Saturday, 25 December 2021

A Merry Christmas to us all; God bless us, everyone!

 We have a God who makes promises and keep them.  Today the promise of the one whom. Job wishes for (that is someone who can stand between him and God, who knows what the human condition is and understands what it means to be God) and in the birth of Jesus, the Christ, this desire is fulfilled.

The light has come into the world and the darkness cannot, and will never, overcome it.

With the services for Christmas, the Home Communions and all that makes Christmas Day such a blessing done, it's time to sit back and reflect on a year now closing. Of course tomorrow (St Stephen) is another day and there's a wedding blessing to be conducted and more besides (for Church never stops serving does it?).

But I thought I'd pause for a second and wish all who pass by these pages a blessed and joyous Christmas season and a happy new year.

Thank you to all who visit this blog, communicate with me and also at times disagree).



Thursday, 23 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Thursday, 23 December 2021

O Emmanuel, our king and our lawgiver, the hope of the nations and their Saviour: Come and save us, O Lord our God.

Wednesday, 22 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Wednesday, 22 December 2021,

O King of the nations, and their desire, the cornerstone making both one:
Come and save the human race, which you fashioned from clay.

Tuesday, 21 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Tuesday, 21 December 2021

O Morning Star, splendour of light eternal and sun of righteousness: Come and enlighten those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.

Monday, 20 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Monday, 20 December 2021

O Key of David and sceptre of the House of Israel; you open and no one can shut; you shut and no one can open. Come and lead the prisoners from the prison house, those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.

Sunday, 19 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Sunday, 19 December 2021

O Root of Jesse, standing as a sign among the peoples;
before you kings will shut their mouths, to you the nations will make their prayer:
Come and deliver us, and delay no longer.

Saturday, 18 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Friday, 17 December 2021

O Wisdom, who proceeded from the mouth of the Most High, reaching from one end to the other and ordering all things powerfully and gently: come to teach us the way of prudence. Amen.

Thursday, 16 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Thursday, 16 December 2021

Tonight we think of others - those we know and those in places in our news.

God, may the light of Your life enter into the darkest places of our world this night. Amen.

Tuesday, 14 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Tuesday, 14 December 2021

Preparing for bed, lifting the needs of those we love and those known in the concerns of others, each us to hear Your heartbeat and to walk in Your footsteps. Amen.

Monday, 13 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Monday, 13 December 2021

Church is called to be generous, humble, compassionate and kind: May we mirror these qualities and so build Your Church Lord. Comfort and keep us this night we pray.

The images are depictions of Lucy, Martyr at Syracuse (304) and Samuel Johnson, Moralist (1784).

Today (13 dec) the Church remembers the lives, ministry and martyrdom of:

Lucy, Martyr at Syracuse, 304

Lucy was a native of Syracuse in Sicily. She lived at the beginning of the fourth century, when the Roman authorities were attempting to re-establish the worship of gods they approved.

The emperor himself was the focus of one of the cults. Tradition has it that Lucy, as a young Christian, gave away her goods to the poor and was betrayed to the authorities by her angry betrothed, who felt that they should have become his property.
She was put to death for her faith in the year 304.

Her name in Latin means light and, as her feast-day falls in December, she became associated with the one true Light who was coming as the redeemer of the world, the Light that would lighten the nations, the Light that would banish darkness and let the eyes of all behold Truth incarnate.


Samuel Johnson, Moralist, 1784

Samuel Johnson was born in 1709 and is best known as a writer of dictionaries and a literary editor. Yet in his lifetime he was renowned for his religious beliefs and as a firm supporter of the practice and order of the Church of England.

He had been converted to Christianity as a young man after reading William Law’s A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life, and his support of the High Church party was unstinting. Amongst his other writings, his essays entitled The Rambler, which appeared twice-weekly between 1750 and 1752, earned him the nickname ‘The Great Moralist’, then a term of affection and honour. He died on this day in 1784.

Sunday, 12 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Sunday, 12 December 2021

The day ends and as we pray for family, friends and those we know of with problems,
we lay down all the day has been and head for bed and, should we awake tomorrow, a day of blessings given and received. Amen.

Saturday, 11 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Saturday, 11 December 2021

Juan Martínez Montañés (1568 – 1649) image of John the Baptist calls us to stand against the pressures of this world that cause us to bend and, leaning into that wind, to stand steadfast and sure in the presence of the Lord, our God. Hallelujah.

Friday, 10 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Friday, 10 December 2021

Weeping over a broken humanity and an unstable creation, we rejoice in our ability to respond in prayer, action, service and giving of self. Lord, may we wake to serve You and all humanity. Amen.

Thursday, 9 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Thursday, 9 December 2021

Life is precious and needs to be handled with prayer.

