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Christmas Message from Bishop Mina 2018

anba_mina

In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, one God, Amen.

Dear brothers and sisters, I wish you all a Happy New Year and Merry Christmas.

What is the meaning of true Christmas? what do you think people mean by Christmas? For some, Christmas means going home. It’s togetherness of family and good memories, and for some people Christmas is exchanging cards with people you know, there will be about four billion of those exchanged.

For other people, Christmas is fun. It’s a party. Exchange of gifts, Santa parades, Christmas trees and its decorations.

For some people, it’s a very, very sad time because Christmas seems to bring all of the sorrow and suffering and pain of life, how much loneliness they feel, missing a husband who is gone or kids who are far away in other countries.

For some other people who work in malls, police, traffic, Christmas is a very hard and busy time, and for others, it’s a time when you say thanks.

Christmas is about giving … It’s a time for giving.

The true meaning of Christmas, was understood by Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist, who when she met Mary the mother of God she said, blessed is the fruit of your womb, she blessed the baby Jesus while still in the womb of St Mary.

St. Mary understood Christmas when she said my soul exalts the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God, my savior.

Zachariah, the father of John understood Christmas when he said: “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has visited and redeemed his people and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David.”

Even the angel Gabriel said: “There is born for you a savior who is Christ the Lord.” and then suddenly: a multitude of angels praising and glorifying God, saying glory to God in the highest.

Simeon, the old man as he looked into the face of the baby Jesus said: “Blessed God mine eyes have the seen his salvation”

Anna, the old lady who lived in the temple for more than 80 years gave thanks to God for the redeemer.

The true Christmas is about:

  • Thanking God for the gift of Jesus Christ.
  • Praising him for the gift of the Savior.

That is what our Coptic Church is doing for the whole month of Kiahk, every Kiahk praise night we stay awake till morning thanking and praising God for his gift: “Baby Jesus” and for his “Salvation”, for the born of St. Mary is our Savior.

May God bless you all.

— His Grace Bishop Mina
Bishop, Coptic Orthodox Diocese of Mississauga, Vancouver, and Western Canada

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