Christmas Column

Date: Sat 25th December 2010

Christmas is a time for being with friends and family and for many people a chance to remember the significance of why we celebrate Christmas, the birth of Christ.

In recent years we have heard of too many cases of people being afraid to be open about Christmas. I loathe the attempts that have been made to refer to Christmas as ‘Winterfall’ or rely on only non Christian symbols to signify the forthcoming holiday period. I am yet to meet a follower of a different religion to Christianity who is genuinely offended by Christian symbols. Celebrating the true meaning of Christmas is not incompatible with having respect for other religions.

I thoroughly enjoy this time of year, it is great time for families to spend time together. I also know that it is hard work for many people and a sad time for some who have lost loved ones at this time of year. There will also be people, such as the emergency services, who have to work at Christmas time.  Our thoughts also go out to our armed forces, particularly those serving in Afghanistan over Christmas. Their commitment to their duties is extremely admirable and we owe them a particular debt of gratitude at this time.

So I wish all the readers of the Dartford Messenger a very Merry Christmas and a peaceful New Year.