As day ends, laying all before the cross, we pray for the power and presence of our God to bring healing, sleep, wholeness and a love for Him. Amen.

Wednesday, 8 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Wednesday, 8 December 2021.

The Virgin Mary, an ordinary woman, by her 'Yes' becomes extraordinary. May we sleep this night and wake to be made extraordinary by our willingness to serve all by the power of God's Holy Spirit in us. Amen.

Tuesday, 7 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Tuesday, 7 December 2021,

The depiction of Ambrose brings us to reflect on how we are called to bring peace, order and an absence of conflict to the world as part of the Church. May we wake tomorrow and be a source of love and unity we pray. Amen.

Monday, 6 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Monday, 6 December 2021

St Nicholas, the man whose generosity brought him the title Father Christmas.
May we sleep and wake to give freely out of the treasures of your grace the Love of our God made flesh for us. Amen.

Today ( 6 Dec) the Church celebrates St Nicholas

Today the Church celebrates the life, ministry and place in Christmas tradition that is Nicholas - a fourth-century Bishop of Myra in Asia Minor (in what is now southern Turkey).

His reputation as a worker of wonders was enhanced by a ninth-century author of his hagiography and he is now best known through these stories.

Many of them concern his love and care for children, how he fed the hungry, healed the sick and cared for the oppressed. He saved three girls from a life of prostitution by providing them with dowries and so developed the tradition of bearing gifts to children on his feast day, a practice appropriated for the Christmas celebrations.

Nicholas is also one of the patron saints of Russia.

Sunday, 5 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Sunday, 5 December 2021

As the day closes and we seek the peace and presence of God to bring us sleep,
may we wake tomorrow and make known the first Advent of our Lord as we await the second. Amen.

Saturday, 4 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Saturday, 4 December 2021

Tomorrow we celebrate the prophets. May we, inspired by the same Holy Spirit, celebrate the love of God made flesh and reveal Him to all we meet in our actions and words.

Give us sleep this night and strengthen us we pray.

Today (4 December) the Church celebrates:

 Today the Church celebrates the lives and ministries of John of Damascus and Nicholas Ferrar:

John of Damascus was born in Damascus in about the year 657. Although the city by this date was Muslim, John’s father, a Christian, was Chief of the Revenue, and the principal representative of the Christians in the city. In 716, John, well-educated in science and theology, became a monk at the monastic settlement at Mar Saba near to Jerusalem and later was ordained priest there.

He became a prolific writer of theological works and of hymns. His summary of the teachings of the Greek Fathers, called De Fide Orthodoxa, proved an immense influence in the Church in the following centuries, in both east and west. He died on this day in about the year 749.

Nicholas Ferrar was born in London in 1592 and was educated at Clare Hall (now Clare College), Cambridge, and elected a fellow there in 1610. From 1613, he travelled on the continent for five years, and on his return worked with the Virginia Company, and was briefly elected to parliament.

In 1625, he moved to Little Gidding in Huntingdonshire, where he was joined by his brother and sister and their families and by his mother. They established together a community life of prayer, using the Book of Common Prayer, and a life of charitable works in the locality He was ordained to the diaconate by William Laud the year after they arrived.

He wrote to his niece in 1631, ‘I purpose and hope by God’s grace to be to you not as a master but as a partner and fellow student.’ This indicates the depth and feeling of the community life Nicholas and his family strove to maintain.

Despite difficulties with the Puritans, who were suspicious and referred to them as the ‘Arminian Nunnery’, the community continued after the death of Nicholas on this day in 1637, until his brother John and sister Susanna died twenty years later. The memory of Nicholas Ferrar and his family has continued to inspire Christians to lives of prayer, service and community.

Friday, 3 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Friday, 3 December 2021

We serve a God who is active, engaged and seeking the best for all creation.

May we mirror these behaviours of our God tomorrow in the day before us we pray. Amen.

Today (3 Dec) the Church celebrates the life and ministry of Francis Xavier,

Today the Church celebrates the life and ministry of Francis Xavier, who was born at the castle of Xavier in Spanish Navarre in 1506.
He was educated in Paris and, with Ignatius of Loyola, became one of the group of seven who took vows as the first members of the Society of Jesus, or Jesuits.
Since preaching the gospel overseas was an integral part of the Jesuit vocation, Francis sailed for Goa, on the west coast of India, in 1541. He travelled all over the East Indies, evangelising and establishing the Church in Ceylon, Malacca, Malaya and notably in Japan, where he left behind two thousand converts.

He had just reached China when he died on board ship in December 1552. 

Wednesday, 1 December 2021

Compline (night prayer) - Wednesday, 1 December 2021

The image of Charles de Foucauld.
A man who loved and served those far off; a man whose legacy changed the lives of many.

As we go to our beds, cause us to wake and serve You Lord with passion for for all we meet. Amen.