The community at Notre Dame University-Louaize (NDU) gathered at the Issam Fares Conference Hall on Friday, December 22, to celebrate Christmas Mass, the altar presided over by Fr. Pierre Ghsoub, Assistant to the President for Finance. Concelebrating the Divine Liturgy were Fr. Bechara Khoury, NDU President, Fr. Joseph Khalil, University Chaplain General, and Fr. George Debli and Fr. Abdo Antoun, University Chaplains. Students, staff, and faculty congregated for the celebration of the Holy Eucharist, the hymns performed by the NDU School of Music, led by Fr. Khalil Rahme.
In his homily, Fr. Ghsoub referred to Christmas as the focal point of our faith, the launching pad for our relationship with God. “In this sacred mystery of the Lord’s incarnation, we ourselves become sanctified,” he said. “Through Christ, our bodies are no longer chained to sin, but are temples of the Holy Spirit.” Fr. Ghsoub continued to discuss the Child Jesus and the holiness of childhood itself, where we are all called to return, experiencing the fullness of its humility, innocence, and reliance on God (cf. Mt. 18:3). Through Mary, we are shown God’s love for humanity, and it is also through her that we encounter Christ and His new covenant, where He pours out His love and mercy for our salvation.
The Divine Liturgy proceeded with the consecration of the Eucharist, the reading of intentions, and prayerful hymns. After Holy Communion and the Final Blessing, Fr. Khoury gave a brief word to the NDU community, reflecting on the past year and all the progress that was made in the shared love for the University by each of its members. He gave a final thanks before extending an invitation to Christmas lunch at the NDU Exhibition Hall, where the community enjoyed the conclusion of the semester and beginning of the Christmas festivities in one another’s warm company.