Christmas 2020

St. Edward's Parish Christmas Services

ADVENT

Advent is a season of the virtue of hope, hope in God’s promises, welcoming the Saviour as individual disciples and as a community of disciples. This is a time of watchful prayer. Sadly we are unable to come together to reflect during this time or to enjoy singing Christmas Carols together but please join us on the parish facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/groups/2762598427183322/ and share any links you find to help us through this Advent period.


The Christmas Tree and the Nativity Scene are signs of hope, especially in this difficult time. Let us be sure we do not stop at the sign, but get to the meaning, that is, to Jesus, to the love of God that he revealed to us, the infinite goodness that he made shine on the world.”  Pope Francis


silhouette of Jesus, Mary and Joseph

Northampton Cathedral – Christmas Masses Online

https://northamptondiocese.org/live/ click the button marked LIVE to start receiving a live feed

VIGIL OF CHRISTMAS

3pm Mass
5pm Mass
8pm Mass
Midnight Mass

Friday 25th December – CHRISTMAS DAY
8.30am Mass
11am Mass

 


CHRISTMAS SERVICES AT ST. EDWARD’S CHURCH

Three kiings represented in flower display

St. Edward’s Church

Christmas Eve:  6pm and 8pm BOTH THESE MASSES ARE FULL TO CAPACITY

No further bookings can be taken.  Please do not turn up unless you have booked as you WILL be turned away. (If we are over capacity, we could be fined or shut down)

Christmas Day: 8am,  9.30am and 11am. LIMITED AVAILABILITY

Unfortunately, we will not be able to hold Masses at St. Bernadette’s, Holy Trinity or St. Nicholas Owen this Christmas.

Booking line open Monday 9.30am. to 12,

then Wednesday 9.30am. to 12,

and Thursday evening 6pm. to 8pm.

 0739 6606 881

It is essential to book for these busy Masses to avoid being turned away.

Please be flexible – if the Mass is full, you will be offered a less busy alternative.

Please be advised that a certain amount of ventilation is required under current restrictions which can lower the temperature in church.  We will endeavour to keep the church as comfortable as possible of course.  Thanks for your understanding.

Dispensation remains to not attend Mass if you are concerned about Covid to livestream at home for a Spiritual Communion instead.  A huge choice of Catholic churches are offering livestreams at https://www.cbcew.org.uk/home/our-work/health-social-care/coronavirus-guidelines/online-mass-directory/  or at https://www.churchservices.tv/whats-on-now/

 


 

THE BIRTH OF JESUS (Revised Standard Version)

Mary holding baby Jesus. Detail from the Nativity Window of St. Mark's Anglican Church, Vero Beach, Florida by Conrad Pickel Studio Inc In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be enrolled. This was the first enrolment, when Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all went to be enrolled, each to his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be enrolled with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. And while they were there, the time came for her to be delivered. And she gave birth to her first-born son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.
And in that region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear. And the angel said to them, “Be not afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy which will come to all the people; for to you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a babe wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.”

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among men with whom he is pleased!”

When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” And they went with haste, and found Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they saw it they made known the saying which had been told them concerning this child; and all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. But Mary kept all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them. Luke 2:1-20

Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we have seen his star in the East, and have come to worship him.”

When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea; for so it is written by the prophet: ‘And, you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who will govern my people Israel.’”

Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star appeared; and he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.” When they had heard the king they went their way; and lo, the star which they had seen in the East went before them, till it came to rest over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy; and going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshipped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.
(Matthew 2: 1-12)


 

CHRISTMAS ART

Download some nativity colouring sheets for your children, or visit the art sites listed to show them some of the beautiful paintings that the birth of Jesus has inspired over the years.

Nativity Story Birth to Cross by Jacqui Cornelisse

Nativity Colouring Sheets and Christmas Activities


CHRISTMAS MUSIC

Christmas Carols have been sung for centuries. Actually begun as a tradition of songs of joy during the pagan Winter Solstice, the custom was adopted and adapted by the early church. In AD 129 the “Angel’s Hymn” was sung at a Christmas service in Rome and carols in Latin began to be written across Europe. It was the resurgence of the celebration of Christmas begun in the 13th century by such people as St. Francis of Assisi that saw the use of carols / canticles in the native tongue of the people (rather than Latin). When Cromwell came to power in 1647 Carols and the celebration of Christmas were banned in England. Carols however were sung in secret and survived in oral tradition. It was during the Victorian period that Carols again became popular in the UK and were sung in the street and people’s houses, as well as at church, they are a beautiful way for us to share the story of the birth of Jesus.

Silent Night Sung by Libera at the BBC Songs of Praise Big Sing Carols 2013

 

Silent Night was written in 1816 by an Austrian priest called Fr. Joseph Mohr. Myth says that on Christmas Eve in 1818 the organ at St. Nicholas’ Church, Oberndorf had broken, Fr. Mohr asked his friend Franz Xavier Gruber, the local schoolmaster to write a melody for the words so that it could be sung to guitar accompaniment in time for Midnight Mass. The Christmas carol spread throughout the world.

During the First World War, On Christmas Day 1914, Silent Night / Stille Nacht were sung simultaneously by both English and German troops during the famous Christmas Day Truce. It is believed that Silent Night has now been translated into approximately 300 different languages.

Silent night, holy nightSilent night
All is calm, all is bright
Round yon Virgin Mother and Child
Holy Infant so tender and mild
Sleep in heavenly peace
Sleep in heavenly peace

Silent night, holy night
Shepherds quake at the sight
Glories stream from heaven afar
Heavenly hosts sing Alleluia!
Christ, the Saviour is born
Christ, the Saviour is born

Silent night, holy night
Son of God, love’s pure light
Radiant beams from Thy holy face
With the dawn of redeeming grace
Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth
Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth

Websites to check out:

 


Wishing you a Christmas Full of Blessings


Detail from the Nativity Window of St. Mark’s Anglican Church, Vero Beach, Florida by Conrad Pickel Studio Inc. from http://www.pickelstudio.com/