Without Christ there is no Christmas. This is cliched but nevertheless true. However, these few days it was Mary I was meditating on. Without Mary, Christmas is an orphan. We owe the birth of our Saviour to a young teen girl who trusted God and said “Yes, let it be done to me as you want.” We owe a debt of gratitude to Mary for her simple child-like faith. Wisdom does not reside with the old and experienced. It resides with simple faith. A girl fresh from puberty played a vital role and her womb was the landing ground of the Saviour of the whole world. Most cultures look upon women as inferior, and they are not treated as equals and deserving of mutual respect. They are taken advantage of and patronized or ignored. Their talents, influence and gifts are not always fully appreciated nor valued. Worse they are also violated and oppressed and are objects of sarcasm, suspicion and cynicism. They are not taken seriously – unless they happen to be your mother. However, what man despises, God exalts. He did that 2000 years ago when He chose Mary – a teen girl to reveal the “arm of the Lord”, “a light to the peoples”. So do not forget Mary. Thank God for Mary and all the goodness she represents as a woman, as a believing Eve–faith, sacrifice, risk, tenderness, gratitude, gentleness, compassion, talent, strength, and resilience. It was David Yonggi Cho of Full Gospel Church, Yoido, who echoed William Booth of the Salvation Army, who declared, “My best men are women”. So today, thank God for all women and show your sincere appreciation when you wish your mother, your wife, girlfriend and daughter and sister a Mary Christmas.