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  • £5.95

    Praying Advent: Three Minute Reflections on Peace, Faithfulness, Joy and Light

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    In Advent we celebrate that God has already come – yet is coming. Already encircled by infinite divine life and love, we try to awaken our souls to God's vibrant presence. For many Christians, Advent and Christmas in their favourite season, yet they find themselves overshadowed with shopping, preparations for Christmas, unexpected snow and ice storms, holiday parties and endless other distractions. Although the tree might be decorated and the presents wrapped, Christmas sometimes simply falls upon us, our souls feeling woefully underprepared. Praying Advent can help busy souls prepare for the true Christmas season. The book is divided into four weeks, with a reading, reflection and spiritual practice for each day. This month-long journey can beautify souls and awaken hearts to the presence of Emmanuel – God with us.
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    £10.00

    Advent in Narnia: Reflections for the Season

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    With its enchanting themes of light and darkness, temptation and sin, forgiveness and hope, and even an appearance by Father Christmas, C.S.Lewis's The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe naturally enhances the Advent season of reflection. As the reader anticipates the glorious coming of Christmas, Advent in Narnia inspires us to consider the holiday season from a new perspective. These 28 devotions feature Scripture passages and excerpts from C.S.Lewis's The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, prompting meditation on Advent themes such as grace, love and sacrifice. Questions for reflection are included with each devotion, ultimately guiding the reader to know God better while journeying through Narnia. Four sessions for small group discussion, along with information on creating a 'Narnia Night' for families, are also provided  to deepen your church's Advent experience.  
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    Jesse Tree Bumper Pack: 1 Jesse Tree readings booklet + 10 Ornament sets

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    Bumper Jesse Tree pack, including an A5 booklet containing the Jesse Tree readings, one for each day in December, plus 10 sets of 31 double sided card ornaments illustrating the readings. This pack is ideal for groups wanting to use a Jesse Tree activity together. The readings, also available in Celtic Daily Prayer Book 2: Farther Up and Farther In published by Collins and available here , have been written by Andy Raine from the Northumbria Community. Each ornament set consists of three sheets of card printed with a total of thirty-one double sided ornaments for you to colour, cut out and use to decorate your own Jesse Tree at home. The Jesse Tree has been used over many centuries to bring life to the characters who are part of Jesus’ family Tree from Jesse through David to Joseph and Mary. Your Jesse Tree can be made from anything you wish but many people use a branch which can be left in its natural state or stripped and painted gold, silver, white and then suspended from a ceiling or ‘planted’ in a pot. Instructions for preparing the ornaments are included in this pack. Also available from the Northumbria Community is the standard Jesse Tree Pack which contains 1 set of these card ornaments along with the A5 booklet of the readings – available here  and the standard ornament pack which contains 1 set of card ornaments without the booklet – available here
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    £9.99

    Haphazard by Starlight: A poem a day from Advent to Epiphany

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    Advent is celebrated when the year is becoming darker and colder, moving into the death and dormancy of winter. Before we can greet the coming of the light, we need to engage with some themes that are challenging and occasionally fearful. Like the Magi who travelled a long distance to search out and adore the infant Jesus, and who took some wrong turns on the way, we too have a journey to undertake before we find that we have 'Walked haphazard by starlight straight into the kingdom of heaven.' (U.A. Fanthorpe, BC:AD) Haphazard by Starlight is a companion volume to Janet Morley's bestselling Lent book, The Heart's Time. Here the reader is given the opportunity to engage in a pilgrimage of the heart, through Advent and Christmas to the feast of Epiphany. Each day, from 1 December to 6 January, offers a poem (sometimes explicitly Christian, sometimes not) and an accessible commentary that is both critically informed and devotional in intent.
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    Walking Backwards to Christmas

