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By Carlos Legaspi Jr.

Questions that Matter

Saturday, December 21, 2013

A FRIEND of mine confided that she had not felt the spirit of Christmas. At first, I did not mind the comment but as I talked to more people, they told me that they no longer see the reason for celebrating Christmas. It took me nights to ponder why do most people have this feeling about Christmas today. Is it because of the cutting of the PDAF (Priority Development Assistance Fund)? Is it because of the recent calamities that had befallen us during the advent of the Christmas season? Is it because that the taxation scheme of the country had gone haywire? Is it because of the busy schedules that we have? Or is it because many have opted not to celebrate Christmas parties?

Advent is a time for us to prepare ourselves for the greatest event in our salvation history. The season of advent is really a season for us to sacrifice and to give our “all” for the good of mankind. Advent is the season where we are in today. Come December 25 is the onset of the Christmas season. However, in the Philippines, we are unique in celebrating Christmas. Most of us start Christmas with the entrance of September for it is known as the “-ber” month. This has a culture and economic reason and not liturgical.

Catholic liturgy will always tell us that Christmas starts December 25 and the season before Christmas is Advent. Advent is similar to the season of Lent. Lent ends with the triumph of Christ over death – Easter while Advent concludes with the nativity of Christ. We are requested to do sacrifices and prepare ourselves for the commemoration of the birth of Christ.

Every Christian should be very happy in the celebration of the birth of Christ. It is the fulfillment of the covenant of God with man. There is joy and happiness in the season once we bring Jesus Christ in our midst. We have to celebrate Christ in Christmas. It is then that we will really enjoy the joys and glad spirit that Christmas brings. The solution and answer to the weariness of today is putting Christ back. Even attending the early morning Aguinaldo masses with the hope of having a fulfillment of a request or petition can lose Christ somewhere. But if we really understand the essence of the celebration of the Novena, we will end the nine days and be prepared in accepting Christ when he comes on the 25th.

Here are some little tips on how to make Christmas Merry. First, spend for a nativity set and not on Christmas trees and its lavish decorations. Second, put a spot for the baby Jesus in your house and not for large empty gift boxes. Third, play Christmas songs that would bring you to the Nativity and not to Santa Claus. Fourth, bonuses, cash and food are secondary to the celebration. Fifth, celebrate the birth of Christ like the way you celebrate for a birthday party. Sixth, have Christmas parties like what you had in the past years. Seventh, eat, enjoy and be merry and pray for the victims of calamities. Eighth, think what Christ will bring you and not what Santa Claus would bring to you. Ninth, Love the poor. And lastly, share but enjoy while sharing. Remember yourself too.

Have a Merry Christmas!

St. Ezekiel Moreno, St. Lorenzo Ruiz, St. Pedro Calungsod, Blessed John Paul II, Mons. John Liu and John Su and Sir Faraon Lopez, Pray for us. Amen.

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on December 21, 2013.


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