At 4.00 p.m. on Monday, 24th December, A Christingle Service was held at St. Mark’s Church. There were many young families there.
As the service began The Rev. Eileen lit the four red candles of the Advent ring and as she did so she asked the children present if they could remind her what the candles represented. The correct answers were called out – hope, peace, joy and love! The children also told her that the white candle (which would be lit the following day) represented Jesus – “the light of the world”.
The congregation then sang “Away in a manger” before Eileen led us in prayers to say sorry to God for what we had thought, said or done wrong.
During the next carol, “Ding dong merrily on high”, a collection was taken for The Children’s Society.
When that had been brought to the front and thanks had been given for it, we all sang “Allelu, allelu, allelu, alleluia, Praise ye the Lord”. Then Eileen divided us into two halves and one side sang the “allelu’s”, and the other side sang the “Praise Ye the Lord’s”. When a side was singing, they stood up, when they were not, they sat down! Well we got it in the end and then we had to switch sides!
As we finally sat down, Eileen asked any children from St. Mark’s School to come to the front. She asked the children to sing a couple of songs from their recent nativity production. This they duly did, with great enthusiasm.
We then heard a reading from Luke before Eileen asked us, “What’s the best thing about Christmas?” People of all ages offered answers to her question before she told us a story about a young boy and his excitement when a circus came to town! The message behind the story was a warning to us all not to get so caught up in the trappings of Christmas that we miss the main point of it!
The intercessions followed and then it was time to collect the Christingles! They were slightly different this year as the traditional candles representing Jesus (the light of the world) had been replaced by glow-sticks! Eileen demonstrated how the glow-sticks could be activated before inviting the children to come forward and collect their Christingles.
Amazingly there was exactly the same number of Christingles prepared as children present. Phew!
When everybody had got their stick glowing the lights were dimmed and children encouraged to hold their Christingles in the air as we all sang “Silent Night”.
The joyful service ended with prayers and the carol “Joy to the world”.
Thank you to
Walter for these photos
everyone who attended this service
and made it such a brilliant start to Christmas!
NOTE:- Over £300 was collected for the Children’s Society at this service! Thank you to all who contributed.