Wednesday, June 24, 2009

John the Baptist

St John the Baptist
Leonardo DaVinci

Today is the feast day for the Nativity of St John the Baptist and we are now at the half way point to Christmas. The Church placed this celebration on this day, not because there is hard evidence for his day of birth, but for symbolic reasons. John the Baptist said in the Gospel of John (Jn 3:30)
"No one can receive anything except what has been given him from heaven. You yourselves can testify that I said (that) I am not the Messiah, but that I was sent before him. The one who has the bride is the bridegroom; the best man, who stands and listens for him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom's voice. So this joy of mine has been made complete. He must increase; I must decrease."
Jesus must increase and John must decrease.

This day also coincides closely with the summer solstice, the longest day of the year. Our days will begin to be shorter. Our days, like John, will decrease until we encounter the Word made flesh, Jesus.

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