Cardinal Cormac's Christmas Message
posted on 22 December 2003
'it was into a world as violent and uncertain as our own that God sent His angels to announce His own unique gift – the birth of His Son, our Saviour'
Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, Archbishop of Westminster and President of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales, has today (Monday 22nd December) released his Chrismas message for 2003.
In his message the Cardinal said:
“I send my warmest greetings to you and your family as we approach this wonderful season of Christmas.
' This year we celebrate this feast of peace at a time of continued insecurity at home and abroad. And yet it was into a world as violent and uncertain as our own that God sent His angels to announce His own unique gift – the birth of His Son, our Saviour, in that simple stable in Bethlehem.
'Jesus, the Son of Man, Mary’s tiny child, was born into a situation of intense vulnerability. No sooner was he born than he was fleeing persecution and terror.
'The true meaning of the Nativity cannot be experienced without a sense of this insecurity and fragility which is part of our human story. These things help rather hinder our entering more fully, and with an even greater sense of wonder and expectation, into the miracle of Jesus’ birth.
' At times this message can seem lost among the gaudy lights and discarded wrappings of the modern commercial Christmas. But we should not forget that all but a few of the people of Bethlehem were also blind to what His birth might signify. Although there was no room available there, Jesus still came. Even though our own hearts are at times not fully open to his message, He still comes to us to bring us the same life, joy and peace that He brought to the Shepherds who went away 'praising God for all they had seen and heard.'
'So, this is not a time for worry about what might be. It is a time to pause, to focus on what is really important in our lives, and for us to invite Jesus ever deeper into our hearts that He may be born anew within us'