This Christmas, Make a Difference

Dec 24, 2010

'Joy to the world the Lord has come, let all the earth receive the king and heaven and nature sing…' this is the spirit of Christmas. A season filled with the atmosphere of joy and love over the birth of Jesus the Saviour of the world who will liberate the people from bondage of every kind and show a path to live life based on spirituality and goodness.

The Saviour decides to come because he feels a need, a need to show the people how to lead a life not based on the blind competition to acquire the material prosperity but to acquire the divinity to lead a happy life. Jesus, God and Man, takes His incarnation not in the glory but in the absence of grandeur.

St Ignatius of Loyola, the founder father of the Society of Jesus, in his famous book, 'The Spiritual Exercises,' says that the Triune Gods sat together to contemplate the happenings of the world and what they saw in the world made them sad because the people of the world had turned evil and the evil practices were at their maximum. They then decided that one of them would have to incarnate in the form of human and go down the world and teach them the way of living. Jesus, the second person of the Trinity then incarnates as human, born of Immaculate Conception through an earthly mother Mary. Mary thus became the perfect instrument of the saving plans of God.

Though betrothed to Joseph, she agreed to the message given by Gabriel angel of conceiving Jesus and not thinking about the social disgrace which otherwise a woman had to go through when pregnant outside marriage. She thus becomes a model for the entire generations of the holy motherhood.

Well, the point is that there is no time which is not appropriate for the birth of Jesus. The birth of the baby Jesus can happen at any given time, when a person starts to say what Jesus would do in this particular situation. Today the world seems even more evil making a perfect timing for the birth of Jesus. This is the time when each one should be reminded of Jesus being born in their hearts. Christmas should not be just about the Crib competition, carols and the Kuswar preparations at home to show the world how much one can afford for the feast. It’s also not just yearly renovation of the house.

It goes beyond these outer expressions of our faith. All should be able to prepare a spiritual fertile ground to receive the baby Jesus in our hearts, which many, if not all, miss. For some Christmas may be a spiritual experience of God’s saving hand just for the time being. It does not permeate their life throughout, failing then in giving any significant change in their life to understand this great mystery of Jesus coming in the midst of human world.

I always wonder what after this Christmas. Right from the commencement of the Christmas season, there is a change in the environment. People try to prepare in their own way to celebrate this feast. Some attend regular mass, some make it a point to help the needy by giving donations and some even go to the extent of giving up their bad habits. All in an attempt to make a spiritual ground in their hearts to receive Jesus.

In the past, I used to go for carol singing to each house in my village, one of the most exciting events during this great season of Christmas. My mom made sure that all the children go for the carols and feel the changed atmosphere in life. She also insisted that all the members come home for this great event. I remember my brothers coming home from the boarding school and in their own little way bringing Christmas gifts. The custom of exchanging Christmas gifts I practice even now. Last time during the Christmas get-together in the college I gave a small gift to my Christmas friend. As a child, I used to get a new dress for Christmas which I would be happily wearing at the vigil mass.

Today, the Christmas celebration has undergone a sea change. The Crib which used to be simpler has become an extraordinary one with all the modern equipment like water fountains, bigger stars and bigger budget for the celebration. The house-to-house carols have changed into meagre carols before the vigil mass with the latest band of the city. Shopping for Christmas is not limited to just one dress but different sets of new dresses adding to the confusion of what to wear for the festival!

If something has remained timeless all these years of my Christmas celebration, it is the message of Christmas which has changed but little. The sermons more or less have been the same with the change of expressions and orations depending on the personality of the priests. Jesus always comes for the poor (both spiritual poverty and actual material poverty) and the orphans and the people who are struggling to live their life. Jesus gives an assurance that the life after death belongs to all those who are considered underdogs of society because they are innocent at heart. Their life is not waste but it has true meaning and their suffering would one day change into happiness.

Christmas, if it makes one tired on December 26 and the following days with a lot of decorations to remove and worry about the budget next month, then it surely would have failed us in celebrating the birth of Jesus. The celebration must positively change our outlook of life, after having received the peace and joy which Christmas promises to each, irrespective of religion. The experience of increased joy and peace succeeding Christmas is the true gift of the beautiful festival.

Can one say, I believe in sun even when I don’t get to see it, I believe in God even when I don’t feel His presence at times. This is the gift of Christmas.

Merry Christmas to all and Happy New Year 2011. 


Ronald Xalxo - Archives: 

By Ronald Xalxo
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Comment on this article

  • Andy, Goa/Mangalore

    Sun, Jan 02 2011

    Wow...beautiful article ronny...heart touchin and really one with a personal touch...keep up the good work ronny!!!!

