by Sister Cordy Korkowski
Christmas Day meant it was the birthday of Jesus but also my Dad’s birthday. We celebrated the dual birthdays every year, until my father died in 1996. After our farm house became too small for the Christmas celebrations, the families of my eight brothers and four sisters graduated to the Brandon City Hall, where little feet could run and play and those more advanced in years could find comfortable spaces to spread out and visit. We have nearly 70-100 Korkowski’s and friends gather now, depending on the weather, most originating from the lineage of my parents, Grace Lambertz Korkowski and Al Korkowski.
My dad related to me that on Christmas day he would feed the animals the best of corn and ground grain. After all, it was Christmas. Now, it’s my turn to know how to celebrate with all of creation, an activity St. Francis would certainly endorse. I go out in the morning of December 24 and make sure all the bird feeders are filled to the brim. Even the humble little sparrows are grateful to be remembered.
This year, we Franciscan Sisters decided to get into the swing of things around the Franciscan Welcoming House too. Sister Clara Stang obtained a darling little tree that we have placed in our front porch. It is just enough to let all know who drive past, that we are celebrating a great feast. Inside our house is the traditional tree, gathered ornaments of each Sister, plus poinsettias that look glorious in their deep red outfits, lights and artifacts of a variety of countries and traditions.
We have done the inner preparation too. Each in our house, Sisters Loretta Denfeld, Clara Stang and myself, have treasured the time of Advent, 2008. We would share on the special Advent Scripture readings at prayer. Our own spiritual preparation for Christmas, plus many social gatherings of Sisters, friends and family, combined to make the days before and after Christmas rich and meaningful.
St. Francis of Assisi initiated the crèche in Assisi, being deeply in love with the Incarnation, Jesus becoming one of us. When we gaze and admire the crib scene, it is more than beautiful artistry. It is a sign of God’s immense love for us. Our hearts are filled with gratitude for such mystery.
Written by Sister Jan Kilian, this blog will give an understanding of what it’s like to be Franciscan. Living out the spirit of Saint Francis, we see all God’s creation as brother and sister. We, Franciscan Sisters of Little Falls, are committed to building relationships and community, ministering wherever there is greatest need, promoting justice and healing Mother Earth’s wounds. My writings will give a glimpse of the compassion, spirituality, interconnectedness and goodness of living Franciscan.