[WATCH] Archbishop Charles Scicluna: ‘Birth of Christ reminds us of priceless value of life’

‘Our Christian faith shows us that the answers to the questions that spring from our fundamental thirst for understanding are found in the small and helpless child inviting us to listen to his voice’

Archbishop Charles Scicluna
Archbishop Charles Scicluna

Archbishop Charles Scicluna has asked Catholics to reflect on the stillness of Christmas night and the birth of Jesus Christ as a way of treasuring the gift of life.

In his message for Christmas, Scicluna said he wished that people use the occasion of Christmas to “cherish the gift of life” both at birth but also later on in life. “How meaningful it would be that we not only cherish life along the years by treasuring the presence of the elderly in our lives and ensure that they live their old age with dignity, but that we also cherish the baby in the mother’s womb.”

In an imploration to Christians to cherish the sanctity of human life, Scicluna said that the answer to deep philosophical questions such as ‘where are coming from’ could be found in the “in the small and helpless child who is inviting us to listen to his voice. This voice is telling us: ‘Take care of me’. The baby’s cry tells us when he is hungry and thirsty or he is feeling cold and needs someone to feed or swaddle him. It is so wonderful that in our culture we still treasure the value of life that is concretely perceived in every child that is born.”

Using the words of Fr Josef Mohr’s and Franz Gruber’s Silent Night, composed in 1818, Scicluna said that while the story of Jesus born in a manger in Bethlehem invites people “to partake in the stillness of the night and pause for quiet to reflect on our lives, the Baby Jesus also reminds us that life has a value that is priceless.”

Scicluna made an imploration for people to respect each other’s dignity, forgive each other, and live together in peace. “My appeal to the Christian community and even to the other members of the community that are rejoicing with us in the Nativity of Our Saviour is that we continue to rejoice not only during this Holy Night of Christmas and on Christmas Day but also for the following 12 days.

“Today week, on the 1st of January, we will celebrate the Motherhood of Mary, the Mother of Jesus; the fact that he is named Jesus means that ‘God saves’. On the 6th January, we celebrate the Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord, the great feast that recalls the encounter of Jesus with the Magi of the East, who were Gentiles, people who were non-Jewish, who also represent us.

“Even we, who are not Jewish, have nevertheless met Jesus very early in our history, with the arrival on our shores of our Father in faith, St Paul the Apostle. During his stay among us we learnt of the healing power of Jesus of Nazareth; the child whose birth in the grotto in Bethlehem we are celebrating.”