In a week where he bid farewell to the Saskatchewan legislature, Premier Brad Wall was among the dignitaries delivering special messages for the Christmas season.
New Democrat interim leader Nicole Sarauer shared her greetings, along with Lt.-Gov. Vaughn Solomon Schofield.
Read their full holiday messages below:
Christmas Message from Premier Brad Wall
In 1913, a young immigrant, his name was John, who was a husband and father of three, left behind the oppression of his country forever. He also left behind his family, for what he knew might be an extended period of time.
Despite the fears he must have felt for his family, he set out to cross the ocean. To find a place of hope for their future. He came to Saskatchewan.
It took him nine years. He worked hard and he saved hard.
Those nine years were not without hardship and tragedy. And when they were over he no longer had three children. His daughter had died in the influenza epidemic of 1915. Only his two sons remained.
What a bittersweet family reunion it must have been, when he managed to send enough money to bring his wife and two sons to join him. Despite their loss and their difficulties their story is still about hope.
Hope that was stronger than the fear of what they had to endure. They saw Saskatchewan as a place to build their future. And turn that dream into reality.
Despite the adversities in the lives of that young immigrant family, that first Saskatchewan Christmas must have been a great celebration.
There was probably not a great deal of wealth in gifts or a great table spread, but there must have been a great deal of wealth and fulfillment in simply being together. And there must have been renewed optimism for the new year dawning.
That has been what we have dared to dream in our province for the last 10 years. That Saskatchewan’s story would be about optimism and hope again. And that hope would be stronger than the fear that we aren’t good enough, or fear of the unknown.
Instead, we dreamed of a Saskatchewan that would bring our kids home. A Saskatchewan that had confidence in what we have to offer to a new wave and a new generation of immigrants just like John.
Together, that’s what we have done.
In 2017, a hundred years later, that immigrant family’s descendants still live in Saskatchewan.
John’s great grandson and his family will come together in just a few weeks for a traditional ranch Christmas…all because of one man’s determination and sacrifice. And because of a place of hope, like Saskatchewan.
And this Christmas, new comers from the world over will enjoy the holidays in their own way here in Saskatchewan. Because in the last 10 years, newcomers have again found hope here and chose Saskatchewan in record numbers.
To live without fear and to dream of a better future. May we always have that freedom. And may we always have the freedom to celebrate Christmas.
Christmas is the ultimate story of hope because that’s what God gave to us all. He sent His son Jesus.
As a tiny baby, He left perfection to endure oppression.
Because He loved us. And chose to bring us that hope. That’s what I believe this Christmas.
It’s the time of year to enjoy the wealth of simply being together with those we love, and the fulfillment of helping someone in need.
And it’s the time of year when we are all reminded of the need to spread that hope and love God sent to us. To share it with those around us, especially those in need.
So from me and my wife Tami, and our family, and on behalf of my colleagues in the government of Saskatchewan may the Miracle of Christmas bless you, and the True Spirit of Christmas keep you.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Christmas Message from the Leader of the Official Opposition
Hello everyone, and Merry Christmas.
I’ve always loved the holiday season and now, as an MLA, I have the honour and privilege of visiting with the young and young at heart as families and communities come together to enjoy the spirit and warmth of the holidays.
Whether it’s seeing the joy on children’s faces as they experience the magic of the season or visiting with seniors in care homes and listening to fond memories of holidays gone by, on a more personal note, I look forward to spending time with my family, as we celebrate Christmas.
We’ll gather together in Regina, Indian Head and Humboldt. We will celebrate Christmas, we’ll exchange gifts and, while we look forward to the year ahead, we’ll reflect on the past year.
I’m also looking forward to finding some time to get out on our cross-country skis and enjoy the winter scenery of this beautiful province.
However you celebrate, during this season, all of us take time to turn our thoughts to consider those who have struggled over the past year – whether it was through the loss of a job, the loss of a loved one, wild fires, floods or tragedies around the world.
We all join together in wishing for peace and happiness in 2018.
The season’s spirit of love, peace, and goodwill toward others are universal. These are the values at the heart of what we all want it to mean to be from Saskatchewan.
Looking out for one another, caring for the most vulnerable, welcoming newcomers with open arms, and comforting those who are sick or suffering, is how we can continue building together toward a stronger and fairer Saskatchewan.
However you are celebrating this holiday season, on behalf of myself, my family, and the Official Opposition Saskatchewan NDP, I wish you and your loved ones a holiday season filled with love, joy and laughter.
Merry Christmas, happy holidays, and all the best in the new year.
Christmas Message from the Lieutenant Governor
It is my great pleasure to extend greetings on behalf of Canada’s Queen as we mark this special time of year.
I can hardly believe it has been nearly six years since I became Saskatchewan’s 21st Lieutenant Governor. It has been an extraordinary privilege to represent our Head of State, and to meet the remarkable people of Saskatchewan. I have been especially honoured to serve as our nation commemorates the 150th Anniversary of Confederation.
This is also the 100th Anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge, when thousands of Canadians served together for the first time. That remarkable victory was a pivotal moment in our history, and the international community recognized the critical contributions of Canadians.
To this day, many communities in Europe honour the graves of our soldiers, who sacrificed everything to bring an end to war. A century later, Canadians continue to serve in our military, our police forces, as paramedics, firefighters, corrections officers, and border guards. I am grateful to all our men and women in uniform for honouring the legacy handed down to us by those young men who served at Vimy, 100 years ago.
As we mark this milestone year, we must acknowledge that Indigenous peoples have called this land home for thousands of years. It has been my great privilege to walk beside Elders and Chiefs in the grand entries of pow wows, to take part in a sweat lodge, and to be welcomed into First Nations communities.
I am grateful to Indigenous peoples who have looked upon Canada 150 as an opportunity to create bridges of understanding. As Gord Downie said on Parliament Hill on July 1, “Now we begin a new 150 years.”
It is my sincere hope that the people of Saskatchewan will embrace this new beginning, and will reach out to those who may be different than us. It is my prayer that we will work together to create more inclusive communities, where everyone is welcome. Only we have the power to create the change we need in our country.
Over the past six years, I have presented hundreds of awards to deserving individuals.
There are many more who may not receive public recognition, but who give of their time and their resources to improve the lives of others. To all the generous and capable Saskatchewan volunteers, I thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for making our province better. You are proof that we are each able to make a difference, and that when we work together, no challenge is too great.
One of the things I love most about this time of year is spending time with my family. I also love Christmas Carols. I’d like share a few lyrics from one of my favorites.
Let peace begin with me
Let this be the moment now.
With every step I take
Let this be my solemn vow.
To take each moment
And live each moment
With peace eternally.
Let there be peace on earth,
And let it begin with me.
From my family to yours, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. May the coming year be filled with joy and with peace.