“O Key of David, opening the gates of God’s eternal kingdom, come and free the prisoners of darkness!”

– “O” Antiphon for Dec. 20

Three turns clockwise and stop at the first number. Pass the second number once going counterclockwise and return to it. Go to the last number going clockwise. Push up and open.

I know a bright and thoughtful young man with whom I’ve been privileged to enjoy a good relationship during his time at Malden Catholic. We’ve developed a fun and playful rapport and I’ve learned a fair bit about him as time has gone on. And yet, I’ve never taught him. I’ve never coached him. I’ve never had him for homeroom or advisory. But I did open his locker once.

Today’s readings taken together paint a portrait of a God who desires to open up a personal relationship with us and is not shy about it. Ask for a sign from the LORD! Let the LORD enter! The Lord is with you! Have you noticed in these readings how God becomes more and more insistent on being with us until that relationship is finally realized in the flesh of the child who is Emmanuel?

As we surveyed the freshman corridor back in September, a longtime colleague of mine remarked how astounding it is to him that so many of our boys will carry their enormous books around with them all year rather than acknowledge that they can’t open their locker, that they just need a bit of help. Surrounded by the gazes of their freshmen brothers, asking for help to open a locker is a powerful expression of vulnerability.

And how incredible it is that God expresses this same vulnerability in Luke’s Gospel by relying on Mary’s help! So if you’re ever lucky enough to help a nervous freshman open their locker, maybe you’ll be able to catch a glimpse of the God who asked a young girl in Nazareth for a little help with opening His relationship to the world.

Lord Jesus, by the intercession of Mary and Joseph, the ones who opened You to the world, make us available for You to become more present, through us, to the world. Amen.

Robert Gregory

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