Tuesday, December 19, 2006


The first of a series of reflections on surprising aspects of the Christmas story. This one is from Richard Rohr OFM, looking at the texts in Luke.

"The question for us is always “how can we turn information into transformation?” How can we use the sacred texts to lead people into new places with God, with life, with themselves? This is surely true with our Lucan texts on the birth of Jesus. They have largely been sentimentalized in Christmas card fashion. We no doubt enjoy such 'Christmas cards', yet they don’t really change our lives in any substantive way ...

"An untransformed mind writing a story of God would surely have the Christ born in a palace, among nobility or even royalty. The birth would be spectacular, not sordid. It would demand respect instead of inviting confusion. Only a transformed mind would write such a text as this, and only transformed (or eccentric) people would allow the text into the sacred canon." [Full text as *.PDF file download here]

Rohr's book of daily biblical reflections Radical Grace, is well worth reading. It's also the name of the journal of the Center for Action and Contemplation, which he founded and fronts.

[Picture: a real manger, rather than a Christmas card one. Not that I have anything against Christmas cards. Commercialism turns true gold into tradable plastic, but miserablism is worse because it is mean-spirited]

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