Christians around the world will pause on Christmas Day to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. Different countries will commemorate the birth in different ways, whichever the custom of their land. It’s been the practice for thousands of years.

Even here in America, the habits are sometimes different from family-to-family. It’s been that way from generation-to-generation.

For the most part, the family shopping is completed, the gifts are wrapped and wide-eyed children are anxiously awaiting the arrival of Santa Claus. The holiday dinner feast has been planned for days and families are ready to celebrate.

Church services will be special. Music and choir directors have rehearsed their parts for weeks. Places of worship are attractively decorated for the event.

While the celebration is always a welcome event, there will be some sadness attached to the occasion. Thousands of people remain homeless, scores of families will be saddened by adversity of some sort. But we must remember the multitude of good people who have done their best to wipe away the wrinkles of despair and replace those wrinkles with smiles of happiness because of their kind deeds and acts of compassion. The Christmas season is filled with acts of compassion.

So let the beauty of the season bring us peace, and may the spirit of the season bring us hope.

Remember a part of those magic words that have been ringing around the world for centuries: “Silent night, holy night! All is calm, all is bright.”

We wish our readers a Merry Christmas filled with peace, hope and joy.