Christ is Our Peace … est pax nostra!
Living Words from John Paul II
Edited by Abraham A. van Kempen
Each week we let Saint Pope John Paul II share meaningful signposts to spark socio-economic resolves through justice and righteousness combined with mercy and compassion; in short, love.
Men and women of the third millennium, you who hunger for justice and peace, accept the message of Christmas, which today rings out around the world!
Jesus came to break down "the dividing wall of hostility" (Eph 2:14) and to make one family of all mankind.
Let us hasten like the shepherds to Bethlehem, let us pause in adoration in the cave, and gaze upon the Newborn Redeemer.
In him we can recognize the face of every little child who is born, of whatever race or nation: the little Palestinian and the little Israeli; the little American and the little Afghan; the child of the Hutu and the child of the Tutsi... whoever the child is, to Christ each one is special.
Today my thoughts go to all the children of the world: so many, too many are the children condemned from birth to suffer through no fault of their own the effects of cruel conflicts.
Let us save the children, in order to save the hope of humanity!
This is what we are urgently called to do by that Child born in Bethlehem, the God who became man, to give us back the right to hope.
Let us beg from Christ the gift of peace for all who are suffering as a result of conflicts old and new.
Day after day, I bear in my heart the tragic problems of the Holy Land; every day I think with anxiety of all those who are dying of cold and hunger; every day there reaches me the desperate cry of those who, in so many parts of the world, call for a fairer distribution of resources and for gainful employment for all.
Let no one lose hope in the power of God's love!
May Christ be the light and support of those who believe and work, sometimes in the face of opposition, for encounter, dialogue and cooperation between cultures and religions.
May Christ guide in peace the steps of those who tirelessly devote themselves to the progress of science and technology.
May these great gifts of God never be used against respect for human dignity and its promotion!
May God's holy name never be used as a justification for hatred!
Let it never be used as an excuse for intolerance and violence!
May the gentle face of the Child of Bethlehem remind everyone that we all have one Father.
Abraham A. van Kempen is Sr. Editor of the Building the Bridge Foundation, The Hague.
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