The Earth is yearning. I can see it in the strings of lights, so many more this year dangling so much earlier. I can hear it in the music of the season playing before that November feast. I have seen it in the Yuletide movies streaming in summer, and even spring. We are yearning afar communally. Yearning for calm, an end to fear Yearning for excitement and wide-eyed joy Yearning for warmth and presence too. This year, this lonely year. We yearn for more, A Light brighter than those dangling strands. So let us go to that moment in time guided by starlight to a stable far deep in the night. We go seeking to hold the intangible made tangible. We go, you and I, and offer our hearts as manger a place for the precious Child to lay. We prepare the space the heart—the manger Allowing our hearts to open and soften, making space for the Child that is the Christ. A cry rings out: Emmanuel! Into the embrace of the warm manger the Blessed Mother places the Child. Arise, what feelings as I cradle the divine Child. Shall my heart be touched as his tiny hand reaches out? In his tender gaze are offers divine: love peace joy hope comfort healing renewal wholeness. I accept the gifts in the manger of my heart and dare to realize the Light of the World is holding my heart.
Editor’s Note: We at Loyola Press are saddened to hear of the passing of William A. Barry, SJ. Fr. Barry’s life and work are an inspiration to countless people.
We pay tribute to this distinguished spiritual director and author by remembering his life’s work of helping people grow in friendship with God. Read a brief biography and excerpts from some of his work.
May you rest in peace, Fr. Barry.