Friday, December 29, 2006

Ritual and Rite

To Dance with God
Gertrud Mueller Nelson

Have being flipping through this book, and using its incredible wisdom, for years.

Has any one else out there heard of it, used it, or read it?

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Sentence for Midnight

Let us all rejoice in the Lord
for our saviour is born
to the world

true peace
has descended
from heaven

Antiphon for midnight mass

Merry Christmas Everyone.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Ten Things I love Starting with The Letter T

Antony asked us to tag ourselves and play this game.

He gave us the letter and we fill in the blanks.

I actually found this quite hard…

I tried to do the first 10 things that came into my mind:

Time. Love it. Need it. Use it. Never seem to have enough of it to do the things I want. I am trying desperately these days to hallow time with prayer – Liturgy of the hours, meditation, writing, but the trap of being a sort of creative, in-the-moment, sort of fellow is that time slips away quickly when the inspiration strikes.

Tradition: It would be all too easy to just think of this in terms of Church Tradition, although I love that. I adore the idea of praying in ancient words, of celebrating vigils and rituals which Christians have observed for centuries (and I don’t find anything tired in rites or rituals…). I also love more folk traditions: Christmas trees, wreaths, St Nicholas Day biscuits, marking the date of Epiphany with chalk, family holidays, the whole shebang.

Talk. Nothing I like more than a good natter (although Coralie would call it a gossip…!)

Transfiguration Community: You Knew this was coming! I love this motley crew of travellers. We meet, we eat and drink, we pray, we love one another. We bring our experiences, our day, our selves, and healing and holiness is begun. A Privilege.

Test Cricket. I grow in appreciation of this game every summer. Strategy, courage, grit, luck, tactics. Up to five days of magic. And this year Australia won the ashes (Yesterday!) which is the equivalent of the world cup – but only Australia and England can play.

The” Bands: I tried really hard to avoid any “The” ‘s but at least its at number 6. The Beatles, The Jam, The Style Council, The Church, The Small Faces, The Police, The Who, The Byrds, The Smiths – all some of my favourite bands. Just looking at that list tells me fair bit about myself. I like OLD music and my tastes are a fairly wide …

Thomas Merton: The patron saint of the emerging church movement, given many recent blogsphere posts in his memory. I love Tom’s work – some of the more edgy stuff especially, like his oriental interests (Te Ching???), his letters, outlines for monasteries and hermitages, and especially his notebook he kept when he visited Our Lady of The Redwood monastery. Merton also stands for a whole lot of monastic authors I love like Jean Le Clerq, Ester De Waal, Abhishiktananda, Bede Griffiths, Lawrence Freeman and so the list goes on. Helpful, heavy and hopeful.

Tea. Now hear me, I am a coffee drinker. Plunger in the morning, maccihato when I am out, espresso after a large dinner. But in true thirty something fashion, I am rediscovering the things of my youth – and tea is one of them. It took me to read an interview with the current heir to the Twinnings family about matching tea with food to get me started. He suggested having a large plate of bacon and eggs on thick toast with a cup of their English Breakfast, made to the specific instructions. Being a good little camper, I did as I was told and I was hooked.

Tonsils: I don’t have any, neither does my little boy. He breaths a lot easier at night (less like a freight train) and so do we…

Travel: I’ve only made some tentative steps with this activity, but I love it. I have travelled around a lot of Australia and to New Zealand and some other places. I can’t wait to take the family and explore the world together. Maybe I’ll come and visit some of you!

nearly there

and to help you on your journey, a few helpful links

Andrew Dowsett has been keeping a lovely reflective journey to advent

Ron Rohlheiser writes brilliantly Christmas, Myth, Naivety and Faith

Pray as You go keep on offering great stuff



Saturday, December 16, 2006


Our friend Bryan was playing this today….

Thought we’d have a go!

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate?
Australia. HOT at Christmas. Maybe Hot Chocolate if its cool (like, when would that be…) .
More likely cold beer, cold wine, cold chocolate milk.

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree?
Wrapped. But that doesn’t stop them being shaken, felt and explored…

3. Coloured lights on tree/house or white?
Lights on tree thanks. House too much trouble actually…

4. Do you hang mistletoe?

5. When do you put your decorations up?
First of December. Kids and Coralie put them up. I “supervise” and stalk the corridors feeling stressed!

6. What is your favorite holiday dish?
BBQ seafood. Cooked outside. With a Nice Semillon.

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child?
Mum and Dad went to midnight mass. When they came home, far from being asleep, y brother and I had snuck out of room, opened allof the presents, and as a masterstroke, had convinced grandma that this was what was supposed to happen!

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa?
There’s NO Santa? Or is there more about him I don’t know yet?????

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?
Only one, after Mass and a glass of Frozen Butterscotch Schnapps.

10. How do you decorate your Christmas Tree?
Lots of home and school made decorations, with other stuff we have. Its fun.

11. Snow! Love it or Dread it?
Its 36°C here – snow would be fab!!

12. Can you ice skate?
Yep. Inside only.

13. Do you remember your favorite gift?
My parents relieving a rather large debt I owed them.

14. What’s the most important thing about the Holidays for you?
Rejocing in Gods goodness. Family. Friends. Slowing down.

15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert?
Frozen “lollies and chocolate Christmas pudding”!

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition?
Midnight mass. Singing Carols. By Candlelight. Incense. Magic. Mystery

17. What tops your tree?
A Star.

18.Which do you prefer giving or Receiving?
I LOVE being given gifts,but watching other recive and appreciate yours is a special magic...

19. What is your favorite Christmas Song?
Once in Royal Davids City OR O Come O Come Emmanuel Bring me to tears actually…

20. Candy Canes! Yuck or Yum?
I give ‘em out. I don’t eat ‘em!

Play along fans!!!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Advent Reflections

Still here.
Still praying together.
Still eating together.
Still caring for one another.
Loving each other.
Sharing life.

Tonight is a chance for all of us to celebrate the joy of Christmas and share gifts with the children. It is a fitting end to a long year (as those of you who read my stream of consciousness poetry blog will know!). Over the remaining time of Advent, we will meet in various combinations and forms, celebrating the mysteries of this time of year.

Bless you all.


A time to
Delve deeper into
the loVe of God-
Not spending
Too much money

(From Iona)