by Fr Tarcizio Paulo Odelli, SDB
The humanization of God divinizes the human being. This is the great message to celebrate and experience during the Christmas season. Through the Gospel we can reflect on four words that help us to celebrate Christmas in a "Christian" way and within this perspective humanize / restore the human being.
Christmas is welcoming
We live in a hectic era. One of the characteristics of this time is the distraction from the simple and beautiful things in life. This is why Christmas reminds us that we must learn to welcome the other, to be attentive to those by our side.
Mary is a model of hospitality and welcome. She listened to the angel's message, welcomed everything in her heart, and that is why the Word was incarnated in her womb. The Strenna 2019 invites us to welcome and understand the needs of today's young people, and sometimes the needs of their parents, or those with whom we are in contact in the pastoral environment.
Christmas is dialogue
Once again, Mary is our model. She not only listens to the angel, but converses with him. And in this dialogue she discovers what God's plan is for her. Even if she does not understand everything, she gives a positive answer.
The Christmas period offers us the opportunity to leave the house, to visit people, not to close ourselves in our little world. There is a lot of life around us. We must learn to speak and converse with others without offending them.
Christmas is caring
Our mission is also linked to the care of the lives of children, adolescents and young people. Joseph is our model, because he was called by God to take care of Jesus. And how he took care of Him! He spared no effort. The Strenna 2019 also talks about the art of accompanying.
It is not enough to be fathers, we must be present in life, open our eyes to the needs of others, accompany the person, the young person or the adult with real interest in what he or she seeks and expects from him- or herself, with real empathy, which is the opposite of the cold and formal courtesy.
Christmas is meeting
The shepherds were the first to meet Jesus, and they show us that meeting Jesus is the greatest joy that can happen in the life of each one of us.
Don Bosco told his young people that they should not envy the shepherds who went to the cave of Bethlehem to see the baby Jesus: "'Blessed or lucky shepherds', we say. But we must not envy them, because their luck is ours too. Jesus himself, who was visited by the shepherds in His cave, is here in the tabernacle ... And there is nothing more pleasant for Him than for us to frequently visit Him."