“2014 CHRISTMAS MESSAGE” BY MIA AMOR MOTTLEY: QC & MP, LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION

Dear Friends, Colleagues and my fellow Barbadians;

Those of us who celebrate the birth of Christ do so with feelings of great joy in remembrance of his arrival in Bethlehem. His teachings tell us of the importance of charity, love and courage.

At this time it is important that we share our expressions of joy and celebration with those less fortunate among us. This Christmas, there are many families whose breadwinners cannot provide the traditional Barbadian fare through no fault of their own. Many children will not know the joy of unwrapping a gift on Christmas morning or the smell of a baking ham, turkey or great cake.

I know most of us who still have jobs have had to cut back on our spending. I also know that many of us know of at least one family that is struggling to provide even the basics. I ask that you find it in your hearts to share something with the less fortunate among us over this Season. Simply put, let those of us who can help those of us who cannot. It might be a wrapped gift for a child or a chicken or some other food item for their family. Or you might be able to visit a shut in senior in your community for an hour.

I know most of us who still have jobs have had to cut back on our spending. I also know that many of us know of at least one family that is struggling to provide even the basics. I ask that you find it in your hearts to share something with the less fortunate among us over this Season. Simply put, let those of us who can help those of us who cannot. It might be a wrapped gift for a child or a chicken or some other food item for their family. Or you might be able to visit a shut in senior in your community for an hour.

Each one of us can make a difference in making someone else’s Christmas a joyous Season. There is no greater gift than love and no greater reward for the giver than charity.

As Barbadians, we must return once more to that spirit of community that guided our lives in days gone by. We can no longer depend on a broken Government to look out for the weak among us. We will have to help those with whom we share this still beautiful and peaceful land.

We must not prey on the weak or less fortunate. We must build them up, for in so doing we will build up our communities and ourselves. We must lose the desire for material things in preference to spending time with our children, with our family with our seniors and with our neighbours.

As a country we still have much to be thankful for. Chief among these is the Barbadian indomitable spirit to overcome adversity and to share our blessings. Let us renew and live the teachings of our parents and grandparents and, of Christ himself, to work hard, to be tolerant, to be fair, to respect each other, to care, to love and to share. For it is only through the efforts of every single one of us that our country, this rock, this place that we call home will thrive once more.

There is no better time to start than this Advent season, the start of a new year in the Church and the celebration of the coming of Christ. In wishing each and every Barbadian a Blessed Christmas, I ask you to remember those among us whose Christmas might not be so bright this year and to do whatever you can to change that while seeking to renewing your spirit and your commitment to this, our country.

I look forward to the New Year to continuing to meet and talk to you about how as a country and as individuals we can improve our fortunes and make a contribution to rebuilding Barbados – to discuss truly our sense of purpose as a people, who we are, where we want to be and how we will get there.

Enjoy, reflect, and share the joys of the Season. May peace and happiness be with you. May God bless each of us and give us the courage to face 2015 with fortitude and compassion.

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