Thank you God for sending Your Son on one glorious night to be born a virgin, to live a perfect life and to die on the cross for my sins. Thank you that he rose from the dead three days later and that this Christmas and every Christmas we can celebrate the gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ. Amen.
The early Christian community distinguished between the identification of the date of Jesus’ birth and the liturgical celebration of that event. The actual observance of the day of Jesus’ birth was long in coming. In particular, during the first two centuries of Christianity there was strong opposition to recognizing birthdays of martyrs or, for that matter, of Jesus. Numerous Church Fathers offered sarcastic comments about the pagan custom of celebrating birthdays when, in fact, saints and martyrs should be honored on the days of their martyrdom—their true “birthdays,” from the church’s perspective.
The precise origin of assigning December 25 as the birth date of Jesus is unclear. The New Testament provides no clues in this regard. December 25 was first identified as the date of Jesus’ birth by Sextus Julius Africanus in 221 and later became the universally accepted date. One widespread explanation of the origin of this date is that December 25 was the Christianizing of the dies solis invicti nati (“day of the birth of the unconquered soul”), a popular holiday in the Roman Empire that celebrated the winter solstice as a symbol of the resurgence of the sun, the casting away of winter and the heralding of the rebirth of spring and summer. Indeed, after December 25 had become widely accepted as the date of Jesus’ birth, Christian writers frequently made the connection between the rebirth of the sun and the birth of the Son.
The Passionist Province of St. Paul of the Cross (Eastern United States) is in the process of Canonization for one of our former Superior Generals who was from this Province.
The first stage of the process is over and Father Theodore has been declared, by the Vatican, as a "Servant of God." The next stage is that God must confirm Theodore's presence in heaven with a miracle. If you have a serious illness please pray for Father Theodore Foley to intercede for you at the throne of God so that your request can be granted. Should you receive a miracle, due to the intercession of Father Foley, please contact us so that we can further our brother's journey to sainthood.
Lord Jesus Christ, you called Father Theodore Foley to follow you as a Passionist Priest even to Calvary's heights. Through your Immaculate and Sorrowful Mother, you taught him obedience to our Father's will and the fulfillment of your Commandment of loving God and neighbor. Let the loving inspiration of your Servant move us to live a more profound life of virtue. We humbly ask that you glorify your servant Father Theodore Foley according to the designs of your holy will. Through his intercession, we ask you to grant the request I now present (here mention your request).
This I ask through Christ Our Lord. Amen