by Beverly Hutchinson McNeff
Most of us at the Center happen to be old-time movie buffs. Many of the old Christmas movies have wonderful spiritual messages to them. One of our all-time favorites is It’s a Wonderful Life with Jimmy Stewart. This classic Capra movie has become a holiday standard, and we wouldn’t miss it!
But, if you are up for another old-time adventure this holiday, you should check out the wonderful 1947 gem, The Bishop’s Wife. This magical film from Samuel Goldwyn stars Cary Grant as an angel named Dudley, who comes as an answer to the prayer of the newly appointed Bishop, David Niven.
The Bishop thinks that Dudley is there to help him with his all-consuming task of raising money so that an edifice to God can be built in the form of a new cathedral. The Bishop’s driving desire to build this cathedral has been at the expense of his relationship with his wife, played by Loretta Young, and those of his family and friends. But, Dudley is there because of the Bishop’s prayer for help, and real help is what the angel gives!
As you can imagine, the end of the movie is a tear-jerker that leaves you with a good feeling. We want to share a little of that “good feeling” with you right now, as we print the poignant Christmas Eve message that the transformed Bishop delivers. We hope you enjoy this reminder of the true message of Christmas. …
“Tonight I want to tell you the story of an empty stocking. Once upon a midnight clear there was a child’s cry. A blazing star hung over a stable and wise men came with birthday gifts.
We haven’t forgotten that night down the centuries. We celebrate it with stars on Christmas trees, with the sound of bells, and with gifts, especially with gifts. You give me a book. I give you a tie. Aunt Martha has always wanted an orange squeezer, and Uncle Henry could do with a new pipe.
Oh, we forget nobody…adult or child. All the stockings are filled. All that is, except one. And we have even forgotten to hang it up. A stocking for the child born in a manger. It’s his birthday we are celebrating. Don’t let us ever forget that. Let us ask ourselves what he would wish for most and then let each put in his share: loving kindness, warm hearts, and the stretched out hand of tolerance. All the shining gifts that make peace on earth.”
“Each little gift you offer to your brother lights up the world.” (T-22.VI.9:9)
We Wish You a Blessed Holiday Season!
The Staff of MDC