The Birth of Our Lord Jesus - The Nativity
3rd Joyful Mystery of the Rosary
Now at this time Caesar Augustus issued a decree for a census of the whole world to be taken. This census - the first - took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria, and everyone went to his own town to be registered. So Joseph set out from the town of Nazareth in Galilee and travelled up to Judea, to the town of David called Bethlehem, since he was of David's House and line, in order to be registered together with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. While they were there the time came for her to have her child, and she gave birth to a son, her first born. She wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger because there was no room for them in the inn. In the countryside close by there were shepherds who lived in the fields and took it in turns to watch their flocks during the night. The angel of the Lord appeared to them and the glory of the Lord shone round them. They were terrified, but the angel said, "Do not be afraid. Listen, I bring you news of great joy, a joy to be shared by the whole people. Today in the town of David a saviour has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. And here is a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger." And suddenly with the angel there was a great throng of the heavenly host, praising God and singing: "Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace to men who enjoy his favour."
Now when the angels had gone from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, "Let us go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened which the Lord made known to us." So they hurried away and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in the manger. When they saw the child they repeated what they had been told about him, and everyone who heard it was astonished at what the shepherds had to say. As for Mary, she treasured all these things and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds went back glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen; it was exactly as they had been told. (Luke 2: v 1-20)
Meditation: Today we have come to worship our Saviour in the arms of his Mother, like the Christmas shepherds. Imitating Joseph we have tried to prepare the shelter where He is to be laid. We are to be that crib unworthy of Jesus, but beautified and made holy by Mary's presence. Jesus, as Mary enters our lives, may you be born in the silence of our hearts.
Eternal Father, through the motherhood of the Blessed Virgin Mary, you offered mankind the treasures of eternal salvation. Grant that we may feel her presence and know her help, she who has allowed us to receive the Author of Life, Jesus Christ.
Mary, my Mother, in you the Word was made flesh. May this same Word transform my life into something beautiful for God.
The Nativity - As we contemplate now the Holy Family in Bethlehem and the birth of our Saviour, let us pray for all the families in our parish and especially for any families we know who are facing difficulties. May they draw close to the Holy Family and we ask you, Lord, to pour out your blessing on them.
And she brought forth her first born son and wrapped him in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger because there was no room for them in the inn.
Click here for more on this mystery & solemnity of the Nativity by Blessed John Paul II, Papa Benedict XVI & Pope Francis.
3 2us by Father David Barnes
"Christmas tells me so much about myself, about being a human being. It tells us that God wants to share his life with us completely. The fact that God became flesh and dwelt among us tells us that God identifies with us in every way except sin. This is an important message for us to take to heart because it tells me that I am infinitely loveable to God."
Evangelium on Christmas
with Father Marcus Holden ♦
"We're made for the lights of eternity, we're made for God. God became man, born that man no more may die, born to raise the sons of earth, born to give them second birth. He became one with our humanity, not with an animal, a plant or even a planet. He became one with us and it tells us about ourselves that we're made for him and our hearts will be restless until they rest in him. Lets allow him on this night to subvert us! To enter clandestinely as a warrior into our soul, to break down and topple all those idols, all those false things that hold us back, because he will bring light. O Christian realise tonight in the wonder of the manger your nobility. Amen."
¤ - Right click on this symbol to download individual mp3 recording.