Christmas Letter 2023
Upon those who dwelt in land of gloom, a light has shone.” Isa 9:2.
Brothers and sisters, perhaps we have wondered why Christmas is celebrated on December 25 and not at any other time. This is due to the period of the Roman empire. The Roman emperor, Aurelius (270-275BC) during his reign decreed throughout the empire a festival to the god Natale Solis Invicti or the birth of the invincible sun. This holiday was established on December 25 on the winter solstice. This festival gradually simulated the birth of the sun, that is, from long days of darkness in winter to increasing clarity during the day. The emperor’s intention was to unify the empire with this festival. Sometime later, with the conversion of Emperor Constantine in (327AD), instead of eradicating this festival, it was given a Christian meaning. The Emmanuel becomes incarnate and comes to dispel the darkness of sin and to give light; He comes to conquer death.
Brothers and sisters during our times it seems that we are in lands of gloom and hopelessness: so much violence in our streets, wars between nations. All this leads us to fear and anxiety. However, let us remember the words of Saint Paul who says; where sin abounds, Grace abounds even more. God is more present and active in the world and his light shines during the darkness.
Simply pause and observe how in the midst of uncertainty you have remained firm, you have allowed yourself to be guided by your faith, you have savored it and it has led you to be light for those who have darkness. Your love for God has allowed Him to be incarnated through your works and you have let Him shine. Let us remember how generous they were in donating coats and blankets to clothe the naked; those who need it have been fed; This is partly due to your generosity on the 4th Sunday of Charity, by bringing a bag of a type of grain or a can of food. Some Venezuelan immigrants have been helped to find housing. He has arisen from their hearts to strengthen the ministry to the sick to visit them. Through prayers and support to the seminarian Daniel García, the incarcerated person is visited. Daniel, who carries out this ministry, sometimes represents us in these visits to the incarcerated. These works that manifest the charity of Christ and that bring hope in the midst of uncertainty are possible when we place ourselves at the feet of the Blessed Jesus, when we seek Him in the sacraments, when we seek Him in the Word, when we seek Him in praise, in the devotional This is how his Spirit moves us to let him shine.
Spiritual goods cannot walk without material goods. We have a co-responsibility to maintain buildings, it is our duty to make them places worthy of God and praise. It gives me pleasure to see them working as a team and as ONE PARISH. You have managed to get the sound system installed, the masonry work on the buildings, the hallways have been painted, work continues on the skylights; all this in his house in Nuestra Señora del Monte. In María Reina del Cielo, it was possible to lay asphalt in the parking lot next to the school; and there are still projects to be completed, only together will we make the Light of Christ shine.
As you wrap gifts for your closest family and friends, I invite you to keep this your HOME in mind. She always depends on his generosity. I invite you to give him a gift this Christmas of $150 per family or whatever amount you can afford. You can send your gift to our parish office, or simply by going to https://give.archchicago.org click or by clicking here DONATE and go to the give to a parish section and find us on parish selection. With your financial help we will continue to respond to pastoral challenges and continue maintaining the buildings. I thank God for putting me here among you and seeing your faith in action; always firm in prayer, serving selflessly. Thank you for allowing me to work with you and I ask that you keep me in your prayers. I wish you a happy advent and a good Christmas Eve. Merry christmas!
Rev. Sergio de la Torre - Carrillo
C E L E B R A T I O N S
OLM - 7:00 PM Bilingual
Spanish 10:30 Am, 1:30 PM
English 9:00 AM / Spanish 12:00 PM