( if you could manage it, there’s a lot of winners in it!)
NOTE: This is only for girls and boys who are over 15yrs, three months and two days old. Everybody else should be just let get on with munching on reindeer cakes and guzzling drinking chocolate!
However this is for the rest of us! It might be entitled:

‘How to avoid your house on Christmas Day becoming like a scene from Albert Square or a bad day in Fair City!’

By the time you are reading this, Christmas fever will be at its height. Yet one more race to the shops. Last minute change of plans causing stress to soar… someone not coming home, or somebody you did not expect, and in many ways you could do without, on the way….

A lot of doors were closed in Bethlehem that night. How about your own door? Oh right. Very good. And tell me, what about the door to your heart? Speaking of your heart, how is it? No I don’t mean the valves or it’s beat. Well maybe I do mean it’s beat. Does it beat freely with love? Would it be a good seat for the Prince of Peace? Is there any irregularity or blockage?
Could such an irregularity or blockage be caused by anger resentment or bitterness?

Do we not yet know that such feelings are the road to no town and not many country places. Surely its not a secret any more that forgiveness, even though it can be really difficult, is the sure way to deep peace. Don’t forget to breathe! A couple of glasses of water can make a huge difference.

Everywhere you go there’s Christmas music, from Chris’s ‘Driving home for Christmas’ to Michael Buble’s ‘Its beginning to look a lot like Christmas’. Indeed there’s still a few places where you might hear ‘Away in a Manger’ or ‘Silent Night’.

Are you personally in any real danger of discovering that real Christmas joy is found in giving rather than receiving? (mind that phone doesn’t cause trouble!)

There is one thing than soggy sprouts and that’s sprouts like bullets, or is there?

Here’s a question for you: which would you prefer to be saying on Christmas Night,

a) those sprouts were awful or

b). hopefully we’ll get good news from the doctors in the
morning ?

One more question, will you be the one who blows up, the one who burns bridges this Christmas, or will you be the one that calms, distracts, soothes, will you be the messenger of peace?

Why not be a real rebel this Christmas and whisper, well I really mean, stage whisper, the name of Jesus, whose birthday it is. You could do it covertly behind your hand, as you pass the cranberry. Better still why not go completely mad and hop up on the chair ( be careful of the wonky hip and mind the new knee), and shout out, good and loud, HAPPY BIRTHDAY

I pray that you, and all those you carry in your heart, may be protected from all darkness and pain and may you know his love, joy and peace this Christmas!

Oops nearly forgot„..l will be celebrating Mass, the greatest prayer in the world at Midnight, yes Midnight, on Christmas Eve AND 11:30 pm on New Years Eve. I would just love that you could join me.

Fraternally, Joe McD


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