The Birth of Christ – A Milestone Event

Fr. Panayiotis’ Message for Christmas

Dear parishioners and friends of our Parish,

The birth of Jesus is a milestone event in the history of the world.

This was not just like every other birth of a child, but rather an event that changed history and affected the world. 

The Gospels give us just a few of the details surrounding the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem, but it was not until he was 30 years old that the people of Palestine realized that that baby, which the shepherds saw in a manger and was visited by those educated men from the far East, was indeed different. 

It was not even until after 3 more years of his amazing ministry, his teaching, his miracles and his presence among them that they realized that this Jesus was from God. 

It was at this time that they began to wonder if he was the one whom the prophets had talked about. Was he indeed the Messiah? The one promised by God who was to bring salvation?

And then he was arrested by the Jewish leadership and put to death, and many people’s dreams for him were crushed. 

But, you know, there were several people before Jesus that had declared themselves to be the Messiah, who promised to free Israel from the Romans and they were all put to death, but we don’t even know their names. They disappeared, they were forgotten. 

So, why wasn’t Jesus forgotten?

Because he was indeed from God! He did not do those amazing miracles of healing people, calming the sea and raising the dead by some unusual tricks. His power was from God. 

This was revealed in many ways, from the very beginning. Angels appeared at his birth singing “Glory to God in the highest and on Earth peace, goodwill to men”. Angels appeared to the shepherds, revealing to them that the child was from God. The Magi came from the far East guided by an unusual phenomenon, a star which lead them to worship him and bring him gifts.

Everything about him is unusual, because no one like him has ever been born before or after. 

He is revealed at the river Jordan as the Son of God and again on Mount Tabor as he glows in Divine Light. 

The most amazing thing about Him, is that Jesus is God, but he is also man. He is “theanthropos”. He is God who has received humanity. He has assumed humanity in himself to save it, to heal it from sin and restore it to what God intended for us from the very beginning.

Jesus is unique! There is no one like him. He lives a human life, but continues to remain God. He experiences life like we do, but remains sinless, because he chooses not to sin. His human will has completely surrendered to the Divine Will, just like we need to do. 

He has opened the way for us to the Kingdom of God, letting us also know that the Kingdom of God is within us and among us.

Then, He allowed himself to die on the cross, so that he can crucify our sins and defeat death. He rises from the dead so that he can restore our human nature and perfect it.

He then ascends to heaven, so that he can honor and glorify our humanity in himself as he enthrones himself on the right side of the Father, fully man and fully God (theanthropos).

Christmas is the Birth of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Messiah and the beginning of the Divine Plan for our salvation. His arrival brings the greatest gift of God for us.

This Christmas, God is calling us again to come to Him. To join the shepherds and the magi and become witnesses of the miracle of his birth and participants in His plan for our salvation.

Christ is Born, brothers and sisters! Let us Glorify Him and receive His abundant blessings.

May God Bless and protect you always,

In Christ’s Love,

Fr. Panayiotis