'Tis the season for healing
Cecelia Campbell-Livingston, Gleaner Writer
With Christmas Day now gone, many are just getting over last-minute shopping, gift-buying or the planning of delectable meals. The message is often lost in all the feverish activities that surround the day's celebration.
The Gleaner spoke with some church leaders who are keeping it real while reaching out.
Father Roger Graham, from Our Lady of the Angels Roman Catholic Church, thinks it's a time for families to heal.
"During this period, families have the chance of being together and getting rid of old hurts," Graham said.
"It's a time not only to remember, but squash differences in families, whether church, blood, or work family."
He reminded that while many are happy and celebrating, there are some who have lost loved ones during the season.
It is why he said members of his local church take the time to reach out to the community and support each other.
"They are always checking on each other. If one is sick, another accompanies them to the doctor. Those who have give to those who don't," he said.
The Church itself is engaged in a year-round outreach, but for the Christmas season, "we do a little more," he said.
For Father Collin Henriques, from the Holy Trinity Cathedral, Christmas is a time of spiritual reflection.
"It's clearing a space that we can be spiritually refreshed," he said, pointing out that there are times people get tired from the challenges of dealing with certain things and the time should be used as a season of refreshing.
While there is nothing wrong with the celebrations, he said, "Sometimes we forget; we need to make a space in all that we are doing."
Bishop Robert Thompson, sharing his thoughts on the season, said Christmas, in addition to being about Jesus Christ, is about us and what God gave by becoming human.
"God is saying we can reach beyond ourselves because of Him."
According to Thompson, especially in a society like Jamaica, where so often many feel like nobodies, the Christmas message is powerful.
"You can be a somebody. Mary was the poorest of the poor. That's why the innkeeper didn't recognise her and Joseph. By becoming one of us and being born, He is saying to us, 'Hey, you can be a somebody.' That is the greatest gift of Christmas," he said.