Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Day 9. Simbang Gabi - Putting it all together


Gospel: Luke 1:67-79

After knowing that we are part of the unfolding of this great Christmas story, we say the "Benedictus", canticle of Zechariah, with emphasis on the following points, and note that these points are also our prayers:

first, everything is the work of the Lord, the salvation of the Lord, His goodness and love unfolding from every side, to finally free us from our sins and give justice to the world. The Christian is totally God-centered;

second, that He shows mercy (hasad) to all of us; His mercy endures forever; it is what is keeping us alive; in love, capable of giving. Grant that we may realize that every goodness in our hearts is the fruit of God's own goodness and that we are just mirroring it;

third, that God affirms our mission of our being to bring peace to the world through the conduct of our own lives.

Taken all these together, we realize that everything is in God, as in the liturgy - "through Him, with Him, and in Him, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor is yours, Almighty God forever and ever, Amen." And that is what it means to celebrate Christ's birth!

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