Gospel Reflections

Feast of the Nativity Dawn

Luke 2:15-20

Feast Day Reflection by Sister Edna Maier

Published: December 25, 2015

Read Luke 2:15-20

When the angels went away from them to heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go, then, to Bethlehem to see this thing... Read More…


Christmas Blessings to all as we reflect on the readings presented to us during the Mass at Dawn. First, let me share some thoughts about the three Christmas Masses:

  • Midnight Mass (when many of us are sleeping) the gift of our dreams.
  • Mass at Dawn (when the sun rises and so do we) the gift of blessed beginnings.
  • Mass at Day (when usual activities become special) the gift of renewed awareness of God’s Presence.             

And now for the blessings proclaimed at Dawn: Isaiah tells us that we are God’s reward! I once heard this short, sweet message proclaimed by a preacher at a Day of Reflection years ago. I fell in love with it then but had forgotten the reference.  Finding it in today’s Mass at Dawn was such a gift as it “dawned on me” that this blessing of the past was so near. Hopefully, some special blessing will “dawn on you” this Christmas day!

Psalm 97 picks up the theme with several verses, especially: Light dawns for the just; and gladness for the upright of heart. And, lest we get too carried away with our own goodness, Paul’s letter to Titus reminds us “not because of any righteous deeds we had done but because of his mercy, he saved us.” Yes, we are God’s reward, not because of our good deeds, but because of God’s Love and Mercy. In another saying (author unknown) that I heard once upon a time and that I have shared with many, “God loves you just the way you are, but too much to leave you that way!” This sentence will bring a smile this Christmas dawn.

Now to hear the Dawn Gospel featuring shepherds, simple shepherds who had been visited by angels, angels they had heard on high.  The angels had revealed to them the message of the miraculous birth in Bethlehem (House of Bread); these angels had fired the hearts of the shepherds.  It was not enough for them to simply hear the good news. The shepherds had to get up and go to Bethlehem, whether this was convenient or inconvenient. They desired to taste and see “this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.”

O Holy Night, O Blessed Dawn, O Happy Day! May we not only sing your Christmas good news, but also we need to be ready to get up and go with the shepherds to the places and people where our faith calls  us. As we have been fed in the House of Bread this Christmas, may we feed others with the good news of Jesus.  Amen.

 

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