A Christmas Reflection - Hope for the Homeless and Displaced
28 December 2016
The story of Christmas witnesses and gives hope to the homeless and displaced of the world. The tragic events unfolding in places like Aleppo, Mosul and Yemen remind us that Mary and Joseph became displaced and homeless persons who sought refuge for the tyranny of their time. Millions today face the same plight. Jesus and Mary were forced by imperial order to leave their hometown. They also had to flee to Egypt from the tyranny of Herod who was determined to take the life of Jesus.
It's sad to say that after two thousand plus years, with the peoples of the world looking forward with great expectations, old-fashioned imperialism and tyrannical rule continue to force many people from their homes and homeland.
In Trinidad and Tobago, we have not been spared from the tyranny of crime, violence, drugs, HIV/AIDS, family and psychological breakdown. These phenomena have caused many people to become homeless and displaced. But, in spite of these tragedies, many people still express joy and hope. Many people demonstrate such resilience in the face of pain and suffering and can say that tragedy has not completely devastated them.
The faith and hope of God's homeless and displaced persons can only have arisen from a deep and abiding faith. The God who came down at Christmas in Jesus Christ and who is redeeming love enables God's people to struggle with a vision that a better day will come. And above all the one who is the savior and the Prince of Peace continues to open his loving arms to all.
The Church, if it is faithful to its Lord who has come among us, must speak and act on behalf of homeless and displaced persons. We need to seek ways and means to respond to God's needy and oppressed people. Whatever new strategies we develop and adopt to meet the challenge of the new society, it will always be the responsibility of the Church to give hope to the hopeless and, where there is doubt, faith.
So let the message of Christmas fill your life with joy and peace. Best wishes to you and your family during this holiday season.