A message for Noel  
Like a child I am delighted by Noel. Noel gives us hope, a hope of enlightenment, a hope of peace, a hope for a new possible beginning. It is God coming to live among us, to know every thing of a human life to transform it into his own image. It is a marvellous promise, of which the achievement is greater than what we were expecting.  
Noel is the surprise of the arrival of a child, a child coming from somewhere else: he is a foreigner. A child’s face, a foreigner’s face. Faces revealing who we are.  
naissance de Jésus At Bethlehem the child showed his full dignity. The rendezvous of God with man, and the divinity with mankind.
The child from Bethlehem values the foreigner. Jesus was born during a voyage to a city where there was no room for a couple travelling.  
A child and a foreigner are the messengers that introduce us to the mystery of Noel.  
It was in this state of spirit that I went to Cuba to defend five Cubans, in jail since 10 years in the United States. Once more they will spend Christmas away from their families.  
On December 26, I will go to Gaza from Cairo for an international march for peace, with the Palestinians from Gaza who are looking forward to welcome us.
marche pour la paix
The world needs peace. It is urgent to stop the Afghanistan and Iraq wars. The international opinion demands it. Soldiers sent to these countries die as useless heroes. There are also the dead from the Afghan and Iraqi resistance, the thousands of women and children victims of these wars. Every day of war is too much.  
Peace concerns each of us.  
douce paix de Noël I wish the children and foreigners who are crossing our way open us to the calm peace of Noel.
Peace be with you all through the New Year.  
Jacques Gaillot,
Bishop of Partenia