Christmas is a time to pause, reflect and refocus on the true essentials of life. It is a place we all seek to go back to and recapture childhood's magic and the bounty of everyday miracles.
Christmas allows us to remember - the birth of Christ with its message of love and hope, the journey of Mary and Joseph and its story of humility and sacrifice, the Magi's quest and its lesson in faith and courage.
The Department of Foreign Affairs is one with the entire nation and Filipinos all over the world in celebrating this wondrous occassion.
The passing year rained extraordinary challenges. Succeeding waves of high-impact global events, from the Arab Spring to the economic and debt crisis, and the Philippines' adept response, underscore our resilience as a nation.
In the spirit of genuine public service, the men and women of the Department marched through the storms with dedication, commitment and fortitude. Looking back, we see how much we have achieved by being true to our duties and responsibilities. Throughout the year, we remained steadfast, hopeful and optimistic with the victories we gained.
To everyone in the Department, each step we take forward is the perfect opportunity to do more, serve better, and reach beyond our grasp.
Together with all Department personnel in the Home Office, Regional Consular Offices, embassies, consulates, and missions abroad, I wish every Filipino peace and prosperity.
May the spirit of Christmas further unite our nation and may our collective faith as a people usher in a brighter future.
ALBERT F. DEL ROSARIO
Secretary of Foreign Affairs