There is something magical about the holiday season. Following Advent, the Christmas season arrives amid world-wide celebration. And on the day of our Lord’s nativity, we celebrate the profound love that God holds for each of us. Over two thousand years ago as the King of kings came into our human world, his arrival would bring with it no lavish celebration nor elaborate fanfare. Yet we have come to understand that Christ’s modest beginnings would mirror his life. An existence of humble majesty. Jesus’ presence among us was only the beginning. Each day God blesses us with miraculous wonders, many which unassumingly arrive. The gift of these marvels is often the subtle, yet glorious manner in which they come to reveal themselves.
This year on the birth date of Christ, the natural world revealed a simple act of celestial movement with magnificence befitting the momentous arrival of our Lord. On December 25 at 9:23pm in Saudi Arabia, the “ring of fire” eclipse began and would soon be seen by millions across the Eastern Hemisphere. During this picturesque eclipse, the moon is positioned in line between the earth and the sun. And as the moon crosses the face of the sun, it leaves behind a "ring of fire" effect (annulus) which served to light up the sky with dazzling brilliance.
Though the days leading up to Jesus’ birth in our little corner of the world may not have been as momentous as compared to the eclipse that was enjoyed by those in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, India, Sri Lanka, Sumatra, Singapore, Borneo, the Philippines and Guam, the St. Agnes community nonetheless enjoyed the dazzling brilliance of our annual school Christmas concert. On December 13, our parish activity center once again welcomed the musical gifts of those within BEAR NATION. On this night, our Choir, Band and Cherub Choir groups offered their creative talents as a way to honor the special blessing of Christ’s birth. As I am one who personally struggles with the onslaught of holiday materialism, I often say that the impending excitement of Jesus’ birthday truly begins on the day that our young students offer the gift of song and story during our concert event. Looking back at this memorable event, I would like to offer my sincere gratitude to Julie Williams and Dan Baker for directing our musical groups and for the leadership that they offered.
Before we would depart for vacation, another special musical event occurred. On Tuesday, December 17, the members of the Class of 2021 shared the joy of Christmas with the residents at Frederick Villa Nursing Care Center. On this wonderful day, our 7th grade students sang Christmas carols to the elderly and infirmed neighbors who reside in this local assisted living and rehabilitation facility. To see the smiles of the residents as they joined us in song and celebration would forge an unforgettable memory for our student leaders. And as part of the mission of our school, our students learn the important lesson that faith in action is manifested by love.
St. Agnes School forms students of virtue in heart, mind and soul.