Loading
Moving Christmas message by Catholic Cuban dissident made public

.- The national coordinator of the Varela Project and president of the Christian Liberation Movement, Oswaldo Payá, published a message to his fellow countrymen asking them to return to the commemoration of Christmas as a celebration of faith in Jesus.

Payá recalled that the Christmas holiday was restored in the country five years ago, but he lamented that the Christian spirit of the holiday is still absent from many Cuban homes.

According to the well-known dissident, after years of repression Cubans are still fearful of openly expressing Christmas wishes to one another, but fear is not “the only factor in this omission.” 

“The true meaning of Christmas can only be understood when it is celebrated and lived from the fullness of the faith,” Payá said, pointing to the large numbers of faithful that attended Christmas Eve Mass.

He said that many Cubans feel Jesus, “born in poverty in Bethlehem,” is saying something to them.

“Most certainly the churches were crowded with people looking for something different than the diversion of rum and beer.  People were waiting to hear words of hope and love.  The great dilemma is whether or not they encountered that word which would make them change the direction of their lives,” Payá said.

In this sense, he said that “if people are afraid, it is because they have not encountered Jesus, and it would be difficult for them to wish someone a Merry Christmas.  If they claim to be celebrating Christmas as Christians and they just focus on the special meal, the tree, or the disappointment of not having these things, then the true meaning of the celebration will be equally missing and Jesus will still be absent from the lives of these people.”

He echoed the words of Cardinal Jaime Ortega, Archbishop of Havana, who told the faithful that “whoever tragically says that on this occasion he or she cannot express joy or happiness does not know the fullness of the Christian message, much less what Jesus comes to bring us.”

Payá said “Christmas will always exist” and “it doesn’t need to be authorized by official decree, because even though laws are passed which allow for its celebration, it is a feast that comes from the heart and not from legislation.”

“If one’s heart is empty, full of despair, estranged from God and full of banality, then there cannot be a true celebration of Christmas.  It’s not fear that prevents one from expressing Christmas greetings, but rather not knowing the God who is love, forgiveness and freedom.  He that knows Jesus and is committed to following Him will not easily be kept from living Christmas and wishing a Merry Christmas to all,” he concluded.


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea
The tombs of the early Christians
Missionaries of Africa, called "the White Fathers"
Italian youth give testimony after mission to Peru
Interview with Iraqi Ambassador to the Holy See on the persecution of Christians
New book 'The Vatican unknown'
A Look at India from Rome
3D Church mapping
#PAUSEforPeace Initiative
Dedicating art to San Juan de la Cruz
A state without territory elects new government
The renewal of the Legionaries of Christ
Presentation of the book "The Pastor"
Aug
27

Liturgical Calendar

August 27, 2014

Saint Monica

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 23:27-32

Gospel
Date
08/27/14
08/26/14
08/25/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: 2 Thess 3: 6-10, 16-18
Gospel:: Mt 23: 27-32

Saint of the Day

St. Monica »

Saint
Date
08/27/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 23:27-32

Homily
Date
08/27/14
08/26/14
08/25/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: