My fellow Jamaicans at home and abroad,
We celebrate another Christmas as a nation, and we are grateful for the reminders of the power of peace and goodwill in shaping our lives. Christmas is a time that brings together families, friends, and communities, in thanksgiving and celebration, for the gifts and blessings we have received throughout the year.
All of us have faced difficulties and disappointments of one kind or another during the year, which is now closing. However, even as we look back on the challenges we experienced this year, we recognize the meaning of the Season, the traditions and the symbols which give us cause to enjoy the unique feeling that this special time of year brings.
We fully embrace any opportunity to engage with each other in an atmosphere of cordiality and conviviality, and to appreciate how good it is to ‘dwell together in unity.’ At the heart of this fellowship and goodwill is the true message of Christmas- that of building harmonious relationships, and a world where peace reigns in the hearts of humankind.
In the spirit of the Season, I urge us all to focus our minds on all that is positive in our past – our values, our faith, and our generosity of spirit. It is equally important for us to recognize where we have fallen short in our responsibilities to the vulnerable; draw inspiration from the Christmas Message, and resolve to correct our oversight or neglect.
As we spend time in reflection and renewal, let us:
• Remember and sympathise with, those who are spending their first Christmas without a loved one who was taken by crime, illness, road fatality, or other travails.
• Spend some quiet time in taking stock of our individual lives, and our impact on community and country.
• Strengthen the bonds of responsible family life, and protect our children.
• Be constructive with our suggestions as we are critical of our faults.
• Renew our long-term resolve to serve those in need and show kindness to those experiencing difficulties.
• And let us continue to exude the warmth and generosity which reflect the best of our Jamaican traditions.
During this time of faith and family, I hope you will experience the love, gladness and heart of Christmas.
Lady Allen joins me in wishing for everyone a safe, holy, peaceful and joyous Christmas Season.
Happy Holidays everyone, and may God bless us all.