Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Christmas season

I've been meaning to post here for ages, but time just got away from me.  December has been a whirlwind month for me.  The last weeks of school are always crazy, and I moved (literally all the way across the country) on Christmas eve.  Now I'm finally catching up on sleep and finishing my unpacking.  Plus, I'm catching up on California sunshine!

Since yesterday was the feast of St. John the Evangelist, I've been thinking about the beginning of the Gospel of John:

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 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.
image from BC's Trinity Chapel, which used 
to be part of a Sacred Heart college for women

All semester, my tenth-grade students were asking me HOW ... most especially, how can Jesus be both God and human?  I avoided it to the best of my ability, mostly because I don't know how to explain to 15-year-old kids that some things are impossible to explain, especially when they're about God.

On one of the last days of class I decided to tackle the question.  We looked at the infancy narratives, and then I asked them to open to the Gospel of John, to see that there's no sign of the baby!

I love the connection between the Word that was God from the very beginning, the word by which God created all that exists in Genesis, and the tiny infant which is the Word's love flowing out to become one with us in our humanity.  If there's one thing I want my students to know, it's that God loves us so much that he allowed himself to be limited by our limitations.