Archbishop Bernard writes:

As we continue our journey through Advent on this Gaudete Sunday we hear St John the Baptist questioning the Lord about his identity and mission. He asked: Are you the one who is to come, or have we got to wait for someone else? When he was questioned about his credentials in this way, the evidence Jesus provided lay in his acts of kindness and healing: the blind see again; the lame walk again; the dead are raised to life. These are signs of the powerful presence of God’s Kingdom and Advent encourages us to look for the coming of God’s Kingdom today. And tom consider our legacy from the Jubilee Year of Mercy.

In our Archdiocese we are blessed to have Father Hudson’s Care working to establish the justice and peace of God’s Kingdom. I think that if John the Baptist were to send a messenger to question those who work for Father Hudson’s Care today, they would provide evidence of their co-operation in the Lord’s work helping the disabled to live more fully again, those who have dementia to have their dignity again, vulnerable children to be cared for again, the asylum seeker, the homeless and those involved in crime to be part of society again. In Christ the dead are raised to life again, and it can truly be said that those who felt that they were dying through loneliness, rejection or failure are helped to live again. Most of all on this Gaudete Sunday, when we are told the tongues of the dumb shall sing for joy, the mission of those who work for Father Hudson’s is to bring joy to places where there may be pain and suffering.

This Gaudete Sunday, as we welcome Christ especially in those most in need and as we consider what the lasting legacy of the Jubilee year of Mercy will be, I want to encourage you to support Father Hudson’s work. During the Year of Mercy, Caritas Archdiocese of Birmingham, working with Father Hudson’s as the social care agency of the Archdiocese and with other agencies, has established these new projects as a true legacy of the mercy of Christ. This is a cause of great joy for us as, with Isaiah, we say: ‘the lame shall leap like a deer, the eyes of the blind shall be opened… The Lord your God is coming … He is coming to save you’.

May the Son of God fill you with joy as you prepare to celebrate his birth, and may I wish you the blessing of a very happy Christmas to come.

For the full text of the Letter please click the link below.