The angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.  For today in the city of David a savior has been born for you who is Messiah and Lord.

And this will be a sign for you: you will find an infant wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.”
Luke 2:10-12

nga-duccio-di-buoninsegnadetail from “The Nativity with the Prophets Isaiah and Ezekiel” (1308-1311)
Duccio di Buoninsegna (Sienese, c. 1250/1255 – 1318/1319) at the National Gallery of Art

For more more contemplation on art depicting Mary with the Baby Jesus visit the NGA’s “In Depth Madonna and Child”.

ssvm-christmas-mass-2016-at-vatican

Many of our sisters serving or in formation in Rome were able to attend the Midnight Mass at the Vatican with Pope Francis.  One of our American sisters there, Sr. Maria Virgen Oyente Johnson (Wisconsin), is shown very clearly as she prays during the Mass [see 11:23].

Other groups of our sisters during the Mass appear in the coverage as well [see 10:10 and elsewhere].

We ask to share with them the closeness to the Holy Father and the heart of the Church as we celebrate the birth of our Savior, Christ the Lord!

Merry Christmas to all!  May we pray for peace in our world, in our homes, and in our hearts!  For the Prince of Peace is born who will reign forever and ever!

Servants of the Lord and the Virgin of Matara
Province of the Immaculate Conception