Priest: ‘Baby Jesus unites us’

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Fr. Erlito Maraya blesses the Nativity Scene with Baby Jesus present before celebrating the Christmas eve Mass. (Photo: Eileen Nazareno-Ballesteros/CBCP News)

TACLOBAN City, Dec. 26, 2016 – Even as a baby, Jesus had the power to unite mankind.

In his Christmas eve homily, Fr. Lito Maraya, rector of the St. John the Evangelist School of Theology in this city, underscored the power of the infant Jesus to gather people in the same way a newborn babe brings together in-laws who previously may have not been on good terms.

Maraya spoke about the baby Jesus as “a gift of communion” from the Father to the world, underlining the inherent power of a baby to unite people.

According to him, this is manifested by the gathering of churchgoers, who give up personal time to attend the Christmas eve Mass and the past novena Masses or Simbang Gabi and Misa de Gallo.

Discussing the Gospel reading of Dec. 17, which outlined the genealogy of Jesus, the priest said all of Jesus’ forebears were awaiting His coming.

“From Adam, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, David, Solomon, all of these characters in the list have one thing in common, they were waiting for the birth of a baby from the time of Adam to the time of Joseph,” explained Maraya.

He added, “In that long line, the thread that bound them was a baby. The purpose why God called them is in preparation for the birth of the Lord.”

The characters in the New Testament, such as Zechariah, Elizabeth, John the Baptist, Mary, Joseph, the shepherds, the three wise men, also share the baby Jesus as a common point of interest.

“In other words, this long list of the cast of characters in the Old and New Testaments all point toward the same direction along with the angels and animals who gathered as one community because of the baby,” he added.

“That is the power of the baby Jesus to unite and therefore they can truly say that the baby Jesus is God’s gift of communion from the Father to the world,” he stressed. (Eileen Nazareno-Ballesteros / CBCP News)

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