Bishops across the country have released Christmas messages to encourage the faithful in this year of unexpected challenges, marked by bushfire and pandemic, closed churches and online Masses.
In their messages, the bishops remind the faithful to look to the birth of Jesus this Christmas as a sign of hope for the world.
“The birth of Christ in Bethlehem was far from ideal in its material circumstances, but that just served to underline how hope and joy can break out in the strangest places,” Maitland-Newcastle Bishop Bill Wright said.
Referring to months of church closures and restrictions on places of worship, Australia’s newest bishop, Sale Bishop Greg Bennet, said: “The buildings were closed but the Church was alive. And in all this we were not alone: Jesus has been born for us! As we celebrate the Birth of Jesus, we remember that he has been born for us, and he is with us – Emmanuel.”
Read the bishops’ Christmas messages below:
Catholic Religious Australia