BABY JESUS doesn’t usually make it to bed-in-the-manger in Bramhall Parish Church until a moment of blessing at the start of Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve. Everyone else is on hand there already, but not the Baby Jesus. So, with several dozen infant “Active Angels” arriving to meet him at 10.30 this morning it was a mildly anguished Yours Truly who, in search of a well-informed Sexton or Verger, asked “where’s the baby?”.

“Don’t know”, said the parish administrator, “but Noah’s here. We’ve got a real baby that would do”.

Ah! And there’s the point. There’s the miracle for me and you. The Incarnation of God is “born in us today” – again and again and again and again – in REAL babies. IN me and you! And with the renewed dawning came, of course, another truth – in the nick of time – that the absent Baby Jesus wasn’t really absent at all. Just biding his time. Waiting for the right moment. Asleep, rather as though in the bottom of a boat, in the sacristy desk drawer …

PEACE. Be still.

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