Last Updated on January 1, 2022 by GMC
Now there were shepherds in that region living in the fields and keeping the night watch over their flock. The angel of the Lord appeared to them and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were struck with great fear. 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.” And suddenly there was a multitude of the heavenly host with the angel, praising God and saying:
“Glory to God in the highestLuke 2:8-14
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
Poor and lowly shepherds keeping vigil with their flocks at night were the first to receive the good news of their newborn shepherd king. As an unearthly light lit up their fields, an angel assured them, “Do not be afraid!” Zechariah, Joseph and Mary were also commanded by angels, “Do not be afraid!” The inbreaking of divinity into human affairs frightens mortals with the reality of a realm beyond their grasp. Pure, uncreated goodness and light blind eyes habituated to the shadowlands east of Eden.
The Father in his mercy and kindness sent his Son, Light from Light, into mortal flesh wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying on a bed of straw. Instead of blinding and terrorizing humanity, the infant Jesus beckoned all to approach him with love and wonder. His tiny innocence and vulnerability disarmed shepherds and kings who found him in the city of David the shepherd king and father of the Messiah. Together with Mary and Joseph, the first adorers of the Word made flesh glorified God with the choirs of angels.