God has pitched His tent among us…

“Make the tent you live in larger; lengthen its ropes and strengthen the pegs! You will extend your boundaries on all sides; your people will get back the land that the others nations now occupy. Cities now deserted will be filled with people.” –Isaiah 54:2-3

Listening to and watching what is going on in the world, one can get the impression that it is not mercy and peace which have increased, but rather violence, religious persecution, intolerance and racism.

In this very situation, Christmas invites us to encounter Jesus as one who has pitched his tent among us. This reminds me of a tabernacle in a Jesuit house here in Rome where I made my retreat this year. In one of the chapels the tabernacle is placed inside a tent. Every time I or others opened the tabernacle for adoration of the Blessed Sacrament I felt I was discovering the presence of God in the midst of people – those living in secure and protected places, as well as those living in insecurity and life threatening situations.

In deep communion with one another, with creation and with the marginalized, let us celebrate God’s presence in our world.  Let us be grateful for the Good News of Christmas; that our God is not interested in power and wealth, but rather in persons and in all that has life; that he reveals himself to those who are considered small and insignificant as well as to those who are searching for meaning and healing.

May the 2016 Christmas celebration encourage us to live our Christian and Congregational values of communion and interculturality with even deeper conviction and passion so that more people may experience God pitching his tent among us.

–Excerpt from the 2016 Christmas Letter of Sr. Maria Theresia Hörnemann SSpS, Congregational Leader