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Christmas Message from the Patriarch of Antioch

By The Grace of God
IGNATIUS ZAKKA I IWAS
Patriarch of Antioch and All the East
Supreme Head of the Universal Syrian Orthodox Church

Prophet Malachi prophesied: "For you who revere my name the Sun of Righteousness shall rise with healing in its wings." (Malachi 4:2).

This prophecy was fulfilled nearly four hundred years later when our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ God-Incarnate, was born at Bethlehem. All Christians the world over celebrate the Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ as the 'Feast of Christmas.'

Christmas is the time for spiritual rejoicing and glorifying God. But unfortunately, there is now much unhappiness in the world. Injustice and unrighteousness are present in many parts of the world. Lack of belief in God is on the increase. People and nations are failing to understand God's love for them. So they are becoming more self-centered than God- centered. And naturally, there is no peace, but unrest all over the world.

All human efforts to establish lasting peace are proving to be in vain. Only God can bring lasting peace and joy. St. John the Apostle testifies: "For God so loved the world that He gave unto the world His Only-begotten Son that whoever believe in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life" (St. John 3:16). We must realize this love of God for us and love Him in return. We must repent and believe in His Only-begotten Son, Lord Jesus Christ and accept Him as our Lord and Savior. We must entrust ourselves completely into the hand of our Lord Jesus Christ as His blessed mother. St. Mary submitted herself completely to the will of God. We must allow Him to guide us in the paths of righteousness. And then, as Prophet Jeremiah said, "He shall reign as King and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land" (Jeremiah 23:5).

May our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ wipe off all injustice, unrighteousness and suffering and grant us all lasting peace and joy.

We wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We extend our Apostolic Blessings to you. May the grace of God be with you all.

December 6, 2005
Source: SOCM Forum

See Also:

Glad News, Good news, Christ is born
The greatest wonder ever revealed in heaven or earth was the wonder recorded in the verses before us for consideration.

Testimony of an Inn-Keeper
A familiar Christmas Story with a twist.

How "Merry Christmas" is said in the languages of the world

The Meaning that now-a-days Christmas has Forgotten
These are the the traditional symbols of Christmas and their meanings.

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