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Donnybrook Parish

lent reflectionThe  primary place  of  encounter with  God  for most  adults,  and children,  is  family  life.    For Christians, the  family is  the  first experience  of  Church; “It  is  within  the  family,  the  domestic church, that  we  first  live our  Christianity that  we  identify what  Christian  life consists  in,  that  we  learn  beliefs  and values,  and grow in  prayer”

Pope  Francis  advice  to families

Give a  kind  look.

Never  underestimate the  value  of  a  gaze of  love.

“Anyone who  is  “In  Christ”  is a new  creation. It  is all  God’s work”
 (5  Cor:  V17)

Pope Francis Peace to all people and to all nations on earth! Peace, which the angels proclaimed to the shepherds on Christmas night, is a profound aspiration for everyone, for each individual and all peoples, and especially for those who most keenly suffer its absence. Among these whom I constantly keep in my thoughts and prayers, I would once again mention the over 250 million migrants worldwide, of whom 22.5 million are refugees. Pope Benedict XVI, my beloved predecessor, spoke of them as “men and women, children, young and elderly people, who are searching for somewhere to live in peace.” In order to find that peace, they are willing to risk their lives on a journey that is often long and perilous, to endure hardships and suffering, and to encounter fences and walls built to keep them far from their goal.

In a spirit of compassion, let us embrace all those fleeing from war and hunger, or forced by discrimination, persecution, poverty and environmental degradation to leave their homelands.

Pope FrancisIn Bethlehem, Jesus was born of the Virgin Mary.  He was born, not by the will of man, but by the gift of the love of God our Father, who “so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life” (Jn 3:16).

This event is renewed today in the Church, a pilgrim in time.  For the faith of the Christian people relives in the Christmas liturgy the mystery of the God who comes, who assumes our mortal human flesh, and who becomes lowly and poor in order to save us.  And this moves us deeply, for great is the tenderness of our Father.

The first people to see the humble glory of the Saviour, after Mary and Joseph, were the shepherds of Bethlehem.  They recognized the sign proclaimed to them by the angels and adored the Child.  Those humble and watchful men are an example for believers of every age who, before the mystery of Jesus, are not scandalized by his poverty.  Rather, like Mary, they trust in God’s word and contemplate his glory with simple eyes.  Before the mystery of the Word made flesh, Christians in every place confess with the words of the Evangelist John: “We have beheld his glory, glory as of the only-begotten Son from the Father, full of grace and truth” (Jn 1:14).