Christmas message Head of the Orthodox Church of Kazakhstan Metropolitan of Astana and Kazakhstan Alexander
- 06.01.2023, 11:33
- Новости на английском языке
Honorable fathers, dear brothers and sisters, residents of the land of Kazakhstan!
We celebrate the feast of peace and God's love and become mysterious witnesses of the Nativity of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! Together with the Bethlehem shepherds, we hear the voice of the heavenly herald: “I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.” (Luke 2:10-11).
“Let us receive this joy in our hearts,” St. Basil the Great calls on us, “let us worship with the Magi, we will glorify with the shepherds, we will rejoice with the angels, for our Savior who was born not in the form of God, so as not to frighten the weak, but in the form of a slave in order to free the enslaved ".
Holy Scripture tells us that Almighty God created Heaven and earth for man, the visible and invisible world, but the Creator's greatest gift to people was the Incarnation. The Lord Almighty " he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness." (Philippians 2:7), united with our nature in order to unite us with His Divine nature. The birth of Christ the Savior on earth was the beginning and source of a grace-filled life that brings renewal to the entire human race and all creation. “For life has appeared,” says the Apostle John the Theologian, “The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us” (1 John 1:2). Faith in the birth of God in the flesh and life according to this faith delivers people from enslavement to vanity and susceptibility to corruption and bestows the highest good - adoption by the Heavenly Father.
In the raging sea of life, we are not alone - for all time and for every hour “God is with us!”, But we are required to never betray Him, never to allow unbelief to cloud our mind, and passions to captivate our will.
Many countries and peoples are now undergoing severe trials, but, unfortunately, few people understand that the deepest cause of various disasters is the distance from the Source of life - God. Mankind is languishing from withering unbelief, from spiritual emptiness, from untruth and cruelty. On the feast of the Nativity of Christ, the Christmas carol announced by the angels is heard during the divine services: “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests!” (Luke 2:14), you and I need to add fervent prayers for peace, for the cessation of enmity, for the eradication of hatred and to expel every unkind word and deed from our lives in the holy days. Let everyone strictly follow the apostolic call: " Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good" (Rom. 12:21). Peace and harmony in the people, country, city, community and family begin with the peaceful dispensation of a single human soul, with its reconciliation with God, with neighbor and conscience.
Since ancient times, it has been customary to give gifts on a holiday and delight the hero of the occasion. How can we please the Lord, who is Himself the source of all good, to whom “the earth belongs and what fills it, the world and everything that lives in it” (Ps. 23:1)? Priest Nicholas, Metropolitan of Alma-Ata, argues: “What will we give Him? What would the Creator of the universe be pleased to receive from us? “He wants nothing but our love.”
Let's bring as a gift to the Newborn Christ at least one specific good deed, from which our neighbor will feel lighter, happier and brighter. Let's try to become merciful and generous, show diligence, helping the sick, the lonely, the unfortunate, despite the fact that in our days it is more difficult to do good deeds than in past years. But it is precisely in difficult circumstances that we have the opportunity to more fully manifest the nobility of our soul. Like the sages of the Gospels, let us approach the Divine Infant lying in the manger with our gifts, showing instead of gold - unfeigned love, instead of incense - humble prayers, instead of myrrh - kindness to the people around us.
I heartily congratulate all of you on the great feast of the Nativity of Christ and prayerfully wish you to stay in spiritual joy in the Lord, “for the sake of us now, born in the flesh of the Blessed and Most Pure Virgin Mary.”
God is the source of love and peace (2 Cor. 13:11), may he grant the blessed land of Kazakhstan, all countries and people and each of us peace and His great and rich mercy.
Happy Christmas and Happy New Year!
Christ is born - praise!
Christ from Heaven - meet!
Head of the Orthodox Church of Kazakhstan
Metropolitan of Astana and Kazakhstan