[Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem] And so we begin our Christmas celebration, with the glorious news of the birth of a baby and the hope that this holds for the world.
In all things we are told to give ‘thanks to God’ and in all we do ‘give the Glory to God’. With this in mind we look back upon a year filled with thanksgiving and look forward to the wonder and splendor that God has in store for us.
I am thankful for the productive Annual Majma that was held in Amman, Jordan this past November. Our theme for this Majma was ‘Serving to the Glory of God’. We focused on our institutions and the work we do to the Glory of God and in the service of our communities. Our schools, healthcare institutions and churches glorify God through the educating and teaching of our future generations, the caring for the sick and the needy, the elderly and the marginalized. We give glory to God through the example of our Christian principles and moral values, which are rooted in our faith. We look forward to working together to build future programs and projects that will benefit all people, both physically and spiritually. In Christ we are called to alleviate the suffering of our people, our friends and neighbours without regard to race, religion, gender or politics.
The hope of the church is in Christ Jesus. Through Him we are working toward a stronger unity, greater love, and deeper faithfulness in our mission and ministry among all Christians and non-Christians. And so, just as Jesus embraces the world, so too does our community embrace the world. Living in the land of the Holy One, we open wide our doors to welcome the world into our midst. Our churches regularly greet the pilgrims who come to visit, see and learn of the work Jesus continues to do through us. As they come to Bethlehem to kneel at the foot of the manger, so too do we gaze upon the Christ child, small, vulnerable and innocent.
In this land of so many passionate commitments and conflicts, we celebrate again Jesus’ ministry of reconciliation. It is through the courage and strength of the Holy Spirit that we can continue to serve to the Glory of God.
It is with great honour and profound humility that I minister among you as your Bishop here. All I do is in the service and Glory to God. I pray that as you celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ, this Christmastide,be full of the joy and deep peace that comes in knowing that you are dearly loved by our God who so loved the world that He gave us his only Son.
Bishop Suheil Dawani
Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem