What Does It Profit Me?

The Solemnity of Mary the Mother of God (Jan. 1) marks the Octave of Christmas.  Next Sunday, we will celebrate Epiphany, and the Sunday after that, the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord.  As we transition from the Christmas season back into Ordinary Time, as we pack up the outward signs of Christmas, we want to find some small way of keeping Christmas – its meaning and its light – with us.  Has Christmas changed us?  How?

An image from an Edith Stein poem is a simple way to express the change that should take place within us every year:  “My heart has become your manger.”

Meister Eckhart in his own mystical way makes a similar point, and one which expresses the longevity of Christmas in the enduring power of the birth of Christ:  “But if it does not happen in me, if this child is not born in me, what does it profit me?  What matters is that God should be born again in me.” 

Has your heart become a manger – a refuge – for him?  Has he been born – in you?  How will you share him with the world?

  -- Meister Eckhart (1260-1328) was a German theologian and mystic who was a member of the Dominican Order.  Eckhart was tried by the Inquisition as a heretic but has had many contemporary defenders, including John Paul II and the Dominican Order.  -- Edith Stein was a Jewish academic who converted to Catholicism and became a Carmelite sister.  She died at Auschwitz in 1942.  Stein was canonized in 1998 and is known as St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross.  She has also been honored with the title of "martyr."  The quote above comes from her poem "Holy Night."

 

-- Meister Eckhart (1260-1328) was a German theologian and mystic who was a member of the Dominican Order.  Eckhart was tried by the Inquisition as a heretic but has had many contemporary defenders, including John Paul II and the Dominican Order. 

-- Edith Stein was a Jewish academic who converted to Catholicism and became a Carmelite sister.  She died at Auschwitz in 1942.  Stein was canonized in 1998 and is known as St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross.  She has also been honored with the title of "martyr."  The quote above comes from her poem "Holy Night."