Joy to you, it is Christmas; Christ has been born , the great light has shone, He has brought good tidings of good and publishes salvation. Come, let us adore Him.
Christmas is a love story, a love story of two families: one who is so rich, happy and in abundance while the other is impoverished, sorrowful and lost. The two families live in world apart, because it is the nature of the first family, it looked with compassion and love to stretch “a hand” to this other family that it may share in their abundance and goodness. And thus come Christmas. God coming to (be) man. He made and sees the man family as His own and came to it, yet the world knew Him not, people He made His own family received Him not but to all who received Him, who believed in His name, He gave power to become children of God. The Word becomes flesh and makes His home among us, to share with us His good tidings to enrich us, remove the sorrowful veil and gain us everlasting life.
This love story has numerous and many scenes and episodes of the meeting of a lover, God and the beloved , you and me. In many and various ways God spoke of old to our fathers by the prophets but to us by a Son. Many episodes have displayed how God loved us much, we cannot quantify. we celebrate the coming of love into the world. He comes to us for He loves us. It is not infatuation but a true love as He loved us to the end, up to dying for us.
We may want to ask, why is red used for Christmas. Before that, what is Christmas? I will want to take it from the word itself, “Christmas”- Christ mass, that is , Mass of Christ. What is the mass of Christ ? It is the giving of Himself, the sacrificial love, He shared His blood for our sake. Christ celebrated His mass on the cross, which was bloody. So , red comes to symbolise His blood , His Love; we celebrate love. Not only love but also life as His Love gave us life – the reason of the colour green at Christmas.
Though, if we take a step backward into history, we will find out that the traditional red and green colours of Christmas have a long and rich history rooted in paganism and later on Christianised. To celebrate Saturn, the god of Agriculture, Romans set aside the days from December 17th to 25th as special holidays. Exchanging greenery such as holly and ivy was a way to wish one another long life , peace and good luck. Early Christians chose to stamp this tradition with a more spiritual meaning.
These symbols and colours are ways of telling the love story of God and man. It does not resides only in symbols and colours but to translate it in concrete terms by loving one another as Christ is the reason for the season – LOVE. Let it make manifest in our families, to share this love, to let love reign, reconcile, heal wounds and be happy. And may the joy of Christmas ever abound and blossom in our hearts through Christ our Lord. Amen.