Saturday, December 23, 2017

Brown Christmas

At Christmas time we search for messages of peace and good will all the while hoping for a little relief from the daily news of divided sides sniping at each other while half heartedly saying to each other “Merry Christmas!”  Perhaps that’s why “Happy Holidays” is attractive to many pretense well-wishers.    Taking the Christ out of Christmas may ease the conscience of us Catholics wielding insults and bearing grudges, even with Christmas carols telling us to forgive and love – to be joyful.

Larry Brown, a teacher whose opinion pieces occur regularly in the Cape Cod Times, gives us a lesson in yesterday’s edition of the Times.    Entitled “How can we ‘keep Christmas’ in times like these?” his opinion should ring our Christmas bells loudly.

He reminds us of Jimmy Stewart’s “It’s a Wonderful Life,” and says, “Good people, loving people feel the suffering around them.  But angry people listen only to themselves.  When the forces of disintegration are more competitive than the forces of unity, dark times can come.  Love always survives, but sometimes as a refugee.  I worry a lot about that.”

Larry mentions he is a Hindu who “keeps Christmas.”  He says, “Hindu scripture tells us we should not love the religion; we should love the soul in the religion.  In behavioral terms ‘keep Christmas’ means really looking for the souls in people we meet.  It’s trying to remember we’re all souls in body suits – spiritual beings.”

For us Catholics our “soul” is Jesus, our Christ.   Let’s focus on what’s about to happen on the 25th – the birth of our “soul” that speaks to kindness.   As Larry says, “Instinctive kindness is the fruit of gratitude that’s not forgotten.  It’s not actually about the creeds, which without love are meaningless.” 

Merry Christmas! 

Deacon David Pierce  

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