By Father Roch Kereszty
Special to The Texas Catholic
In his sixth homily for the Vigil of Christmas, St. Bernard suggests how we might best prepare for the coming of Christ into our hearts. He contrasts the newness of Christ with the novelties of this world. By always seeking what is new, we merely scratch our itch for more excitement, for more sensory intellectual stimulation.
Yet the more we scratch this itch, the worse it becomes. The more tired and empty and old we become. When we listen for the latest gossip, the most gruesome murder, for the daily rise and fall of presidential hopefuls, our soul actually begins to hurt, like the itch we have scratched too hard. And the search for excitement just continues the next day.
On the other hand, the newness of Christ renews us and makes us young again. Even after they grow old in years, the saints exude a freshness, a contagious peace and serenity. The source of this newness is Christ who is being born in them. His immortal, risen life transforms their hearts and minds so that they come to look upon this world with his loving eyes and rediscover this world’s beauty and goodness.
They are firmly rooted in reality, not one day’s sensational excitement, because the source and redeemer of all creation lives and works in them.
Christ longs to be born in each one of us. We only need to stop chasing after the wind, make a good confession and create some empty space and inner solitude so that Christ can take up his home with us and make us anew.
Father Roch Kereszty, O.Cist., is a theologian and monk at the Cistercian Abbey of Our Lady of Dallas in Irving…This column first appeared in the December 2015 edition of “A Letter from the Abbey,” the publication of the Cistercian Abbey of Our Lady of Dallas in Irving.