I know, I know it is far too early to be talking about Christmas. I also know that your school calendar will have been planned way back in June or July. This next half term can be such a busy one (which term isn’t?) when we add all the preparations and celebrations for Advent and Christmas to our already busy lives.
I want to invite you to our Advent Retreat for staff. Each Thursday in December, as part of the subscription to CPD, you will be able to access a 30 minute retreat.
The retreat will be a chance for you and your colleagues to pause, be still and reflect on the real reason for the season. There will be three different retreat sessions and you can attend any or all of them. The theme of the three sessions will link together but can also be used as stand alone sessions.
Staff Spiritual Wellbeing
We hope these retreat sessions will be an opportunity to focus on staff wellbeing. You will need a projector and screen to view the sessions, but you could also create a relaxing atmosphere, light some candles, offer a mince pie (or even a glass of mulled wine).
Exploring the Holy Family with Fr Michael Hall
This year we will be joined by Fr Michael Hall who will lead us in three reflections on the Holy Family. Each week will focus on a different person – first Mary, then Joseph, then finally Jesus – as we explore together the true meaning of Christmas.
Those of you who subscribe to our Collective Worship resources will recognise that this is the same focus as resources for prayer and liturgy for Advent. It is an opportunity for staff to go deeper and reflect for themselves about the role of Mary, Joseph and Jesus in the story of Christmas.
In Luke’s Gospel, the Angel announces that Mary will be the Mother of God. Her fiat or ‘yes’ to God echoes through eternity, inviting us to do the same. To trust in God’s plan and say ‘yes’ to whatever He has in store for us.
St Joseph, although we don’t hear directly from him in the Gospels, has so much to teach us about what it means to be a Christian, to humbly and faithfully follow God and play our part in building up His Kingdom here on earth.
Jesus is God incarnate, God made flesh. His birth was an event that changed history. God could have showed up on Earth in any way He liked, and yet He chose to become a vulnerable little baby who relied on His parents to provide, care and guide Him through His early life.
I really hope you can join me for a time of stillness, prayer and reflection. Here is a little taster of what you can expect from last year’s Advent Retreat.