Christmas #2

In lieu of a Boxing Day service.
One of the resources I refer to gave a picture by Corinne Vonaesch “La parole et luminière” – The Word and Light – referring to John 1. In tracking down I discovered she has done a series of painintgs over the last ten years using the same schema on canvas. I was so intrigued that I have created a pps with all the paintings. A: I hope it works B: I hope you find them worth the reflection.

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Christmas #1

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day 2010.
These two sermons were and borrowed from and inspired by a couple of posts by Kim Fabricus.
One blogger spoke of eloquence – was that my delivery, the text or both?
When it comes to the incarnation though, I find that there are some things that can be said and some that can’t, and even using other sources it is impossible to use them in totality.
That is because as I see it the Incarnation becomes an intensely personal expression of how I see God in the world.
That theme carries through into the feast of the Epiphany and beyond, as I am finding in the exploring of themes for Sunday.
Anyway, here are the two offerings.
101224 delivered in candlelight, 101225 with bright sunshine bursting into the church.

So What Happened?

December 12 and 19th.
These came and went with no sermons.Dec 12th was our Mainly Music Musical – a cardboard menagerie, live children, shepherds, angels, Joseph, Mary, a Roman centurion and mum’s and dad’s and grandparents galore.
Photos were taken and if I can get some I’ll put them up.

December 19th Carols and Christmas Cake. Brief meditations after readings, loads of carols, and the cake was created on Stir-up Sunday. It has become a bit of a ritual now and certainly those who have taken the cake mix home to bake do a wonderful job in finishing the cake off, preserving it for our last service of Advent, and presenting it back.
Two of the reflections used the word Emmanuel. We always associate it with hope and positivity, but in Isaiah 7:10-16 it is a sign of something dire coming. Yes in peace we can give a child a name filled with rich meaning, but what will it be like when as an adult the nation, the people will be living under the cloud of disaster – is Emmanuel the right word to have then – Is God really with us.
Then with Matthew 1:18-25 we can reflect on our Christian appreciation of the name. A couple of commentators suggested that “Emmanuel” is the theme word for the whole of Matthews gospel – that God is with us through all that Jesus did and said, through the passion and on into the future which is where we find ourselves placed in relation to the gospel. As God was with them so God is with us now, and so God will be with those in coming generations.

For this story to have relevant meaning, I have been encouraged by a review of a book on order suggesting that one of the ways we can draw people to the gospel is by telling our own story of faith – not what we believe, but how what we believe informs our living. It also applies to our congregations as well. How does this story make them live out their life as a community of faith?

Next years work starts to take shape!

An Active Welcoming

Overcoming our natural fears to create peace. I’ve noticed how hard it is to make contact with our neighbours. Waves and “Hi’s” are the limit at the moment. That’s a challenge. I can recognise 6 people who live in our street, and a couple of the cats. Have we really created neighbourhoods of isolates?

Alistair