Bishop of St Albans’ Christmas message

The Rt Revd Dr Alan Smith, the Bishop of St Albans

The Rt Revd Dr Alan Smith, the Bishop of St Albans - Credit: Archant

St ALBANS: Giving not shopping is the true message ofChristmas according to theBishop of St Albans, the Rt Rev Alan Smith.

In his Christmas message, the Bishop warned that many people could no longer pause and find the time to enjoy the presents they had been given before they get the urge to shop, spend and consume more.

His comments came after St Albans Abbey was packed with children and adults for its five performances of Carols on the Hour on Saturday which invites shoppers to come in for a half hour service and carol singing.

The Bishop said: “With Christmas this year being celebrated against the backdrop of a rapid growth in food banks across the UK, I’ve met families who are struggling to afford a decent lunch, let alone spend Christmas afternoon in online shopping.

“For those that cannot find a job or those who are too ill to work, there may be little cheer this Christmas.”

He added: “So for the sake of our own physical and spiritual health, will you join me in doing something different this Christmas? Why not practice giving, rather than consuming? Not only will it make an incalculable difference to the lives of people who are suffering, but it will also be health-giving for us and our families.”