Father Bill Jones delivered the homily at the 12:10 Mass at the Cathedral yesterday. It was such a beautiful meditation on the birth of our Savior, I wanted to share it with our readers.
Father Jones was happy to oblige me by providing a peek at his handwritten notes, which I’ve transcribed here. In his always-humble way, he was also quick to note that some of the material is borrowed from other sources and that this particular homily was drawn from his archives (the papers on which these notes were written date back to the 1970s — proving the message of Christmas is truly timeless!).
I hope you find this as inspirational as I did.
More than 1,900 years ago, Jesus was born contrary to the laws of life. He lived in poverty and was reared in obscurity. He possessed neither wealth nor influence. In infancy, he startled a king. In childhood, he puzzled doctors. In manhood, he ruled the course of nature. He never wrote a book — and yet all the libraries of the county could not hold the books that have been written about him. He never studied medicine and yet he healed more broken hearts than all the doctors far and near. Names of great kings and statesmen, scientists and philosophers have come and gone, but the name of Jesus abounds more and more. Though time has spread 1,900 years between our generation and the scene of his crucifixion, yet Jesus still lives. Herod could not destroy him and the grave could not hold him.
Jesus is the Christ, the Messiah and Savior, the Redeemer of Israel. Jesus is the true light that enlightens all men, a light that shines in darkness, a light that darkness could not overpower.
Jesus began his life on earth by being crowded out. That was to happen all through his ministry and, for that matter, all through history. Christ is born without a home so as to be the more homesick for man — every heart is his hearth. In particular does he sigh for the sinner the wayward, those in need of mercy. That he may be all the more acceptable and we all the more hospitable, he comes as a child. No one need to feel unworthy to come to a stable nor too shy to kneel before an infant savior.
Jesus is seeking a dwelling place in our lives right now! Are we willing to rearrange our lives, to make the necessary changes and make room for him?
What is going to be for us? Invite him in — or crowd him out?