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A New dawn of Hope: Christmas message from the World Council of Churches

A new dawn of hope. This is the title of the Xmass message from the general secretary of the World Council of Churches. By the tender mercy of our God, the dawn from on high will break upon us, to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace. It is on these words from the first chapter of St. Lukes’s Gospel that Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, has based his Xmas reflection.
In Holy Scripture, Tveit says, light is a symbol of God’s guidance on our pilgrimage of faith: In New Testament accounts of the Nativity, humble shepherds watch their flocks by night while wise scholars, travelling in the east, look up at the same night’s sky and discern something new amid the rotation of stars. They were all open for a move, to see something, someone that brings hope for the world. In Holy Scripture, says Dr Tyveit, light is a symbol of God’s guidance on our pilgrimage of faith, and in all honesty, we mortals need to be led by God to find the way to peace and justice, reconciliation and life in abundance. We need the lamp of God’s word to guide our feet in God’s ways. The world of Council of Churches was meeting for the 10th assembly in the Republic of Korea, when the secretary general wrote his reflections, and from Korea he said that as World council of Churches they joined their voices in the recurring prayer that was the assembly’s theme: “God of life, lead us to justice and peace.”
We realized that the way to justice and peace must overcome the boundary at the heart of Korea, as well as the many walls of hostility that divide nations, cultures, classes and families. As an Assembly, we expressed particular concern for displaced persons, refugees and migrants, for regions such as the Middle East and the Great Lakes region, particularly Congo, in Africa, and we condemned the politicization of religion as a means of attempting to justify violence.
Most of all, we have issued an invitation to all people of good will to join us in the pilgrimage to Just Peace throughout the earth. Dr Fykse concluded saying. We are inspired by the shepherds and the wise to seek the Prince of Peace in unexpected places, even in what might be seen as the “wrong” places. May the blessings of Christmastide be with you, and may the dawn from on high break forth upon the whole world.


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