Ἀφιερωμένο στόν Κύριό μας Ἱησοῦ Χριστό καί τήν Ὑπεραγία Θεοτόκο
Misha’s gift ,Christmas is the feast of warmth and of warm human hearts.
The following incident took place in an orphanage in Russia, where young children are cared for, abandoned and abused.
On Christmas Eve, a professor went to the orphanage, in order to talk to the children about this great celebration. Most of them were hearing for the first time about Christ and His birth. A six year old boy, Misha, listened very carefully the words of the professor.Subsequently, the children were given materials to make the cave, the manger and everything else in relation to His birth.While the professor was observing the children’s handcrafts, he noticed something that he made an impression to him: Misha had placed inside the manger two babies.
– One is the Christ, the professor said. Who is the other child in the cradle?
Then, little Misha started telling him the story of the Nativity of Christ he had just heard by the professor, adding, however, something of his own. When he got to the point where Virgin Mary put the baby in the manger, Misha continued with these words:
“Then, little Christ turned, looked at me and asked if I had a place to stay. I told him that I have neither a mother nor a father, nor anywhere to stay. Then Jesus told me to stay with him. I then thought that I had no gift to give him, like the others. How would he keep me beside him?
The only gift I could offer was to keep him warm. That’s why I asked him:
– If I keep you warm, is this a good enough gift for you?
And Jesus replied:
– If you keep me warm, that will be the best gift I have ever been given by anyone.
So I got into the small cot, and then Jesus turned, looked at me and told me that I could stay with Him forever.”
When little Misha finished his story, his eyes were full of tears that were running rampant on his cheeks. He leaned over the table, covered his face with his hands and cried.
The little orphan had, at last, found someone who would never leave him, who would not abuse him. Someone who would tell him to stay with him forever.
Source: Misha’s gift, p. 57-59, p. 241-242 , Magazine “By the lake”, Monthly publication of Paralimni St. Demetrios Church, period b, year 18, No. 12, December 2008
”The motherly love of the Most Holy Theotokos permeates today’s entire event and radiates a warm feeling within us. Christmas is the feast of warmth and of warm human hearts. If it seems that there is no place today a person can “warm” himself, it is because human hearts have grown cold. They have become hard and unfeeling even towards the suffering of so many of our brothers and sisters who in recent years have been left homeless, exiled from their birthplaces, and some even without their loved ones. That life is hard is not the exception but the rule. Only the twentieth century has brought the simple-minded dream that life should be easy and leisurely, which it never has been throughout history. …But afflictions and difficulties and limitations are easier to bear when we have warmth in us and amongst us. For in the day of His second coming, the Lord will not ask us what kind of times we lived in, but how we related to our neighbor. Was he our “hell” or our “heaven?”
We ourselves build either heaven or hell in our own hearts out of the momentary circumstances we are given, and the warmth of the human heart is able to transform any situation, even to make a cave in Bethlehem the most beautiful palace and birthplace of the King of kings.
He revealed that good is far stronger than evil, and that every triumph of evil is temporary and illusory”
Patriarch Pavle of Serbia
What shall we offer Thee, O Christ, Who for our sakes hast appeared on earth as man? Every creature made by Thee offers Thee thanks: The angels offer a hymn; The heavens a star; The wisemen gifts; The shepherds, their wonder; The earth, its cave; The wilderness, a manger. And we offer Thee a virgin mother. O pre-eternal God, have mercy on us!
(from the Vespers of the eve of the feast of the Nativity, December 25.)