Issue 81
December 22, 2015
From the Director's Desk

"On this holy night, while we contemplate the Infant Jesus just born and placed in the manger, we are invited to reflect. How do we welcome the tenderness of God? Do I allow myself to be taken up by God, to be embraced by him, or do I prevent him from drawing close?" - Pope Francis (Christmas Homily, 2014)

The past year has seen many moments that called out for the "tenderness of God."  Challenging moments of war, suffering, natural disaster, and human-caused neglect - seemingly harsh, rather than tender.  Some might use the harshness of the world as an excuse to move away from God or render God irrelevant.  Yet, there is still a seeking in the human heart given by God who desires to embrace us and draw us close.  When we look at the scene of the Nativity, do we see the tenderness of God in the midst of the harsh reality that Mary and Joseph were not shown tenderness in their need, but instead were rejected?  The Son of God came into the world in poverty.  At the end of his earthly life, he was rejected once again. The Father, though, continued to show mercy, love, and tenderness by raising him up, opening the way to salvation, and leaving us a share in Christ's mission of love and mercy until he comes again.

During this Jubilee of Mercy and beyond, may we go about doing Christ's mission well through living tenderness, reviving faith, rekindling charity - living the corporal and spiritual works of mercy.  These works of mercy are practical ways for us to welcome and share the "tenderness of God."

On behalf of the board, staff, collaborators, and advisors of the Catholic Apostolate Center, may you have a Blessed Christmas and a good New Year!  You will be remembered by me at Masses during the Christmas season! 

May the charity of Christ urge us on!

In God, the Infinite Love,
In This Issue
Jubilee of Mercy Resources

Pope Francis has called for an Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy to be celebrated throughout 2016. Having started on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, December 8th, Pope Francis wants us to use this time to show the mercy of God to others. The Catholic Apostolate Center has a resource page, which offers resources from sources such as the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization, USCCB, Archdiocese of Washington, and many others. Please feel free to share these resources in your ministry!

Click here to learn more about the Jubilee of Mercy.
Mercy in Motion

Throughout the Jubilee of Mercy, the Catholic Apostolate Center is offering reminders of ways to live out the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy. We hope these serve as quick reminders and pathways of reflection to reach out in different ways to those that need to experience the mercy of God in their lives.

Follow us on Facebook and reflect on the other Works of Mercy!

The Catholic Apostolate Center welcomes you to read our E-book, Ad Infinitum: Reflections from the Bloggers of the Catholic Apostolate Center. This E-book is a selection from the hundreds of posts and dozens of writers that have appeared ion the Catholic Apostolate Center's Ad Infinitum blog since its inception.

Included in the E-book are a selection of Advent and Christmas Season related posts to enjoy during this holiday season. Use them as a way to grow in faith and share with others during this holiday season.

Click here to learn more about our E-book.
Advent Reflection Guide

The Catholic Volunteer Network (CVN) and Catholic Apostolate Center present to you the 2015 Advent Guide. 

The 2015 Advent Guide concludes with a thought-provoking reflection about the whole of the Advent Season and the beginning of Christmas from our Social Media Coordinator, Kate Flannery

This guide offers prayers, reflections, and service suggestions from several current and former CVN volunteers corresponding to each Sunday's Gospel. Each week focused on one of the four pillars of faith-based service: Community, Social Justice, Simple Living, and Spirituality. 

Click here to check out this great resource from the 2015 Advent Season.
Ad Infinitum Blog
Christmas Reflection
by Nicholas Shields

During Advent and Christmas we are watching Mary, Joseph, and Jesus grow and become a family. We should take this opportunity to allow ourselves to walk in their footsteps and live a life wholly committed to Christ. We should take this opportunity to ask for their intercession and assistance on our journey to God. 

Click here to read more. 
Support the Catholic Apostolate Center

As we approach the end of Advent and begin the Christmas season, let us remember that every day gives us an opportunity to evangelize. This year, please consider making the Catholic Apostolate Center a part of your year-end generosity. Your financial support enables us to continue our important mission to revive faith, rekindle charity, and form apostles in the United States and around the world. 
  • A gift of $5 will help us reach more Catholics around the world through social media.
  • A gift of $15 will enable us to create new resources to empower you to evangelize.
  • A gift of $25 will support our work as we collaborate with others to form apostles.

Whatever your level of support, know of our thanks now and in the new year!

The Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord

December 25, 2015
On this day the Church focuses especially on the newborn Child, God become human, who embodies for us all the hope and peace we seek. We need no other special saint today to lead us to Christ in the manger, although his mother Mary and Joseph, caring for his foster-Son, help round out the scene.

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