Christmas reflection: Open the manger of your heart to Christ
YESTERDAY's shortest light-day, for those of us in the northern hemisphere, signals that Christmas is imminent.
End of year returns for 2017, shopping days and Advent Liturgies too are pregnant with anticipation as December 25 nears.
And in a quiet corner of our homes there is the perennial symbol of the peaceful, discreet and constant presence of Emmanuel - "God with us".
The Christmas Crib sits unselfconsciously on the window ledge or table as a silent witness to the preparations and gifting, the feasting and gatherings that form our annual traditions.
These cribs also hold a memory of departed or absent loved ones who, over the years, have cast a glance of deep affection at that same family crib.
The disarming simplicity of the crèche reminds us all that at a moment in time, God became human that we might become divine; that the spark of divinity is in all of us and that the capacity for endless goodness and peace-making in our particular corner of the world, allows each one to make a home for the Christ-child in the manger of our hearts.
Perpetua McNulty RSM
Thornhill Ministries, Derry