Father Valan Arockiaswamy

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HOMILIES

Close Dear Audience,
For better understanding of the spiritual message behind this homily I kindly remind you to first read and contemplate the biblical texts before reading or listening to my preaching - a human reflection on the Word of God!

The Nativity of the Lord (Year B, Day Mass)

Dec 25, 2020 Views 50 Listen 4 Downloads 0
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First Reading

A reading from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah (52:7-10)

How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings glad tidings, announcing peace, bearing good news, announcing salvation, saying to Zion, "Your God is King!"

Hark! Yours sentinels raise a cry, together they shout for joy, for they see directly, before their eyes, the Lord restoring Zion. Break out together in song, O ruins of Jerusalem! For the Lord comforts His people, He redeems Jerusalem. The Lord has bared His holy arm in the sight of all the nations; all the ends of Earth will behold the salvation of our God.

(P) The word of the Lord.
(R) Thanks be to God.

Responsorial Psalm

Psalms of David (98:1, 2-3, 3-4, 5-6)


(R) All the ends of the Earth have seen the saving power of God.

Sing to the Lord a new song, for He has done wondrous deeds; His right hand has won victory for Him, His holy arm. (R)

The Lord has made His salvation known: in the sight of the nations He has revealed His justice. He has remembered His kindness and His faithfulness toward the house of Israel. (R)

All the ends of the Earth have seen the salvation by our God. Sing joyfully to the Lord, all you lands; break into song; sing praise. (R)

Sing praise to the Lord with the harp, with the harp and melodious song. With trumpets and the sound of the horn sing joyfully before the King, the Lord. (R)

Second Reading

A reading from the Letter of Saint Paul to the Hebrews (1:1-6)

Brothers and sisters: In times past, God spoke in partial and various ways to our ancestors through the prophets; in these last days, He has spoken to us through the Son, whom He made heir of all things and through whom He created the universe, who is the refulgence of His glory, the very imprint of His being, and who sustains all things by His mighty word. When he had accomplished purification from sins, he took his seat at the right hand of the Majesty on high, as far superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs.

For to which of the angels did God ever say: You are my son; this day I have begotten you or again: I will be a father to him, and he shall be a son to me? And again, when He leads the firstborn into the world, He says: Let all the angels of God worship him.

(P) The word of the Lord.
(R) Thanks be to God.

Gospel

A reading from the Gospel according to John (1:1-18)

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came to be through Him, and without Him nothing came to be. What came to be through Him was life, and this life was the light of the human race; the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. A man named John was sent from God. He came for testimony, to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He was not the light, but came to testify to the light. The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world came to be through him, but the world did not know him. He came to what was his own, but his own people did not accept him.

But to those who did accept him he gave power to become children of God. These are they who believe in his name, who were born not by natural generation nor by human choice nor by a man's decision but of God. And the Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us, and we saw his glory, the glory as of the Father's only Son, full of grace and truth. John testified to him and cried out, saying, "This was he of whom I said, "The one who is coming after me ranks ahead of me because he existed before me."" From his fullness we have all received, grace in place of grace, because while the law was given through Moses, grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God. The only Son, God, who is at the Father's side, has revealed him.

(P) The Gospel of the Lord.
(R) Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

Homily

One day a kindergarten teacher was observing her classroom of children while they were doing some drawings. She saw one three year old little boy sketching something on his paper. "What are you drawing?" she asked. "I'm drawing a picture of God", the boy replied. "Oh! You can't do that", she said, "Nobody knows what God looks like." Without looking up the boy answered, "Well, they will know now."

If anyone wants to know what God is like then you need to just look at Jesus. Who is Jesus? In today's second reading from the letter to the Hebrews the writer makes declarations about Jesus. The writer does not attempt to prove God's existence but just acknowledges that God exists and, that He reveals Himself to human kind. He says, "In times past, God spoke in partial and various ways to our ancestors through the prophets; in these last days He has spoken to us through the Son." The "last days" refers to the time of Jesus Christ through whom God has revealed Himself fully and completely in a unique way.

To support the claim the writer declares that:

  • Jesus is the Heir of all things.
  • Jesus is the creator who made the universe.
  • Jesus is the radiance of God's glory.
  • Jesus is the exact representation of God's being.
  • Jesus is the sustainer of all things.
  • Jesus is the priest who provides purification for sins.
  • Jesus is the King who reigns supreme at the right hand of God.
  • Jesus is superior to the angels.

That is to say that Jesus does not just bring the message from God the Father but he himself is the message. He is not just purely God's message but also God's personality. Jesus himself has many times said to his disciples, "If you knew me, you would know my Father also", John (8:19). "Whoever has seen me has seen the Father", John (14:9).

To know God we have to know that Jesus is the heart of God revealed to mankind. The child Jesus we see in the manger today is truly worthy of worship because of who he was, is and will be forever. The shepherds, prompted by the angels, found the Messiah as a baby "wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger", Luke (2:12). He looked like other babies in outward appearance but the shepherds saw and knew who he was and they worshipped him with awe, reverence, gratitude and love. Then, they went and told others what they had seen. The shepherds give us the perfect example to follow. Like the shepherds let us also earnestly go and see and come to know Jesus Christ, and then offer to him an acceptable worship with awe, reverence, gratitude and not only today but in the days to come.

(P) Amen.

Wish you all a Blessed and Joyous Christmas!

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