Friday, December 10, 2010

O Little Town of Bethlehem .........

Several years ago I had the opportunity to visit Bethlehem, the birth place of our Lord. I had no idea what to expect but boy were my eyes opened! I cannot go into all the details but Bethlehem (which in Hebrew means the house of bread) is in the West Bank in Israel. Suffice it to say people there are extremely poor and their are few jobs and opportunities for young people. Basically Palestinians living in Bethlehem have little chance of improving their lives, at least under the current situation.

As we go through the Advent Season take time to pray for Christians here and throughout the world who are being persecuted or who lack resources. Think of those who are less fortunate than us, those without home or shelter, those who lack food and education.

Christmas is a time of joy and celebration, but also a time when we reach out to those around us who need some joy and peace in their lives .

O little town of Bethlehem
How still we see thee lie
Above thy deep and dreamless sleep
The silent stars go by
Yet in thy dark streets shineth
The everlasting Light
The hopes and fears of all the years
Are met in thee tonight

For Christ is born of Mary
And gathered all above
While mortals sleep, the angels keep
Their watch of wondering love
O morning stars together
Proclaim the holy birth
And praises sing to God the King
And Peace to men on earth

How silently, how silently
The wondrous gift is given!
So God imparts to human hearts
The blessings of His heaven.
No ear may his His coming,
But in this world of sin,
Where meek souls will receive him still,
The dear Christ enters in.

O holy Child of Bethlehem
Descend to us, we pray
Cast out our sin and enter in
Be born to us today
We hear the Christmas angels
The great glad tidings tell
O come to us, abide with us
Our Lord Emmanuel