Weekly Letter (Dec 14 ’15)

Dear Parents and Students,

You probably all know the story of the three wise men (or Magi). From readings and prophesies they learned that a bright star on the western horizon signified not only the birth of the promised King but also showed the location of His birth. They followed that star to Bethlehem where they found Jesus, His mother Mary and His foster father Joseph.

They brought with them three gifts for the child; gold, frankincense and myrrh. Usually we think of these gifts as a way to honor Jesus but some theologians see it from a different perspective. The gifts were a test. The Magi hoped that by presenting the gifts to Jesus they would be better able to understand what kind of King He would be. If He took the gold, He would be like every other king mostly interested in the things of this earth. If He chose the frankincense, they assumed he would be a priestly King, whose focus was the next life. If He chose the myrrh, it would signify that Jesus was just like any other man who would one day die.

They must have been astounded when the Baby reached out and accepted all three gifts. Yes, He cares about justice and mercy in this life. Yes, He cares about our relationship with God. And, yes, He did die, three days before He rose from the dead and showed us that these bodies may grow feeble and die, but our souls live forever in God’s love.

One of my favorite Advent/Christmas readings appears in both Isaiah and Matthew:

“The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light.” That light is the light of Creation, the light of the star above Bethlehem, the light of Jesus, the light of Resurrection, the light of faith, hope and our love for each other through God. Have a very merry Christmas, remembering that God loves you unconditionally.

God Bless You All,


Terrence Hanley


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