Irenical letter on the Feast of the Nativity of the Lord – 2015

Bucharest, Nativity of the Lord 2015

Glory to God in the highest,

and on earth peace, good will among mankind!

(Luke 2:14)

God eternally alive becomes a mortal Man in order to give eternal life to mortal men. The Son of God becomes Son of Man so that man might become a son of God by grace (cf. John 1:12). The descent of the Son of God Jesus Christ among humans is the beginning of human ascension into the kingdom of love of the Holy Trinity. But this ascension of man is based on reconciliation between God the Holy One and the fallen man from the relationship with Him through the sin of disobedience. Therefore the new man in Christ is the man in whom God’s peace dwells and who is working for reconciliation of people with God and with one another.

Today, when verbal and physical violence increases in the family, in society and military conflicts and terrorism multiply in many parts of the world, the Church must defend and cultivate the eternal values ​​of the Gospel of Christ’s love and of the dignity of man created in God’s image. The gift of spiritual peace, of man’s reconciliation with God, with himself and with others, is received through prayer and cultivated by thoughts, words and merciful deeds, so that spiritual peace of the soul may become a source of social peace, of peace in the family, in the community and in the world. Therefore, we are all called by God to cultivate peace and cooperation among peoples, not dissension and violent conflicts.

On the occasion of the Feast of the Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ and of the New Year – 2016, we address our wishes of good health and salvation, peace and joy, along with the traditional greeting: Many happy years to come!

With great esteem and brotherly embrace in Christ the Lord,

† DANIEL

Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church

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