What does Christmas say to people today?
“It speaks of tenderness and hope. When God meets us he tells us two things. The first thing he says is: have hope. God always opens doors, he never closes them. He is the father who opens doors for us. The second thing he says is: don’t be afraid of tenderness. When Christians forget about hope and tenderness they become a cold Church, that loses its sense of direction and is held back by ideologies and worldly attitudes, whereas God’s simplicity tells you: go forward, I am a Father who caresses you. I become fearful when Christians lose hope and the ability to embrace and extend a loving caress to others. Maybe this is why, looking towards the future, I often speak about children and the elderly, about the most defenceless that is. Throughout my life as a priest, going to the parish, I have always sought to transmit this tenderness, particularly to children and the elderly. It does me good and it makes me think of the tenderness God has towards us.”
God always opens doors. This reminds me of another image that Pope Francis used, “God always builds bridges. A Christian is one who always builds bridges.”
Pope Francis reminds us, “don’t be afraid of tenderness. When Christians forgot about hope and tenderness they become a cold church.”
Do we see God the Father as a tender Father? Do we experience the loving caresses of the Father towards us?
Jesus is the Good Samaritan. When He finds us wounded on the side of the road, bruised and beaten up. Jesus pours the Oil and the Wine of His Mercy into our wounds. Jesus washes away the grim and filth with His Tears. He takes us to the inn which is the Church.