Just returned from the Advent Carol service. The village kids at All Saints managed to decorate and light 120 jar jams. Each jam jar was covered in tissue paper and glitter and contained a tea light. The church path is very dark by 6pm. (No street lights in the country!) In fact the path is very dark during the day because there is a dense row of overhanging yew trees. The good thing is that the trees protected the candles from the rain and blustery wind. (When is it going to stop?). The boys had great fun racing up and down keeping them all alight. By the time they had finished it looked beautiful and it still looked wonderful at the end so I have left them burning tonight,as a sign that the light does shine in the darkness.
In church we all had processional candles. I think we managed to marry tradition with new stuff. We still sang O come O come Emmanuel and Hills of the North rejoice ; we lit the Advent wreathe and had the usual readings but, the church youth group performed a rap they had written about the angel Gabriel visiting Mary and sang to a song by Blush called Greater Love using -shock horror- microphones. Some of our more traditional members were surprised to see the screen and projector in church but I think they did genuinely enjoy having more teenagers there.
I did. I was really smiley. Stagestruck was there with me. How could I not be smiley.
It is tricky mixing traditions into one service. The danger is that in trying to keep everyone happy no-one is pleased. Might have just got away with it again but I did robe (for that proper sense of decency and order!!) to ensure I didn’t upset someone.