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    Using the brilliant, deceptively simple device of telling the Christmas story backwards, Stephen Cottrell helps us encounter it as if for the first time. His approach enables us to get under the skin of a complex narrative, giving insights into its many hours as well as its joys. We begin by seeing through the eyes of Anna, the prophetess in the Temple, who comes face to face with the dazzling light of the glory of God. The story darkens as we find Rachel weeping for her tiny son, slaughtered by the ferocious decrees of King Herod when he realises the wise men have tricked him. One of these, Caspar, asks on finding the baby Jesus, 'Was this what the stars had led us to: the heavens themselves come down to earth?' But a warning dream takes him and his companions far away from Herod's palace and over the mountains. The author continues to lead us in reverse chronological order through the angels' message to the bawdy, awestruck shepherds; the musings of Martha the (so-named) innkeeper's wife, who is uncharacteristically moved to wonder at the child she helps to deliver; the dreams of fearful, dependable Joseph; the joy of Elizabeth in recognising that her longed-for child will prepare the way for the Christ; and the faithful, strong-willed young Mary, whose delight in nature and in God foreshadows the light of life that will be kindled inside her. We then enter the dark, calamitous world of Isaiah, who 'sees all sorts of things he does not readily understand, but faithfully tells them without really knowing what he's telling, except it is from God'; and finally we step into the wilderness to which Moses has fled. But it is here, through the voice calling out of a burning bush, that the great revelation comes: darkness shall be scattered, and light will forever blaze.
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  • £12.99

    Waiting on the Word: A poem a day for Advent, Christmas and Epiphany

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    Advent is a season of waiting and anticipation in which the waiting itself is strangely rich and fulfilling. Its focus is on the coming of Christ – in humility in the manger at Bethlehem, in majesty as the fulfilment and finality of all things, and in the countless moments of encounter and transformation in the time between these two great comings in which we live. The other sense we have of the word 'advent' is in the word 'adventure'. 'Let us take the adventure that God sends us,' say the knights in Sir Thomas Malory's Le Morte d'Arthur, recognising that the God in whom we live and move and have our being may come and meet us when and where he pleases. Poetry can help us fathom the depths and inhabit the tensions of Advent's many paradoxes: past and future, dark and light, waiting and consolation, emptiness and fulfilment, ancient and ever new. In the spirit of the season, this anthology includes the familiar and adventures upon the new. Malcolm Guite selects and reflects on a poem for each day. The selection ranges from spiritual classics such as Edmund Spenser, John Donne, George Herbert and Christina Rossetti, to new and contemporary voices such as Luci Shaw and Scott Cairns. His own acclaimed sequence of sonnets for great Advent antiphons is also included. This anthology moves through Advent into its fulfilment in Christmas, and on to Epiphany where the choice of poetry is influenced by the stargazing pagan wise men. Here are works by non-Christian poets who seem, nevertheless, to see in the heavens such signs as declare the glory of the Lord.
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  • £5.99

    Someone to Believe In: An Advent course

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    Someone to Believe In is an original Advent course based on the classic Christmas movie Miracle on 34th Street. Through discussion of some of the themes and characters of this perennially popular film, the course helps us to think more deeply during the Advent season about the coming of Jesus, and what the Christmas story can teach us about our faith today. The course comprises four weekly group sessions which explore the following themes: – Beginning our walk of faith – Responding to challenges in our faith – What does faith mean when common sense tells us not to believe? – Understanding the gift of miracles Each session includes watching scenes from the 1947 Academy Award-winning Miracle on 34th Street (there are timing references for the DVD) and alternative options to watch scenes from the 1994 version. Each session also includes questions and reflections for group discussion, activities and suggested closing prayers. NB: DVD not included!  
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    £3.50

    The Word was God: Short reflections for Advent

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    Here is a gentle way of walking through the busy days leading up to Christmas. Here is encouragement to slow down and savour the words of one of the best-loved of seasonal Bible readings. Here is refreshment as well as inspiration for sharing the good news of Jesus' birth with others.  
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    Lighted Windows: An Advent calendar for a world in waiting

