This is the Christmas list that my pastor is publishing in the bulletin this weekend. It brought tears to my eyes and reminded me for the millionth time that I am SO blessed to belong to my wonderful parish.
As the holiday approaches I always receive many gifts and also many inquiries about gifts that I might want from parishioners who are very generous to me personally. So here is a list of things that I would like you to give me for Christmas:
1. Take any monetary gifts or the price of anything you might buy or make for me and give it to St. Vincent de Paul or the school library and let me know about it.
2. Make a donation to the White Rose whose work will become very important especially in the next few years.
3. Skip a party and spend a quiet evening with your children and family.
4. Visit someone alone or in the hospital or nursing home.
5. Reconcile with someone with whom you are upset, angry or resentful—take the first step—don’t wait for them to do it.
6. Read from the Christmas Story with your children and pray the Rosary for the deceased of our parish families.
7. Make the resolution to be faithful to attendance at Sunday Mass and Reconciliation throughout the coming year.
The relationship you have with Jesus Christ; the goodness of your lives; the deepening of your faith; your adherence to the teaching of the Church; your faithful and sincere prayer at Mass; reception of Holy Communion; devotion to the Scriptures; and the increase of the love that binds together your families, our parish and this country—these things are the best gifts and best thanks you could give to me.
Have a good Advent, Fr. John