Speech

“Christmas has come at a time when our country continues to endure the pain and stress that have afflicted the entire world for most of the last two years. It has affected Jamaicans both at home and abroad.
Yet, Christmas has such powerful significance that it is able, at least for the moment, to transcend the hardship we are undergoing and bring us together as a family to share and celebrate with friends and loved ones.
It is a spirit that we wish would prevail throughout the year. It brings a feeling of togetherness that we must try to retain even after the Christmas season has passed.
In these especially difficult times, let us make an extra effort to spread the joy of Christmas. Let us reach out to those whose circumstances defy the happiness that Christmas is all about – the poor and the elderly, the sick and the shut-in. And let us look out especially for the children who look forward to Christmas with so much hope and expectation. Let them not be disappointed.
Please be careful in your celebrations on the roads and in your homes and let not the joy of Christmas be marred by tragedies that can be avoided.
To those Jamaicans who live abroad but have come home to spend Christmas with their families, we say welcome home. And to those who will spend Christmas abroad, many of them in cold, bitter climes, we miss you but we are sure that your Christmas will be brightened by the warmth and sunshine of the Jamaican spirit that is so much a part of you.
To all Jamaicans, wherever you are, I wish a peaceful and blessed Christmas”.