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    The world waits... – sometimes holding its breath in fear of what tomorrow may bring, sometimes in a haze of busyness or boredom, in which we hardly know what we are waiting for. Yet still we wait in hopefulness. The birth of a baby invariably stirs deep wells of hope in the human heart. Perhaps in this generation, things will get better. Perhaps this child will make a difference. As we approach the Christmas season we prepare to celebrate the coming to earth of someone who really does make a difference. In this season, the 'windows' of our human experience can change from rows of faceless panes, perhaps grimy with dirt, into lighted windows that open up new possibilities and coax us into a place where rejoicing might be possible. The journey mapped out in this book is an invitation to look into some of these lighted windows, and discover a few reflections of what we wait and long for – reflections of God's guidance, his call to trust him and live by his wisdom. Each window seeks to bring familiar scripture into focus with everyday living, encouraging us to enter right into the place where God is coming to birth, and to make the experience of Bethlehem our own. And finally, the windows become doors, through which we are sent back to a waiting world to share our personal experience of God-with-us.
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    £4.00

    Longing, Waiting, Believing: Reflections for Advent, Christmas and Epiphany

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    In the excitement of the weeks before Christmas, it is all too easy to overlook the fact that Christians have, down the centuries, regarded Advent as a season of penitence, a time of prayer and preparation for the great feast of the birth of Jesus, just as Lent is a season of preparation for Easter, when we remember his death and resurrection. This book of daily Bible readings and reflective comment covers the weeks from 1 December through to Epiphany on 6 January. As well as considering the well-known events of the nativity story, it looks back to those who prepared the way – the patriarchs and prophets of the Old Testament and John the Baptist and Mary the Mother of Jesus in the New Testament. The book explores the traditional Advent focus on the 'four last things': death, judgement, heaven and hell. Rodney Holder shows how these sombre themes have their place in the build-up to the celebrations, because of another historic aspect of Advent: reflecting on the second coming of Jesus, when he will return, as Lord and King rather than a helpless baby, to set the world to rights.  
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    Real God in the Real World: Advent and Christmas readings on the coming of Christ

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    This book offers a lively, engaging and accessible look at the theme of the Incarnation, the mysterious event at the heart of Christmas, using personal stories, illustrations from popular culture and the arts, as well as daily Bible readings. The starting-point is what the 'Word made flesh' means for us and how the first Christmas should still have an impact on our everyday lives. We will be taken on an absorbing journey to help us recognise the person of Jesus in the people we meet, the conversations we have, and even in our relationship with nature and the arts. By the end of our journey, we will not only recognise Christ in others but also in ourselves, as we model ourselves on him and share his love, compassion and peace with our neighbours, whoever they are and whatever their backgrounds.
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  • £9.99

    Feast + Fast: Food for Advent and Christmas

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    Christmas is one of our best loved festivals. During the long dark days of winter, it gives the focus of a celebration to lift our hearts and spirits, and the food that goes along with it plays an enormous part. But the Christmas season isn't just about shopping, parties, presents and over-indulgence. Advent, the period leading up to Christmas, can also be an important time of spiritual as well as practical preparation. In this, Christina Rees's second collection of writings and recipes following Christian festivals, she explores the wonderful season of Advent and Christmas through the themes of Welcoming, Wondering, Giving, Receiving and Celebrating. With spiritual wisdom and recipes to guide us through the festive season (including Christina's original American turkey stuffing recipe as enjoyed and adapted by Delia Smith!), she provides inspiration for fantastic meals for family and friends, and insight for maintaining a fresh and positive perspective in the midst of all the seasonal activities. Feast + Fast – Food for Advent and Christmas is a rich and creative offering, perfect for anyone seeking joy and love that lie at the heart of Christmas.
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    We Make the Road by Walking: A Year Long Quest for Spiritual Formation, Reorientation and Activation

