Some Reflections on the Story of the Little Drummer Boy – Part II

December 26, 2019

Part I

*  *  *

Christmas night. Our Lord is in the manger. In Catholic cities, this manger is found in all the churches. It is also found in other places, in public oratories, in public nativity scenes, in the specially decorated display windows of stores. Whoever passes by sees it. You will see it in a thousand places.

A man walks amidst all these representations of Our Infant Lord and, suddenly, he is touched by a representation which is most appealing to him. It touches him and remains fixed in his soul. He stops and says, “My Lord and my God.”

To Mass on Christmas Eve

It does not always happen at the moment. A person stops and looks and then walks home. Later, there comes a certain moment when this person is doing some everyday thing in this home, let’s say, when it is late, nighttime. It is nearly time for bed. He is preparing his clothing for the next day. Or he is writing the last lines of a letter to someone. Or, counting how much money he has in his wallet. A thousand things, taking off his watch, a thousand things preparing to go to sleep. Suddenly, by the action of grace, together with the action of nature, his memory presents to him that scene that he saw earlier. And grace falls upon that figure. He stops then and says: “My Lord and my God. There is Our Lord Jesus Christ, as I especially love Him.”

This is the same as saying that the Infant Jesus visits all souls by grace. He no longer plays the role of one who receives a visit, but of One who seeks after men. On these nights He seek out, in a special way, all men, of all ages, of all languages, of all social conditions, and says something that touches their heart, also in a special way.

Portrait of Franz Xaver Gruber

You have a curious proof of this in that carol that was sung a little while ago, “Silent Night.”

You all know how this song was born: There was a public school teacher from a small city in Germany, who, because something happened with the parish priest so the music was not prepared, or for some type of hindrance, had to compose a song for Christmas. So he composed a song. It sprang from his own emotion before the manger, but, slowly, slowly, Providence had been preparing in his soul an emotion for Christmas that was for the whole world.

Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht. Alles schlaft, einsam wacht”…

Silent night, holy night. All is sleeping, calm.

Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht. Alles schlaft, einsam wacht”…

Das traute hoheilige Paar

Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht. Alles schlaft, einsam wacht”…

…The venerable and very holy couple.

Who is the vernerable and very holy couple? You see them here.

Our Lady and Saint Joseph, as midnight approaches, are in prayer.

Saint Joseph, as the time draws near, perceives that a mystery is about to take place and is filled with increasingly greater veneration for his spouse and adoration for his foster Son Who is about to be born. He witnesses everything, not with his eyes, for he perceives that this mystery is not for his eyes. At a certain moment, then he lowers his eyes and bows his head. But his entire being senses that something heavenly is taking place.

How was Our Lady’s prayer? We may imagine how admirable and holy was Our Lady’s prayer! She much have been in a very high ecstasy, as perhaps no mystic in the Church will ever be, when the angelic clock struck midnight. In a virginal way, painless, without suffering for Her, the Infant Jesus is born of Our Lady, of Mary virgin before the birth, during the birth, and after the birth.

The Infant Jesus comes into the world. Silent night, holy night.

 

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 706

 

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