Seychelles' Christian leaders send messages of Christmas joy and peace
Traditionally, believers in the island attend mass in their respective parishes on Christmas Day. (Joe Laurence, Seychelles News Agency)
(Seychelles News Agency) - Christians in Seychelles join the rest of the world on Monday in celebrating Christmas with believers in the island attending mass in their respective parishes.
As Catholics and Anglicans celebrate this important event, the leaders of the island nation's two Dioceses -- Bishop Denis Wiehe and the Right Reverend James Wong – sent messages of Christmas bringing a joy that illuminates the soul and fills it with great peace.
Bishop Wiehe said, “May this great peace be with you at Christmas. May our families be united and filled with the love of Jesus, Mary and Joseph. May we be at peace with each other as we strive for a brighter future for our Seychelles.”
|Bishop Wiehe said this Christmas let us also think of those who are alone and who have no one with whom to enjoy the festive season. (Joe Laurence, Seychelles News Agency) Photo License: CC-BY|
Wiehe's wish for this festive season is that people become more caring and attentive to the more vulnerable, and to think about those who are alone this Christmas.
“Christmas is a festive period. We wine and dine with friends and family and this is a wonderful celebration. However, let us also think of those who are alone and who have no one with whom to enjoy the festive season,” the Bishop said.
Bishop Wiehe said, “let us be grateful for all that we have, for all that we are. Let us also share the wonderful news that God is with us in all that we are and all that we undertake.”
For his part, the Right Reverend James Wong said, “God loves us -- this is the Christmas message -- and he shows his love for us. He doesn’t leave us in darkness, but becomes one among us in his son Jesus Christ.”
Wong said that many people today are seeking and searching for more concrete and satisfying things. “Some among us today have a dependence on alcohol, drugs, sex and material comfort. We are becoming a materialistic society and if we continue on this road we will fast experience financial instability.”
|In his Christmas message, Bishop Wong said that through Jesus Christ God shines his light on the world.(Patrick Joubert, Seychelles News Agency) Photo License: CC-BY|
The Anglican Bishop spoke about the time when the Jews were praying and waiting for the Messiah, Christ, the one who had been consecrated to come.
He said that there was emptiness and the Greek God and the Roman culture could not satisfy the needs of the Jews. They were waiting for something to arrive. In many ways that was a moment like the world is today.
Bishop Wong said that through Jesus Christ God shines his light on the world.
“Jesus Christ is God’s light in the darkness. He is with us in our darkness. Through our faith and our confidence in him, he helps and saves us. He is with people who are suffering here and everywhere,” he added.
Christmas day in Seychelles, a group of 115 islands in the western Indian ocean, is traditionally spent among family members where everyone comes together to share a special lunch or dinner.