Bishop Debbie Reflects - Day 1

    17 Dec. 2019

    Each Christmas I enjoy setting up our nativity scene at home. It’s a small one, made of banana leaves and I bought it several years ago from a woman’s co-operative in Kampala, Uganda. It brings back memories of a group of women working hard to sustain a living and to provide a better future for their children.

    All the characters from the nativity are in the box, beautifully handmade, and I set them up on a side table – the shepherds, the wise men, Mary, Joseph, the baby Jesus, a couple of sheep and a donkey. All the people and animals that we see in our nativity plays in schools this week up and down the region.

    But I wonder if you have ever imagined what it would have been like to have been there – the reality of the stable that night in an insignificant town called Bethlehem where the Saviour of the World was born.

    Imagine you were Mary – a young girl, perhaps not much more than 14 or 15 – giving birth in a stable where the animals lived, after a long and arduous journey to get there. Not exactly the birth plans we draw up today. Joseph had stood by her and was there at her side that night. But what did the future look like. What did it really mean that she was giving birth to the Son of God?

    Mary had lots of questions and very few answers at this time – but what she had was a beautiful baby boy and a sense that God would show her the way forward, giving her a deep peace.

    May you know that same peace this Christmas