Christmas Retreats

Welcome to our Christmas retreat. Please use these resources in whichever way you find most helpful. If you wish to take part in an online lectio divina using the Christmas gospel on Wednesday 30 December please contact Sr Judith to register.

Getting Started

Photo by Gareth Harper on Unsplash

This section has some useful tools to help you start your retreat. Here are some ideas for creating sacred space and for praying with scripture. They can be used individually or with others.

God with us

There’s something about the Christmas gospel that compels us to stop. However busy our preparations keep us there always seems to be a moment when we are drawn to pause. It mate be a quiet moment at the Christmas tree with lights twinkling in the dark. It could be that moment of stillness before the voice of a chorister breaks into “once in Royal David’s city”. It might be as the last present is wrapped, or the last of food prepared. It could be a quiet moment in front of whatever crib or nativity scene you have in your home. For me that moment comes when I first year Christmas tapestry hanging in the chapel.

Whatever brings us to that moment of stillness it gives us the opportunity to open ourselves to this momentous event we are celebrating. It gives us a chance to allow the mystery of the incarnation to touch our hearts. However brief that pause is it allows us to open ourselves to the transforming coming of Christ into our lives.

This short retreat is an opportunity to take time to reflect on the
Christmas gospel using both the text and the images presented by the tapestry.

Christmas Tapestry, Turvey Abbey

Emmanuel, God-with-us, who became human to show us how to live, touch our lives with the light of your presence. Fill us with your love and enable us to embrace the new life you offer. We make our prayer through Christ our Lord. Amen

Spend some time reflecting on the tapestry.
Notice how the light spills out, illuminating the people and the city. Where is the light of Christ illuminating your life this Christmastide?
Spend some time praying with the character you most identify with. What speaks to you in their experience?
In a dark corner, on top of one of the buildings are the three crosses of Calvary, a reminder of the path Jesus will take. They tell us that we can bring all of our lives into the light of Christ. Christmas has space for our sorrow as well as our joy. What sorrows are you carrying into the presence of Christ this Christmas?

Read Luke 2: 1-14.
How are you making space to welcome Christ into your life this Christmastide?
What new life is being brought to birth in you this Christmastide?
Where is God speaking words of joy to your heart in these fearful times?

End your retreat with a time of thanksgiving for the gifts you have received.