Horizon: Christmas

Christmas is joy, newness, and a wonder to be discovered

Vatican Media
Vatican Media

Christmas celebrates the birth of a Child. What God has done for Humanity is to give it a Child. A child is fragile. It needs others even to survive. A little one is greater than the most powerful technological invention. In a world where the heads of the needy are trampled on, Christmas tells us of the birth of a poor child; weak squared. In such a dehumanised world, Christmas, so full of humanism, vindicates the truth of man, his dignity, and his inherent rights. Amid so many induced abortions, Christmas celebrates that the conceived has come to birth. On this earth, full of confusion, it is clear that the Child is a being, male, with a finished nature. In a dark universe, this flower of purity, the supreme model of humanity, is born. The highest sanctity consists in following him fully. In a world of so much paganism, Christmas celebrates the birth of the son of the Virgin, whose mother is the simplest, the best, the greatest model of a woman, the most holy, the most familiar, the most pure, who has lived clean and beautiful love. In the Amidmidst of so many family crises, Christmas brings the family together, like an echo of “see how they love each other”.

We live in a very changing world. More things have changed in half a century than in a millennium. We are at a change of era, in a radically new reality, something from another dimension, from another world. This was unimaginable before. Changes are taking place at a dizzying pace and are accelerating ever faster, without it being possible to know where we are going to end up, or even what challenges the very near future will bring.

A trajectory is marked by joining points in time. Thus, the 20th century, the century of nuclear energy, of great scientific and technological progress, was the century of the world wars, the bloodiest in history. The 21st century, from which it stems, is moving towards the computer revolution and the biological revolution. At present there are so many wars that Pope Francis has been able to say that we are already living in the third world war. Christmas rejoices because the prince of peace has been born. Without God, man cannot achieve peace. Peace is a gift of God. The reign of Christ is a reign of peace.

Let us suppose that in every corner of the world, there could be a mobile phone connected to the internet. Then, simplistically, at every spatio-temporal point there would be a representation of the whole universe, with which one could interact. That is, that tiny point would be like a little bag containing the entire immense Cosmos. This, then, would affect every household, every child, and so on. Given the human inclination towards evil, it cannot be underestimated that this new power could even be used for great evils. In any case, one thing is clear: we have a problem!

Today, the use of science has broken with ethics and with God. Our world is shouting louder and louder and this separation is very harmful. We find that the human person is unable to solve its major problems. Progress has brought him to the edge of a great abyss. Today, especially, we need a Saviour. This cannot be a human person. Only God can save us. Christmas celebrates the birth of the One who, when original sin had closed heaven to us, has come to forgive us, to save us. What good would it have done us to be born if there could be no salvation? Christmas rejoices in the birth of the One who continues to save us, the only Saviour of the world. He is our liberator, the only hand that can save us from the quicksand. He is the Love that pulls us upwards. Relying on Christ, there will always be hope and optimism.

The truth will set you free. Now, in many places, political party discipline means voting whatever the party says, whatever that may be. Where then is the human being, his greatness? Such a discipline is the union of demagogic lies and the dictatorship of relativism. This being the case, Christmas celebrates the birth of the One who is the Truth, faithful witness, martyr, who came to bear witness to the truth, and who is the giver of true freedom.

Christmas rejoices in the birth of the One who is the light of the world and the founder of the Church, his great work, his immaculate bride, his mystical body, which is one, holy, catholic, apostolic, Roman, always persecuted and slandered.

Christmas celebrates this absolute truth very much: this newborn child is truly and perfectly God, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who has become incarnate. It is the wonder of infinite goodness! He is God, who cares for mankind as a gardener tenderly cares for the flowers in his garden. Christmas brings before our eyes the truth of God. This truth, God who is Love, –Deus caritas est-, illuminates the truth of man. God wants to be born and to grow in your heart, which is capable of the infinite! All reality is illuminated by the beating of a paternal, merciful heart of infinite love, and this is what is decisive. This is also a breath of joy.

When the world turns away from God, it is saddened and decays. Christmas is joy. The angel said to the shepherds: “Do not be afraid. Behold, I come to bring you good news of great joy, which will be for all the people: today in the city of David a Saviour has been born to you, who is Christ, the Lord; and this will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger. Christ is the Desire of the Gentiles. Pope Francis has said: Jesus Christ is joy. The Gospel is a proclamation of joy. To encounter Jesus is to encounter joy. Jesus is the source of joy.

Christmas is a celebration of the birth of the victor, the one who never loses battles. Being with him, even in these exciting times, we will have the great joy of victory, we will never be defeated. For he who does the will of God always wins!

Christmas stands before our eyes like a stupendous fire castle. One of its trails is formed by humanism, the best humanism. Another trajectory is the infinite radiance of divinity. Another orbit unfurled is hope, which flows luminous from the Redemptor hominis. That is to say, an artistic triangle of light has been formed, which is inscribed in the circumference of joy, poetry, music and beauty. In the centre of this luminous polygon, there is a large inscription: Your Jesus is born!

Can those tiny dots, called men, stuck to the broken earthly sphere, so stained with blood, not raise their heads and marvel at this grandiose astronomical spectacle? Why, instead of breathing the sad and dark air, – of earth traversed by underground galleries dug by worms and rodents – why not breathe that air from above, clean, true, luminous, flowery, perfumed, elevated, fantastic, stupendous, sublime, exciting, full of beauty and goodness, enchanting, so attractive, so attracting, so magnetising, so carrying?

In short, definitely, Christmas is joy, a novelty, a marvel to be discovered.