7 January 2013
Christmas Eve Midnight Mass Celebrates Birth of Jesus in Bethlehem
Every year on Christmas Eve, the Chapel of the Divine Child at Bethlehem University is a site of joy and worship when faculty, staff, and friends of Bethlehem University gather to celebrate Christmas at Midnight Mass, here in the town where Jesus was born.
Though the beautiful Chapel at Bethlehem University always exudes a warm atmosphere, this spirit is particularly alive on Christmas Eve, when worshippers give thanks to the Lord and pray for peace to prevail on earth. In this Chapel, the feeling of the grotto, the real birthplace of Jesus, gives hope to worshippers.
This year at Midnight Mass, the principal celebrant was Archbishop Giuseppe Lazzarotto, the Apostolic Delegate to Jerusalem and Palestine, and Chancellor of Bethlehem University. He spoke about the great joy that God has bestowed upon us all through the birth of Jesus Christ.
Many other guests attended Mass on this special occasion, including members of the Bethlehem University Board of Trustees and Vice Chancellor Brother Peter Bray.
"One of the biggest challenges we have is keeping hope alive," Brother Peter said in his Christmas message this year. "I am talking about a deep awareness that in the midst of the struggle, in the midst of the darkness, somehow we experience being held, being cared for."
As the community at Bethlehem University gathers to celebrate Christmas, we send our message of hope to the world, and our thanks for your ongoing support to this educational institution and the people of Palestine.
"It is this experience that gives us the hope to persevere, to carry on, to move past the failures and the defeats," Brother Peter said.
We concluded Midnight Mass with a special Christmas reception afterward at the Hotel Management Institute at Bethlehem University, where guests exchanged Christmas greetings and shared the excitement of the dawning of Christmas Day.
We at Bethlehem University thank you for your support and prayers, particularly at this time of year when we celebrate the birth of Jesus here in Bethlehem.