As the nation celebrates Christmas today, a Catholic Church leader urges the faithful to “be Christmas, be Christ to all!”
“Aside from greeting and wishing each other a Merry Christmas, why not become and be Christmas to all. We can be Christ to all,” said Balanga Bishop Ruperto C. Santos.
“Christmas is to celebrate and commemorate the Birth of Jesus.
Jesus is born to us and for us. Jesus is given to us. He is God’s gift to us so that His divine plan of saving us would be fulfilled,” he said.
Being Christmas and being Christ to others means making Jesus a part of our very existence, the Church leader said.
“Let our lives be the birthplace of Jesus. Let our hearts be His manger. Let our houses be His home. With that, Jesus is with us. We are Christ. We are Christmas to one another,” Santos said.
He added, “Christmas is truly merry if Christ is indeed present in our words and deeds. Speak words which make our family and friends happy. Do works that will help them to be merry. Let us also present ourselves to be pleasing to Him. That way, we turn ourselves as gifts, as presents to Jesus. And so Christmas is us. We are Christmas. We are Christ to others.”
Meanwhile, Roman Catholics from around the world await Pope Francis’ seventh ‘Urbi et Orbi’ (To the city of Rome and to the world) Papal address and apostolic blessing at noon today (6 p.m. Manila time) from the central balcony of the Saint Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican. Part of the blessing is the remission of all temporal punishment due to sin through a plenary indulgence attached to the Papal blessing.
According to tradition, God’s eternal plan for man’s redemption is centered on the Savior’s Birth. Saint Paul in Galatians 4:45 said, “When the fullness of time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, so that He might redeem those who are under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.”
The Birth of Jesus to the Blessed Mother during the days of Caesar Augustus, the emperor of Rome who ruled from 27 B.C. to 14 A.D., was a fulfillment of an Old Testament messianic prophecy.
In the Scriptures, there are two accounts, namely Matthew 1:18 and Luke 1:26 and 2:40, narrating the events surrounding the Birth of Jesus more than 2,000 years ago.
Also known as Christmastide, “Christmas is a celebration of the Incarnation of the Eternal Word, the Son of God, and through this Incarnation, the world is transfigured and restored,” the Catholic Church said. (Christina I. Hermoso)