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Christmas message from the Synod of Victoria and Tasmania Moderator


Christmas has always taken place in challenging times. The onset of the global financial crisis has meant that people all around the world are experiencing job losses, housing distress and deep seated insecurity.

Threats of the collapse of many international institutions and fear of change, has made the world fragile for many.

During the year, the poor of the world faced even tougher times, with rising food prices, malaria and HIV/AIDs epidemics going unchecked and the tragedy of war.

At home, more and more Australians are experiencing homelessness and the effects of droughts and water shortages.

But in some ways it has always been this way. Christmas was always difficult for someone. So today, Christmas will again be set against the backdrop of another’s difficulty.

Into the midst of this difficulty comes Christmas, and just as Jesus was born in a stable – in a world of strife – so today, we say God has come amongst us in our troubled world.

Christmas is the season that we are reminded of God’s eternal love in Christ. God entered the world in human form to say to us that there is no human experience that cannot be touched by the love of God in Christ.

My Christmas message this year is that God energises us; and that we, in turn energise others by being helpful, prayerful and caring for our neighbours and our community.

In these troubled times communities, including governments and social institutions, must protect the most vulnerable and needy.

Ordinary families, the poor and those who live on the edge of society who have not contributed in any way to the global financial collapse must be protected from being its first victims.

The lesson we must take from this Christmas is that society and our governments should remember those for whom there is ‘no room in the inn’. People on the margins deserve the love and justice of our society not the indifference of market forces and economic theories.

Through the love of God, we know once again that materialism is not the real answer to living a happy life. The more we have does not make us richer in life’s treasures of love, hope and peace.