December 24, 2023

Dear Parishioners of Saint Polycarp,

“Behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy: A Savior has been born for you who is Christ and Lord” (Luke 2:10). With these words of the angel of God to the shepherds of Bethlehem, Jesus entered our human world and took on human flesh — “To take on human flesh” or incarnatum est is what we called the incarnation. He was born to us as a baby. His birth is the good news of great joy for it is through Him that we are saved and called children of God. Even though Jesus’ birth was over two thousand years ago, His presence dwells among us today. He is with us always, especially whenever we gather to celebrate the sacraments in His Church.

Jesus is born for us: This is our Christmas message and gift to you and your family. As we gather to celebrate Jesus’ birth, we (the parish priests) invite you to celebrate the life that each of you has received. To speak of life is to speak of the many wonderful gifts and blessings we have received; the many people we have met and encountered; and the many people who have supported and loved us.

Christmas is a wonderful celebration. In and through it, we become a family of Jesus. Theologically and spiritually speaking, we have God as our Father, and we have Mary and Joseph as our spiritual family.

This year’s Christmas Season is brief. We have two weeks to celebrate it—that is, from the Christmas vigil (12/24/2023) to the Feast of Epiphany (1/7/2024). Despite its brevity, we will celebrate the Feast of the Holy Family on December 31, 2023, and the Feast of the Motherhood of our Blessed Mother Mary on January 01, 2024. All these Feasts point to us that Jesus wants us to be part of His family.

May the spirit of Christmas lift your spirit during this time. May the Baby Jesus be the source of hope and love to each one of you. May we continue to pray for peace in the land where Jesus was born.

With my brother priests, deacons, religious sisters, and parish staff: Merry Christmas! Feliz Navidad! Chúc mừng Giáng Sinh! Joyeux Noel! Buon Natale!

Father Viet Peter Ho, Pastor

Father Nicolas Nguyen

Father Saúl Alba-Infante

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