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Charity at Christmas and beyond – Dec 19

Charity at Christmas and beyond – Dec 19 PDF Print E-mail

By Vernon Khelawan

Tomorrow evening, Archbishop Edward Gilbert will have the honour of blessing and officially opening the public crèche on the Brian Lara Promenade at the corner of Abercromby Street and Independence Square North.

The crèche, which is organised by the Christian Council of Trinidad and Tobago, will, until December 27, have nightly services led by a worship leader and will feature different homilists from various Christian denominations.

In the archbishop’s reflections on the chosen text for the night (Luke2: 8-20) he would bring to mind what can be regarded as the greatest manifestation of evangelisation in the Christian world.

Luke wrote, “There were shepherds in that locality, living in the fields and keeping night watch by turns over their flocks. The angel of the Lord appeared to them as the glory of the Lord shone around them and they were very much afraid.

The angel said to them, you have nothing to fear! I come to proclaim the good news to you – tidings of great joy to be shared by the whole people. This day in David’s city a Saviour has been born to you, the Messiah and the Lord.”

Calming words, but full of meaning and a message delivered by a special messenger – an angel of the Lord.

As we Catholics prepare to celebrate the anniversary of the birth of our Lord and Saviour the passage speaks directly to all of us, reminding us of the “reason for the season”, if I am allowed to borrow a phrase from that popular Christmas ditty sung by Singing Francine. It puts into perspective how God wants us to deal with the season.

And while there is nothing wrong with the material preparations – well-lit Christmas trees, beautifully decorated homes, a plethora of luncheons and dinners, gifts for family, friends and colleagues and lots to eat and drink, the spirituality of the family cannot be ignored.

In the same way God chose to evangelise the poor shepherds living in the fields, the thrust of the Church has to be focussed on winning back the “shepherds” of our Church flock by multitudinous works of charity not only at Christmas time but always.

So while we prepare to enjoy the season and joy and celebration that accompanies it, Luke reminds us that thought must be given to the poor and underprivileged in our society, as well as the destitute, and do something positive about it.

Evangelisation in its truest sense.

Last Updated on Thursday, 16 December 2010 22:17