Sunday, January 1, 2012

At The Stroke of Midnight

The last one arrived shortly before midnight. Now there were twelve. Somehow that seemed an appropriate number to be before Our Lord this New Year’s Eve.

I remember Christmas Eve, a week ago, when the numbers were fewer. Midnight at Christmas morn some were celebrating the arrival of Our Savior, His birthday, but more are here this night. I wonder: Are they celebrating the dawn of a new year, or the ending of the old? Or are they celebrating at all? Are they praying about the end of a year of trial, like me, and expressing hope for the future? Why is it important that they take this time to be in the presence of their God?

At the stroke of midnight, most were on their knees. Some were older (and I had seen them in the chapel before). Most, however, were younger, including some couples. The sight of them gave me hope, hope for the future. Even as I worry about the past and wonder about the future for myself and those I love, I can see that the future for God and His Church is promising. It’s good that my thought went there. I need hope. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in myself and my immediate concerns, but I am not present on this earth only for myself. Even as the young people present this night give me hope, we are all called to be witnesses to Hope, to everyone we meet. So, as St. Paul says, we can proclaim to others “It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me.” We are here to give hope to others, to be His presence, in our life, and even in our death.

People continued to come and go during my entire adoration time. I am happy for Our Lord, that so many wanted to spend time with Him. (Or with thoughts of His Mother, whose feast day is January 1?) I felt as if my family were gathering with me tonight, here in prayer.

And at the stroke of midnight I was meditating on the Glorious Mysteries of the rosary, and read these words:

I am never alone for You are one with me.
I will be with you always, even to the end.
• Lord, I need You with me, by myself I am so weak.
• Spirit of Wisdom, guide me.
• Love come to me, that I might be love to others.
• Lord, You know that I love You.
• Yea though I walk through the valley … I shall not fear for You are with me.

My Jesus, Who so loved me, Who I so love, I trust in You.


  1. What a beautiful way to spend New Year's Eve! Happy New Year, Tom!

  2. Happy New Year to you also, my friend. May there be less anxiety for everyone this year.