My dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
During this season of joy, our hearts are stirred by the beauty, depth and constancy of God's love for each one of us. Truly, God so loved the world that He sent His Son as our Saviour (Jn 3:16).Whether it be the words of the Christmas gospel, the sight of the lowly manger, the sounds of a cherished carol, or above all, our receiving in Holy Communion the same Saviour who was born in Bethlehem, we are deeply moved by the wonder, awe and reassurance that God has drawn close to us.
Christmas is a 'feast of hope' - the assurance that 'God is with us'. We need this constant assurance, this constant hope, because our world is marked by so many things - good and bad; unity and divisi on; riches and poverty; violence and peace - and God Himself gives us this assurance by giving us His Son Jesus, who is called 'Emmanuel', which means "God is with us."
Pope Francis reminds us about the true meaning of Christmas. First, that God reveals Himself in Jesus, not as the exalted Lord of the Universe, but as One who humbles Himself. So, in order to be like Jesus, we must not put ourselves above others. We must humble ourselves and serve others. Second, Pope Francis has said that if Jesus has become one of us, then whatever we do for our brothers and sisters, we do for Him.
As we contemplate the baby in the crib this Christmas, let's try to become the person He became; humble, close to others (especially the poor) and attentive to their needs. Let us ask Mary, the mother of Jesus, to help us see the face of Jesus - the Son of God made man - in the faces of others.
May we be for this world that ray of light which shone forth from Bethlehem, bringing tidings of comfort and joy to the hearts of all we meet.
I take this occasion to wish you and your families all the blessings of Christ's Holy Nativity. May the joy that flooded the earth on the day of His birth overflow in our hearts, in our homes and in our communities during this holy season and every day of the year.
Wishing all of you a Blessed Christmas!
Most Reverend Julian Leow Beng Kim, D.D.
Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur
22nd December 2017