PRIEST: Today is a wondrous day … a day for untold rejoicing as we gaze upon the awesome mystery of our God in vulnerable human flesh … the All-powerful contained in the powerless frame of a tiny baby.   Looking into the eyes of this child we can only treat every child with immense respect and love, embrace every human person with a divine love. Yet our world is not like that … and too often neither are we. So we repent of all evil, and seeking the way of peace for ourselves and our world: then our joy will be full this day!

READER:       Father,  come and speak Your Word of Forgiveness to every human heart:
                            forgive us when we close our heart to Jesus’ brothers and sisters,
when there is no room in our nation for the stranger and refugee;
come free us to welcome Your forgiveness

                                            LORD HAVE MERCY

                            Jesus, come and speak Your Word of Peace
                                 into the violence and war of our world:
                            for every anger that we harbour within,
                            for every injustice that makes some victims,
                            for being so slow to work for the peace proclaimed at Your birth…

                                            CHRIST HAVE MERCY

                             Holy Spirit, come and speak Your Word of Love
                                 to a world that forgets how to accept each other:
                             for every refusal to love, to heal,
                             to give ourselves in compassion and sacrifice…

                                            LORD HAVE MERCY

PRIEST:     May the Father who has so loved the world that He has sent His beloved Son embrace you in forgiveness;
                       May the Son and Saviour Jesus who died to reconcile us all
                       touch your heart with pardon and peace;
                       May the Holy Spirit who hovers over this day more brightly than the Star
                      fill your lives with light and healing;
                      and may our God who is with us
                      bring us and all the world to everlasting life…   


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