Dear Friends,

Christmas is the Feast of the Incarnation. In Latin, ‘incarnation’ is derived from the word ‘carnus’ meaning flesh. ‘Incarnation” means ‘in the flesh’, or something that is visible, physical and tangible.

The birth of Jesus was not a symbolic presence but the actual presence of God in the world.

Jesus made real contact with people. His love was mediated in ways that people could experience. His was a healing touch that attracted crowds.

Many consider Christmas as the celebration only of a past event and that the work of Jesus ended with the Ascension. But this is to misunderstand the mystery of the Incarnation.

The Church as ‘the Body of Christ’ still mediates the saving ‘touch’ and ‘embrace’ of Jesus in a way that brings his love close and continues to show, in concrete ways, his care for the world.

Here at the University of Providence, through our ministry of education, formation and service to the poor and vulnerable, we continue the ministry of Jesus Christ. When God is present or ‘incarnate’, through our ministry, the effects of his ‘touch’ are the same as those recorded in the Gospels: learning, healing and new life.

My friends, I thank you for the many ways you already support the ministry of our faith based University. I also invite you to consider new ways of support so that we can continue to mediate the presence of God’s love.

Finally, wherever and whenever you gather with friends and family this Holiday Season may you find peace of mind, joy, and the warmth of loving relationships!

Thank you for your prayerful consideration of this appeal and wishing you the blessings of the great feast of the Incarnation.