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    We Make the Road by Walking is a year's worth of reflections on the Bible. Working with the framework of the church year, they provide a Genesis-to-Revelation overview of the Bible that can be used in a number of ways: a year of church services, a year of weekly dinner-dialogue gatherings, a year of classes or online interactions, a series of retreats, or simply a rich reading experience. Brian McLaren explores what it means to be alive in the way of Christ - reading, praying, meditating, discussing and acting our way through God's word to us, the Bible.
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    The Long Road to Heaven: A Lent course

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    This second Lent resource from the author of The Naturalist and the Christ explores Christian understanding of 'salvation' in a five part study course based on the film The Way. Starring Martin Sheen as a bereaved father, this soulful and uplifting film observes a group of pilgrims walking the Way of St James to Santiago de Compostela. As it follows their journey of inner transformation, the course examines Biblical accounts an images of salvation – past, present and future – and addresses the questions: What are we saved from? What are we saved for? Who can be saved? What do we have to do to be saved? How are we saved? PLEASE NOTE THE DVD IS NOT INCLUDED
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    £5.99

    Finding a voice: A Lent course

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    Finding a Voice is an original Lent course by Hilary Brand. Taking the film, The Kings Speech as a starting point, the course explores the ways in which fear holds us back and examines how we, like Bertie, can face and overcome our fears and begin to find our authentic voice. The course is based around five weekly group sessions entitled: 1.The stuff of nightmares and the power of friendship 2. Chasing the dream or fulfilling the calling 3. Pressing forward and breaking through 4. Poisonous words and profane responses 5. Faith in our voice. Each session includes extracts from the film, group discussion questions, exercises and meditations. There are also short introductory and follow up chapters, with related Bible passages, for individual reading each week. Also included in a suggested follow-up session, along with full notes for leaders. PLEASE NOTE THE DVD IS NOT INCLUDED
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    Lent is for loving: A Lent course about Love

    Lent is not just about denial! Christianity is not a blueprint for repression but for joy; for a life of fulfilment beyond our wildest dreams. Jesus said 'I have come that you may have life and have it to the full'. In short chapters suitable for individual reading or group study, and questions for meditation and reflection, Sheila Cassidy considers the word 'LENT' as an acronym for what it really means to live as a Christian today: L is for LOVE E is for EMPATHY N is quite simply for NO! T is for THANK YOU GOD Sheila Cassidy's honest and wise books on suffering and healing have made her one of the UK's best-loved and most popular writers on pastoral care and personal growth. She is widely known for her work in the hospice movement, and as a young doctor who survived torture for daring to give medical care to an opponent of the Pinochet regime in Chile.  
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  • £8.99

    Jesus: his home, his journey, his challenge. A Companion for Lent and Easter

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    'After many years of biblical scholarship and teaching, David Bryan set off to learn about Jesus by visiting Israel. On his return, he was plunged into parish ministry in Darlington. Ten years later, he has synthesised his learning and ministerial experience in this inspiring and challenging companion for Lent. The text brings Jesus to life in ways that will not only inform but also energise many individuals and groups. Working with it is a great way to prepare for Easter.'

    Stephen Cherry, Residentiary Canon of Durham Cathedral

     

    'David Bryan's face-to-face presentations in local churches, helping the, connect with the human story of Jesus, transfer very successfully into this book. His own devotion to Jesus, his scholarship carried lightly and an ever-present strain of humour, invite us to encounter the challenges that Jesus brought to those he first met. He starkly brings us close to the tough realities of life and strife at the time of Jesus, raising questions along the way to stimulate consideration of the reader's own beliefs and values. Poetry, archaeology and politics are woven together as Bryan invites us to reconsider our identity in the world of today in the light of Jesus' dream of the reign of God. This is an excellent resource for groups of personal study.'

