Friday, 30 December 2011

Believe it or not it's still Christmas!

The secular world starts Christmas as soon as it possibly can with no thought of Advent or any spiritual preparations for the coming of Our Saviour, Jesus Christ. Now that the big day has been and gone they are desperate to bring it to an end! Easter Eggs have already replaced chocolate Santas in the shops, trees are seen already in rubbish or recycling bins and the general public wonder why our cards are still on show and our tree lights continue to shine.
For Christian/Catholic families Christmas Day is only the start of the celebration. Please keep alive the twelve days of Christmas. The wise men edge ever nearer to their place in our crib scenes. Each day offers an opportunity to sing carols, exchange small gifts, offer hospitality and above all live the message of Christmas. Not one card or bauble should be cleared away before twelfth night! And of course on the Feast of the Epiphany we should bless our homes for the year ahead. I will post more on this later.

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Unto us a Child is born

Wishing all my readers a Happy and Holy Christmas Season.
May the Christ Child bring peace to our hearts, our families and our world.

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Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Bringing the Christmas message with Carols

Members and friends of the Holy Family Guild gathered in a small village in Tyne and Wear and walked singing carols from house to house and even stopped in at the village pub. We collected for a local hospice but the main aim of the event was to spread the Christmas message in the form of carols. In so doing we were also keeping alive a tradition which goes back centuries in Europe and then Britain and which we read about in the novels of Thomas Hardy, Kenneth Grahame and Louisa May Alcott among others. After the cold frosty evening kept us moving briskly, we returned for mulled wine, mince pies  and cake. Then the children had a visit from St Nicholas before we prayed together in the familychapel. NOW it must be nearly Christmas!

Sunday, 18 December 2011

Believe it or not it's still NOT Christmas!

Yes we are still in the season of Advent - preparation for the coming of our Saviour. Many schools are already on holiday, Christmas trees and decorations are everywhere you look, panic has set in in the shopping centres and carols are playing on every radio station's not Christmas yet! We still have one week.
Tomorrow the Holy Family Guild will meet for their annual gathering singing carols around a local village to raise funds for a hospice. The children who come will meet St Nicholas and we will have prayers together. Use the last week of Advent wisely in preparing. Not just preparing all those practical things that must be finalised but set aside time for prayer, a visit to the Blessed Sacrament, an extra Mass and most especially the Sacrament of Confession. Just as your house should be clean to receive the decorations, so our souls should be spruced up to welcome the Christ child. Only then can we feel worthy to truly celebrate the Christmas Season. So be patient.... make the most of the last week of Advent.