Every year at St Andrew’s Redruth Mary & Joseph set out during advent for their journey to Bethlehem via lots of houses where they stay overnight for prayer. It is based on the Mexican tradition of Posada.
This year we have had to do it differently fearing that transferring a box of figures, candles and prayer cards from house to house would not be sensible in Covid tide we made 25 sets of small figures and my wife Lez painstakingly put together a prayer card and thoughts for each day. The quotations and prayers for each day are under the next article.
Pastoral Telephony - in praise of the telephonists!
Some people are brilliant at telephoning! Lez phones some of the ladies in the ST Andrews ‘Crafty People’ group when they would normally be meeting for their weekly social crafting in non corvid times – especially if she knows hey are on their own. Many of our Readers have almost swapped their preaching, teaching and open the book ministries for a life on the telephone and I do admire and give thanks for them.
I hate making telephone calls. I really hate making telephone calls. I don’t mind receiving them…. but I am so far out of my comfort zone just picking up the phone to have a chat that it makes me put it off by tying to find other things to do. I can stand up and talk to hundreds without problem, make YouTube videos, tell stories but phoning gives me the heebie-jeebies!
So don’t think that your ministry, whether you are a reader or ‘just’ a member of the congregation making calls to check up on folks is a little thing! It is not! It’s a gift and you are called to do it. You telephonists are wonderful!
St Andrew’s Posada 2020
Thank you for taking part in the Posada this year. You should have received 2 Nativity characters (Mary and Joseph), a candle, a daily prayer sheet and a list of names. Below are the instructions of what to do.
- Set aside some time to spend with Mary and Joseph
- Light a candle
- Reflect on and pray for the topic of the day
- Pray for an individual/a family from the list of names (there are 26 so you will be able to pray for everyone on the list by the end of the Posada)
Sunday 29th December
“A journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step” (Lao Tzu)
Reflect on and pray for those walking into the unknown, those setting out on difficult journeys, your own Advent journey.
Monday 30th December
“The angel comes, his tidings ring on the air like bells…..and when he goes, he leaves a feather in your belly” (Steven Waling)
Reflect on and pray for pregnant women, those with a new baby, those who have suffered the loss of a child.
Tuesday 1st December
“All happy families resemble one another. Each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way” (Leo Tolstoy)
Reflect on and pray for single parents, families who are in turmoil, children living in violent homes.
Wednesday 2nd December
“The wind blows over the lonely of heart and the lonely of heart is withered away” (W.B.Yeats)
Reflect on and pray for those who are lonely and isolated, those who are friendless, those separated from loved ones.
Thursday 3rd December
“What will survive of us is love” (Philip Larkin)
Reflect on and pray for those who have never been loved, those who feel they are unloveable, those who find it hard to show love.
Friday 4th December
“No passion so effectually robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear” (Edmund Burke)
Reflect on and pray for those who are fearful of life, those who are crippled by anxiety, those who see only darkness and shadows even on the brightest day.
Saturday 5th December
“My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle, and are spent without hope” (Job 7 v6)
Reflect on and pray for youngsters who have no hope in the future, those who do not know what it is to hope, those who have given up hope completely.
Sunday 6th December
“We walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5 v7)
Reflect on and pray for searchers after the truth, people who have doubts about their faith, people who have no faith at all.
Monday 7th December
“Every form of addiction is bad, no matter whether the narcotic be alcohol or morphine or idealism”(C G Jung)
Reflect on and pray for those struggling to overcome issues of alcohol abuse, those locked into drug addiction, those whose gambling habits have become reckless and out of control.
Tuesday 8th December
“He has sent me to bind up the broken hearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives, and release for the prisoners” (Isaiah 61 v1)
Reflect on and pray for prisoners who have experienced a miscarriage of justice, prisoners serving life sentences, prisoners of conscience.
Wednesday 9th December
“Even the sparrow finds a nest where he can settle down” (Scottish Psalter)
Reflect on and pray for people sleeping on the streets, people with nowhere to go, people in danger of losing their home because of the current crisis.
Thursday 10th December
“Whenever you save 5 shillings you put a man out of work for a day” (The Observer, 31st May 1953)
Reflect on and pray for those worried about losing their job, those who cannot find work, those who are having to make others redundant.
Friday 11th December
“Bring me flesh and bring me wine, bring me pine logs hither. Thou and I shalt see him dine when we bring them thither” (John Neale)
Reflect on and pray for parents who go hungry so their children can eat, children who know what it is to have an empty tummy day after day, users of our local Foodbanks.
Saturday 12th December
“By oppression and judgement he was taken away” (Isaiah 53 v8)
Reflect on and pray for those suffering oppression, those who live under the tyranny of a dictatorship, those without freedom of speech.
Sunday 13th December
“Other refuge have I none, hangs my helpless soul on thee” (Charles Wesley)
Reflect on and pray for refugees escaping from war zones, people risking lives on perilous boat journeys, asylum seekers starting life in a strange country.
Monday 14th December
“Slavery they can have anywhere. It is a weed that grows in every soil” (Edmund Burke)
Reflect on and pray for those experiencing modern day slavery, young girls sold as sex workers, children working in sweat shops across the world.
Tuesday 15th December
“Give to every human being every right that you claim for yourself” (Robert Green Ingersoll)
Reflect on and pray for policy and law makers, those who work in the field of Human Rights, those who are trying to make a difference.
Wednesday 16th December
“I must create a system or be enslaved by another man’s. I will not reason and compare, my business is to create” (William Blake)
Reflect on and pray for those who initiate change, those who challenge the accepted view, those who make things happen against the odds.
Thursday 17th December
“Your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions” (Joel 2 v28)
Reflect on and pray for people who look at the wider picture, people who think outside of the box, people who are visionary in their approach to issues.
Friday 18th December
“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more you are a leader” (John Quincy Adams)
Reflect on and pray for people who inspire others to take a new path in life, people who inspire others to be courageous in their choices, people who inspire others to reach beyond their usual comfort zone.
Saturday 19th December
“Encouragement is free, and beyond measure in value” (William DeFoore)
Reflect on and pray for those who help to bring out others’ potential, those who offer words of encouragement at the right time, someone who has encouraged you.
Sunday 20th December
“The sun of righteousness will rise with healing in his wings” (Malachi 4 v2)
Reflect on and pray for counsellors and mediators, NHS workers, those who hold the hands of the dying.
Monday 21st December
“Here a little child I stand” (Robert Herrick)
Reflect on and pray for children in care, children who will not know the joy and excitement of Christmas, the child inside you.
Tuesday 22nd December
“In the end is my beginning” (T S Eliot)
Reflect on and pray for those who are contemplating new beginnings, those who are having to start again, those whose journeys are nearing the end.
Wednesday 23rd December
“Whoe’er has travelled life’s dull road, where’er his stages may have been, may sigh to think he still has found the warmest welcome at an inn” (William Shenstone)
Reflect on and pray for those who have the gift of hospitality, those who welcome the stranger, those whose arms are always open.
Thursday 24th December
“The peace of the Son of Peace to you” (The Celtic Blessing)
Reflect on and pray for the peacemakers, peace across the world, peace in the hearts of those you know and love.
Nativity Gift List
Dear God, please give me:
The unquestioning faith of Mary
The tolerance of Joseph
The patience of the donkey
The kindness of the innkeeper
The reverence of the oxen
The joy of the angels
The obedience of the shepherds
The perseverance of the wise men
The Christ-child in my heart today