It is hard to feel the solemnity of Christmas in China.. especially here, in rural China, but I should still praise God for his great blessing for me since I can still have a vigil mass and accomplish my holy day of obligation, though the mass itself is really sloppy.
I said that I would not complain about mass but tried to feel and understand the grace God supplies with me through the Eucharist, but when you feel that the whole world is not with you, how hard will it be to still insist on truth? I closed my eyes for the entire vigil mass except the communion time. Looking up to the body of Christ still gave a lot of comforts. I feel that i am alone but God is with me always.
I miss STL.. I miss the great time of going to the evening mass at Cathedral and midnight mass at SFdS. I miss the company of all the great friends to talk about the spiritual things.. I miss the great food cooked by my friends’ family. Serafinos.. Gilroy…. Starks… Benjamins… and many many of you. I still remembered the hard time I had last year about picking one to go with during Christmas…. Although this year, I am alone, I have memory of all of you…
Merry Christmas, I miss all of you!
I told my friend that I felt lonely during Christmas. It is the similar feeling as the time I felt lonely during Chinese new year in St. Louis. These two types of lonely is similar but still different. This time, the loneliness is stronger, since I felt lonely spiritually…and Christmas is a spiritual thing, and cannot be replaced by party and gifts…It is hard to explain to others why I felt lonely.. The main reason might just be that I am weak in faith and desire too much from this secular world.
The Christmas day is pretty busy since Christmas is not national holiday in China and we still have class… and we are in the finals. Thanks be to God that I finally have the habit of “mental prayer”. I reserve half hour everyday merely for God, and it is the best time in my life.
The gospel for the Christmas Day mass is from St. John, which is definitely my favorite…
In the beginning was the Word,
and the Word was with God,
and the Word was God.
He was in the beginning with God.
All things came to be through him,
and without him nothing came to be.
What came to be through him was life,
and this life was the light of the human race;
the light shines in the darkness,
and the darkness has not overcome it.
A man named John was sent from God.
He came for testimony, to testify to the light,
so that all might believe through him.
He was not the light,
but came to testify to the light.
The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.
He was in the world,
and the world came to be through him,
but the world did not know him.
He came to what was his own,
but his own people did not accept him.
But to those who did accept him
he gave power to become children of God,
to those who believe in his name,
who were born not by natural generation
nor by human choice nor by a man’s decision
but of God.
And the Word became flesh
and made his dwelling among us,
and we saw his glory,
the glory as of the Father’s only Son,
full of grace and truth.
John testified to him and cried out, saying,
“This was he of whom I said,
‘The one who is coming after me ranks ahead of me
because he existed before me.’”
From his fullness we have all received,
grace in place of grace,
because while the law was given through Moses,
grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
No one has ever seen God.
The only Son, God, who is at the Father’s side,
has revealed him.
The part which I highlight gave me great comfort last night when I was alone with kids’ horrible homework…..I understand that I was chosen by God and always under his protection. I have to understand that everything he arranged in my life is not something random, but for the goodness of my soul.
Merry Christmas , my dear Friends! don’t worry me, but please pray hard for me !