Many claim that Filipinos celebrate the longest Christmas holidays in the world; it starts as early as September and ends after New Year. When Filipinos celebrate Christmas they don’t only go to church for the night mass (simbang gabi) but usually have a lot of parties at home, school, community, and offices. Christmas is not complete without merry making and exchange gifts. Not only that there are fireworks, dancing on the streets, drinking spree, and singing with loud Karaoke machines. And I forget something, expensive Christmas decorations and plenty of lights that can awe the public. That’s why business becomes active during Christmas season and so with crime incidents. People from all walks of life can not just let it go without the traditional “noche buena” where the family come home and eat together to celebrate Christmas. Everybody is happy during Christmas to the extent of forgetting what they are celebrating for and why they are celebrating.
I mentioned about rising crime incidents during Christmas. Criminal elements like robbers, snatchers, and kidnap for ransom folks are everywhere. And if you are not careful you may fall victim on them. They don’t only take your money and other valuable things but even your life if you resist. This, harming people, they do it without hesitation only to get some money to spend for Christmas. Oh, what a tragic way to celebrate Christmas! It’s a pity that criminal elements and unscrupulous people prey on other people just to have something to spend for Christmas. As if we have forgotten the very reason we celebrate, the birth of Jesus who will be sacrificed at the cross of Calvary for the atonement of our sins. I just don’t know why people commit crime just to celebrate the birth of the Savior our Lord Jesus Christ. Christmas to some is not meant to rejoice for the birth of the Savior but to take the occasion as a reason to enjoy, lavishly spend their resources to show up, and for self gratification.
Christ was born in a manger just to teach us a lesson of humility. Happiness is not what we have and we can show but the expression of faith in our hearts. Christmas is a time to give, not only material things for you to be praised by other people but above all your heart. You give up your pride and forgive those who harmed you. Humility is the foundation of true love. Christ’s humility led Him to cross for our Salvation.
Of course I highly appreciate also kind hearted people who share what they have for the poor such as food, money, and other kinds of gifts to make other happy during Christmas. With or without TV cameras focused on them, they feed the hungry and assist the needy. Happiness is not on what you receive but on what you can give for the sake of other people in need. People do not only need material things but love and affection as well. Every year we celebrate Christmas just to practice what Christ has thought us: love one another as Christ loves us.
May we continue enjoying the spirit of Christmas as we are approaching another prosperous New Year. God bless and may the Lord be with you always.
Congratulations Dr. Dante Rio!!!
I would like to take this occasion to also congratulate Dr. Dante Rio, a newly ordained as the minister of the Lord. Dante, the Lord loves you so much that He has added another dimension to your compassionate ministry. May you be blessed both as a physician and a pastor. Welcome to the club.