ARCHDIOCESE OF LINGAYEN-DAGUPAN
Dagupan City, Pangasinan
Christmas Message 2008
“While Mary and Joseph were in Bethlehem, the time came for her to have her baby. She gave birth to her son, wrapped Him in strips of cloth, and laid Him in a manger.” (Luke 2:6-7)
It is said that Christmas means different things to different people, that the Christmas season brings various messages to various individuals. During these ominous times however, the anniversary of the birth of Christ forwards a distinct and singular truth that we have to pay attention to and remember well.
The universal and timeless truth is this: the birth of Christ strongly affirms and decidedly confirms the inherent value and intrinsic significance of human life. The fact that no less than the second person of the most Blessed Trinity became man and wherefore took on a human life—this historical truth alone forwards the invaluable nature, the priceless dignity and precious rights of every human person—young and old, rich and poor alike.
Manifestly derogatory and directly violative of human life, human dignity and human rights are the almost daily sad and depressing news of murders, extrajudicial killings, forced disappearances—not to say the oppression of the poor and the exploitation of the helpless.
This is not to mention the deliberate option and concerted effort of some supposedly honourable men and women in this Country, not only to stop the natural birth of babies but also to destroy their lives before they are even born. One could only wonder where would these presumably illustrious men and women be—if their own parents did exactly they want done to the yet unborn.
The Church has never taught much less promote irresponsible parenthood. Couples should only have the children they are capable of caring for, feeding, teaching and sending to school. But in using their natural conjugal procreative right, it is not only incongruous but also sinful for them to precisely refuse to comply with their consequent obligation of welcoming every child they conceived—precisely by using all possible means to prevent conception or worst. To kill their own already conceived child.
During these disturbed and disturbing times in our country, there is the insistent and continuous call for responsibility, for integrity and honor. If this is true in terms of cleansing the government of graft and corruption, this is more true in terms of promoting human dignity, human life and human rights.
Christ is born! Christ is alive! Christ is the way, the truth and the life! Christmas is the celebration and affirmation of life!
Do have a truly Merry Christmas!
God bless you all!
Very sincerely yours in the good Lord,
+OSCAR V. CRUZ, DD