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| 16th December 2008 | Modified: 20th October 2014 | Christianity, News Releases | Seen 63 times | Liked 0 times

16 December
Dec 16
16th December 2008

2008 Christmas Message from Cardinal Keith O'Brien  

"At this time of year we focus on that familiar scene of the stable in
Bethlehem, on the hope and promise that new life offers to the world  
and the centrality of the human family in God s plan of salvation. We  
are all members of a family. Our immediate family, the family of  
society, and the international community or family of nations.

This year began with concerns for the international family as violence  
erupted in Kenya. The world was shocked by news of attacks on women  
and children who had huddled together seeking refuge in a church. As  
we yearn for peace at Christmas, we remember those not at peace around  
the world.

At home increasingly sexualised messages bombard young people in  
Scottish families. Children are almost egged on to experiment as they  
are assailed by ˜safe sex messages. The inevitable result is unwanted  
pregnancies, abortions and heartache. There is no doubt that a stable  
family is the key to so many benefits for spouses and children.

Not without reason has the church taught repeatedly that the family is  
the basic cell of society. If we damage that unit, it will be to the  
detriment of us all. Perhaps we should turn again to that nativity scene, where  
Mary and Joseph, are united in love and adoration of God s gift of a  
child. The example of the ˜Holy Family should fill us all with a  
renewed respect for ˜the family in society and across the world in  
the year ahead."

ENDS

Peter Kearney  
Director  
Catholic Media Office
5 St. Vincent Place
Glasgow  
G1 2DH  
0141 221 1168
07968 122291  
pk@scmo.org  
www.scmo.org

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