Wednesday, December 22, 2010


O King of all nations and keystone of the Church: come and save man, whom you formed from the dust!

“Dust.” The word reminds us of Ash Wednesday when one of the verses that accompanies the placing of ashes on our foreheads is: “Remember, you are dust, and to dust you will return!” It’s a sobering thought: we are dust, creatures. We didn’t make ourselves, nor can we keep ourselves from dying. But what we are about to celebrate is the fact that God became human. God, who formed humanity from the dust or elements of the earth, took flesh, was conceived in the womb of a woman, developed as every baby does through the stages of an embryo to a fully developed child, and was born. Why? Why did God share in the dust of humanity? Why did God get His hands dirty? The answer is one word: Love. God is Love and so God wanted to make creatures capable of being loved and loving in return. When those creatures rejected God’s love and sought to do things their own way, God did not reject them but became one of them to save them from themselves. Jesus is the King of all nations because He is the king of Love, the only power that could transform death into life on a cross. The love of Christ will triumph and draw all people, as He predicted in John’s Gospel: “And when I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to myself” (12: 32).

Jesus is also the keystone of the Church. He is the stone that keeps the two sides of an arch together. That arch consists of the Jews on one side and all the non-Jews or Gentiles on the other. Jesus is the keystone of this arch that brings all people together. And so we ask him to come in our day and in a way that will finally convince all people of His love so that we may accept it and share one day in the life of His heavenly Kingdom.

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