Christmas Message from Father John Hampsch, C.M.F.
Christmas Day is a good time to remember the poster slogan: "Today is the first day of the rest of your life." But remember also that every "today is itself God's gift - that's why we call it the present! Think of that while wrapping those last minute Christmas presents. For a spiritual boost at New Year's that will lift your spirits without imbibing in the spirits, be resolute in your resolutions; practing being at war with your vices and at peace with your neighbors. 'Taint easy, but it keeps your halo from becoming a noose!
So for 1998, start with a cool Yule and follow the Bethlehem Star throughout the New Year by living carefully and prayerfully. That's not just holiday advice for perpetuating the Christmas spirit; it's also a prayer from my faithful staff at CTM for all you Hampschters, echoed by yours truly. In our daily Mass we'll be praying that you make your heart a manger to couch the world's Heaven-sent Present - the One Mary gift-wrapped in swaddling clothes and now presents to you: a Gift that is all yours without asking, and all yours for the taking. And when you hold Him to your heart, while basking in Mary's smile and angel glow, whister in His ear a little prayer for me, woncha? Yule never No-el how grateful I am.
I want to leave you with a special poem I composed which I call "CHRIST-MASS":
My blessings to all this Christmas,
The Virgin who, with Sacred Leaven,
Had fashioned "Bread that came from Heaven,"
Raised Him up with blessing hands
To Magi, shepherds, angel bands,
From His crib-ciborium,
When in my hands on Christmas morn
This Bread-made-God again is born,
I'll lift HIm up that all may see
Love in mute Divinity,
And bless you, friend, with Mary's Babe.
Father John H. Hampsch, C.M.F.
December 25, 1997 volume 8, no. 60   DAILY CATHOLIC