From Magic City Morning Star

Guest Column
Merry Christmas from John Walsh
By John Walsh
Dec 23, 2009 - 1:13:45 AM

So it's Christmastide again and this being my first Christmas as a soon to be world famous writer thanks to your wonderful newspaper, I thought I'd just pop in and wish ye all a fine and Blessed Christmas.

No matter your religion, Heretic, Jew, Mohommedan or Hindu, I do pray the Blessed Savior makes his face to shine upon you and give you peace.

Christmas is a special time of year. For some it is a time of giving like for them three wise men who following the miracle star found the Blessed Babe in his mother's arms.

For others, Like Mary and Joseph, it is a time of rest at the end of a long journey to witness the miracle of a new birth. Poor as they might be, their blessedness was beyond all that a mere mortal could dream of.

For others it is a time of charity when those who cannot offer much, offer all that they can, like the innkeeper that blessed night.

For others like the wicked Herod, it is a time to look for ways to rob us of our blessing. May such as he melt off the earth like snow off the ditch

But above all else, Christmas is a time for family and friends to come together as one, welcoming each other with open arms, forgiving all debts, and praying God's blessings on all.

Would to God the local constabulary would pay attention to the 'forgiving of all debts' though.

I remember once when we were new to living in Australia, and didn't have much in the way of family to celebrate with, me Ma got a call from a distant relative who years before had moved to Australia and was living in the north. She invited us all to celebrate Christmas with her family. And so off we went into parts unknown.

Another unknown was that her husband was a copper, the local police seargent no less. Now cousin Jack as we called him was a good God fearing Christian man and like any good Catholic, was determined to spend Christmas eve at Mass with the family. So off he went leaving a new junior officer in charge. A right conscientious young berk he was.

The church was packed to the rafters for midnight mass that Christmas, and so of course there were cars aplenty parked in a street with not enough space to accomodate them all. So this wet behind the ear copper decides to go ticket collecting, and seeing the street full of cars parked wherever they might, he proceeds to start writing out tickets for illegal parking.

Mass over, everyone comes out to find that half of them have got a ticket. I was standing right beside cousin Irene and cousin Jack when a member of the congregation starts frothing at the mouth about the pettiness of handing out tickets on Christmas eve.

He let's his shite fly right at Cousin Jack who just stood there saying nothin.

'You bloody money hungry coppers sucking us dry with your tickets!' he yells. Cousin Jack keeps his peace letting the poor begger get it all out, and when finally he runs out of steam, Cousin Jack quietly and as politely as you like says: "I know how you feel! I got one too!"

Well! Didn't that just take the wind out of the windbags sail. Everybody gathered round to listen to the tirade were laughing fit to bust. Even the bloody seargent got a ticket. He was no different than anyone else.

And isn't that the point of Christmas? We are all the same! All struggling to get through every day, every unfortunate event and tragedy, and we are all the same in the eyes of the Almighty. He loves us all!

Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God and May the roof above us never fall in and may the friends gathered below it never fall out.

Have a Blessed and Merry Christmas!

John Walsh

John J. Walsh, a Catholic, is originally from Ireland; went to high school and university in Australia, and later moved to the U.S.A. He lives in the Midwest and is married to an American. He now has a lot of time on his hands and is taking the opportunity to see some of his musings in print. Fearing the hot blooded protestants and not wanting to reach heaven or hell faster than is God's plan, his personal email address and other particulars are not available for publication. You may however Email him at: johnjwalsh_magic

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