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Sunday, 16 December 2012

Community Visit 2013 ...

Living in the community!

 Anne Shaw and Anthony Kramers have begun making plans for the next Community Visit which will take place on Monday 28th January 2013 - Friday 1st February 2013. 

A lot of community members will remember that last Community Visit which took place early this year when Anthony and Louise Redwood (of Edinburgh) came to meet with us all however as ever, things have moved on during this very busy year so they will be visiting us all again to see how community life is going. The purpose of the community visit is to listen, reflect and discern with you what you are living today across the community.

While here they will be inviting a range of groups to meet them such as the Listening group, Assistants, Community Council and Committee etc but they will also keep times available to see people who wish to individually. If you wish to arrange a meeting please get in touch with Anne who can see what times are available.

 During the community visit their will also be a Community Gathering on Thursday 31st January which will be a lovely event to look forward to. There will be more details to follow in January 2013.

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

The Beginning of Advent

The Community's brilliant handmade wreaths!
The Community came together on Thursday 28th November in Braerannoch to celebrate with each other the beginning of Advent which would be taking place that Sunday. Many of us attended including the Chair of the L'Arche UK Board, Kathleen O'Gorman who was visiting our community for a few days that week. It was wonderful to have Kathleen around to experience one of our informal gatherings which she seemed to really enjoy.
The Faith Life Group organised the Advent activity which centres  around an Advent Calendar and a Nativity Scene this year. Beautifully made by Holly, Erika, Lisa, Joseph and Hilary the Advent Calender pockets contain small verses of the Bible which matches the theme of each week which are
Hope, Peace, Joy and Love!
Along with the small verse there is a picture which each day is coloured in and stuck onto the the Nativity Scene so that by the end of Advent a lovely full picture of the Nativity Scene will be completed after the help of those who opened each pocket daily.
The wonderful Advent Calendars
The Nativity Scene slowly building up!

During the gathering we discussed what Advents means to us and a representative from each house and one from The Workshops lit the first candle on their Advent wreaths which all looked amazing for the occasion as they were all made by the core members and assistants which was a great touch!
The Advent Gathering
After joining hands and saying Our Lord's Prayer together Amy and Holly went round the group to let everyone choose their Advent Friend. For those who may not be familiar with this term - an Advent Friend is a person who wants to be a secret sign of God's love and presence to someone else in The Community. This means that to be an Advent Friend you should be prepared to pray and give gifts to the person you choose.
This year Amy prepared the Advent Friend pictures into Christmas Crackers where you needed to pull on each side to open it and reveal your friend. You can see one of them below which we really fun and exciting for all!
An example of the Advent Friend Crackers.

Our Christmas Card ...

Each year we use the artistic talents of our core/ day members to design The Community's Christmas Card and in the past we have had many fantastic cards from the houses but this year was the turn of The Workshops. A competition was set up which had such an amazing response! - there was well more than 60 entries - some of which you can see below:
Absolutely beautiful - the runners up!
After the entries were narrowed down by Amy and Kirsty, Maria who is a valued volunteer, narrowed them down to a further five. It was then organised that the day members would choose their winner by having a show of hands at their Friday wages meeting. This is always a busy and fun filled meeting but even more so when deciding the winner.
After some close competition it was decided that Paul Hughes' happy and colourful Snowman was the well deserved winner. The cards have already been posted after Amy had some help labelling them from The Snug, so hopefully you will be seeing them coming through your letterbox soon.
The winning design!