The meaning of Christmas to me is summed up concisely and nicely in the sermon given by the bishop at the end of the 1947 classic movie, “The Bishop’s Wife.” Since I am an accountant, I am forced to reduce the sermon to a mathematical algorithm….What can I say? I am a CPA and this is what we do all day, even on Christmas Day?
Mea culpa. But here it is, Einsteins:
Peace on Earth = Loving Kindness + Warm Hearts + Stretched Out Hand of Tolerance
But despite its simplicity and precision, an algorithm doesn’t capture the moving poetry of the sermon. So I include it below for the appreciation of all of those who hate mathematics and accounting and who have a real life. Better yet, just click on the video above and watch and listen to David Niven recite the sermon:
Tonight I want to tell you the story of an empty stocking.
Once upon a midnight clear, there was a child’s cry, a blazing star hung over a stable, and wise men came with birthday gifts. We haven’t forgotten that night down the centuries. We celebrate it with stars on Christmas trees, with the sound of bells, and with gifts.
But especially with gifts. You give me a book, I give you a tie. Aunt Martha has always wanted an orange squeezer and Uncle Henry can do with a new pipe. For we forget nobody, adult or child. All the stockings are filled, all that is, except one. And we have even forgotten to hang it up. The stocking for the child born in a manger. Its his birthday we’re celebrating. Don’t let us ever forget that.
Let us ask ourselves what He would wish for most. And then, let each put in his share, loving kindness, warm hearts, and a stretched out hand of tolerance. All the shinning gifts that make peace on earth.