“Hosting the Host” – what does that mean right now as we find ourselves fast approaching Christmas Day and the Birth of our Lord Jesus?
Well, this phrase came to mind after a conversation with my son’s fiancé Courtney. She had observed that I seemed to “host” a lot and did anyone else ever host as well? I thought for a moment and then replied that our home had become a place of refuge – a place for not only friends, family and neighbors but also those who were seeking peace and the presence of God in prayer.
As always, I like to define the word or words I use especially in the “title” of a blog – so here is the definition of “Host,”
Host – a person who receives or entertains other people as guest.
However, I would like to write here about “another Host.” The “One” who invites us to the “Table of Plenty” at every Mass celebrated in the Catholic Church. A place where “He Hosts” us – a place where we come to receive the “true Body and Blood of Jesus Christ.” A place where we are fed, nourished and strengthened to face the world and our daily day- to- day. How joyful He is to give Himself to all who present themselves to the Host of Hosts!
Good Friday Dream
I will never forget a dream I had years back sometime during the evening of Good Friday and the morning of Holy Saturday. My Pastor, Msgr. Maniscalco had asked if he could come and stay at our home as the rectory was being renovated. I replied, “of course” and he came to stay. The next morning I prepared a cup of coffee for him and after seeking him out, I found he was in another surrounding and not in my own home.
As I opened a door, I found him at an altar preparing for Holy Mass. I slipped in and found a place to be seated on the floor. I had also noticed that nobody else was present.
And then . . .the “Little Blonde Haired Child” appeared dancing on the Altar. He was dressed in a jeweled coat and little sandals and seemed to be so filled with joy. Dreams are surreal to begin with but this dream I certainly will never forget.
When it came time for me to receive the “Host” – the “Child Jesus” ceased dancing and disappeared off the altar. I remember thinking in the dream where did He go?
When pondering the dream the next morning with my husband, I then realized that the “dancing Child Jesus” disappeared off the altar because He would now “dance” His way right into my soul as I received Him in the “little White Host.”
It also seemed to be odd that I would have a dream like this on Good Friday. I then realized it was a beautiful confirmation and message to our Pastor – Msgr. Francis Maniscalco – at that time.
He had just approved Eucharistic Adoration on Fridays at St. Thomas the Apostle Church only months before this dream. After speaking with him on Holy Saturday morning, I just felt so convicted that Jesus was thanking him for giving the Parish the opportunity to come and worship “His Presence” in the “Little White Host.”
The Dual Invitation
Why do I find myself writing about this subject just before the birthday of our Lord Jesus Christ? I guess it’s a question that is being posed to all of us right now.
Who are we “hosting” this Christmas Day? Will it be our relatives, family, friends or neighbors? Will they know that it is the “birthday” of the King of Kings? The “birthday” of the “One” who created us and breathed us into being! The “One” who is so crazy in love with us!
Will we be hosting “His” parents as well? Will the Blessed Mother and St. Joseph be invited into our homes?
Will those seated around our dinner table and gathered around our Christmas trees know that the “True Host” is hosting them? Everything is “gift” that we have received in this life and everything is a blessing given by God.
What will we give the “Giver” on His birthday? What would He desire of each and every one of us?
The Little White Guest
The answer is truly simple! He wants our “love” and He wants our “presence” at “His Table” on Christmas Day.
Christmas is “Christ’s Mass” isn’t it? Remember my dream and the “joyful dancing” of the “Little Child Jesus” so happy to be giving of Himself on the altar and also on the Cross as well.
We are so blessed to have the freedom to attend Mass especially in light of the Church’s being closed during covid.
Let us go to the House of the Lord on Christmas Day rejoicing and dancing with the Child Jesus! Rejoicing with “His Parents” and rejoicing with our own families in grateful love to the Father and Creator of the Universe for birthing “His Son” and us into existence!
LITTLE WHITE GUEST
You have come to my heart, dearest Jesus,
I am holding You close to my breast;
I’m telling You over and over,
You are welcome, Little White Guest.
I love You, I love You, my Jesus,
O please do not think I am bold;
Of course, You must know that I love You,
But I am sure that you like to be told.
I’ll whisper, “I love You, my Jesus,”
And ask that we never may part;
I love You, O kind, loving Jesus
And press You still nearer my heart.
And when I shall meet You in Heaven,
My soul then will lean on Your breast;
And You will recall our fond meetings,
When You were my Little White Guest.
May it Be So!
Blessings to all this Christmas Day of 2023
Peace on Earth
©2023 Anita Guariglia
Featured Image – Pinterest
Priest/Host – instagram
Other images – Pinterest
Little White Guest – Catholic Tradition (internet)