My Thoughts 07/12/2021

If you are on Facebook, you might be getting a few photos of peoples Christmas trees with the tag – It is beginning to look a lot like Christmas (from a song made popular by Michael Buble).

I want to say, ”hang on,” “ wait,” “slow down”. We have put our Christmas tree up in the sanctuary of the church but are using it as a Jesse Tree.

The Jesse Tree is a newer Advent devotion, that takes it name from the Catholic iconographic tradition of showing the tree of Jesus, who as we hear early in Advent, is the flower that blossomed from the “stump of Jesse (Isaiah 11:1). You can find suggested symbols and scriptural references if you type in Jesse Tree in your search engine.

Why not put up the tree but don’t decorate it with Christmas lights and ornaments. Instead decorate it with symbols that relate to a Scripture passage anticipating the coming of Christ.

Today we celebrate The Feast of St. Ambrose. He wrote many prayers and hymns among which is this hymn for Advent.

Saviour of the nations, come;
Virgin’s Son, here make Thy home!
Marvel now, O heaven and earth,
That the Lord chose such a birth.

Not by human flesh and blood;
By the Spirit of our God
Was the Word of God made flesh,
Woman’s offspring, pure and fresh.

Wondrous birth! O wondrous Child
Of the virgin undefiled!
Though by all the world disowned,
Still to be in heaven enthroned.

From the Father forth He came
And returneth to the same,
Captive leading death and hell
High the song of triumph swell!

Thou, the Father’s only Son,
Hast over sin the victory won.
Boundless shall Thy kingdom be;
When shall we its glories see?

Brightly doth Thy manger shine,
Glorious is its light divine.
Let not sin o’ercloud this light;
Ever be our faith thus bright.

Praise to God the Father sing,
Praise to God the Son, our King,
Praise to God the Spirit be
Ever and eternally.

Canon Father Anthony Charlton
Canon Father Anthony CharltonParish Priest