There are many things that I love about Nativity scenes. Among them is that they are open and inviting. It always has the feel that we are being invited to enter into the manger and find our place among the shepherds and the Magi. In fact, every Nativity always seems incomplete. It is waiting for us to be part of it.
As a priest, I have the privilege of speaking the words of absolution. But, it wasn't only the priests who were agents of mercy tonight. It was truly a team effort. Our interns, music ministers, FOCUS Missionaries, and students in the Newman Center community were all involved. They were out inviting students to come to confession, handing out invitations on campus, providing examinations of conscience, and playing beautiful music.
Many of those who came to confession tonight were there because somebody invited them to come or encouraged them to come. They were there because a team of people pulled together to announce the mercy of Jesus. There are all of these young people who tonight are closer to Christ because others shared the Gospel with them.
It's really a beautiful thing that happened tonight. Jesus used a community of young people to bring other young people to Himself. Tonight, because of a wonderful and evangelical group of young Catholics, the Nativity scene is a little more complete. Awesome.