Christmas begins with Christ
Christmas message from the Ven Andrew W Doughty, the Archdeacon of Bermuda and Commissary and the Rector of St Mary the Virgin, Warwick
GETTING READY FOR CHRIST AT CHRISTMAS!
“From early in November
to the last week on December,
I got money troubles getting me down.
Well, the music made me merry, but it’s only temporary.
I know Santa Claus is coming to town.
In the days I work my day job,
In the nights I work my night,
But it all comes down to a working man’s pay.
Getting ready — I’m getting ready for Christmas day
Oh! We’re getting ready,
for the power and the glory,
and the story of Christmas Day
If I could tell my Mum and Dad
That the things that we never had
Never mattered — we were always OK!
Getting ready, ready for Christmas day
The music and lyrics of this wonderful Christmas song were written by the legendary Paul Simon and can be found on Simon’s ‘So Beautiful or So What’ CD.
Even though Simon is Jewish, he is able to capture both the joy and the prayer of Christmas. (Can I recommend you go to Amazon or iTunes, listen to it, and perhaps buy it!?)
Simon combines a Gospel/Cajun beat with important, heartfelt lyrics.
In the background you will hear a 1941 recording of a sermon the great Baptist preacher, Rev JM Gates.
Rev Gates was one of the black pioneers of the early recording industry and recorded over 200 of his sermons on disc between 1926 and 1943.
He was the mentor of the great blues artist Thomas A Dorsey, who gave us ‘Precious Lord, take my hand!’
It is Rev Gates’ sermon that gave Simon the title ‘Getting Ready for Christmas day!’
This great song communicates the excitement of the coming Christmas festival.
It also speaks about the real challenges that face us economically and internationally, and within our own local communities and family homes.
With the tragedy of Newtown, and all the bad news and other changes swirling around us, it’s easy to get swept up into an cynical exhaustion that kills our Christmas joy.
But this song also reminds of the power and the glory of the story of Christmas.
For we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ — God with us! God in us! Emmanuel!
During this Christmas season 2012, try not to let money troubles or family worries tarnish your Christmas celebration.
Celebrate Jesus’ birth with joy and with traditional Bermudian Christmas generosity & hospitality.
Our children and our grandchildren know that “Things” don’t really matter — Family and Friends Do!
Try as best you can to celebrate — body, mind and spirit — the birth of Jesus our Saviour — and amid your busy schedule and your endless “To Do” list, take some time out for yourself, and for Thanksgiving and Praise.
And if you can — try to get to church on this Christmas Eve or tomorrow on Christmas Day!
I know that you and your family will find a warm Christmas welcome and a wonderful & transforming experience of “Peace and Good Will” among men and women.
The Clergy and the congregations of the Anglican Church of Bermuda wish you and your family a wonderful Christmas holiday!
We are keeping you in our prayers! May God Bless you and your family!
REMEMBER, CHRISTMAS BEGINS WITH CHRIST!