Tuesday, December 23, 2008

FW: [SOCM-FORUM] Christmas message of Patriarch Moran Mor Ignatius Zakka I Iwas


Ignatius Zakka I Iwas
Patriarch of Antioch and All the East
Supreme Head of the Universal Syrian Orthodox Church


Apostolic Benediction to our beloved Metropolitans and to our beloved
spiritual children: the Reverend Vicars and the Parishioners of all
our Malankara churches and congregations in the Arabian Gulf Region,
Europe, Australia and Singapore.

By the Mercy of God, we have once again come to the Feast of the
nativity of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and we have great joy
in sending you this message on this blessed occasion. At the birth of
Jesus, the wise men came from far off places by suffering all the
pains of the difficult journey to see him and to get blessed by this
child who is born as the Saviour of the world. "They saw the child
with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then,
opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and
frankincense and myrrh" (Matthew 2:11). At this Christmas time we
also have to submit to Him the most valuable that we have. But He is
God and He came to this world in search of the lost sheep ˆ the human
kind. St. Paul says "Do not be conformed to this world but be
transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may prove what is
the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect" (Romans
12:2). So the most valuable and acceptable gift that we can offer Him
is nothing other than ourselves ˆ our soul and our entirety. When we
submit ourselves to Him, we shall follow His path truly and
sincerely. Thus we will be transformed to the true image of God. As
we celebrate this Christmas, let us rededicate ourselves to Him and
turn to be the true followers of Him. May the baby Jesus grow through
our lives and we be the bearers of Him.

Our dearly beloved, we pray that May the coming New Year also be a
year when through each of you, the qualities of Jesus Christ are
being truly revealed to the world, and testifying Him through your
lives. Then, through each of us the world will see the light of God
and receive the peace of Christmas. We wish you all a Merry Christmas
and an evermore blessed New Year. This celebration may bring peace
and spiritual happiness to your churches, homes, and to all your

We extend our Apostolic Blessings to you. May the Grace of God be
with you all through the intercession of St. Mary the Mother of God,
St. Joseph the Righteous and all the other Saints. Amen.

Copy of the Apostolic Encyclical is available at

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