By Paul Dion, STL
First, allow me to present a statement: We are now gaining about 1.5 minutes of sunlight per day, on average, since December 21. It will take until March 21 for the amount of sunlight to equal the amount of night. So don't try to hold your breath. Now we can get a little bit serious, but not too much.
It is quite certain that most of you have seen the "abbreviated" form of Christmas, you know, XMAS. Some of you just accept it and don't pay any heed. Others look at it and are offended. Some of you are perhaps thinking that it is part of the "vast, left-wing conspiracy that is out there to demolish CHRISTMAS.
ParishWorld.net does not use this form of writing "Christmas" because of the confusion that it can cause.
Now, the question(s):
Are you offended when you see XMAS? If you are, why?
If you are one of those who are not offended by XMAS, why are you not offended by it?
I know that this can seem silly, but if you are indifferent about it, why is that so?
Wait until you see the answer. You will all see that this is not a "silly" question.
If you still need to get something off your chest, we await your sentiments with open arms and a sharpened pencil.
God bless you all.
By Paul Dion, STL
We know a lot about the life of Jesus as an adult. We know that He gathered people around Himself and preached to them with authority. The story of Jesus' infancy in Matthew has a lot of indicators about where the source of this authority lies. I expect that many of you will point to the genealogy that is the hallmark of Matthew's gospel.
There are several other markers in the story that point to some of Yahweh's strongest "messiahs" (anointed ones) and to some of the Chosen People's most glorious, and notorious, adventures that are experienced by Jesus, Mary and Joseph in the first two chapters of Matthew.
These experiences are God's work fashioning the Son into the complete, authoritative incarnation of Himself, the fulfillment of His announcing that this child will be Emmanuel, Jesus (Joshua in Hebrew), the one who saves.
Here is this week's burning question: How does Matthew let us know that Jesus is "Special?"
Discuss the symbolism of the "Adventures of Jesus, Mary and Joseph" in the first two chapters of Matthew.