Welcome to the Diocese of MacKenzie – Fort Smith

Bishop Mark Hagemoen’s Christmas Message, 2014

Dear brother Priests, Religious, and Lay Faithful of the Diocese of Mackenzie-Fort Smith


Greetings to you all!! Winter is again upon us in the North. The long, dark days will soon bring us to the Christmas time when the light will slowly increase through our dark days.
It is really wonderful how the land and the sky give testimony to the meaning of Christ who comes to us at Christmas. Of course, so do God’s people! The longing for light and hope amidst the darkness has a special meaning for those who know winter well!

We prepare to again celebrate the anniversary of the coming of the Christ Child: the little and vulnerable One who shows the world a new and ultimate strength, and who will be a true ‘king’ who ‘saves’ all people. The lowly and poor shepherds will be the people to first hear the song of the angels, which proclaims to heaven and earth the dawn of peace for all!

The life of the Saviour gives us a glimpse of the journey to such peace. Shalom may seem to be impossible in a world which, despite tremendous blessing and advancement, experiences widespread division and brokenness, and is capable of great injury and destruction. Yet, the Saviour shows us a new and ultimate way – indeed His light will illumine the greatest darkness. His is a Light of blessing, respect, service, sacrifice, and love.

May His way show us all the way we all need to find together.

I take this opportunity to thank you all for your welcome and openness to me as my first year as a new Bishop. This is a land of great wonder and blessing. Yet, the greatest blessing is the people! I thank God for the opportunity to serve His Church – His People. I also thank the many priests, religious, lay men and women – who show me what it means to have a generous heart and a servant spirit.

May God bless you All. Have a joy-filled Christmas and a blessed New Years’ time. MAHSI CHO!

Sincerely in Christ,
Mark Hagemoen
Bishop, Mackenzie-Fort Smith


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