The Portuguese-language catechesis group at the Cathedral Parish recently organized a Christmas meeting at Cheoc Van that brought together about 80 catechists, children and their parents. The initiative, in which the 11th anniversary of the priestly ordination of Father Daniel Ribeiro was also celebrated, should set the pattern for future events of the kind, now that Macau has come to terms with Covid-19.
Bishop D. Stephen Lee Bun-sang requested and Coro Dóci Papiaçám di Macau obliged. The interim choral ensemble sang Christmas carols in Macanese Patois outside the Cathedral of the Nativity of Our Lady on Saturday afternoon. Later, the group accompanied the evening mass at Saint Dominic’s Church. The purpose? To convey a message of hope, in times of crisis and rapid change.
The parish of Our Lady of Carmel has organized a drawing contest as a way to teach the younger generations the true meaning of Christmas. Under the motto “We Celebrate the Coming of the Lord with Peace and Love”, children of catechetical age who attend Sunday School in the only Catholic Church in Taipa, are invited to create Christmas-inspired artworks until December 18. The initiative aims to draw the kids’ attention to the fact that the real meaning of Christmas goes far beyond Santa Claus and exchanging gifts.
Originally, the balls and the lights on Christmas trees symbolized the hope that nature would eventually overcome the cold and darkness of winter, and produce once again fruits and crops for our nourishment. May those fruits of conversion also bring hope and light to a world that is still in a deep moral winter.
Our faith shows us the pathway to hope. It teaches us patience and perseverance in trials and temptations to despair. It is the one thing that pulled many people through the most recent pandemic and, perhaps, renewed their relationship with God, making it even stronger.
Let us go to Bethlehem to meet the Lord, this is what Adeste Fideles wants to tell us, hoping that we are listening.
In itself, there is no harm in rejoicing even through a certain consumerism of the Christmas atmosphere, if we speak about the profound reasons why this holiday exists. Yet, as I said, many often overlook these reasons because we don’t find them where they should be. Then we are content to contemplate an absence, as if we put all the gift packages on one side, without ever opening them.