Rorate caeli desuper, et nubes pluant iustum
Drop down dew, ye heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain the Just
The prophet Isaiah tells us in chapter 45, verse 8: "Rain down, you heavens, from above, and let the clouds pour down saving justice!” However, St. Jerome (c. 347 - c. 420), when he translated the Bible into Latin, the so-called Vulgate, gave a messianic character to the text and what should have been: "Rorate, caeli, desuper, et nubes pluant iustitiam", became: "Rorate caeli desuper, et nubes pluant iustum". He translated "iustum" (Just), by "iustitiam" (Justice). Rain clouds to the Just!
And that is our prayer this Advent season: Clouds, rain down Justice, clouds rain down the Just One. Yes, God and our Father, sends the Righteous One to give us strength to carry out his justice. A justice demanded by the most destitute of our working brothers and sisters, in whom we see the face of Jesus, the Messiah, the Christ, the Son of God. Justice demanded by those affected by the health, ecological, economic, and social crisis, the consequences of which still affect so many of us, so many of our brothers and sisters.
At Christmas we celebrate the closeness of God. Closeness that we experience and celebrate throughout the year, wherever we are, because Jesus appears to us in the face of all those who, like him, cannot find a place to stay, cannot find a place to rest from the hardships of their lives. Christmas is a reminder of God's commitment to us, of his trust in us who, despite our precariousness, want to follow in the footsteps of the Righteous One who brings us justice.
O heavens, rain down your justice! It is this hope that has led us this year to become aware, at the Lisbon Seminar last September, of the consequences of the pandemic caused by Covid. This infinite hope which helps us feel the call to transform the world for which we work and fight into the world where we will be able to exercise our condition as daughters and sons of God. Hope is audacious, we said in the final manifesto. That is why we believe that not only is another world possible, but we believe that another world is necessary. The world that the Gospel proposes to us, the world that Jesus, the Son of God, the Righteous One, has dreamed for humanity.
In the Seminar that we will be holding in Barcelona next September 2023, we will insist on our role, as Christian workers, to make democracy truly a means that facilitates justice and social prosperity and leads our Europe to actually fulfil Jesus' answer to the disciples of John the Baptist: "The blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are made clean, the deaf hear, the dead are brought back to life and good news is reaching the poor. And how fortunate is the one who does not take offense at me." (Mt 11:5-6).
Christmas is the beginning of the world that Jesus, the Righteous One, the Son of God, has dreamed of. Let us join God's initiative by welcoming the Righteous One in us, and making him known among our working sisters and brothers. That will be the best gift we can give them. Merry Christmas, God bless you and your families!
Olinda Marques, President
Charly Brunner, President
Melchior Kanyamibwa, Coordinator
Armin Huerner, Treasurer
Josep Jiménez Montejo, Chaplain