I've always wanted to see John the Baptist depicted in our church Nativity scenes. He'd be out of place to say the least. One of my colleagues suggested that we could put a motion activated John the Baptist in one of those outdoor Nativity scenes and, every time someone walked past he could call out something suitably insulting. That seems to be what John the Baptist was good at!
And yet, for all his harsh words, people flocked to the wilderness to hear him preach and to respond to his call to repentance.
John the Baptist conducted a ministry on the margins. And isn't that the sort of ministry in which the church today should be engaged - taking the good news out to the periphery of society, sharing with those on the fringes, to whom belongs the Kingdom of God.