“For behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all people.” (Luke 2:10)
Dear Confreres, Sisters, Lay Missionaries and Associates, and friends,
In the name of the General Government, I wish all of you a Blessed and Joyful Christmas! Once again, we listen together to the words of the angel who brings us this good news of great joy: “Today…a savior has been born for you who is Messiah and Lord… You will find an infant wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.”
As Pope Francis reminded us this week, “When God wanted to turn upside down the values of this world, he became small, in a stable, with the little one, with the poor, with the marginalized… Littleness… the littleness of this God…”
Why this ‘littleness of God’? Blessed Pope Paul VI explained this mystery at Christmas, 1971: “God came as the smallest, the frailest and weakest of beings. Why? So that no one would be ashamed to approach him, so that no one would be afraid, so that all would be close to him and draw near him, so that there would be no distance between us and him.” As St. Alphonsus wrote in his Christmas Novena, love and love alone is the reason for the Incarnation.
The littleness of God is God’s solidarity with us in our wounded world. God becomes one with all the little ones of the earth – with the refugees and the migrants, with the homeless and the poor, with the youth and the aged, with the fearful and the suffering. The Redeemer does not come among us as a conqueror but as a child. This child invites us to the same solidarity with one another and with all.
Together, let us live our missionary vocation as Witnesses of the Redeemer: in solidarity for mission to a wounded world.
May God bless you and all you love with peace and joy, reconciliation and hope. May Mary teach us to ponder this mystery and treasure it in our hearts.
Your brother in the Redeemer,
Michael Brehl, C.Ss.R.