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  • Advent Angels - Day 22

    Gingerbread angels!  It's a few years now since we did a 'Gingerbread Nativity' on Christmas Eve at church.  Indeed, until I was looking for something else on my external hard drive (which turned out to be on my new laptop afterall) I had forgotten all about these pictures.

    It's surprising how rapidly the years pass.  Equally surprising, and for me intriguing, what we do and don't remember.  No doubt some people remember very cleary, and fondly the Gingerbread Nativity (I recall it as somewhat chaotic with rather excited children, and frazzled adults, even if I had a lot of fun).

    What matters is not that we recall the details, not even that we remember the event, but that it happened, and we experienced it, and, in some small way, it impacted us.

    I'm sure the angels (vanilla, gingerbread and chocolate) tasted good.  And I'm sure the day was fun for the small people who took part in it.

    Finding the photo reminds me of the value of 'present moment' as well as the limits of memory.  I hope that this year, too, our children and YP have had fun with the activities we've shared, from peg doll angels, to gingerbread men and more. If all they remember in years to come is that it was a time of fun and love, and stories of good news for all, then we'll have done ok.

  • Angel Advent - Day 21

    This image was shared with me by a former work colleague and sometime chorister at St Mary's, Glasgow

    The annunciation is a rather wonderful image, using a very limited colour palate to great effect.  I love how Mary is sitting on a chair (I thought for a while it was a park bench!) and her handbag dangles at the end. I love the coffee pot on the table and the (highly symbolic of her purity) vase of lilies in the foreground. The overflying dove, the branch held by the angel - all rich symbols in a surprisingly contemporary depiction.

    What I love about this image is that very fusion of ancient and modern, symbolism and mischief, all of which express something of the mystery of this ancient story.

    God of the past,

    God of the present,

    God of the future

    Older and younger than we will ever be

    Thank you for the creativity of artists

    Who can express something of that mystery

    In images such as this.


    Photo (c) Stewart Macfarlane 2015

  • Kitty Nativity

    As a bit of fun, I decided to decorate the cat's 'tree'.  Rooting through their toy box, and realising how many toy mice they have, I decided to create a nativity scene with them.  The angel is actually a small toy cat, rescued from the church clear out last year, and yes, there's a chicken (rather than a camel or a donkey!) and a tiny dog (instead of a lamb).

    Both cats were very curious about it - with Sophie even snuggling up in the 'stable' for a while.