A Christmas Snippet from Archbishop Christopher Prowse

archbishopbyline(The following text is from a homily given by Archbishop Christopher Prowse to the South Woden parish at the 40th anniversary of the dedication of their Sacred Heart Church on Sunday, December 11)

As Christmas nears let us remember an important foundation of our Catholic Faith.

We believe that there are in fact three nativities of Jesus in the world.

The first Nativity is his birth in the flesh 2000 years ago in the humble stable of Bethlehem in present day Middle East. When we hear of so much darkness of warfare and selfishness in the world, this darkness is conquered by the Light of Christ who came into our world 2000 years ago. Jesus is the expression of God’s immense love for us. God who is almighty has become so fragile and little in a small child. May it never be said of us that there is “no room at the Inn” in this Parish or in this Archdiocese for the Lord. Jesus is always welcome into our midst. How much we need him.

Yet there is also the promise that the Lord will come again at the end of time. This is seen in the second reading from today. St James tells his people to “Be patient, Brothers, until the Lord’s coming”. In the early Church they thought that Jesus might return again at any moment – in their own lifetime. 2000 years later we are still waiting for the Lord’s Second Coming. When He comes again he will come in Glory. He will come to judge the world with love and mercy. He will be asking all of us in what ways did we feed the hungry, visit the sick and imprisoned, clothe the naked and proclaim His Kingdom to the peripheries of our world. Let us prepare for the Second Coming with the sense that we are but travellers here on this Earth, as St Mary of the Cross would say.

But there is a third Nativity of Jesus. Not only has he come in the flesh and not only will he come again in Glory, but he comes to us right now through the Holy Spirit. We can almost call it the Nativity of the Holy Spirit.