A Christmas Blessing

Dear PCS Friends,

I’ve been pondering what to say during this interesting season of intersect of the anxieties of Covid and the anticipation and hope of Advent and Christmas. Struggling with the right words, I googled “school Christmas message to parents” and was met with the following: “As a reminder, anyone feeling ill should not attend school. All children, students, staff, and visitors must be screened for symptoms of illness …”. 

My response was simply one of sadness. Whatever your concern level is related to Covid, it just seems sad to me that so much of the messaging of the moment is founded in anxiety (or its related cousins, frustration and anger) instead of hope.

Over the past couple of days, I’ve been thinking about the birth narrative of Jesus. At our home we have a tradition of putting out a nativity scene as Christmas approaches and then as Advent passes, we move various characters towards the manger. First Mary and Joseph, then baby Jesus, the shepherds and finally the wisemen are placed by or in the manger. I know there is some scholarly  conversation around when the various witnesses arrived; however, I always find it comforting to have a physical reminder of the shepherds (decidedly working class and probably a bit smelly) standing beside the wisemen (probably wealthy and smelling of expensive perfumes). Together, the poor and the wealthy, the simple and the wise are before the Saviour – worshipping. It makes me wonder if in this moment we as well are capable of putting aside our differences (our anxieties, fears, and frustrations) and standing together before our Saviour in worship. As a school, the desire to be together before Jesus has always been at our centre.

My prayer for all our community is that we could discover the story anew.

For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

From all of us at PCS, may you have a blessed Christmas season.

Darren Lewis – Superintendent