View from the community: Share good fortune this Christmas

PUBLISHED: 08:00 01 December 2018


I received my first Christmas catalogue in August, before I went on holiday, but now the decorations are up in the High Streets and advertisements are urging us to prepare for the great material feast of Christmas.

So, this week is when the church catches up and Stir-Up Sunday and then Advent (the four weeks before Christmas) urge us to prepare for the spiritual feast of Christmas too.

While the media are telling us how many shopping days there are to go, the church tells us how many praying days there are til the great celebration of the time, 2000-ish years ago, when Christians believe that God came into the world as a human.

Stir-up Sunday is so called because the prayer for this day, November 25, begins with the words “Stir up, O Lord, the wills of your faithful people” and five weeks before is about right for the Christmas pudding to be made, stirred and steamed ready to be put away for flavours to develop. Traditionally, each family member has a stir of the pudding and makes a secret wish, mostly, I suspect, in relation to their Christmas list!

And, while the world gets out its most glittery outfits, for partying, the church is plain and dressed in purple as we try to contemplate the holy truth of Christmas with its themes of love for everyone, especially those people who, like Jesus’ family, are poor and far from home.

We are also given opportunities to share our good fortune and, whether it’s texting a donation, writing a note that’s a bit more than just “Lots of love, XXX” in a Christmas card, or inviting a lonely neighbour in for a cup of tea, that’s exactly the sort of thing that God wants us to do.

Latest Newham Stories

22 minutes ago

BBL Cup semi-final: London Lions 97-85 Esh Group Eagles Newcastle

22 minutes ago

A pop up bus is to deliver urgent supplies to the East End’s homeless this Christmas.


Newham’s enforcement team have dealt with more abuses of blue badges than any other offence during the second half of 2018.

Newham Council
Yesterday, 17:43

MPs opposing the Brussels Brexit deal joined campaigners converging on east London for today’s rally at the Excel centre calling for a People’s Vote on the controversial agreement being debated in Parliament on Tuesday.

Theresa May
Yesterday, 16:00

London City Airport has forked out £1,000 to pay for three MPs to watch West Ham play.

London City Airport
Yesterday, 13:00

Thousands campaigners are converging on east London this afternoon for a rally calling for a People’s Vote on Brexit ahead of Tuesday’s crucial vote in Parliament.

Theresa May
Yesterday, 12:00

Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Recorder readers this week.

Stephen Timms
Yesterday, 10:17

Essex Senior League: St Margaretsbury 1 Clapton 0

Essex Senior League


Have you spent time as an unpaid carer? If you are over the age of 25 and living in Newham, the Working for Carers scheme can help you take the first steps back to employment.

Hanson Fernandes’ journey began in 2015 when he arrived in London from Goa, India.

Newsletter Sign Up

Newham Recorder twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists

Education Promo

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Newham Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now