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A time of welcome
December 14, 2009
by Father Tony Hesse, Church of the Most Holy Trinity, Winsted

“And you, Bethlehem, land of Judah, are by no means least among the leaders of Judah; for out of you shall come forth a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.” (Matthew 2:6).

As Matthew refers to the prophecy of Micah to explain about the coming of a ruler, he uses it to point to the coming of Christ, our Good Shepherd.

This time before Christmas is referred to by many churches as the Advent season. Advent means “coming” or “important arrival of something or someone.”

During this holy season of Advent, we are reminded to prepare ourselves for the coming of Christ, not only His second coming, but also His coming daily to our hearts.

Because I am new to the Church of the Most Holy Trinity, and to the Winsted area, I can definitely relate to coming and being welcomed. Now, don’t get me wrong, I am not placing myself on the same level as our Lord, but I can definitely say that it feels good to be welcomed. When we are new to something, we hope to feel appreciated, cared for, and loved.

Why not offer the same welcome to our Lord? This season of Advent, as we prepare to welcome Christ, let us also carry that same warmth and hospitality to all who come into our lives, our communities and churches. There are people all around us who have never been welcomed or included.

Maybe this Advent season can be a new beginning for all of us. As Jesus comes to us, let us go to those who are marginalized, alienated, and alone, and bring them to Christ. I cannot think of a better way to celebrate Advent, than to assist in bringing people to Christ, so He can come to them, too.

Have a blessed and holy Advent and joyful Christmas!