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Dear Friends,

Let me wish you a thoughtful and reflective Christmas even as we continue to witness numerous challenges in our world today.

Christmas season is here and once again there are many distractions in our world that we hardly take notice of the significance of the birth of Christ. Looking at how much so many women still give birth under very poor conditions, the image of Mary with her child in a stable resonates in solidarity with the poor that hardly see their children grow to the age of five.

I find great consolation in the image of Christ the Saviour: when I see the ever vibrant religious faith of the African people, couples who hold firmly to family values, parents who ensure that their children go to school despite harsh economic times, the youth who go against all odds to embrace a culture of peace and social responsibility, leaders who defy corruption, greed and oppression in search for justice and equality, great signs of hope in Ghana Elections, ever peaceful and economically stable Gabon and Botswana, quick political and economic recovery in Angola and Mozambique.

The history of Salvation is in continuous search of its fulfillment even as we witness the endless violence in Darfur, Israel and Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia, Jos in Nigeria, Central African Republic, DR Congo, the fragile peace in northern Uganda and Sudan....greed and oppression of the leaders in Zimbabwe, obstinate defiance and impunity culture amongst politicians in Kenya, mass poverty in Ethiopia, 25million unemployment in the rich South Africa, and the challenge of malaria, cholera and HIV/AIDS.

If the coming of Christ this Christmas ought to call us to a new mission, then new the meaning of the good news, evangelion, is personal engagement, in whichever small way, in social transformation that brings in new values of love, humility,understanding, patience and commitment to healing wounds of division. If Christ has put this passion into hearts, then let it no be in vain, let's bring the lump from under the table and light the world around us.

Have a blessed Christmas and hopeful New Year.

Many Thanks

Dennis

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