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December 2014 – St Mary’s Great Chart & Singleton
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December 2014

As I begin my 12th Christmas in Great Chart and Singleton many of you will know that I have chosen a ‘Christmas Word’ for a number of years.  I’ve had hope, love, light, gift, glory, Jesus, joy and others.  This year it’s a bit unusual as I have thought about the world we live in, our local and wider, national and international community in which we once more come to this massive, exhausting but wonderful annual celebration of Christmas.  And my word this year is ‘fear’!  Fear because it’s all around us, and the Christmas story and message seems to confront fear head on.  When the Angel Gabriel tells Mary she is to be the mother of Jesus, her first response is fear (whose wouldn’t be!); when Joseph discovers his fiancé Mary is pregnant not by him and the angel tells him its Ok to go ahead and marry her he says ‘fear not’; when the angels tell the shepherds on the hills outside Bethlehem that Jesus is born they say ‘fear not’!

The message of the Christmas story seems to anticipate that we are often by nature fearful people.  We are fearful of war, of Ebola, of the economy, of immigration, of the health service, education and locally of thousands of new houses being built, and yet the Christmas story says ‘fear not’!

But we don’t ‘fear not’ just by being stoic and trying harder or pretending there’s nothing to fear, but because the angels bring this great message of peace and joy!  A Saviour has been born!  There is hope even in this world as God has sent Jesus among us to lead us to trust in and follow Him.

We are celebrating in so many ways as a church at both Great Chart Parish Church and Singleton Village Hall as well as in our schools and around in our local community.  We do hope that you are able to join us – see the posters and leaflets around the Parish and in our schools.  But wherever you are this Christmas we pray that you will know the peace and love of Jesus that drives out all fear.

Our main Christmas services are:-

Sunday 21st December

10:30am Nativity Service at St Mary’s in Singleton Village Hall

6pm Candlelit Carols at St Mary’s Great Chart

Wednesday 24th December (Christmas Eve)

3pm & 5pm Crib Services at St Mary’s Great Chart

11:30pm Midnight Communion at St Mary’s Great Chart

Thursday 25th December (Christmas Morning)

9:30am All Age Communion at St Mary’s Great Chart

10:30am All Age Communion at St Mary’s in Singleton Village Hall


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