2020 Theme

Near & Far

by Revd Caroline Risdon, Assistant Priest of St. Alfege Church, Greenwich

It is impossible for us to consider 2020 without immediately thinking of the global COVID-19 pandemic and of lockdown. Lockdown required us to be apart from one another for significant periods of time and we are still living with limitations on our physical interactions. In this sense we are living ‘far’ from one another. Yet, there have also been ways in which we have been ‘near’ to each other; working, attending social groups, exercising and more online from within our homes. This is what lead me to the theme of ‘Near and Far’.

For Christians, the concept of being both near and far is one we think about over Christmas. We are celebrating the birth of Jesus more than 2,000 years ago. That historical event is quite ‘far’ from our own lives, but it is ‘near’ us every December when we remember the nativity story once more. The way Jesus lived his life is ‘far’ from our ways of living, but it is ‘near’ to us whenever we take time to care for others, to share what we have, to stand up for those without a voice.

Now, more than ever, we need to find ways of staying close to one another even while we are apart. St Alfege Church is delighted to offer the Advent Windows as a safe, outdoor, community activity this Christmas season.  We hope you will be able to enjoy the Advent Windows trail in your own time with your family and friends.

There is still some way to go for us to return to being together safely once more. So, whoever and whatever you are near to and far from this Christmas, I hope you find fulfilment and peace.

God Bless.


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