NAY PYI TAW December 23
Myanmar Council of Churches (MCC), Catholic Bishops of Republic of Union of Myanmar, Myanmar Evangelical Christian Alliance, Myanmar Christian Mission Cooperation Organization jointly organized the Christmas Thanksgiving at Holy Cathedral Church at the corner of Bogyoke Aung San Street and Shwedagon Pagoda Road in Pabedan Township, Yangon Region, this evening, attended by Chairman of State Administration Council Prime Minister Senior General Min Aung Hlaing.
Also present were Daw Kyu Kyu Hla, wife of the Senior General, the SAC Joint Secretary and wife, SAC members and their wives, Union ministers and their wives, senior military officers from the Office of the Commander-in-Chief and their wives, the Yangon Region chief minister, the Yangon Command commander, the mayor, bishops of MCC, Catholic bishops, bishops of Alliance and Cooperation Organization, officials of Interfaith Friendship Group, guests, Christians in Myanmar, Catholic youths and local Christian elders.
On arrival at the Holy Cathedral Church, the Senior General and party were welcomed by Archbishop of Catholic Archdiocese of Yangon Cardinal Charles Bo and pastors. The ceremony began with the Christmas wish extended by Reverend Saw San Aung (MCMC). Then a carol was sung. Reverend Saw Sam San (MBC) extended greetings.
In his Christmas greetings, the Senior General said Christmas which falls on 25 December every year is a special holy day. And it is an honour to take part in Christmas together with Christians. The Senior General also wished all Christians and global people including Myanmar peace and tranquility under the loving kindness of Lord Jesus.
He said sharing God’s immense love, kindness and compassion for all mankind is the essence of Christmas prayer service. All human beings should capture the Christmas essence with mutual love and kindness. In this way, a peaceful and prospering human community will turn the world into a tranquil place.
The world has many religions, and Buddhism, Christian, Islam and Hinduism are designated as the four major religions. Every religion guides people towards secular and religious benefits, love peace and compassion. Religious teachings will surely lead us to a peaceful society and a peaceful and prosperous country.
The Constitution of Myanmar allows freedom of worship for all religions including the four major religions. The State is protecting all the religions it has recognized. Section 34 of the Constitution says, “Every citizen is equally entitled to freedom of conscience and the right to freely profess and practise religion subject to public order, morality or health and to the other provisions of this Constitution.”
People of Buddhism, professed by the largest number of people in Myanmar, and of Christian, Islam and Hinduism faiths have been living in harmony in Myanmar since yore without attacking one another or making any discrimination.
They have been living in unity and serving the national interest with fraternal spirit. They must continue this practice and must be aware of the attempts to destroy and break up unity by misusing the religion.
As regards peace, he said as all religions are based on peace, which is essential for all human societies. SAC always opens the door to peace, and Tatmadaw is always ready for peace negotiations. All along history, all successive governments made efforts to achieve peace.
In the time of our government, efforts are being made with might and main by laying down the roadmaps to ensure peace.Reverends of respective Christian denominations and heads of various religions, who are present today, are requested to participate in the process of ensuring perpetual peace in the country as much as they can. The two national goals for our country are to ensure prosperity of the nation and food security.
As the main teaching of a religion is prosperity, all are urged again to work altogether in the process of ensuring perpetual peace with their wish of peace. Staying and working disciplined will be helpful to achieving prosperity. Food security is directly helpful to the propensity of the nation. Therefore, each of the people across the nation needs to have its own responsibility.
All are urged to work together from the auspicious moment of Christmas Day for the year of 2022 to ensure good opportunities of stability and peace, security and peace and coexistence of all religions that are mainly necessary for the nation.
According to the wording “Peace on Earth and Good will toward men” by the evangelist Luke, I am wishing the reverendsof Christian denominations who organized today’s event, union level departmental dignitaries, senior military officers, dignitaries of Interfaith Friendship Organization, special guests and all citizens having merry Christmas along with happiness, peace and healthiness and gladness.
Then, Sr. Daisy (CBCM) and Archbishop U Myat Hsan read the Bible and Archbishop Stephen Than Myint Oo Christmas messages.
Next, Reverend Dr. Myo Winz and Reverend Dr. Aye Min expressed words of thanks, made a special wish for the Republic of the Union of Myanmar and sang a hymn together.
Afterwards, Archbishop Cardinal Charles Bo made a Christmas wish for the nation and all the Myanmar citizens.
Later, the Senior General and wife were given a Christmas gift painting by Cardinal Charles Bo, Archbishop Stephen Than Myint Oo and Reverend Dr. Aye Min. The Senior General and wife returned Christmas gifts and cash donations to them.
The Senior General and party had dinner together hosted by Myanmar Council of Christian Churches, CBCM, Myanmar Evangelical Christian Alliance, and Myanmar Christ Mission Cooperation Federation.