This week's reflection ponders on self-denial through Lent.
Christmas is a wonderful, joyful time of the year!
Posted in Faith
Below is the script transcribed from the Moderator's Christmas message for 2018 - Christmas is a wonderful, joyful time of the year! To access the video click the following link.
As we remember the gift of God’s Son to the world in the birth of the baby Jesus, we celebrate by sharing gifts of joy and goodwill with each other. I’m just wrapping another gift right now, actually.
I love the joy of sharing simple gifts with each other at Christmas.
Many Uniting churches and organisations are mindful of people facing unplanned hardships and are preparing gifts of Goodwill in preparation for Christmas.
Organisations such as UnitingCare and Target who recently launched their annual Christmas appeal are working hard to spread joy to those who need it. I accompanied a group of young people as they selected gifts that reflect the joy of Christmas for other young people who are experiencing hardship.
Many churches are also preparing Christmas hampers as signs of good will to people in their community.
There are some people in rural South Australia who have no or limited harvest this year. My heart goes out to these people, I am thankful for money raised and those friends and neighbours providing support and gifts for those doing it tough in our state’s rural communities.
2018 has continued to see the growing global concern for refugees across the world. War and unrest and natural disasters have driven people from their homelands. Jesus was born into the world for all people to know the love of God for them. The Christmas Bowl appeal demonstrates Jesus’ love for refugee care across the world, as a sign of neighbourhood love.
Please remember people who are in refugee camps and detention centres this Christmas, with your gift of love in a donation to a charity like Christmas Bowl.
I recently attended the Willunga Uniting Church Christmas tree festival
What a joy-filled occasion that was! Christmas trees decorated by many Willunga organisations were displayed, and there were so many activities to enjoy. Perhaps a church is holding a Christmas event near you? – why not go along and hear the story of Christmas at a Christmas Eve service, or a Carols event or a special festival like Road to Christmas.
Sharing Christmas means that the gift of Jesus to the world – that baby born in Bethlehem,
…becomes a gift that goes on and on. A gift that continues to bring Joy and goodwill to people everywhere. A gift of love. A gift of Hope and a gift of Peace, especially if you are facing a hard time right now.
Your hard time may linger, but you will be able to bear it better knowing God’s love for you has come in Jesus and continues to come – every Christmas!
A joy filled Christmas to you all.
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