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Christmas 2017

image of heaven opening upAdeste Fideles, (O Come All Ye Faithful, carrying with it a sense of joy and urgency) resounded throughout our home and airways on the days before Christmas and on Christmas Day itself. I had three “God Moments” on Christmas Day, each centering on how people came to adore the newborn babe.

God Moment I
On the morning of Christmas day I entered the Adoration Chapel early on that day to put hosts into a large pic for the Communion Service at Overland Park Place. I entered the Adoration Chapel not expecting to find anyone there on that morning when people are generally busy with preparing meals, filling stockings, wrapping gifts or sending out last-minute Xmas cards but there alone in the semi-darkness was Gene Schreiner who had come to adore Jesus, born on this day over 2000 years ago, much like the Magi will do on Epiphany.

God Moment II
At the Communion for Service Catholic at Overland Park Place residents took part in the readings, warmly and beautifully gave each other a sign of peace after the Our Father and then received Our Lord in communion. Just at the end of the Communion service Marie, a new resident, entered the chapel, went over to the piano and, looking up at me, said, timidly, that she could sing and play the piano and asked if she could play something for us. She added that she would need some sheet music if any were available. As it turned out Adeste Fidelis was the only sheet music on the piano. Marie, perhaps out of practice, and perhaps not quite as agile at the keyboard as she one was, struggled through the hymn the first time, did better the second time and at the third reprise, with a beautiful voice, sang the Adeste Fidelis to the delight of all. For Marie it was a gift she wanted to give to the Christ Child. The Little Drummer played his drum; Marie gave her voice and skill at the piano.

God Moment III
Christmas dinner took place at the home of my son Mike and his wife. Mike’s father-in-law, a widower, suffers from dementia, lives alone in his farmhouse, supported by family and friends., It is not always an easy life. He loves occasions in which he can share a meal and enjoy the company of other people. He said the blessing before he meal, told stories and enjoyed the turkey, all the trimmings and pumpkin pie. At the mention of mincemeat pie smiled wistfully and said how he would like to have chance to taste a slice of mincemeat pie again.

We are told that we must always try to see the face of Christ in the sick and suffering. We give the suffering Christ or his Church as we can: Veronica with her veil; the widow giving from her want; the drumbeat of the little drummer boy; Marie with her voice and piano. My gift was a mincemeat pie, made that very night so that it would be ready for Janet’s father when he was driven to his home in the morning

Robert Luchi