MANILA, Dec. 23, 2012—The celebration of Christmas becomes meaningful only because of our faith in God, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle said in a Christmas message.
Christmas is all about faith, he said, thus removing faith from the celebration of Christmas is “to empty it of its meaning.”
“It is a season born of faith and a privileged time to renew our faith,” he furthered.
Musing on this year’s Christmas season which is celebrated within the Year of Faith that began last October, the cardinal asked: “What can the Year of Faith contribute to the Christmas spirit?”
“Faith is a living and sustained relationship with God. It is the Triune God who initiates this relationship by coming to us,” he said.
“Faith becomes complete in our response to God in trust and love, transforming our relationship with other people, society and creation,” the cardinal continued.
Our faith leads us to be in unity with the poor and “makes us to be sharers in Jesus’ saving mission and heralds of true freedom from all that enslaves us.”
Jesus’s coming and becoming “one like us except in sin”, “opens the door for us to enter God’s life. His obedience and fidelity is the door to God. He is the way,” Tagle said.
He stressed that every Christmas season is an invitation to everyone to “receive Jesus as the true Son of God become flesh, to accept him as our Savior and to enter the door to life in the Holy Spirit.”
Concluding his Christmas message, he said, “I pray that all Christians may appreciate more the precious gift of faith during this Christmas season. As we behold the Christ Child, humble and poor, let us thank God for his great love for us and let us respond with all the love we could give. Only pure divine love can save us!” (CBCPNews)