12/25/20 Christmas



Dear Friends in Christ:

Merry Christmas! I know this Christmas is like none ever before, but it is still Christmas!!! It is a day for us to remember God’s merciful love found in the infant Jesus! As we gather, we remember the words of our Advent banners, Hope is never cancelled…Jesus is still coming! We gather to celebrate the birth of our Hope, the Light of the World, the Prince of Peace, the Savior of the World, Emmanuel (God is with us). At Christmas we celebrate that in the person of Jesus, God humbled himself and became flesh. God-made-man enters the world as a newborn baby.


This is the Good News we gather to celebrate today! I thank you for your presence here with us today! I extend a warm and loving welcome to all who are with us to celebrate the birth of our Savior.


Since we last gathered for this celebration, so much has happened throughout the world and in our church, and yet here we are. We are here because we know deep in our hearts that no matter what is happening in the world or the church, nothing compares to the significance of what we celebrate here this night/day. We are here because we know deep within us is a longing that is only filled by the One whose birth we celebrate this night/day.


We welcome ALL who come here to celebrate this great moment. We welcome parishioners and visitors, male and female, young and old, rich and poor, gay and straight, married, divorced and single. We welcome all who come to this celebration filled with hope and joy:


· Those who come seeking like the wise men…

· Those who come surprised like the shepherd…

· Those who come distracted like the innkeeper and his wife…

· Those who are searching for meaning in their lives…

· Those who are grieving the loss of their spouse, parent or child, or another significant person in their life, and are in need of the comfort and peace that only Jesus can give…

· Those who don’t believe that Jesus is for them…

· Those who don’t feel worthy of God’s love…

· Those who are hurting and in pain…

· Those who are not sure why they are here but they are…

· Those who are here to give their faith another shot…

· Those who don’t believe in God…


We welcome you ALL. You all BELONG HERE! You all mean something to Jesus Christ!

No matter what brought you to Mass today, we welcome YOU and we pray that all will come to know the joy, the peace, the hope, the love, and the mercy this Babe of Bethlehem brings into the world.


Just as the shepherds were led to a humble stable in Bethlehem to worship the infant Jesus, so have we been led to be together at this time in history, amidst this pandemic, and here in this place to say with the angels: Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests!”


Think of the power of what we celebrate in this infant baby. For us, for each and every one of us, for all people of all time, this child is born. God gives His Son for you and for me! He sends His Son into the world for us! He is the One who calls us to Himself in the midst of the struggles of life. He is our strength and our stronghold. In the midst of any pain or suffering of life, He is there to give us comfort and strength. In the midst of fractured relationships, financial difficulties, a pandemic, and any other battle or stress we know He is the One that is there for us, guiding us through it, and giving us strength and grace!


The past year has been a time of constant change, continued questions, struggles, disappointments, and uncertainty. This past year has shown us the need we truly have in our hearts for our faith! This past year has opened our eyes to recognize how much our faith means to us, how our faith is our strength, and how without Jesus we could never have dealt with this pandemic and all that it entails.


As we gather to celebrate the birth of our Savior, I am grateful to the people of our parish family. Even in the midst of a pandemic, I witnessed the people of our parish family seeking to grow into a deeper relationship with Jesus. Even in the midst of a pandemic, I witnessed countless people come together to help us reopen the church so we could resume public worship. Even in the midst of a pandemic, I saw the strength we have when we are united together. You see God is at work in our midst. He shows us this every day. Sometimes we need a little nudge to see His presence but, once we

do, it is life-changing!


As we look to the New Year, filled with more hope than ever before perhaps, we are tremendously excited to see how God will continue to work in our midst, how God will continue to deepen the faith and commitment of our parishioners, and how God will bless our parish family as we continue to hear His voice and follow Him!

May the birth of Jesus help our parish family to be a spiritual home and a center of missionary outreach where all may come to be nourished in the midst of their journey. May all who come here feel at home in our parish family!


On behalf of myself, Father Federico, Deacon Iadarola, Deacon Wilber, Sister Patricia, the entire pastoral staff, our parish staff, our Parish Trustees, the Parish Finance Council, and the Parish Pastoral Council, I offer our prayers for a blessed Christmas for you and your family.


Thank you for making Saint Bridget of Sweden Parish such a vibrant community of faith, and thank you for your love evidenced in so many ways throughout the year, especially this year. We offer our special prayers for all those who find these celebrations difficult, especially for those who have recently grieved the death of a loved one. Know you hold a special place in our prayers at this time and that we pray the Christ-child will grant you His comfort and His peace. To all we say Merry Christmas! Rejoice on this O holy night, when the stars are brightly shining, it is the night of the dear Savior’s birth! Fall on your knees, Oh hear the angel voices! O night divine! O night when Christ was born!


As always, remember to pray for our parish family and ask God’s blessings as we build His kingdom here. Please know that I am praying for you, and I ask for your prayers for me, that together through the intercession of Saint Bridget of Sweden, our Patroness, and Blessed Father Michael J. McGivney, and united in the Eucharist, we will reflect the presence of Jesus to the world.





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ABOUT US

Saint Bridget of Sweden Parish is a Catholic community in the heart of Cheshire. Together we can discover your path to a deeper, more fulfilling spiritual life.

Saturday Vigil Masses:

4PM St. Bridget Church

5PM St. Thomas Becket Church

Sunday Masses:

7:30AM St. Bridget Church

9AM St. Bridget Church

10AM St. Thomas Becket Church

11AM St. Bridget Church

Confession: Saturday 3PM St. Bridget Church

ADDRESS

203-272-3531

 

Parish Office

175 Main Street

Cheshire, CT 06410

North Campus

St. Bridget Church

175 Main Street 

Cheshire, CT 06410

South Campus

St. Thomas Becket Church

435 North Brooksvale Road

Cheshire, CT 06410

 

rectory@stbridgetcheshire.org

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