Despite being displaced and persecuted throughout his short life, Christ's unchanging message was not one of revenge or violence but simply that we should love one another. Although it is not an easy message to follow, we shouldn't be discouraged; rather, it inspires us to try harder: to be thankful for the people who bring love and happiness into our own lives, and to look for ways of spreading that love to others, whenever and wherever we can... There's an old saying that "it is better to light a candle than curse the darkness". There are millions of people lighting candles of hope in our world today. Christmas is a good time to be thankful for them, and for all that brings light to our lives. I wish you a very happy Christmas.
The shepherds went and worshipped. Herod sought to kill. Today's Herods, ISIS and the like around the world in so many faiths, propose false apocalypses. But you and I are called to respond in worship and transforming, world changing obedience, both as individuals, and together, to this revelation of the baby that defines God, for it is our response to Jesus that defines us.
If someone wants to ask the person they love to spend the rest of their life with them on a special day of the year, it would seem good sense (and common decency) to be happy for them.
In the last month my team and I have referred about the same number of people to the foodbank for assistance as we did in the ten months before that... The sheer scale of the operation these days is both astonishing and impressive. The fact that it has to be so big, though, underlines that something is fundamentally wrong with the way Britain operates at the moment.
WE wish you a very merry Christmas and a jolly happy New Year. And I'm letting you in on a little tiny secret, what I'm getting the family. Now, really I thought they have pretty much everything... and then I thought, i know, something radical, something brand new, something no one has ever tried anywhere in the world - equality. Isn't that a wonderful idea? can you just imagine? everybody - men, women, children, everybody! - getting on better and being happier because they've all got equality.
So it's Christmas. It's been a tricky one for me to think about this year from the depths of Calais's refugee camp known as 'The Jungle'. However, a couple of Christmas-related things have been happening which I though I would share, as an insight into Christmas as a refugee.
It's Christmas Eve, and this morning I delivered the last two of three hundred Christmas hampers. I don't work for Harrods, or M&S, or anyone else who might spring to mind when you think about hamper deliveries; I work for Salisbury Foodbank. And each one of these three hundred hampers will go to families and individuals who are struggling to put food on the table this Christmas...
While I always opt for Aldi for my Christmas food, I was impressed by Asda this year. I'll still be getting my whole Christmas food assortment from Aldi but Christmas Eve and Boxing Day is set to be Asda (with sprinklings of Tesco and Sainsbury's).
A truly Poncetastic Christmas (TM) requires precision-planning, commitment, heroics and, occasionally, martyrdom. Think you can handle it? Here's what you need to know.
When it comes to Christmas food the most important thing is not to overcomplicate and to stay calm! Producing a perfect spread is all about time management and not losing your head when things don't quite go according to plan. So pour yourself a Baileys and follow my tips for perfect festive food.
With Twitter fast becoming the go to place for abuse it seemed only logical that the figures would reveal a truth which we all felt was inevitable - that social media is the breeding ground for hate. What I saw shocked me, but not for the reasons you might have expected. Twitter's most influential moments were not trolling campaigns, messages of hate during a terrorist attack, nor were they based around celebrity gossip or the revelation that the world's most famous pop star does indeed have a penis...
Alcoholism gets in deep. And it doesn't ever really go away. Like a virus that lingers in your system, ever ready to rear it's ugly head and shout 'Oi dickhead!! Remember me?!'
As we tick ever closer towards Christmas Day, people up and down the country will be starting to panic. Then you realised it's official, the countdown to Christmas and festive season is closely approaching and the present-buying panic is in full swing.
As we grow older, we tend to hide the cantankerousness and innocence that formed such a large part of our youth. Perhaps social convention, or some vague idea of acting grown up, forces us to mask these ostensibly childish attributes.
The families I spoke to were far from gloomy, however: they told me that with a disabled child, Christmas is sometimes different, but that doesn't mean it can't be loads of fun.
The season to be merry is in full swing, and all around us people appear to be having a great time. As a family we love Christmas and everything it stands for. We celebrate with close relatives and friends, reflect on the year that is drawing to a close and to make plans for the year ahead. But as foster carers? Well, it is complicated, isn't it?