December 2018 / January 2019

Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat. Who’ll put a penny in the old man’s hat? If you’ve not a penny a ha’penny will do. If you’ve not a ha’penny then God bless you. 

This is a verse I recall from my childhood, one that I recited often. Only last week I once again heard it sung with great gusto when Don and I went to see the Thursford Christmas Spectacular show in Norfolk. I know it was much too early for Christmas (I’m writing this letter in November), but it is something that I’ve wanted to go to see for a very long time and I knew that if I didn’t go in November I would stand very little chance of going in December, so November it was. The show was spectacular and I enjoyed every minute of it but that has nothing to do with the point ’m trying to make! (I’ve never been one to use the minimum amount of words when a whole string will do.) 

No, the point I’m trying to make relates to the meaning the nursery rhyme/Christmas song is making, it conveys to child and adult alike that the festive period is a time where each should give to charity according to their means – even if all they can give is their blessing and perhaps in consideration this is actually one of the best things that can be freely given. 

So often we get so engrossed in the whole excessiveness of present buying, trying to buy our nearest and dearest, especially our children and grandchildren, all that their hearts desire that we lose sight not only of the true meaning of Christmas but also of those that will have little or nothing for the festive period not only in material things but also in the emotional comforts of somebody to share the season with.

The Christmas season is not always the season of joviality, warmth and love that our T.V. Advertisements endorse but a time of loneliness and sadness. It can also be a time when families and friends fall out because of the pressures and strains that people put themselves under to have the best Christmas ever. 

The questions I ask are ‘What is, for you, the best Christmas ever?’ What is the best gift that you can receive this Christmas? What is the best gift that you can give? 

Christmas is about giving, but it doesn’t have to be about the most expensive thing that money can buy. The giving of ourselves in time to others is the biggest gift that we can give. 

The biggest gift of all time was freely given to us all at that first Christmas over two thousand years ago, the gift of God’s own Son, born in humility and poverty and laid to rest in an animals feeding trough on a bed of hay. The most precious gift of all time. 

I pray that you might find time in the business of this Christmas season to come and share as a community together in the celebration of the birth of the most precious child of all time. ‘Come let us adore him, Christ the Lord.’ 

Wherever you are, whoever you are with I pray that Jesus may be at the heart of your Christmas celebrations.

A very happy Christmas to you all

Rev Sarah

The Rector, Reverend Sarah Corry, can be contacted on 01474 852265, or use our contact form.