The Balm of Christmas

A Christmas so overwhelmed by world events as this one appears to be, may lead some to forget why the day is so celebrated. A couple of millenniums ago an individual was born whose words and deeds continue to bless humanity.

Jesus's message of God's love for everyone has a special appeal this year, when suicide bombers and hijackers claim to act in God's name.

And it's especially timely to quietly remember a life that exemplified abundant mercy and benevolence - even in the face of hatred. Those same qualities, which express God's eternal magnificence, are revered in all great religions, including, pointedly, Islam.

Healing the world's ills begins with the awakening within each heart of the capacity to do good. That awakening is forever symbolized by the star over Bethlehem.

Witnessing the sad scenes of ground zero in New York, the devastation in Afghanistan, or more Mideast violence should move everyone to better understand, and more diligently realize, the bright promise of Christmas.

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