Dear Friends in Christ,
Warmest wishes for a blessed Christmas!
The scripture readings for this wondrous week remind us that it is God who took the first step, coming down to earth in fulfillment of ancient promises to save us from our sinfulness. And now God seeks to be close to us, to strengthen us, and to give us new life in his Son as we wait for his coming in glory.
In the midst of all the distractions of this holy season, may the saving Lord lift us up, draw us close to him, and make us aware of his nearness to us.
As we celebrate the birth of the Prince of Peace, we pray in a special way for peace in our world. We pray for healing and consolation for those who suffer from the violence and destruction that come from war. And we pray also for the women and men of our military, especially those serving overseas and those who are separated from their families. May God bless them, keep them safe and bring them quickly home.
The Holy Father has declared this the “year of the Eucharist”; may the Lord help us see in Christmas the “Christ Mass” at the heart of our meeting with Jesus!
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Cardinal William H. Keeler
Archbishop of Baltimore