Visiting priest Father David Warren, S.F.M., celebrates Christmas Mass in Ste. Angele mission church in Poundmaker, Saskatchewan, in the Diocese of Prince Albert.
Think of the special gifts extended to the Lord by our missionaries who commit themselves to a radical life of evangelization so different from the secular world in which we live.
One of the best-loved scenes in the Christmas cycle of the New Testament readings is the one we hear at Epiphany. The magi have come a long distance to see the announced Child, the Christ of God. But, knowing the awesomeness of the special Person whom they approach, they come with gifts. And wonderful gifts they are, indeed. Gold, frankincense and myrrh are presented to the small Child, to pay tribute to this highest of Kings with the most precious of metals, to draw attention with frankincense to the great dignity He possesses, and confess the quintessence of all humanity in His person with the valuable donation of myrrh.
The magi have placed before us, too, something valuable. And that is the occasion to ponder the kind and degree of gifts we offer to the One Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. What do we kneel and place before Him, as the magi did? Surely, we wish to give Him something worthy of His dignity.
Think, for example, of the special gifts extended to the Lord by our missionaries, who commit themselves to a radical life of evangelization so different from the secular world in which we live. Theirs is a sacrifice, almost always in straitened circumstances of poverty and isolation, to transmit the message of God's Word to the world.
You may not be able to put yourself in the position of a missionary, but there are other ways you can imitate the donation of the magi. Prayer for the work of these good men and women missionaries, as they pursue their vocation of love is crucial. Thinking of their constant commitment of love ensures that the heritage of spiritual goodness will go on. And considering definite gifts of monetary value helps ensure that the Living Word will last and grow in the far reaches of our country. Catholic Missions In Canada depends especially on this last mode of giving to keep our mission work vibrant and lasting.
This year you may think of yourself as one of the magi, for the first time. May God gift you, too, with special graces in 2011.