Christmas – Being born to our fragility

Dear Alumnæ and Alumni,

2021 will be remembered as a year of our frailties. No, the pandemic was not defeated this year. Yes, climate change has continued to take its toll on the four corners of the globe.

We have always been fragile, but without always admitting it to ourselves. The child in the crib was also fragile, born in very precarious conditions to parents who were practically on the run.

Yet people as different as the shepherds and the magi discovered this fragility, even as a shining star guided them, leading them to think that a being beyond imagination was waiting for them. Instead, they discovered a child in a manger. And it was this fragility that they adored, the shepherds with their simple common sense and the magi with all their wisdom.

To follow a star without knowing to whom it will lead us is a form of trust in the future and in life, a way of oblation to what must come. In a world where we tend to want to control everything and where what cannot be controlled, notably because of its complexity, makes us anxious, do common sense, that of the shepherds, and wisdom, that of the magi, not command that we accept to place our trust in things that unfold like water flows, in others who know little more than we do anyway, and in the Creator who alone holds the keys to the mystery that surrounds us?

Fragile we will always be, but without doubt we can recognize that our fragility is the possibility of a strong life, and that the absence of certainty does not prevent joy, like the one we feel at the sight of the Child who has just been born.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Alain Deneef
World Union of Jesuit Alumni

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