A Christmas Message from Brad Ford. Minister Bath United Church.

In his book “The Man Who Invented Christmas” Les Standiford tells a fascinating story of Charles Dickens and the work he did to create and publish his story “A Christmas Carol”, and the role that book has played since the time of its publication in 1843; I don’t think there’s anyone over the age of 10 or 12 who doesn’t know who Scrooge is or who doesn’t know that calling someone ‘Scrooge’ is quite an insult.

However, I think it even more interesting that Dickens was raised in extreme hardship by parents, especially his father, who had no desire or intention of behaving with anything approaching financial prudence and who sponged off their successful son their whole lives. Standiford states that this could be one of the motivating factors behind Dickens life-long desire to make sure that the Christmas spirit was not present at just one time of the year, but year-round.

Christians believe that this Christmas spirit has its source in a God who initiated it by all by giving us a gift that can in no way be repaid; that God comes to us in a babe born in all humility who grew up and grew in the ‘favour of the Lord’ and that in his life, death and resurrection abundant and eternal life is given to us all. A free gift. No strings attached. Priceless.

As we prepare to celebrate Christmas with our family and friends, let us take steps to ensure that the Christmas spirit of joy, peace, hope, love, kindness and generosity inhabits our being throughout the year, so that those who know us can say about us, as they said about the transformed Scrooge: We know how to keep Christmas well!

God bless us, everyone!

Our Candlelight and Holy Communion Christmas Eve Service is at 7p.m. at Bath United Church, Academy Street, Bath. There is a special worship service at Morven United Church, Fralick Road on Sunday December 29 at 9:30; our regular worship schedule resumes Jan 5 with worship at Morven United at 9am. and at Bath United at 10:30. If you’re not involved with a church or faith community already, we hope you will consider joining us on the journey of faith. Everyone welcome.

Bradley Ford,

Minister, Bath United Church.

613-920-1476 (call or text)

revbrad@ymail.com

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