The Children’s Word: A Great Light
Have you ever watched the sun rise? Maybe you woke up very early one morning, even while it was still dark out. You might have seen how the sun started to make everything light, even before you could really see it.
Today, in the Gospel reading, we hear about where our Lord, Jesus Christ, lived. Remember, He grew up in a place called Nazareth. But then, He moved a little ways away in the land of Zebulun and Naphtali. But why does all that matter?
Well, long before Jesus was born, a prophet (Isaiah) wrote, “The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, toward the sea, across the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles, the people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, and for those who sat in the region and shadow of death light has dawned.”
Those people had been waiting, just as the whole world was waiting. The world was waiting for somebody to save them, to save the whole world. And the Bible says, “the people who sat in darkness have seen a great light.” That light is our Lord, Jesus Christ! Remember how the sun makes the dark morning bright and light again? Well, Christ is the “great light” who made the whole world bright and light, too!
SAINT GREGORY OF NYSSA: “The Father of Fathers”
Do you have a brother or a sister? If you do, you might have heard somebody call you, “Peter’s sister” or “Maria’s brother,” or whomever. Sometimes you might have thought you don’t have a name, just somebody’s brother or sister!
Today we celebrate a saint with a very well known brother. Saint Gregory of Nyssa was the younger brother of Saint Basil, and everybody loves Saint Basil. We celebrated his day on the first of January. In Greece, children get little presents on that day, and they remember Saint Basil. But do you know Saint Gregory too?
Saint Gregory did so much for our Christian Church. Long ago, lots of people were saying that our Lord, Jesus Christ, was not really God. They said the Son (Christ) was not equal with God the Father. But Saint Gregory argued and argued against these people. He showed that they were wrong.
Saint Basil made his younger brother Gregory a bishop, and they loved and respected each other very much. When Basil died, Gregory finished some of his brother’s writings, and we still have them today! Saint Gregory was a good little brother, but a great Church Father!
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