Vista Press: Christmas Message 2015

By Patricia C. Bates
Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Published by the Vista Press on December 22, 2015

The Christmas season is a time of hope, joy and giving, making it one of my favorite times of the year. Yet, recent violent events both abroad and at home have contributed to a sense of unease.

The terrible shooting earlier this month in San Bernardino that left 14 dead has underscored the threat that we face from radical Islamic terrorists. But I am reminded of one of the lessons that the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah teaches – the lights of hope are more enduring than the flames of evil.

While Americans of good faith may disagree on some of the solutions being proposed in Washington, D.C. and Sacramento, we can honor the victims by treating one another with respect and seeking common ground. This will be at the top of my mind when the California Legislature reconvenes in January.

As we seek to make sense of what happened earlier this month, may we give thanks for the service of our first responders and the courageous actions of private citizens, as they remind us that there is still much good in the world. May we also give thanks for the blessings we do have as it is a time for our community to come together and serve others. Whether volunteering at a food bank or helping children in need, you can find volunteer opportunities by visiting

The holidays remind us what is truly important – family, friends and freedom. Christmas is about the birth of a new hope that good will ultimately triumph over evil. May we embody the Christmas spirit in all that we say and do.

From my 36th Senate District family, I wish you a Merry Christmas, the warmest of holiday seasons and bountiful blessings in the New Year.