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ING Wishes A Very Merry Christmas to Those Celebrating
Salam alaikum/Greetings of peace,
This is a special time of year for many Americans. Even the term “the holidays” immediately calls to mind the season from Thanksgiving to the New Year; families and friends gathering, public celebrations, counting our blessings, and of course general jolliness.
For Christians, the Christmas holiday marks both the beginning of one story and the culmination of another: Jesus’ birth in accordance with centuries of prophetic traditions and the start of his ministry. Indeed, in the Qur’an’s story of his birth, the newborn Jesus speaks from the manger itself!
Both Jesus and his mother Mary are highly-revered figures in the Qur’an, which notes:
And the angels said, “O Mary, God has chosen you and purified you, chosen you above the women of all people.” (Quran: 3:42)
The angels said, “O Mary, God gives you good news of a word from God, named the Messiah, Jesus, Son of Mary, honored in this world and the hereafter and among those near to God. He will speak to the people in the cradle and in maturity and will be of the righteous.” (Qur’an: 3:45-46)
In a sense, Christmas is a holy time for Muslims, too, because it marks the remembrance of a beloved prophet and his holy mother. And in the modern era, we can’t avoid the comparisons of the Nativity story to the current global refugee crisis: families desperately searching for safety and security in a time of fear and danger.
For those celebrating, we wish you a very Merry Christmas! We hope that you and those around you can find calm in this holiday season. We pray that it brings us all a measure of peace and uplifts our spirits, slightly worn-down after a year of around-the-clock activism.
Our blessings to you in this special time of year.