The lament swells every December, as perennial as the jingle of Salvation Army bells: the season of Advent is lost in the secular trappings of Christmas preparation. For those aspiring to a reverent Advent but caught up in the twenty-first-century to-do lists, A Season of Little Sacraments offers a fresh perspective on the secular-sacred December divide.
Susan Swetnam invites readers along an ordinary woman’s day-by-day walk through Advent, demonstrating that the very ‘distractions’ accused of taking Christ out of Christmas can become ‘little sacraments’ – occasions for grace to break through and faith to deepen – if approached with mindful reflection. For readers who want to experience a truly sacred Advent without fleeing completely from contemporary society, A Season of Little Sacraments will be a welcome source of nourishment and delight.
Advent and Christmas Wisdom from GK Chesterton is like an invitation to laugh and think from a friend and mentor. To quote the author:
'People are losing the power to enjoy Christmas through identifying it with enjoyment. When once they lose sight of the old suggestion that it is all about something, they naturally fall into blank pauses of wondering what it is all about. To be told to rejoice on Christmas Day is reasonable and intelligible, if you understand the name, or even look at the word. To be told to rejoice on the twenty-fifth of December is like being told to rejoice at quarter-past eleven on Thursday week. You cannot suddenly be frivolous unless you believe there is a serious reason for being frivolous.'
GK Chesterton The New War on Christmas
December 26 1925
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.
Henri J. M. Nouwen is one of the most beloved and well-read spiritual authors of our time. His works are popular among Christians of all denominations. This book of Advent and Christmas Wisdom will both challenge you and warm your heart during your annual preparation for the Lord's coming. Through the quotes, Nouwen share with the reader his own journey of waiting while seeking the Lord. Advent is that period of great anticipatory joy to prepare for the celebration of Christ's arrival in Bethlehem as a helpless infant. The date commemorating his birth begins the Christmas cycle of the liturgical year, a cycle that runs through the Sunday after the feast of the Epiphany. This book is designed to be used during the entire period from the First Sunday of Advent to the end of the Christmas season. Reflections for each day in this book begin with the words of Henri Nouwen taken from various sources of his writings. Following that quotation is an excerpt from Scripture related to the quote. Next is a small prayer based on the quote and the Scripture passage. Finally, an activity is suggested for applying the messages to one's daily life. All devotees of Nouwen will appreciate the applications made of his words of wisdom for daily living. Any Christian who is serious about his or her search for the Lord will cherish this book and want to use it from year to year.
This book has been designed to be used from Christmas Day to Epiphany. It has been created to help you find moments of meaning amidst the mince pies and re-runs of old sit-coms. Be inspired by the stories of Saints and find peace with the activities.
The Christmas Creative Retreat Activity Book offers a combination of meditations, prayers and activities. Some to challenge and some to help you relax and clear your mind and always to encourage you to hear the 'still, small voice'.