Christmas

"Adoration of the Magi" (detail) by Jan de Bray [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

The Epiphany—God Has Come for You

OUR SEARCH FOR GOD It is likely that each of us here actively seeks the Lord. Jesus instructs us to seek Him, saying, “Seek and you will find.” Man and woman’s search for God is a recurring story through the ages as we try to discover the meaning of our lives. While meditating on the Fifth Joyful Mystery of the […]

"Adoration of Magi" (detail) by Diego Velázquez [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

A King to Behold

Dr. Scott Hahn reflects on the Mass readings for Christmastide: The Epiphany of the Lord Readings:Isaiah 60:1–6Psalm 72:1–2, 7–8, 10–13Ephesians 3:2–3, 5–6Matthew 2:1–12 An “epiphany” is an appearance. In today’s readings, with their rising stars, splendorous lights, and mysteries revealed, the face of the child born on Christmas day appears. Herod, in today’s Gospel, asks the chief priests and scribes where the Messiah […]

"Adoration of the Magi" (detail) by Sébastien Bourdon [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

The Magi and the gifts of …. Lent?

What shall we give him?  I have always been intrigued by the magi.  Their story forms the majority of Matthew’s account of the birth of Jesus Christ, and yet there remain so many questions about these mysterious figures. Where did they come from? How did they know to follow the star? What did they think when they found the Holy […]

"Christ the Consolator" (detail) by Carl Heinrich Bloch (1834-1890) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Eliminating Obstacles Between Christ and Us in 2020

As I considered what to write for this post in the first week of 2020, I reflected on years of well-intended resolutions to lose weight, go to daily Mass, pick up a new hobby, play more tennis, etc. which ended in failure as my desires clashed with the reality of my busy schedule and stubborn resistance to change. I like […]

"Madonna and Child" (detail) by Sassoferrato | Restored Traditions

God Chose Mary to be His Mother

The teaching that Mary is God’s mother was proclaimed to teach us that Jesus is true man AND true God. Each January 1 (the Octave of Christmas), the Church celebrates the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God.  I receive more comments and questions from non-Catholics, and even some Catholics, about the Church’s Marian practices and teachings than just about any other topic. […]

"The Flight to Egypt" (detail) by Carl Spitzweg

Remembering the Holy Innocents

On the fourth day of our Christmas celebration, the Church reminds us that not everyone is joyful; that there exist those who are not of goodwill who do not wish to receive the season’s glad tidings. Today is the Feast of the Holy Innocents in which the Church recalls and honors those baby boys whose lives were taken in a […]

"Adoration of the Shepherds" (detail) by Antonio Balestra [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

St. John and the Incarnation

“God became man and became friends with people like us.” It’s fitting that a few days after we celebrate God becoming man, we celebrate the feast of one of his best friends. John the apostle, evangelist, guardian of the Blessed Mother, and beloved disciple was also an apologist for the mystery we celebrate during this season: the Incarnation. One of […]

Good King Wenceslaus and Christmas’ Call to Holiness

Most Christmas carols are about that first Christmas night or the celebration of Christmas today.  But one stands out as something different. In a way, the carol “Good King Wenceslaus” isn’t as much about Christmas as it is about what Christmas requires of us. “Good King Wenceslaus” always gets stuck in my head on two days: September 28 and December […]

"Adoration of the Shepherds" (detail) by Gerard van Honthorst [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

God’s Greatest Gift

“I am with you always, to the close of the age.” (Matthew 28:20) Merry Christmas! I love holidays. I love family. The two just seem to go together, don’t they?. Some holidays are joyful gatherings, some not so much. We are all too human, as the saying goes. But I say, give me holidays and family any day; warts and […]

"Adoration of the Shepherds" (detail) by Bartolomé Esteban Murillo [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Learning from the Shepherds at Midnight Mass

This message, indeed, “cannot leave us indifferent.” Because it is true, “it changes everything.” There is something beautifully symbolic about the tradition of Midnight Mass. It shows that Christians are so eager for Christmas to begin that they want to start celebrating on the first moment of Christmas day. People who ordinarily never go out late at night and are […]