A Not-So-Silent Night

God In All Things

This is a guest post by Jan O’Hara.

the-birth-of-christOne time, over 40 years ago, when I was a brand new mother, I decided to travel out-of-state with my husband and six-week-old infant to visit a priest-friend at Christmas. The only time this busy man could give me was at the Christmas Eve Mass he would be celebrating at midnight—at a very small, inner-city homeless shelter for men which he founded and ran.

My husband and I and our sleeping baby sat in the shelter’s tiny, make-shift chapel along with a small congregation of grizzled-looking men, vulnerable, poor, wounded by addiction, whose world was often violent and filled with suffering and condemnation.

As the Mass began, I was feeling so different and apart from my pew mates. Then, as my friend began to deliver his homily about that first Christmas Eve, describing the sudden appearance of angels that frightened poor shepherds…

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