Monday, 24 December 2018

Christmas 2018

The Flight to Egypt.

I would like to wish all my readers a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. May you and your spirits be refreshed by the closeness of friends, the comfort of home, the feeling of togetherness. Let this festive season end the current difficult year on a cheerful note and reflections on what has passed prepare the way for a fresh and bright year to come for all of us. At Christmas, let us be thankful for what we have but also remember those that are not so fortunate, those that have lost so much that we take for granted. As we celebrate, all of us in our own way, the Birth of Christ, let us not forget that the narrative at the heart of this festival continues with the Holy Family's flight to Egypt to escape a murderous wicked regime.

No place for Muslims
I have just come from a traditional Polish Christmas Eve family celebration. Around the table were some 25 people but next to me was the traditional empty plate and chair for the 'unexpected guest'. It is an old Polish tradition. How bitter to sit there and look at that plate in one of the countries - ostensibly so self-righteously 'Christian' - that rejects refugees and whose Church recently organized prayer meetings with rosaries at the borders to keep them out. Such attitudes fly straight in the face of the teachings of the authentic Church (Matthew 25: 31 to 46James 2:14-17).

Identity crisis
At this time, when we settle down with our families in the peace of our homes to celebrate the birth of Jesus, let us not block from our minds that all over the world are people, families, whose lives have been torn apart by tragedy and who are forced to try and seek to rebuild them elsewhere. Yet, precisely at this time, others are planning walls to exclude these people.

Wall of fear
Let us have the strength of mind to recognize that these walls are an expression of our own insecurities, they reflect a lack of faith. They embody a fear that our own value systems no longer have the vitality to accommodate and resist influences from those of 'Others'. Building exclusive walls, physical and mental, we seek to enforce an 'end of history', rather than embrace the future.

Let us have the faith to see the true message of the hackneyed Christmas trope 'goodwill to all men', the global realities behind it, but also the responsibilities and moral imperative flowing from it. And in the coming New Year, and those to come, apply them.

No comments:

Creative Commons License
Ten utwór jest dostępny na licencji Creative Commons Uznanie autorstwa-Bez utworów zależnych 3.0 Unported.