Become Christmas angels!
“Where God is born, hope is born; and where hope is born, persons regain their dignity ”. These are the words of the Holy Father, Pope Francis, reflecting on the Christmas mystery.
At this time of year, there is excitement in the air and the focus is usually on the shopping, the activities, the food that we will share and the sense of family that we will create. All of this is wonderful and quite amazing because it reconnects us in so many important ways.
More significantly, this is a time when we turn our attention to baby Jesus – a wonderful gift to mankind. Christ entered this troubled world as a helpless infant of poor and humble parents.
He came to bring love, peace, and forgiveness; He came to transform our lives. Jesus is Good News for those persons who least expect it. Jesus is love for those persons who do not deserve it. Jesus reassures us that God is with us. “Where God is born, hope is born”. That hope which is born, allows people to reconnect with their dignity.
The first people who received the message of the birth of Christ were the shepherds, the most lowly of people who lived in the field with their sheep. They were people on the margins. We cannot disconnect the Christmas story from the people on the margins, the lowly, the poor, the vulnerable.
God humbled Himself and came to us as a baby. We cannot disconnect Christ who was born in a manger-a trough of hay for the animals to eat- from poverty, from the lowly, from the weak, from the vulnerable. Christ assumes this most poor and vulnerable state so that we can all reconnect with our dignity.
Pope Francis reminds us that: “God abases himself, descends to earth as someone small and poor, which means that to be like Him we should not put ourselves above others, but on the contrary, abase ourselves, give ourselves in service, make ourselves small with the small and poor with the poor.” “For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” (Matt 23:12)
As we celebrate Christmas this year let us ask this question: who is there on the margins with whom I can share my Christmas cheer? Who do I know that may be lonely and to whom I can bring my message of hope?
Sisters and brothers, how can you become Christmas angels to people who need that hope to be born, so that they can reconnect with their dignity?
Let us become Christmas angels this year: let us bring hope, let us bring joy and let us help others to experience their dignity and their worth as children of God. God bless you. Have a wonderful Christmas!
† CHARLES JASON GORDON
Archbishop of Port of Spain