The above picture reminds me of a special Christmas Carol Service in Trefeca. It was 1987, and the Capel Bach, as we now know it, was just being made out of the old stable. There were still gaps for doors and windows, and a bare floor. Ronwy Rogers (then Warden) invited us to a Carol Service in the cold, bare interior, with only candle light and lanterns. Ronwy is on the far right, and some of you may spot the late Mrs Olwen Davies (wife of Trefor Davies, the last Principal of the college), second left. The Trefeca staff, and the builders and architect converting the building were also invited. All of us were wrapped against the cold of what had once been a stable, with the stars visible through the still partly open roof. It was the most authentic place to celebrate the birth of our Saviour.
For many people this Christmas, even that shelter would be better than what they will have – so let us remember them in our prayers.
Lord God, who through your Son Jesus entered this world through a simple stable,
we praise you that you made yourself so low that even humble Shepherds could look level-eyed into the face of God.
We pray, that you will enter now into the hearts and minds of
- those who have no home, no shelter from the cruel winds of winter in Afghanistan, or live in make-shift refugee camps across Europe
- those who have lost their homes and churches this year by the tornadoes that tore through Kentucky
- those who have a home, but it is a place of loneliness, and anxiety, where they see no-one
- those who, like the shepherds that night, keep working, in order to tend the sick or frail in our hospitals and care homes
Lord Jesus we pray that you will find some way to enter each one for whom we have prayer, bringing you light, your life, your hope this Christmastime.
Christmas Greetings to you all from Trefeca!