Just a check-in. I am participating in a Blue Christmas/Longest Night Service tomorrow night and am looking forward to the quiet and healing in the midst of the bitter cold. This has been a lickety split Advent for me and while it has not been a depressing one, it has lacked sufficient time for reflection and reverence. I don’t like when that happens, but given the demands of a new ministry in a new home, I accept that it does. One of the ways I avoid burn-out is by not expecting every season to be as deep as every other one that has ever gone before. This Christmas I am not even putting up a tree. I am still unpacking boxes, so decorating seemed like just too much.
I am aware, as I am sure those of you in parish ministry are, of the special pastoral sadnesses that we carry with our communities during the holidays. We get more calls for counseling, we preach more on loneliness and family dysfunction, and the human need for Love to be born among us. For me as a single woman, I find myself feeling strangely bruised by all the messages I get about single people this time of year, how we must all be longing for a mate, for that diamond under the tree, for someone who will go home for the holidays with us.
I don’t feel that way at ALL, which perversely makes me feel like a double dose of weirdo.
Anyway, if you’re preparing for a Blue Christmas service, holla. What are you planning, basically? How do you feel about it? Are you going to wear anything different that communicates a more pastoral kind of presence than your usual Sunday garb? I’m curious. Let’s pull up a chair and SHARE.