Tough two years but Jesus brings light and joy

Christmas is a ray of light, a sliver of hope, says Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP (Bigstock)

In their annual Christmas messages, Australia’s bishops have underscored the effects the pandemic has had on society in the past two years, but point to the Christ child as the one who heals a broken world and brings light and joy.

“The harmful force of the pandemic that we have been living with for almost two years has affected everyone,” Bathurst Bishop Michael McKenna writes.

“Some of us have suffered physically; all of us have suffered mentally and socially. We need healing in our minds and in our relationships. We need to find the ways of patience and kindness with one another.

“How can we hope to do that? The light shone to send the shepherds to Bethlehem and led the wise men to the same place and the same child. This child is Emmanuel, God among us, entering our broken world to heal us and make us whole.”

Sydney Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP says Christmas is the “story of God-made-man holding out his hand in friendship to humanity”.

“The offer is real, tangible, personal, even physical. After two years of isolation, we need it more than ever. In such dark times, Christmas is a ray of light, a sliver of hope”

Perth Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SBD says that in Jesus “God comes as close to us as we are close to those we love most deeply. Indeed, God comes even closer for his love never fails, knows no end, and is never limited by the brokenness of our humanity and our proneness to let our love of self get in the way of our love for others.”

Canberra-Goulburn Archbishop Christopher Prowse’s prayer for this Christmas and New Year season is to “let us all magnify Jesus in our gratitude and humble response to all the amazing things that have happened to us during this extraordinary Covid year of 2021 – both good and not so good”.

Read the bishops’ Christmas messages and a message from Catholic Religious Australia below:

Adelaide

Archbishop Patrick O'Regan's 2021 Christmas message

Ballarat

Bishop Paul Bird's 2021 Christmas message

Bathurst

Bishop Michael McKenna's 2021 Christmas message

Brisbane

Archbishop Mark Coleridge's 2021 Christmas message

Broken Bay

Bishop Anthony Randazzo's 2021 Christmas message

Canberra-Goulburn

Archbishop Christopher Prowse's 2021 Christmas message

Darwin

Bishop Charles Gauci's 2021 Christmas message

Geraldton and Broome

Bishop Michael Morrissey’s 2021 Christmas Message

Hobart

Archbishop Julian Porteous's 2021 Christmas message

Lismore

Bishop Greg Homeming OCD's 2021 Christmas message

Maitland-Newcastle Diocese

Fr Greg Barker's 2021 Christmas message

Melbourne

Archbishop Peter A Comensoli's 2021 Christmas message

Parramatta

Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv.'s 2021 Christmas message

Perth

Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB's 2021 Christmas message

Bishop Don Sproxton's 2021 Christmas message

Rockhampton

Bishop Michael McCarthy's 2021 Christmas Message

Sale

Bishop Greg Bennet's 2021 Christmas Message

Sandhurst

Bishop Shane Mackinlay's 2021 Christmas message

Sydney

Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP's 2021 Christmas message

Toowoomba

Bishop Robert McGuckin's 2021 Christmas message

Townsville

Bishop Tim Harris' 2021 Christmas message

Wilcannia-Forbes

Bishop Columba Macbeth-Green OSPPE's 2021 Christmas message

Wollongong

Bishop Brian Mascord's 2021 Christmas message

Catholic Religious Australia

Br Peter Carroll's FMS 2021 Christmas message 

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