I’ll be Home for Christmas . . .
Christmas Eve will find me
Where the love light gleams.
I’ll be home for Christmas
If only in my dreams.
December 25, 2012Christ is Born! Glorify Him!
Dear clergy, religious, and people,
The popular song I’ll be home for Christmas, first recorded in 1943 by Bing Crosby, is heard each year during the celebration of the holy season of Christmas. Its melody and lyrics have become one of those Christmas songs which haunt us on the radio or via many other recordings. Some years, we hear the message at home, and we feel reassured in being where we belong – with family and friends. Other years, we are away from home waiting to return. And some years, we are away with no way to return home to celebrate Christmas, except in our dreams.
During this year dedicated to the renewal of the faith, we are called to remember the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem. Mary and Joseph were away from home as they experienced the first Christmas. They certainly wished that they were at home with the support of their families and friends during the birth of Jesus. They welcomed any shelter offered while they were strangers in need of place to call home on that first Christmas day.
This Christmas, all the faithful are called to be like the people who welcomed the Holy Family. We all know someone who has been away from the Church. We can be the ones who invite them to return to their spiritual home for Christmas. Each has a reason why they wandered. Each has a story that needs to be heard. Each probably has a hurt that needs to be healed before they can come home for Christmas. Not everyone can respond to an invitation to come home for Christmas, but we have to try. If even one returns for Christmas through this invitation, there is reason to rejoice.
If you have been away or if your faith is in need of renewal, we welcome you back during the Year of Faith. On March 6 in the Pittsburgh area, “The Light is On for You” to welcome those who have been away from the Sacramental Mystery of Confession. Also, we will have special programs celebrating the renewal of the faith in the family this summer. We are all called to pray that the Lord opens our hearts and minds to the great gift of the birth of Jesus Christ which is the source of our faith. We proclaim the good news which draws all to come home for Christmas.
Sincerely Yours in Christ,
Most Reverend William C. Skurla, D.D.
Metropolitan Archbishop of Pittsburgh