January 2011

Fr. Antony Portrait
Photo Courtesy of Photographer Eric Limon

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Christ is Born!

During the cold, dark winter months the Church celebrates three Festivals of Light:  the Nativity of Christ, Theophany, and the Presentation of the Lord in the Temple.  All of them are bright festivals commemorating specific revelations that brought light into our darkened world.  Christmas is the birth of the Light Himself.  Theophany is the revelation of the Trinity, the Source of Light.  The Presentation is also commemoration of the entry of the Light Incarnate into the Temple built for Him.

It is a time for us to welcome the Light into our lives.  Hopefully, the past year has seen some spiritual effort and growth so that now we are ready again to embark upon new experiences and new insights.  The Christian life is always new and fresh for us if we are being watchful and vigilant.  If our lives have become boring it is a good indicator that we are not paying attention.  So how do we become attentive?

Archbishop John Shakhovsky recommends that we pay attention to little things:

Many people believe that to live according to the faith and to fulfill the will of God is very difficult. Actually — it’s very easy. One needs only attend to details, to trifles, and try to avoid evil in the slightest and most trivial things. This is the simplest and surest way to enter the world of the spirit and draw near to God.

Mother Teresa writes:

Always be faithful in little things, for in them our strength lies. To God nothing is little. He does not mean anything to diminish. All things are infinite for Him. Practice fidelity in the least things, not for their own sake, but for the sake of the great thing that is the will of God, and which I respect greatly.

Do not pursue spectacular deeds. We must deliberately renounce all desires to see the fruit of our labor, doing all we can as best we can, leaving the rest in the hands of God. What matters is the gift of yourself, the degree of love that you put into each one of your actions.

Small things done well, with attention and love at each moment of life makes lives come alive!  It brings awareness of the presence of God into every small detail and ensures that at every moment we are doing God’s perfect will.  This is light we all can follow.

Blessings always,

Fr. Antony