Merry Christmas!!

To the few who read my blog regularly, and to those who read it occasionally, and to the others who happen to have stumbled across it, I wish you all Merry Christmas! Yes, it is the eve of the new year, and yes much of the Western World has moved on. Nevertheless I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and in doing so I want to again invite one and all into a reorientation toward time. As I mentioned in my Advent posts, the liturgical calendar divides time differently than the secular calendar, which when adhered to can reorient us to the world we live in. According to the liturgical calendar it is still the Christmas season and it will continue to be so until January 6th, when the season of Epiphany begins.

Though it feels a bit odd to celebrate Christmas while others are packing up their Christmas decor, it is overall a good experience. The first thing that comes to mind is that I still have lots of time to meet with others and celebrate Christmas with them. As the song says, there are twelve days of Christmas, which means twelve more days of gift-giving, sharing meals with friends and family, and most importantly time set aside to contemplate the mystery of God becoming one of us. Actually, this last thing really takes a lifetime, but it is good amidst the push and pull of our schedules to have time devoted to the things we proclaim are important. So, don’t let the new year distract you from what really matters, and continue to take time to consider God as a weak, dependent, little baby, and thereby lay hold of the unexpected, uncanny, and unfathomable grace of God.

3 Responses to “Merry Christmas!!”

  1. ROG  

    Anthony- I appreciate your willingness to recognize Advent/Christmas correctly – I’m still playing my Christmas music for that very reason – but I’m afraid you’re a salmon swimming upstream.

  2. Anthony Velez  

    Roger – I absolutely agree as far as swimming upstream is concerned, but regardless of the response, I am hoping to at least provoke some thought about various matters regarding the spiritual life, and if a few fish happen to join me along the way, then all the better.

  3. Anthony Velez  

    Oh, and when I lived in Wheaton, IL, I made a connection with a few Xians in the Antiochian Orthodox Church, who followed a different liturgical calendar from the one that Anglicans and Catholics use (I believe they use the Julian calendar in contrast to our Gregorian). They were a close knit community, very family like, and I think a part of their bond was formed through the fact that they were out of pace with both the rest of the world as well as a good part of Christendom. Also, they worshiped through the Divine Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom, which was hauntingly beautiful.