Beauty surrounds us, but we usually need to be walking in a garden to know it - Rumi
At this time of year there is so much to do to prepare for Christmas. It is so easy to get caught up in the commercial aspect of the season. But do we need all that stress?
This Sunday, the third in Advent is also known as Gaudete Sunday, a time when we take a break from the preparations for the coming, or second coming, of Our Lord. It is a day on which we rejoice that the Saviour is coming, as John the Baptist foretold.
At St Mary Magdalene the Advent candles are lit by one of the children in the congregation. This Sunday the joy of Gaudete Sunday permeated the church when the young lady chosen skipped down the aisle, holding firmly to mother's hand, to perform her task. At that moment a ray of sunshine burst through the stained glass windows illuminating the Advent candles. God was truly with us at that moment! Later after the service we learned that it was Father Peter's birthday. His age is a closely guarded secret but he did hint that he might not see 21 again! Oh and the sun was shining and the birds singing in the churchyard as we left. It was a really joyful day. Any worries, doubts or problems vanished from sight. Thanks be to God for His presence with us and for the glory of His Creation!
Peter is a father and a grandfather who has been retired from full time employment for a number of years