25 December 2014
Homily of the Apostolic Nuncio
His Grace Archbishop Petar Rajič
Mass during the Day
Is 52:7-10; Heb 1:1-6; Jn 1:1-18
In celebrating the most famous and popular birthday in the history of the world, the Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ, we are in fact at the same time celebrating many things.
Christmas is a celebration of life: God, the author of life has entered our world. The existence of God has been revealed through Jesus Christ. As John so beautifully wrote in today’s gospel passage, “no one has seen God, the first born of God, has revealed him to us”. In him we find life. Jesus said of himself: “I am the way the truth and the life”. God is life. We come to this awareness through faith. Having this faith, we have a new life in God. Life takes upon new meaning and purpose. Thanks to God we have a reason to live and a reason to die.
Christmas reminds us of our new birth in God. Christ was born a man like us that we might be born of God. Though we have all been born through the love of our parents, we are also born of God when we have faith in him. In God we are constantly re-born, forever young, no matter how old we are.
Christmas is a time for reconciliation. Christ came into the world to save us from our sins and to forgive us. He came in order to give up his life as a ransom for our salvation. Through him we have been reconciled with God. We have a duty then to God, to be reconciled with one another. No matter how many difficulties we have with people, we are constantly called by God to live in harmony with everybody.
Christmas is a time for love. God’s love has been manifested to the world by his arrival. He comes into our lives in order to fill us with his presence and his love. Christ commands us to love God and one another. This love should extend throughout the whole year and not only at Christmas time. Sincerely loving each other means accepting each other as we are, for we are all brothers and sisters in Christ and through him sons and daughters of God.
Christmas is a time for peace. Christ is the Prince of peace. He has given us his peace, which is not the peace the world provides. His peace is based upon justice, forgiveness, mercy, compassion, in a word – love. His peace enters our souls and minds, giving us light, new energy and life in him. We are called to be peacemakers in everything we do, so that we too may become sons of God.
Christmas is the nativity or birthday of our Lord and God Jesus Christ. By coming into our world, God has changed us and our world. Let us celebrate this solemn feast not only today, but throughout our lives with unwavering faith, constant hope and charity in words and deeds. O come let us adore him – Christ the Lord!