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Christmas Homily - He is truly the Prince of Peace



Two-thousand years ago, a baby was born to a very humble scene. As much as we try to dress it up, the manger was a place where animals lived. If God knew who would be the mother of the 2nd person of the Trinity and when He would be born, did He not know where He would be born? This most humble of dwellings tells us so much about God.
Two-thousand years ago, as Shepherds were caring for their sheep on the country hillside, an Angel appeared. He tells the Shepherds that he comes with a message of "good news and great joy." The Savior everyone was waiting for had finally arrived. He wasn't too far away. He was just in town... in Bethlehem. And an Angel chorus appeared to exclaim "Glory to God in the Highest, and on earth peace to all..."
The Shepherds ran in haste to see this child. On the way they must have thought about why the destined Christ was born in a manger. Why not a palace? A palace would mean the Christ would only be seen by nobles and royalty? A House or Inn? Only certain people were welcome in those places. A Manger? It was a place that everyone could go. Just think about who was there: shepherds, townsfolk, angels, and even animals. The three kings would show up later. On this particular night, everyone was on the same level. There were no classes when they were in the presence of the Prince of Peace. It was peace that He brought. It was a peace that no one else could provide. All were welcome to behold this miracle child. Love Himself was born into our world that day.

December 24th, 2014 marks the 100th anniversary of the "Christmas Truce." On a night when the heat of battle came to a standstill between German and English troops during World War I, a song floated amid the wind. The song could be heard from both sides "Silent Night." This song, a commemoration of the birth of Christ, brought about a historic standstill in battle. The armies of opposing sides united for a celebration. On that night items were shared, rations were exchanged, and a game of soccer (football) was played. The only adherence to kingship that either of these sides had was to the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ. Presidents, Emperors, Kings, and other rulers would tell these soldiers to carry on the battle; however, the Prince of Peace prevailed during this night.
Just because we do not see the Christ-child doesn't mean that He still isn't just as present in our world today. At every Mass we have the opportunity to thank God for all He has done for us. In the Eucharist He has gifted us with His very life - something more precious than anything in this world. Culture might tell us that we need to spend money or earn what we deem valuable. But just ask those who gathered at the manger 2000 years ago or the soldiers who gathered together 100 years ago that no form of currency provides the type of peace that only Christ provides.
May the Prince of Peace reign in our hearts this Christmas!