Last night we had our annual Christmas Party at our home, The Perch. It is a tradition we started soon after moving here and have continued. It flowed out of a series of drawing times we have done for the last 4 years of characters from Charles Dickens “A Christmas Carol”. This was our last year of having models sit in character to draw and paint them. This year we had two “ghosts” sit for us, the “Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come” (A skeleton we placed a dark robe over) and the “Ghost of Christmas Past.” Next year for November and December we are going to do a show in our gallery of the best of all those pieces for Christmas time. Wonderful themes to enter into with our neighbors about eternal destiny, the work of our hands in this life, and where true life and blessing comes from.

At our Christmas Party we have continued to connect the Dickens story with our party and have had a reading from A Christmas Carol each year. This year we read a part of the passage where Scrooge is taken by the Ghost of Christmas Present to the Crachit home to observe their Christmas dinner preparations. We also had a second reading this year which was a poem I have enjoyed more this year as I have read it. I read it last night as a prayer. It is a poem by contemporary poet Scott Cairns called “Annunciation”. I love the human imagery intertwined with the message of the arrival of the one bringing “the bright nativity”. This poem invites the listener to delve into the imagery and discover where Truth is found.

I came across Cairns’ poem in Malcolm Guite’s Advent reading series called “Waiting on the Word” where you read a poem a day as you navigate Advent. I commend it to you all. It seems only fitting that the poem I read last night as a prayer for our Christmas Party be read by Malcolm, because everything seems to be better read in a British accent. Enjoy.