Archdiocese of Chicago

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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

How the liturgy reminds us of what we all know…

In the liturgical year, the conception of Jesus in the womb of the Virgin Mary is celebrated on March 25, the feast of the Annunciation of the Lord.  Nine months later, on December 25, we celebrate the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem.  The baby conceived on March 25 is the same baby born on December 25.  His name is Jesus from the first moment of his conception, as we all know.

On May 31, between March 25 and December 25, we celebrate the feast of the Visitation.  Jesus in his mother Mary’s womb meets John the Baptist in his mother Elizabeth’s womb, and John leaps for joy.  Children who leap in the womb are human children, as we all know. 

This Christmas Day, as we celebrate liturgically the birth of Jesus and as the elected representatives of our nation grapple with how to assure health care for all, we should remind ourselves and others of what we all know.

Cardinal Francis George, OMI

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