The Fellowship of Life
Christmas Carol Service
An address by the Rt. Rev. Mary Francis; DD, Ph.D., O.S.H. to the 'Church of St. Hubert and the One Life' - at Cusworth, Doncaster, on Sunday 23rd December, 1973:
"Mummy, why do they spoil Christmas by bringing religion into it?"
Can we wonder at that sincere question of a little girl, when "Christmas" seems to be celebrated by eating and drinking and everything which is material, and not spiritual at all?
The sad reflection is, that Christ has gone out of Christmas. His own birthday on the earth plane has become clouded over. To 'enjoy' Christmas now means that thousands of harmless creatures are slaughtered after being deliberately reared for the purpose. Truly this spectacle is enough to cause tears in Heaven! The commercial aspect of Christmas has now superseded for the majority of people any suggestion of its being primarily a Religious Festival! The sound of Christmas bells is now insignificant when compared with the strains of materialism. To some people the seasonal festivities may be tinged with sadness as they remember their loved ones, who are no longer with them, and they may receive some ray of peace from the 'spirit spheres' where the Festival is held.
But still to thinking souls in all the conflict and unrest of the material world comes the message to 'Prepare the way of the Lord', and make straight the desert of the world. They must meditate on the picture of the Crib and the animals around the Holy Child, and resolve to let those animals which were sanctified by the very presence of Christ on that "Holy Night" live in peace, and not continue on their unheeding way with the materialists to whom the Crib means nothing. Their eyes must not be closed to the horror and cruelty which has defiled the Holy Season.
The fight against the wholesale slaughter of animals and the diabolical practice of Vivisection must increase as the dark forces take over the world. The whole animal creation groans with travail because of man's lust and cruelty and selfishness and while such a state of things continues mankind will remain far from the Kingdom of God and bring suffering upon the whole world in which he dwells.
Those who can accept the message have a tremendous responsiblity to defend the Animal Kingdom upon earth, to them sounds the clarion call "Prepare ye the way of the Lord" to keep themselves from blood, and things strangled and from dead bodies of birds and beasts, and from all deeds of cruelty and to be merciful to all living creatures. If they answer that call the Christ Life will begin to be realised and lived in its beautiful purity, goodness and light. When the exploitation of the animal kingdom ceases Christmas will return to the world in its true religious aspect.
The present days are dark with error, and we can make them long or short. Man can fight against accepting the vision, the knowledge is there to be accepted or refused as man has been granted freewill. But the cloud of shame for what has been done (and is being done in 1973) can never be wiped off the slate of barbarous history.
The Lord of Love has been driven away from earth on His own Birthday by the Density of Evil by which it has come to be celebrated. The profession of Peace and Goodwill so loudly professed is a denial of a Christendom truly based upon those words - it has all become Shallow and Hollow.
Let us work and pray without ceasing that the 'Kingdom of Heaven' may be born upon earth.
Published by the Fellowship of Life
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