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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

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Mgr Jean Michael Durhone: “There Is Room For Bridges To Be Built Within This Mauritian Society”

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Christians around the world celebrate Christmas tomorrow, December 25. Originally, this is the day on which we celebrate the Nativity, the Incarnation of the divine in Jesus, born of the Virgin Mary in a humble stable in Bethlehem. Along with Easter, it’s the most important feast in the Christian calendar.

On that night, the whole world received a gift: God sent his Son into the world as a gift to mankind. Christmas is one of the greatest feasts on the Catholic calendar. It marks the incarnation – God became man.

The majority of the island’s parishes are organizing a Christmas vigil this evening before mass, with carols, entertainment, prayers, tableaux vivants and more. Bishop Durhône’s Christmas message will be broadcast on MBC TV1 after the news on Monday December 25.

Here is the full Christmas message from Mgr Jean Michael Durhone, Bishop of Port-Louis:

“Dear brothers and sisters from Mauritius, Rodrigues, Agalega and the Chagos,

This is the first time I have addressed you as Bishop of Port-Louis on the occasion of Christmas.

You have given me a very warm welcome since I was appointed Bishop of Port-Louis. Gestures of friendship from all cultural and religious backgrounds have been expressed, and I am touched by them. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Christmas is celebrated by all. For Christians, Christmas is the birth of the Savior. In Jesus, God comes to us at the heart of our humanity. God comes to inhabit this world of ours. In Jesus, God brings us the hope of a new world, and that our humanity is called to be saved.

When Mary was about to give birth, she and Joseph looked for a place for Jesus to be born. All the doors were closed. And yet it was in the simplicity of a manger that the Savior was born. Yes, there is still room for Jesus to be born at the heart of this world and our Mauritian society.

When we see conflict, we can become discouraged. Since peace means working towards justice, there is still room to build peace and give birth to hope. When people and NGOs get involved and develop an ecological conscience, I tell myself there’s room for Jesus to be born.

There is room for young people. Young people have something to contribute to our Mauritian society. They can bring us their dreams, their enthusiasm, their energy.

There is room for bridges to be built within this Mauritian society. Our cultural and religious differences are more opportunities for building bridges than obstacles that lead to indifference and violence.

Yes, there is room. And God, out of love for our humanity, freely gives us his son Jesus.

Before expressing my best wishes, I would like to draw your attention to the worrying number of road accidents in our country. How can we not spare a thought for all those families, husbands, wives and children who have suffered the tragic death of one of their own?

In this festive season, I invite you to be responsible on the road. No family can believe that it can be spared such a tragedy. Kisanla ti pu envi truv en membre so fami lor kanape pendan ban fet nwel ou nuvel an? Mo lesperans seki nou pran konsians ki nu responsab nu lavi ek lavi sak dimoun kan nu lor larout.

I wish you and your families, dear Mauritian friends, a very happy Christmas. ”

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