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Advent Retreat: Lift up your eyes!

An online retreat for Advent

with Canon John Udris and Avril Baigent

In the run up to Christmas, it’s so hard to make time for God. This year we are offering an online retreat on Monday evenings through Advent so that everyone can have that opportunity. Join us as we explore the lives of some key Advent saints, helping us to shift our gaze heavenwards, and exploring God’s promises and providence.

With plenty of time for prayer and contemplation, seize the opportunity to switch off from all the pressures on us and just ‘be’.

Watch our trailer here:

 

Register here!

 

Find more resources for Advent here: https://pastoralministryoffice.org/home-copy/growing-in-faith/parish-resources/advent-resources/

 

Monday 29th November – Stars of Advent I
Blessed John Ruysbroek: A God-seeing life

Since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses
Let us lay aside every weight
Let us run with endurance the race before us
Let us keep our eyes fixed on Jesus
The pioneer and perfecter of our faith
Who is seated at the right hand of God’s throne.
(Hebrews 12.1-2)
Watch the week 1 video here.  You have around 5 minutes of contemplative music and words, and the session starts around 9 mins in.

Monday 6th December – Stars of Advent II
St Nicholas:
Generosity, the Divine DNA

“The giver of every good and perfect gift has called upon us to mimic His giving, by grace, through faith, and this is not of ourselves.”

St Nicholas

Watch week 2 here.  As usual, there are five minutes of reflective music and scripture to start.  The session starts around the 9 minute mark.

The Starlight Night 
by Gerard Manley Hopkins

Look at the stars! look, look up at the skies!
O look at all the fire-folk sitting in the air!
The bright boroughs, the circle-citadels there!
Down in dim woods the diamond delves! the elves’-eyes!
The grey lawns cold where gold, where quickgold lies!
Wind-beat whitebeam! airy abeles set on a flare!
Flake-doves sent floating forth at a farmyard scare!
Ah well! it is all a purchase, all is a prize.

Buy then! bid then! — What? — Prayer, patience, alms, vows.
Look, look: a May-mess, like on orchard boughs!
Look! March-bloom, like on mealed-with-yellow sallows!
These are indeed the barn; withindoors house
The shocks. This piece-bright paling shuts the spouse
Christ home, Christ and his mother and all his hallows.

Fr John also recommended Pray for Us: 75 Saints Who Sinned, Suffered, and Struggled on Their Way to Holiness, by Meg Hunter-Kilmer.

 

Monday 13th December – Stars of Advent III
St Lucy: Punching holes in the darkness

 

Monday 20th December – Stars of Advent IV
St Joseph: 
Making God’s dream come true