Mr. Speaker, I am pleased, as original cosponsor, to rise in support of this timely resolution recognizing the significance of Christmas and the contribution of the Christian faith to the United States and to other nations throughout the world. While Christmas does not have the same religious meaning for all citizens, it nevertheless invokes the values of friendship and goodwill that are common to all nations.

   December 25, or Christmas, as we say, commemorates a birth that influenced the world in an unmatched way. Christ's life, his teachings, his example, his sacrifice, and his death brought to life one of the great religions of the world, one which underpins the foundations of democracy in our own United States of America and even other countries throughout the world.

   Even in complex times such as those in which we live at this time, the simple central message of Christianity endures: "love thy neighbor as thyself."

   For many, Christmas invokes the images of Santa Claus and exchanging of gifts. This comes from the patron St. Nicholas, who helped poor children hundreds of years ago by giving them presents. But Christianity is more. It is the birth of the Christian religion and commemorates the birth of its founder, Jesus, on Christmas day.

   At its core are the fundamental important ideals of "Peace on Earth, Goodwill toward men." The poor, the suffering, those left alone or far from their families, and those departed who were dear to us whom we remember from time to time are all recognized in this great religion of Christianity, and, through it, all have been offered hope.

   At this time of year in this season of Christmas, I ask my colleagues to join in supporting House Resolution 847 introduced by our colleague, Mr. King of Iowa, recognizing the importance of Christmas and the Christian faith.

   I reserve the balance of my time.