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Fourth Sunday of Advent: Behold Emmanuel
By Sister Rose Marie Tulacz

 

“Behold, the Virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and they shall name Him Emmanuel, which means ‘God is with us’.” Matthew 1: 23

The scripture readings for this week hover expectantly at the approach of Christmas.  In this threshold moment, I sense it is not a time to write something new, but to pull back the veil, clarify and magnify what has been revealed.

There is incredible beauty in being human. We are precious to God. God loves us unconditionally. God rejoices in us. God delights in our beauty. True humanity is God’s presence revealed in the world. The Incarnation is about God’s longing and passionate desire to be known, loved and embraced in the humanity of His Son, Jesus. The Incarnation is about God taking up residence in us. It is about God’s pulsing delight in being visible in human form. At our very core is the movement of the Holy Spirit throbbing behind every heartbeat and graced activity within our souls.

As we pause and reflect on what true humanity is, we are pulled into the heart of the world, with all its sufferings, injustices, fears, joys and goodness. We cannot despair or become indifferent to the cries of the poor as the truth of the Incarnation is revealed and the work of transformation into God-likeness has its way.

The birth of Jesus in time and space is indeed a bright star in the history of the world. Our prayer and Eucharistic moments as faith communities are the necessary means to continue to liberate and celebrate God’s being with us in our everyday experiences and relationships. The path to human fulfillment is embracing the truth our relationship with God and with one another is inseparable. 

 

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