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Posted on: December 23rd, 2021


Opening to the reading for the Mass on Christmas Day: Gospel Lectionary of Sainte-Chapelle, Paris, France, last quarter of the 13th century

Thursday, December 23, 2021

Malachi 3:1-5; 
Psalm 25: 1-14; 
Luke 1: 57-66

“All these things were talked about through the hill country of Judea” 

Luke 1:65 (RSV)

Zechariah certainly got everyone talking after they heard him bless the Lord!   He had been mute; his tongue was loosened only after he wrote that his son’s name, surprisingly, would be John.  Zechariah’s son, John, used his voice to proclaim Jesus’s arrival and people listened.    

How do we use our voices to proclaim Jesus – to heal and encourage others in his name?   

Last summer, I helped a friend, who uses a wheelchair, cross the main street in our town.  We went to the corner where there are sidewalk ramps to make our way across.  The ramp on the other side was not at all smooth!    I was having difficulty pushing the wheelchair, when I heard a voice asking if she could help.  It was like a voice from heaven and that alone provided the last needed ‘oomph’! The following day when I met with my book group, one friend asked, “Was that you pushing the wheelchair?” Amazed, I asked, “Was that you offering to help!?!”  We explained the encounter and I told them what a blessing she had been.  In the whole scheme of things, this was not a huge event.  That afternoon, though, her voice and call had been a witness to our intertwined lives.    

Christ’s birth makes Love incarnate.  May we listen to and for God’s word among us.  We need not wait for big events.  We can recount the small blessings we receive daily. 

Martha Bartlett