     

    Robin Greenwood, Research Fellow in Applied Theology Durham University

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    The Resurrection of Peace: A gospel journey to Easter and beyond

    Following the pattern of a journey from Galilee to Jerusalem, Mary Grey's new book offers biblical inspiration for the search for peace and reconciliation in Israel/Palestine. Along the way, the author explores core Christian concepts of redemption, atonement and resurrection, pursuing a spirituality of perseverance and steadfastness (sumud) derived from Middle Eastern Christians Full of real-life stories of people living through conflict in well-known Holy Land locations, and with helpful discussion questions at the end of each chapter,  The Resurrection of Peace is sure to stimulate both thought and action during Lent and Easter, and beyond.  
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    Christ and the Chocolaterie: A Lent course

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    Christ and the Chocolaterie is an original, innovative and lively Lent course inspired by the film Chocolat, which was in turn based on the best selling novel by Joanne Harris. Using the film as a starting point for exploring issues about God, the world and what it means to be human, Hilary Brand has designed five group sessions on the themes of: ● Giving up – the prelude to change ● Giving out – the power of a gift ● Getting wise – the possibility of change ● Getting real – the power of acceptance ● Growing up  – the process of change Each session includes extracts from the film, group discussion, questions, exercises and meditations, suggestions for individual reading and related Bible passages for further daily reading plus notes for group course leaders. Christ and the Chocolaterie also includes appendices on the curious history of chocolate, the unfair economics of chocolate and ideas for a chocolate feast.
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    The Mystery of Everything: A Lent course

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    The Mystery of Everything is a new and original Lent course by Hilary Brand, which takes the multi-award wining film about Stephen Hawking, The Theory of Everything, as its starting point. The course explores ways in which the mysteries of the universe and of everyday life – and the acceptance that we have more questions than answers – can reinvigorate our faith and spiritual journey. The course is based around five weekly group sessions entitled: ● The experience of wonder ● The enigma of weakness ● The complexity of relationships ● The encounter with frailty ● The hope beyond brokenness Each session includes extracts from the film, group discussion, questions, exercises and meditations, suggestions for individual reading and related Bible passages for further daily reading. NB film not included
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  • £9.99

    I am with you

    In I Am With You, Episcopal priest and theologian Kathryn Green-McCreight examines the biblical portrayal of God’s presence among us as light in darkness. Close readings of Scripture are woven into a framework patterned on the seven monastic hours of prayer and the seven days of creation. With an introduction by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, I Am With You is a reflective and throught provoking guide to the solemn season of Lent.
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    Into Your Hand: Confronting Good Friday

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    This set of seven reflections follows the traditional church sequence of ‘The Seven Last Words of the Cross’ utterances that the gospel narratives place on the lips of Jesus and attempts to connect them with the reality of faith and abuse in our contemporary world. In his foreword to the book, Richard Rohr says this: Each powerful meditation ... was not the sentimentalised Good Friday ‘seven last words’ that I had grown up with but a full body blow of contact with Reality. Making use of the biblical scholarship and sharp insight that we have all come to expect of him, Walter Bruegemann then goes further. He reveals an amazing awareness of human suffering, family, relationships, despair, hard won faith and personal grief that the crucifixion accounts beautifully and subtly reveal.’
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    Sensing God: Learning to meditate during Lent

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    We often associate Lent with giving something up but it is also a good time to begin. This refreshing book is a practical introduction and guide to Christian meditation. Through this ascetic discipline, we enter into the tradition of the Desert Fathers, and as we learn to sense God’s presence and nurture the silence within, come to experience joy and well-being in every area of our lives. Fr Laurence offers meditation instructions, guidance and support, as well as 46 enriching daily reflections on the Gospels, which highlight particular Gospel themes and their continued relevance for modern living.
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    The Little Book of Lent

    The Little Book of Lent is an indispensable collection of readings from some of the most celebrated modern-day spiritual writers with passages specially selected for each of the forty days of Lent (including a couple of excerpts from Celtic Daily Prayer!) These carefully chosen insights come from men and women, lay and ordained, across the denomiational spectrum, and their wisdom is combined with both a suggested scripture passage, and a prayer to make your own. It is a volume that will become a trasured part of your prayer life during these forty days and can be used year after year.
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