Mele Kalikimaka! Ke Akua ho‘omaika‘i ‘oukou!
Merry Christmas! May the blessing of God be with you!
During last Christmas Season, we challenged our ‘Ohana to not break down their Nativity scenes. Instead, our vision was to find a home for this young refugee and his family, not only at Christmas, but throughout the whole year.
The hope was that the Holy Family would be a daily reminder of God’s continual commitment to (and our role) protecting those needing protection, especially God’s refugees. We also encouraged our ‘Ohana to place the Holy Family near a window, allowing them to watch over a world that continues to struggle with terror, tragedy, suffering, and strife.
At All Saints’, Mary, Joseph, and Baby Jesus have been visible throughout the Church year in the sanctuary. Many of the All Saints’ ‘Ohana heeded the challenge to leave their Nativity up in their homes throughout the year.
Throughout 2015, we have watched with pain the great struggles endured by our refugee brothers and sisters. We continue to be shocked and disheartened by the reckless actions of extremist groups killing and harming others “in the name of God.” And our nation continues to be rocked by over 350 mass shootings in this year alone.
More than ever, the Nativity of our Lord is a prophetic reminder and profound call for Christians throughout the world to be actively engaged in the work of peacemaking, reconciliation, rendering aid, healing, and sharing God’s love.
The birth of our Lord and Savior reminds us that we are sons and daughters of a refugee child. We are baptized into Christ’s mission to love God and to love our neighbor. The Spirit inspires and empowers us to be “Christ’s Light” to a broken world.
With Christmas comes hope! In Christmas comes joy! Through Christmas comes love! We invite you to share Christmas with us—together may we discover and celebrate the hope, joy, and love that is Christ our Lord.
May God richly bless you, all those whom you love, and all whom you are called to serve in Christ’s name, in this holy season and always.
Faithfully in the name of the Great Peacemaker,
The Reverend Ryan D. Newman
Rector and Head of School
All Saints’ Episcopal Church and Preschool