ato1During this season when we celebrate the birth of the Divine Child we are called to embrace the interiority of our souls and to listen to otherworldly, angelic voices. At times we glimpse peripheral presences: ancestors, deceased family members, and even pets who have crossed over the rainbow bridge.

We ornament “evergreen” trees and boughs with colorful beads, tinsel, lights, globes, baubles, and playful figurines. The message of the nativity is inclusivity par excellence:  present at the manger scene, everyone and everything is part of this great mystery. The cosmos has turned upside-down, the mighty have fallen, and the poor have become rich.

How, when, and where to celebrate and embrace the embodiment (incarnation) of divine energy and fire in your life occurs at moments of “being-with and being-for” (Heidegger’s Dasein?). The omnipresent unconscious knocks at the gates of our soul by images that attract or repel, grab onto or slip away. Ongoing and eternally present the works of the soul never ceases to amaze, delight, and in-spire. The feasts of the Christmas cycle nudge us to re-member and re-search.

The singing of carols in the worldwide Ukrainian community is an ancient tradition rooted in the belief of re-turn. The ice will melt, the sun blaze again, nature will arise from its sleep, and the Son of Man is re-membered and takes on flesh.

The majesty of the birth of the Christ Child has been tarnished during the last few years. We have challenged us with revolutions, war, and the deaths of innocents. Today’s dictators lust for power by destroying hope and killing the children of infant democracies. The Herods fear no one, but the multitudes fear them.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine authored by Vladimir Putin is a continuation of his policy of restoring Russia’s imperial greatness. Ukrainians are just another obstacle that needs to be removed by oppression, arrests and murder.

Countless young men and women have sacrificed their lives for the sake of freedom. Those who have survived have lost limbs, suffered brain injury, are unable to walk, and experience post-traumatic stress.

Our caroling this Christmas Season is an appeal to all men and women of good will whose hearts are filled with compassion for soldiers of Ukraine seeking medical assistance and treatment. Volunteers of the Ukrainian Heroes Fund will be caroling so that funds can be raised to continue the good work of St. Joseph the Betrothed Ukrainian Catholic Church in providing rehabilitation for our wounded warriors.

Say a prayer, light a candle, send positive wishes to all wounded physically and psychologically by war and conflict in Syria, Ukraine and throughout the world. Let us not forget #Aleppo #Crimea #Donbas.


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