As one might imagine, the lack of postings here at is not the result of a lack of thinks about which to comment, reflect or share, but rather stems from the chaos of the holiday season, traveling and unforeseen events arising such as the recent death of my grandmother. One of the things I’ve been meaning to share for some time is an article published in the Christmas issue of the Jesuit weekly America by Chris Pramuk, a professor of theology at Xavier University and a fellow member of the Board of the International Thomas Merton Society with me. His reflection, titled “The Weary World Rejoices,” is deeply personal and illustrates what the Incarnation means in a world that experiences suffering and loss, while also providing the condition for joy and salvation. This redemption or transformation from the world’s “weariness,” as the article’s title suggests, to “rejoicing” comes through strongly. Here is an excerpt from his introduction.

The Incarnation, God’s love poured out “in the flesh” of Jesus, remained an abstraction, a doctrine that needed to be understood and explained, certainly, but hardly something one would live.

It was not until I became a father that the mystery of Christmas began to come alive in my heart. With the births of two children and the loss of two by miscarriage, the drama of “love becoming flesh” suddenly became real to me. I began to hear the Nativity stories through the ears of my heart, as it were, and to see through the eyes of my imagination. The Incarnation became less important as a doctrine than as a lifeline I could grab onto with both hands: God’s palpable nearness in the fleshly stuff of an ordinary day. Today the birth narratives disturb and haunt me in their capacity to speak to a world that labors “in great darkness,” to the hearts of a people grown weary with disappointment and scandal. The Nativity sustains me in hope and expectation…

Chris does a great job inviting the readers into his own life and experience to begin to see how we might indeed live the Incarnation. To read the rest, go here.

Image: Michael O’Brien

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