A Christmas Message from Townsville Diocese
IN a fairly non-religious country like Australia, it is easier to say “I believe in God” than to say “I believe in Jesus Christ”.
The first one can be interpreted in many ways by one’s listeners. They might have a vague idea of what the word “God” might mean.
To say one believes in Jesus Christ is a far more confronting statement. It says that God for us has been revealed definitively by Jesus Christ. We speak of God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
This is a much more demanding message to communicate and a far more challenging belief for people to accept.
Christmas is the feast where we come to terms with what is distinctive about our faith. We are not just believers in God, we are Christians who believe that the child born in Bethlehem was and is the divine Son of God.
We believe that God has gone to the trouble of revealing the Mystery of God to us in Jesus Christ, and this was important enough for Jesus to die for us. So as we celebrate the joy of Christmas, it does not hurt for us to reflect for a moment on the challenge that Christmas places before us in our fairly non-religious country.
Are we willing not just to say “I believe in God” but to acknowledge publicly that we “believe in Jesus Christ” who is not just a beautiful baby born in Bethlehem, but the Second Person of the Trinity who reveals the Mystery of God to us, and died in order to give us this revelation.
May God bless you this Christmas, God whom we have learnt from Jesus is Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
BISHOP MICHAEL PUTNEY