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At the Vigil Mass

First Reading: Isaiah 62:1-5
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 89
Second Reading: Acts 13:16-17.22-25
Gospel Reading: Matthew 1:1-25

Theme: “… And God Chose A Womb..”


Today we have come together to celebrate the great mystery of the incarnation, God becoming man. This is the night of all nights where we keep Vigil to welcome the new born king Jesus into our midst. Heaven will kiss the Earth and divinity will enter into the realm of humanity.

Explanation of the Text

Our first reading from the Prophet Isaiah intimated that the Lord takes delight in His people. The opening statement of the pericope reads “Zion’s sake I will not keep silent and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest…” God has heard the cries and the problems of His people and so He swears to intervene in their situation. This intervention would be done by no other person than God Himself.

The Gospel reading from the first chapter of Matthew is a clear demonstration of how God intervened in human history by tracing the genealogy of Jesus whose birth we await tonight. The writer attempts to show that the birth of Jesus is the fulfilment of what has been told in the past.

Today we celebrate the nativity of the Lord. At Christmas we don’t celebrate the birthday of Jesus Christ but the nativity. God becoming a native in our world. The Creator needed not a drone nor an Airbus to enter into the sphere of creatures and so God Chose a womb of a maiden. He applied for a citizenship in our world to be a native and He needed the permission of young maiden named Blessed Virgin Mary. He could have arrived at the palace or the cathedral but He preferred the womb.

This is what we celebrate tonight. But interestingly the genealogy of Jesus contains certain individuals with questionable characters. Rahab was a harlot ( cf Joshua 2:9-13). Ruth slept with someone who wasn’t married to her ( Ruth 3:4-10) and David slept with Uriah’s wife ( 2Sam11:3-4). The list continues unabated. The question lingering on our minds are why should God used these individuals who had questionable characters?

God’s ways are mysterious. He says again in Isaiah 55:8-9 that “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways”. God has come to dwell among us and this is beyond human comprehension. He has come to share in our humanity so that we can share in His divinity.

My dear friends, God is with us. He is closer to us and indeed He is in our midst. This Christmas, may we experience His closeness more than ever. We are living in not an ordinary time. The covid-19 pandemic has brought fear upon the face of the earth and so while we can’t embrace we need to know that God holds us together. While our facemask hides our face, He sees our smiles through them and while we keep our social distance, He is never distant from us. He is walking by our side and He is always with us…

Merry Christmas


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