Children change people. I was talking with a young man recently who has two young children. He was telling me about their plans to take the kids to see “The Polar Express.” His family enjoys it so much, this is the fourth year in a row they will have seen it. He commented that he used to not get excited about Christmas, but seeing his children and the delight on their faces has changed that. Christmas, seen through the eyes of his children, has given him a deeper appreciation for this special season. Children change people.
Many of my friends are grandparents. I love seeing photos and hearing stories about their beloved grandchildren. Having grandchildren is a life-changing experience — one of God’s greatest gifts, and the joy that fills my friends at the very mention of these precious little ones is a delight to behold. Children change people.
Over Christmas, we remembered and celebrated the birth a most special child — Jesus. What the prophet Isaiah foretold a long time ago: A child is born for us, and a son is given to us; upon his shoulder dominion rests. They name him Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero, Father-Forever, Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:5).
This was verified by Saint Luke: Behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For today in the city of David a savior has been born for you who is Christ the Lord (Luke 2:10-12).
For St. Francis of Assisi, patron of the Hospital Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis, Christmas, the Incarnation of the Lord, is the highest of Holy Days. God loves us so much that He became one of us — taking on our humanity so that one day, we, too, might have eternal life! Realization of God’s immense love, manifested in this tiny Child, changed Francis — and billions of others! The Child born more than 2,000 years ago continues to change lives today as He offers to each of us the gift of His love, joy and peace. Children, most especially the Child Jesus, change people. Will you open your heart to receive Him?
Manager of Spiritual Care
St. Joseph’s Hospital