Message on the Observance of Christmas
The themes of Christmas and of coming home for the holidays have long been intertwined in song and story. There is a profound irony and lesson in this, because Christmas celebrates the coming of a Savior Who was born without a home.
was no room at the inn for the Holy Family. Weary of travel, a young Mary close
to childbirth and her carpenter husband Joseph found but the rude shelter of a
stable. There was born the King of Kings, the Prince of Peace -- an event on
which all history would turn. Jesus would again be without a home, and more
than once; on the flight to
From His very infancy, on, our Redeemer was reminding us that from then on we would never lack a home in Him. Like the shepherds to whom the angel of the Lord appeared on the first Christmas Day, we could always say, ``Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.''
As we come home with gladness to family and friends this Christmas, let us also remember our neighbors who cannot go home themselves. Our compassion and concern this Christmas and all year long will mean much to the hospitalized, the homeless, the convalescent, the orphaned -- and will surely lead us on our way to the joy and peace of Bethlehem and the Christ Child Who bids us come. For it is only in finding and living the eternal meaning of the Nativity that we can be truly happy, truly at peace, truly home.
Merry Christmas, and God bless you!