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Christmas message 2016

Until the day comes and Christ, the Morning Star, dawns in our hearts ….

Christmas Day comes for many with a dawning sense of relief:  because preparing for the day to come can be fraught even for the most organised and the most festive-minded of us.   There are so many things to get right: are our gifts just what was wanted? Have we remembered everyone? Offended no-one? Have cards been sent, turkeys’ ordered? Is the Christmas pudding suitable for vegetarians?

Of course the busyness of the Christmas countdown is also part of its joy.  The creativity, the ingenuity, the sheer silliness involved in making the day as special as we can. 

Our desire to make Christmas perfect always gladdens my heart.  Everyone stretching themselves, making that little bit of extra effort and in this you, at the Church of the Holy Spirit, have outdone yourselves this year.

We are abundantly blessed to be part of a warm and vibrant church community at Christmas.  And so these weeks are more hectic for us than many because we search out ways in which we can share this most beautiful blessing of connectedness and loving service with as many in our community as possible.

This year I have watched with my heart full of tender pride and delight as members of this church have spent hours walking wonder-struck primary school children through the mystery of Christmas in our Experience Christmas workshops; sung their hearts out up and down Abbeville Road; cooked Christmas lunch for 33 Silvers and friends at the Silver Socials Christmas Special; overheated in Christmas jumpers whilst playing party games at the Young People’s Christmas Party; sang along with Bonneville School Christmas Service; swept the floor for the Guides and Brownies District Service;  took carols and Christmas cheer into Charleston House and Henry Twining Court; delivered Christmas cards; handed out bags of joy to every person who stepped foot in the church;  accompanied our little Knitivity Mary & Joseph as they journeyed from home-to-home-to-schools-to-Brownies-to-Ace of Clubs and back again.  All this in addition to the usual Candlelit Community Carols, Lessons and Carols, Christingle making,  Nativity rehearsing and Midnight waiting.

You have poured yourselves out in a rich and glorious blessing on our community.  I am so thankful to all of you for giving of yourselves so generously this Christmastide.

And now the day has come and Christ, the morning star, is dawning. 

And I am filled, again, with confidence, that the darkness, which sometimes seems to overshadow our world and our lives, will never overcome the light of that star rising.

Christmas comes but once a year and yet the light of its dawning is still spreading slowly across all the earth one heart at a time and the light that has been kindled in our hearts this Christmas will grow brighter as we share it with those around us.  

Wishing you the love of the Father, the joy of the spirit & the peace of Christ,  Mother Ruth