The gift we receive at Christmas is Jesus. The gift we receive at Mass is Jesus, truly present in the Most Holy Eucharist.
The bread that I give is my flesh for the life of the world. John 6:52
Because we receive Jesus, who is love incarnate, we can truly love our neighbor. Without him, the peace, which is beyond human understanding, is not possible. We are prone to selfishness and division; Jesus heals our wounds. This is what we celebrate at Christmas. The beautiful readings of Sacred Scripture in the Liturgy of the Word during the Masses of Advent and Christmas (and throughout the year) help us to pray and deepen our encounter with Jesus so that we can be equipped as missionary disciples. Each of us is called to be intentional in mission and in service. Giving to others what Jesus gave to us, our lives become a celebration of grace.
Sr. Esther Mary Nickel, RSM
Director of the Office of Sacred Worship, Archdiocese of Detroit