“An Encounter with God, the Creator”

“Blessed is the one who will eat at the feast in the kingdom of God.
Jesus replied: “A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests.
At the time of the banquet he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited,
‘Come, for everything is now ready’” (Luke 14:15-17).

Beloved faithful in Christ,

The Nativity of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is an invitation to mankind to encounter God, the Creator. The parable of the wedding banquet in the Gospels is an image of the birth of Jesus in which we see the humility of the Son of God humbling Himself from heaven to earth. The positive response of the invited guest serves as the opportunity to be elevated to God through Christ. In other words, to adopt a new standard and quality of life which is nothing else but life shaped and lived in the Christian faith.

“Christ is Born and revealed!
Blessed is the Revelation of Christ!”

Dear faithful Christian, once again we are called to greet and humble ourselves before the Nativity of Christ, so that we may with His Birth be reborn in our God-given life. To live with Christ means to adorn our lives with character and shape, making Him our own mission and purpose and to draw mankind closer to God.

The Nativity of Christ is the image of the humility of the Son of God who descends from heaven to earth, taking upon Himself human form and serving the world and all mankind.

The Nativity of Jesus is an invitation to each of us to emulate Christ’s own example to become noble servants and to lead man to God, for that is the ultimate goal of the Christian life. To remain steadfast in this path means to live life with the spirit and awareness of our Christian faith, to live life in emulation of Christ as a servant, who leads us always to do God’s will, to live a holy life making the Gospel our rudder in life, and to make ourselves the golden ring that connects man to God.

“Christ is Born and revealed!
Blessed is the Revelation of Christ!”

The invitation to greet and humble ourselves before the newborn Jesus is extended to each and every of us. How shall we respond as individual Christians, as a people, as a nation and a Church? Undoubtedly, our response shall be a favorable one and shall be expressed through our steadfast Christian faith and our readiness to celebrate the mystery of the Birth of Jesus as the foundation of our lives. If our active faith in the Birth of Jesus is not expressed in our daily life then we have failed in our response to the invitation. To respond to the invitation means to live a life of faith to the fullest with a sincere heart, a loving spirit, a forgiving and a merciful soul, in humility and selfless service, or simply by fulfilling the commandments of the Gospel of Christ. To celebrate the Birth of Jesus is to make the Infant Jesus the mirror of our spiritual life, and motivated by a sense of fear and ignominy to abandon all our hardened evil tendencies and habits that do reflect neither Christ nor the Christian faith. To celebrate the Birth of Christ today means to live a holy life that reflects the holiness of the Birth of the Infant Jesus. This is why Christ, pointing to children, said “to such belongs the kingdom of God.”

Beloved faithful, with each celebration of the Feast of the Nativity of Christ is the beginning of a new spiritual journey. The Birth of Jesus is an invitation to a new life. The Birth of Jesus is the active presence of God in the life of the world so that we too may be reborn in our life and sanctify it. The Birth of Jesus is the invitation to man to make his life an active presence of God in the life of the world, in creativity. Therefore, let us respond to the invitation we have received through our good works of faith, through our service and sacrifice, so that we may uphold our God-given Motherland Armenia and the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, and embody in our Christian life in the vision of our Armenian values.

“Christ is Born and revealed!
Blessed is the Revelation of Christ!”

Archbishop Hovnan Derderian, Primate
Feast of the Holy Nativity – 2014

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