Ottawa, Ontario - January 6, 2017

The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today issued the following statement on Orthodox Christmas:

“This week, Orthodox Christians in Canada and around the world will celebrate Christmas.

“This joyful time of year is an opportunity to gather with family and friends to reflect on the many blessings in our lives. It also gives us a chance to reaffirm our commitment to live in a peaceful, inclusive society.

“This year marks our nation’s 150th anniversary. Openness and acceptance are at the heart of what it means to be Canadian, and we should take every opportunity we can to celebrate the many cultures, traditions, and beliefs that make Canada such a wonderful place to live.

“Let us also use this occasion to show greater compassion and humanity to those most vulnerable, at home and around the world.

“On behalf of the Government of Canada, Sophie and I wish you and your family a merry Christmas, and health and happiness in the year ahead.”