Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Christmas messages....

Many of our bishops have, as usual, released Christmas messages, and you can find some of them over at the ACBC media blog (I expect more will go up after the public holiday period is over).

The Pope

The Pope's urbi et orbi message focuses on the hope of peace, particularly in places like Syria and the Middle East.

Perhaps more interesting is his Christmas article for the UK Financial Times, which talks about the relationship between Church and State, pointing out that our Christian faith should both inspire us to engage actively in the political arena in order to shape a better, more equitable world, but also remind us to render to Caesar only what belongs to him, and no more:

"Because these goals are shared by so many, much fruitful cooperation is possible between Christians and others. Yet Christians render to Caesar only what belongs to Caesar, not what belongs to God. Christians have at times throughout history been unable to comply with demands made by Caesar. From the Emperor cult of ancient Rome to the totalitarian regimes of the last century, Caesar has tried to take the place of God. When Christians refuse to bow down before the false gods proposed today, it is not because of an antiquated world-view. Rather, it is because they are free from the constraints of ideology and inspired by such a noble vision of human destiny that they cannot collude with anything that undermines it...From the manger, Christ calls us to live as citizens of his heavenly kingdom, a kingdom that all people of good will can help to build here on earth"."

Cardinal Pell over at the Vatican website

Cardinal Pell's piece isn't for some reason up at the ACBC blog (yet?).

But it is getting a rather wider audience, not least by dint of being featured on the Vatican website.  His apology for the abuse crisis is being applauded (at least by some victims groups) not least for its contrast to some of his previous, rather less sensitive comments!

The Queen

The Queen's annual message reflects on her Jubilee, and stresses the importance of service of others in Christ's coming.

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