Father Paul Mark speaks on how to greet the New Year: "I don’t remember ever making a new year’s resolution but for many years I greet the arrival of the new year with hope. It is a new beginning, new opportunities and experiences beckon and I hope I am ready to welcome these even with they appear disguised in “work clothes”. A new year is the chance to review the past year, the lessons learned, the mistakes made, and the decisions that have borne fruit. A new year is, above all, the chance to give thanks for the past even if perchance events seemed to turn my life upside down and inside out.
How important it is to give thanks. Dag Hammarskjöld, second Secretary-General of the United Nations, 1953-1961, in his book, MARKINGS, stated, “For all that has been THANKS, for all that will be, YES.” This has been a mantra of mine ever since I was first introduced to his book in 1970. Another mantra of mine is found in St. Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians, “Rejoice always, pray constantly, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” ( 1 Thes 5:16-18)
The ultimate prayer and practice of thanksgiving is the Eucharist, a Greek word that means THANKSGIVING. It is this presence of Christ, his life, teaching, and grace of redemption for the human race, at work to transform us into the Divine likeness of God, lost through sin, that defines and explains Christmas. As we sing at Christmas Vespers, “The Word became flesh, he lived among us.” God is in our midst, what more can we ask for or want? This is the ultimate reason for giving thanks. This makes every New Year happy. Give thanks every day for the great things God does in your life."
Wishing all a holy and happy 2022!
Your brothers of New Clairvaux
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