I had a great time visiting with my brothers and their respective families yesterday. I am saddened that one of my four brothers did not come though he lives in the area, and two of his children came; and another could not leave the east coast due to work. But every family was represented in one way or another. We all thought it was important to have this tradition of many years, since our mother died this past April, and this is the first Christmas without her. I firmly believe she was with us all, in our hearts and minds.
I love my family; immediate and extended. They are a great group, and being with them gives me much pleasure and assurance of knowing something: That I am truly the sane, and handsome one, in the bunch! (Ha, Ha, Ha – Oh, I mean Ho, Ho, Ho!)
O Antiphon of the day:
O Emmanuel, our king and giver of the law: Come to us, Lord our god!
3 days till the BIRTH of CHRIST,
and this is the 23rd day of the ADVENT season.
“HO, HO, HO-ly God, We Praise Thy Name!”
Quote or Joke of the Day:
Blessed are the young, for they shall inherit the national debt. (Herbert Hoover)
But you, Bethlehem-Ephrathah too small to be among the clans of Judah, From you shall come forth for me one who is to be ruler in Israel; Whose origin is from of old, from ancient times.
(NAB Mic. 5:1)
This verse announces that a ‘new’ David , and is about the city will come to restore his kingship. It was written in the 8th century B.C., and is about the city where Jesse, and his son King David. King David was chosen king of the 12 tribes of Israel, uniting them as one kingdom for the first time. Bethlehem contrasts with another city, the much larger Bat-gader, where the reigning king and ruler of Israel is from. Instead of being born in a large metropolitan (for that era) city, Jesus is born in a poor, tiny, agricultural town, and even in a cave at that! The poor and innocent will lead the way, and Jesus lead the way to his ministry on earth through a poor city.
Bethlehem means “house of bread,” and Jesus is the bread of life. Quite an intertwining of Scripture and life. Again, Jesus is born in the Davidic line through both Joseph and Mary, and born in the town of David, to become the bread of faith that feeds us on a daily basis, and becomes the bread of life for us in eternal redemption and salvation of Jesus’ body and blood of the Eucharist.
Thank you Lord for being our bread to sustain us while waiting for your return. You are our manna, our Eucharist, our source of life while in this exile on earth. I wait longingly for your return, and eternal paradise with you. Amen.
Pax et Bonum
Dan Halley, SFO
Secular Franciscan Order (SFO) Rule #21:
On various levels, each fraternity is animated and guided by a council and minister who are elected by the professed according to the constitutions. Their service, which lasts for a definite period, is marked by a ready and willing spirit and is a duty of responsibility to each member and to the community. Within themselves the fraternities are structured in different ways according to the norm of the constitutions, according to the various needs of their members and their regions, and under the guidance of their respective council.