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Pastoral Letter - Dec 20

God is with us!

The God we follow, the God who loves us, is the God who entered this world and our lives and whose coming gave us Christmas.

Immanuel, God with us, is the heart of Christmas.

It means that, in the chaos of this world and even of our own lives, God is with us and enters into it where we are. In our exile from our churches, in our separations from families and friends, in our griefs and losses – God is with us.

This is the heart and centre of Christmas, God comes, into a broken and damaged world. God embraces the chaos, an unmarried couple, in a borrowed animal shelter, to which they have travelled for miles. Not in a palace, or in massive house with all the economic advantages but in chaos and confusion, God comes.

In this last year, I have glimpsed God active and alive outside the walls of church:

In the care of others for those around them and for me.

In the grace of bereaved families as we have sought to prepare funerals in new ways.

In the transformation of the building at Lea - in the care of the congregation for the builders and in the builders’ care and concern to make things as good as possible.

I have known God’s presence in time to reflect, in learning both in reading and in art classes where I am slowly daring to draw and put colour on a page.

As we approach a different Christmas, can you celebrate by reflecting on where you have found God with you in this last year?

Wishing you all a happy and hopeful Christmas.

Rev. Louise