by Sr. Noeleen Mooney MMM Ireland 30.12.2022
For weeks, our daily newspaper has been filled with full page advertisements about how to have the perfect Christmas – food-wise, drink-wise, gift-wise; provided of course that we could afford to do so. We have been bombarded with so many symbols of the sacred season, it is little wonder that we become confused. The symbol of the crib, with all its mystery, was often overshadowed by flashing lights and blaring music.
Now we move on and are just about to face into a brand-new year. What is our symbol for a new year?
Nature provides its own symbols – the newly-formed buds already on the trees; the brave green shoots piercing the dark earth; the birds continuing to sing and embrace the new day, the new year. The ever so gradual lengthening of daylight.
I think our symbol is hope.
The hope that our fractured, fragile world will awaken more fully to the need to seek for lasting peace in all places and between all peoples. The hope that we can deepen our understanding of just how precious is the gift of life in all its forms. It is to be cherished, to be protected, to be healed. The hope that the horrors of wars can recede and cease. The hope that each of us can carry that hope deep in our hearts, knowing that the Light of the World, who came to us at Christmas, will be with us at each moment of this so far uncluttered and brand-new year.