here It was Christmas Eve, probably [fifteen] years ago now. I was still in seminary, and was given an opportunity to preach at a local church that was between ministers at the time. It was a real paying job, which was a pretty big deal in itself; but preaching on Christmas Eve was truly a rare privilege for someone so young. I think I was probably about 23 years old at the time.

comprare viagra generico 50 mg a Torino My mother was excited for me; she was always extremely supportive of my decision to pursue ordained ministry, as supportive as she’d been of me all my life. I think she was relieved when I decided to abandon my earlier ambitions of becoming a bounty hunter. Anyway, she was proud. And we’d always spent Christmas Eve together. So naturally, she wanted to come along. “Forget it,” I told her in no uncertain terms. “That’s out of the question.”

prednisone 10mg My mother was always there for me, always loving and supportive. And Christmas Eve had always been a special time for our family. I can remember being a small child, spending time with my parents and my older brother in the glow of Christmas tree lights tree in our living room, watching Christmas specials on television. We’d watch the Sesame Street Christmas special every year, recorded on an old VHS tape, a tradition that my mom insisted on keeping well into our teenage years. Later, she’d tuck me in and I’d fall asleep while gazing at the electric candle in my window.

viagra generico 200 mg pagamento online a Verona I don’t mean to suggest that our family was perfect, we had plenty of problems. My mom and I had some pretty big fights over the years, but it was always about something stupid—usually my wardrobe. From the time I was three years old and decided that there was no good reason for my socks to match, we never saw eye to eye when it came to fashion. When I was in high school and I grew my hair long, started wearing ripped jeans and leather jackets, she didn’t approve. “You look like the wild man of Borneo,” she’d tell me, which I think was a little unfair. “Why don’t you wear some nice khaki slacks and a polo shirt?” Come to think of it, now I understand why she was so excited when I got that summer job at Dunkin Donuts, where the uniform was exactly that. Before I left for work that first day, she took pictures in the front yard.

source site Yeah, that was a little embarrassing; but it’s not like I was bringing her to work with me. “Forget it,” I told her that Christmas Eve, my voice as cold as the winter air. “That’s out of the question.”

go to link My mother was always there for me, but I wasn’t always there for her. And maybe that’s not really the child’s responsibility; but still, I wish I’d been more understanding that day when I’d been called on to preach. I was young, trying to start a career, at that delicate cusp of adulthood when I really wanted to be my own man. I was the kid who didn’t want his parents to drop him off at school, only now the stakes were higher. There was no way I was about to show up to work with my mother. She didn’t understand; and I couldn’t understand her need to be there, either. We fought. In the end, I went without her and preached to that sea of strangers, breaking her heart. I’m an older man now, far from home. I left that nest a long time ago. And looking back, it all seems kind of stupid. At the time, it was so clear—I had to be my own man. I had to leave home. That makes sense, right? But my mother wasn’t wrong; she just loved me.

best priceest brand propecia sale uk I suppose it took having a son of my own to finally appreciate that.

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Gazing upon the face of an infant child, there’s no telling what the future will bring. But in that moment, there’s nothing but sheer gratitude. Magnificat anima mea Dominum. “My soul doth magnify the Lord.” My heart is filled with love. Mary’s song is one of celebration, not just for the child in her womb but for generation upon generation of family.

There’s no going back to the cradle, or the womb. But that doesn’t mean we can’t return home; it doesn’t mean that we can’t rebuild some of what’s been lost over the years. Jesus may well have had some issues with his family. But in the end, on the cross, Mary was there; and Jesus didn’t send her away. Jesus’ family is sometimes called “the holy family.” But what makes a family holy? Is it perfection? Or is it the willingness to be gracious and forgiving amidst imperfection?

On Christmas, we celebrate the birth of the Christ child; the child who would grow into a man who believed in peace, even if he didn’t always find it. This Christmas, I hope that you find it in the company of the ones you love.


Rev. Seth Ethan Carey

(Originally presented December 2015)

4 Comment(s)
  • Bob Stout Posted October 3, 2017 6:12 pm

    I can’t think you enough for reaching out to us as our pastor, offering the clarity of thoughtful reflection that has helped me for one, to sort through the chaos of this most horrible event. Your observation about the distance between the shooter and the target graphically and accurately assessed the nature of the shooting as being far less mpersonal than other mass shootings. His victims must have appeared as ants or perhaps even less than ants, just shooting targets.. I fear for the future and “copy-cat” efforts. And yes, we do need to come closer and recapture a sense of empathy and compassion, two qualities that have been eroded away by the force of the waves of social media, distant and impersonal/instant one-way communication with significant delay in response if not even no response at all. SAD!

  • Diane Adams Posted October 4, 2017 6:16 am

    Pastor Seth,

    Thank you so much for your words of comfort at this sad, frightening time. Your words, both spoken and written, have touched me many times in the past. I, too, am thankful for my church family, where we can be uplifted and comforted.


  • Siobhan Wagner Posted October 4, 2017 11:59 am

    Pastor Seth ~

    This is such a sad time in all of our lives. There are people out there that hugged and kissed a loved one for the last time on Sunday evening, not knowing it was the last time. We should love everyone like it’s our last day here on earth. Unfortunately we don’t do that on a daily basis. We get too caught up in life until someone evil shows their “face” to the world and we again hug and kiss our loved ones. I have always wondered is there evil in the world or is it mental illness?

    How do we know if someone is truly evil or mentally ill. This is one of the things that scares me the most. Everyone automatically thinks, Oh, he was mentally ill, but was he? This is the one thing that I question in life, is evil among us. It truly scares me to think there is evil but we see it in the news everyday not just Sunday evening.

    Like you said, it’s like a window to hell opened and it is staying open……but why? Are we being tested by one side and pushed by the other?

  • Leland Livingston Posted January 27, 2018 8:49 am

    I like that view of the glass–thank you.

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