|CHRIST CHURCH, DECORATED FOR CHRISTMAS|
|THE BLESSING OF THE CRECHE|
|CHRISTMAS SCENE ON LAKE SHORE DRIVE|
Christmas morning, 9:45 AM. 26 degrees F at the ferry dock, 24 on the back porch. Wind ESE, very strong. The sky is overcast, the humidity 88%. The barometer is falling, currently at 30.5". Today will be snowy and rainy with a high around 31degrees and with strong, occasionally gale force winds. Roads will be icy. More of the same is predicted throughout the week to come. Stay home!
Our little Christ Church, Episcopal, held its Christmas Mass yesterday afternoon; there will be no service today. It was a beautiful Mass, with a candlelit blessing of the creche while the little congregation sang, "Away In A Manger." The only thing lacking was children. How can we expect there to be Christians in this failed old world, if we aren't raising any?
In any case, we sang all the old Christmas hymns I remember singing as a child. I remember singing Silent Night, while a few old folks murmured Stilege Nacht, Heilege Nacht, in deference to their own Germanic childhoods. Of particular poignancy this year, as in many other years throughout my life, were the words of the Prophet Isaiah:
"For all the boots of the tramping warriors, and all the garments soaked in blood shall be burned as fuel for the fire;
For a child has been born for us, a son given to us;
Authority rests upon his shoulders, and he shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.
His authority shall grow continually, and there shall be endless peace for the throne of David and his kingdom;
He will establish and uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forward and forevermore."
In my own lifetime, Christmastime has usually meant wartime; WWII, Korean War, Vietnam War, Cold War, Iraq War, Afghanistan and now...we really need God's Peace, "which surpatheth all understanding." Pray for it like you mean it.