BLOG: Advent and Christmas
The feast of the Immaculate Conception is a public holiday in Italy and most of Europe. When I lived there as a student, December 8th was always a special day because it was a holiday, because it reminded me that Advent had indeed begun, and because it was also the day for a special gathering with ...read more
A reflection on the importance and history of Saint Nicholas, otherwise known as the Spiritual Father of Christmas. St. Nicholas, pray for us. ...read more
In our culture of abundance, more and more people are giving to charities this season. As Salt + Light launches its Advent fundraising campaign, Kris and Cheridan explain why should consider a donation to our media ministry. ...read more
Whether you call your Christmas nativity scene a creche, manger, putz, or szopka, displaying the nativity is a treasured Christian tradition. I recall our little manger; I’d spend hours meticulously trying to figure out how many sheep should stand next the ox and if baby Jesus had enough hay to sleep on. No doubt, you ...read more
Huge crowds gathered to join the Holy Father as he celebrated Vespers of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  Below find his words to the thousands of German faithful gathered at Etzelsbach: Dear Brothers and Sisters, Now I am able to fulfill my wish to visit Eichsfeld, and here in Etzelsbach to thank Mary in company with ...read more
Today is January 6th, and I am thinking of the three wise men. And the three wise men make me think of distances. I was always intrigued about distances in Israel. When I read that Mary and Joseph walked from Nazareth to Bethlehem, or that Mary rode on a donkey, it’s hard to appreciate how ...read more
As we enter into a New Year, the Church celebrates the great solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God. The Church also commemorates the World Day of Peace today. (You can read Pope Benedict’s message for the day, which focuses on religious freedom, here.) As we mark there two occasions, let us pray to our ...read more
Waiting.  Expecting.  Calmly expecting.  Expecting nothing else but to be with God.  Just being available for Him. Last time, I talked about how a friend’s visit inspired me into the “passive active-ness” needed to prepare for God this Christmas. But there’s someone else who inspires me.  On a regular basis.  A woman just like me ...read more
Waiting.  Expecting.  Calmly expecting.  Expecting nothing else but to be with God.  Just being available for Him. For almost two months, I have been focusing on what this is like as I reflected on Christ’s coming this Christmas.  This mode of silent, almost “passive active-ness” was inspired by a visit from a friend. Three weeks ...read more
Pope Benedict delivered his Urbi et Orbi — to the City (of Rome) and to the World — today at noon, Rome time.  The traditional message and blessing is given Christmas and Easter.  The theme of the message is The Word became flesh, and throughout his greeting the Holy Father stressed that God is with ...read more