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Christmas Greetings from the WMC President
Christmas is a story of birth. It affirms the beauty of a human life assumed as well as created by God. “What is not assumed cannot be saved.”(Gregory Nazianzen) The Word became flesh so that our humanity is not any more our own because it also belongs to God. We joyfully celebrate the humanity of God on Christmas, and every day is Christmas as long as a new born baby is with us anywhere in the world.
However, it has been the tragedy of the fallen humanity that we have to mourn the suffering and death of innocent babies ever since the birth of our Lord. The last episode of the Nativity is the flight of the Holy Family to Egypt. The baby Jesus would have been killed unless he was allowed to enter the foreign land. Indeed how many babies have been rejected and died as the numerous refugees have been forced to leave their homes!
Don’t you vividly remember Alan Kurdi, a three year old Syrian boy lying dead on the beach in Turkey? He drowned on 2 September 2015 as his family was trying to reach Europe amid the European refugee crisis. The shocking photograph of Kurdi’s dead body revealed a human catastrophe and the horrific cost of the global migration crisis.
The baby Jesus was a refugee. He was rather a fortunate one because his entry to Egypt was not rejected. However, as long as a door to the migrating babies of our times is closed, Jesus who shares their humanity is also rejected. Are we willing to welcome Messiah and accept him in our midst? Then, we must welcome and accept the babies. Accept them in order for you to be accepted by the baby born on the first Christmas!
As I remember Kurdi in this Christmas season, I would like to invite you to pray for my three year old grandson Jin. Right after the 5th nuclear test by North Korea in March last year I vowed to God on behalf of my beloved grandson to fight a good fight for peace and de-nuclearization of Korea. I am desperate not to let my grandson live in a radioactive hell mutually threatening with the nukes. The specter of a next Korean war is overshadowing us here in the Korean peninsula. Every day we wake up and go to bed with the deep sigh of one who nearly escapes his or her own death.
Nevertheless, let’s lift up our heads to praise the new born King! “Unto us a baby is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isa 9:6) I wish you a blessed and merry Christmas!
And please join me to wish a peaceful Christmas to a Rohingya baby boy who was born at a riverbank October 17, 2017 just a few hours before his parents crossed the border into Bangladesh. Merry and safe Christmas to the son of Mahami and his mother!
Dr. J.C. Park