  • Joseph F. Gonsalves, Bannur, Puttur/Mangalore

    Sun, Dec 26 2010

    I want to share something with you. As many didn't invite me to their party, I will have my own celebration, in a very grandiose party that no one has ever imagined, a spectacular party. I'm still making the final arrangements… Today I am sending out many invitations and there is an invitation for you. I WANT TO KNOW IF YOU WISH TO ATTEND AND I WILL MAKE A RESERVATION FOR YOU AND WRITE YOUR NAME WITH GOLDEN LETTERS IN MY GREAT GUEST BOOK.

    Only those on the guest list will be invited to the party. Those who don't answer the invite, will be left outside. Be prepared because when all is ready you will be part of my great party.


  • Joseph F. Gonsalves, Bannur, Puttur/Mangalore

    Sun, Dec 26 2010

    In truth, that didn't surprise me because in the last few years all
    close their doors to me. Since I wasn't invited, I decided to
    enter the party without making any noise. I went in and stood in a
    corner. They were all drinking there were some who were drunk and telling jokes
    and laughing at everything. They were having a grand time.

    To top it all, this big fat man all dressed in red wearing a long white
    beard entered the room yelling Ho-Ho-Ho! as he seemed drunk. He sat on the
    sofa and all the children ran to him, saying: "Santa Claus, Santa
    Claus" as if the party were in his honor!

    At midnight all the people began to hug each other I EXTENDED MY ARMS

    Suddenly they all began to share gifts. They opened them one by one with great expectation. When all had been opened, I looked to see if, may be, there was one for me. What would you feel if on your birthday everybody shared gifts and you did not get one=3D3F I then understood that I was unwanted at that party and quietly left.

    Every year it gets worse. People only remember the gifts, the parties, to eat and drink, and nobody remembers me. I would like this Christmas that you allow me to enter into your life.

    I would like that you recognize the fact that almost two thousand years ago I came to this world to give my life for you, on the cross, to save you. Today, I only want that you believe this with all your heart. Continued…

  • Joseph F. Gonsalves, Bannur, Puttur/Mangalore

    Sun, Dec 26 2010

    A letter from Jesus to every person who believes in Him.

    As you well know, we are getting closer to my birthday. Every year there is

    a celebration in my honor and I think that this year the celebration will be

    During this time there are many people shopping for gifts, there are
    many radio announcements, TV commercials, and in every part of the world
    everyone is talking that my birthday is getting closer and closer.


    As you know, the celebration of my birthday began many years ago.

    At first people seemed to understand and be thankful of all that I did
    for them, but in these times, no one seems to know the reason for the
    celebration. Family and friends get together and have a lot of fun, but they don't
    know the meaning of the celebration. I remember that last year there was a great feast in my honor. The dinner table was full of delicious foods, pastries, fruits, assorted nuts and chocolates. The decorations were exquisite and there were many, many
    beautifully wrapped gifts. But, do you want to know something=3D3F I wasn't invited.

    I was the guest of honor and they didn't remember to send me an invitation. The party was for me, but when that great day came, I was left outside, they closed the door in my face .. and I wanted to be with them and share their table.

  • Clara Lewis, Kemmannu/Dubai

    Sat, Dec 25 2010

    Nice article, keep writing,

    Merry Christmas to all

  • Chethan, Duabi/Mangalore

    Fri, Dec 24 2010

    Good article, Keep Writing..

  • A.S.Mathew, U.S.A.

    Thu, Dec 23 2010

    In between the last book of the
    Old Testament Malachi and the
    New Testament books, there was a space of 400 years. There
    was no records, how God spoke to the mankind at that time.

    Then the mankind got the greatest
    gift, JESUS CHRIST empowered with a totally new and revolutionary message of peace and
    and hope. A new star was appeared
    in the sky, and Jesus was born in a
    manger without any royal celebrations, but it was the night
    of grand celebration for that
    generation and the generations yet to come.

    Until the message of the "Prince
    of Peace" is not heeded by the world, there won't be
    perfect peace in the world.

    No other festival in the world
    which brings such a joy and
    unity among the people of all
    religions, like the birth of
    Jesus Christ, because He is
    unique and living today. So, the
    same joy the shepherds enjoyed in
    that cold dark night 2000 years back can be enjoyed by us all.


  • John Leslie D'souza, Eliyarpadavu/Mangalore

    Thu, Dec 23 2010

    Nice article Dude,proud of u,keep writing.

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