Mon | Feb 19, 2018

PM Christmas Day message: Become instruments of peace

Published:Monday | December 25, 2017 | 11:19 AM
Prime Minister Andrew Holness.

Merry Christmas!

This is a time for family, and for us in Jamaica it’s also a time for friends, food and festivities. It is indeed the most wonderful time of the year.

For many Jamaicans, Christmas is not merely a holiday; it is a holy and sacred celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, the saviour and redeemer of the world. The spiritual meaning of the season sometimes gets lost in the festivities.

We must always remember that God gave us the gift of his only Son to guide us and illuminate the path to peace and eternal life.

The circumstances of his birth are a lesson in itself of the meaning of the season.

Christmas is not about wealth, it is not about possessions, it is not about status. We don’t have to be rich to celebrate the true meaning of the season. If the Saviour of the World, the Messiah, can be born in a barn, then:

– in the midst of hardship and despair, there can be hope,
– our humanity doesn’t depend on our material possessions or status in life,
– whatever little we have, we can share with others in need,
– our peace, prosperity and redemption, is not a function of the wealth we amass, but on how we treat the least among us.

Christmas is the time when we relieve ourselves of worldly trappings, of the millstones of our earthly desires, of the grip of our vices, and we give of ourselves as human beings, with charity, love, and peace. It is a time when we recommit to follow the examples of Jesus Christ and strive to be better human beings.

Let us pray this Christmas to become instruments of peace and seek to build a kinder, gentler society.

This year was filled with its fair share of challenges, but equally there have been events that give us hope for the future. Our island was built on the spirit of community, togetherness, charitableness, sharing, love and hopefulness.

These values have made us resilient in overcoming numerous obstacles.

That’s really what Jamaica is all about. That is why people across the world love Jamaica and Jamaicans. Let us never lose sight of the core values of the Jamaican personage.

With the spirit of the season, and our Jamaican sense of community, I ask you to remember the poor, the sick, the disabled, the forgotten and marginalised. Make it a point of duty to give to them, to reach out to them, to take care of them. And let it become a routine, not just for the season.

Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”

Take a moment to remember those who are at work even while others are able to spend time with families. Members of our essential services, our security guards, soldiers, police, doctors, nurses. They are making a sacrifice for us.

As a Government we value all our people and will continue to build partnerships. Throughout 2017 I have been deeply humbled by the outpouring of love and support that Jamaica, has given me, my family and this administration. I am honoured to serve you as your Prime Minister.

We have engaged in real partnerships, we have had some success on some key issues. We have achieved much together in 2017 but we have much more to do in 2018. From Juliet, the boys, the entire Government and me Merry Christmas and all the very best.