Sunday, December 28, 2008

First Sunday after Christmas

(Eighth Century)

This morning's gospel reading was the prologue to John's gospel. I grew up in the Anglo-catholic tradition and it was common after a "low" celebration of the Eucharist for the priest to read the so-called "Last Gospel" - AFTER the blessing! And I was taught to make a profound bow at the words, "And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us". I'm very, very grateful for that background for it imprinted on my consciousness both a Eucharist devotion and an ongoing awareness of the centrality of the doctrine of the Incarnation that have turned out to be indelible:

No love that in a family dwells,
No caroling in frosty air,
Nor all the steeple-shaking bells
Can with this single Truth compare
That God was man in Palestine
And lives today in Bread and Wine.

-- John Betjeman


  1. "and lives today in bread and wine" -- is there any greater joy than receiving the Eucharist?


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