This is no time for a child to be born,
With the earth betrayed by war & hate
And a comet slashing the sky to warn
That time runs out & the sun burns late.
That was no time for a child to be born,
In a land in the crushing grip of Rome;
Honour & truth were trampled by scorn-
Yet here did the Saviour make his home.
When is the time for love to be born?
The inn is full on the planet earth,
And by a comet the sky is torn-
Yet Love still takes the risk of birth.
You shall not wrong a sojourner or oppress him,
for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt.
I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
“This is the feast where we celebrate the commonplace blessed and transformed by the flesh-taking of God. Straw and manger bed become a throne, ox and ass the gracious hosts, and humble, fumbling humanity the honored visionaries who come to look and, what is more, to see and understand. The old tensions between sacred and mundane ease, merge and grant us peace. It is our chauvinism, not God’s, that contrast the earthy to the heavenly and finds it ordinary, banal, and unimaginative. The divine contradiction is that we find him where we least expect it. The human condition: our peak experiences, and especially our sorrows, our successes and especially our failures, our “in loveness,” but especially our struggling human relationships this is the manger bed, these the places where we will know him, the Word in human vesture.”
-Gertrud Mueller Nelson “To Dance with God”
God of promise,
Make us ready for Your coming.
Help us to quiet moments of contemplation.
Help us to see awesome beauty in one another’s eyes.
Help us to hear and resound to the cries of the poor and the oppressed.
Help us to breathe in the wonders of nature.
Help us to walk along that path that leads to You.
Help us to know the only truth that will save us.
Help us to serve You until that day.
When we meet face to face.
Help us to grow closer to You with each passing day and to love you.
Come, Lord Jesus!
-Carmen L. Caltagirone
with quickened hope
for crooked paths
keepers of the keys
(If such a thing were possible.)
and will not be
For tiny shoot
of Jesse tree
took root in me
-Sr. Christine Schenk
From Mary’s sweet silence,
Come, Word mutely spoken!
Pledge of our real life,
Come, Bread yet unbroken!
Seed of the Golden Wheat,
In us be sown.
Fullness of true Light,
Through us be known.
Secret held tenderly,
Guarded with Love,
Cradled in purity,
Child of the Dove,
-Sr. M. Charlita, I.H.M.