Lord, help me to show mercy to others and to walk the path of peace
St Stephen, First Martyr : Monday 26th December 2022
Acts 6:8-10; 7:54-59; Ps 30:3-4,6,8,
16-17; Mt.10:17-22 (Ps. Wk. I)
Are we good witnesses to Christ in the face of difficulties and challenges of the secular world? In some places of the world, Christmas is celebrated commercially to the point that if Christmas is deemed too “religious,” certain people get offended. 25 December is still Christmas, which is the celebration of Christ’s birth, no matter how it is being celebrated, for instance, as a winter holiday (and that’s only for the northern hemisphere; what about the southern half of the world).
Even Xmas is very Christian because the X represents Christ through the Greek letter chi, and not to cancel out the Word Christ as commonly thought.
We need not “worry about how to speak or what to say” when confronted with people of this mentality. That is not the way to bring Christmas to the people. Have the assurance that “it is not you who will be speaking, but the Spirit of your Father will be speaking in you.” Some people debated with Stephen on his faith. They could not get the better of him because of his wisdom and because the Spirit prompted what he said. And Stephen was stoned to death for it!
Nowadays, we may not be stoned to death in our primarily urban surroundings, but we can be “stoned” for celebrating Christmas in its original and religious sense. We pray that we, like Stephen, are filled with the Holy Spirit and have the courage to proclaim and observe Christmas in the face of the growing tide of secularised Christmas.
O Jesus born in the manger, help us to put You at the centre of Christmas each year.