We live intentionally with the urban poor, learning from them,

building genuine relationships, participating in their livIMG_0559es and struggles,

learning their language and their culture, and working out

how Jesus’ love can best be shown in their context.



Trust in God at all times, people. Pour out your hearts to the Holy One.

For God alone my soul waits in silence.




God with us. Emmanuel.  We pause and consider.

Me created in the image and likeness of God. Jesus created in the image and likeness of human beings.


“Look, your Mary is pregnant with Emmanuel:  God is with us,” Joseph dreamed.

“How can this be?” struggled Mary. “But here I am; let it be as you say.”


“It is no longer we who live but it is Christ who lives in us,” Paul explains.

“How can this be?” we wonder. “Can Christ be formed in us?”


Well, here we are. Emmanuel.

Let it be as you say… be formed in us, be present to us.


Sing      Let all mortal flesh keep silence and with fear and trembling stand

Ponder nothing earthly minded, for with blessing in his hand

Christ our God to earth descended, our full homage to demand




Holy One, Human One, We admire your downward mobility and forget to follow it.

Help us forgive ourselves.

We notice other ways of incarnation and are quick to judge them.

Help us forgive ourselves.

Thank you for letting yourself be made in our likeness, in a body caught in time and space.

Human One, give us patience with ourselves.


Thank you for living in a simple neighbourhood and waiting thirty years before you started ‘doing stuff’.

Holy One, give us patience with ourselves.


We lament our need to be spoken well of, to be included and to be understood.

Blessed are those who are persecuted, misunderstood and falsely accused on my account, for great is their reward in heaven.


We lament our short cuts in compassion. We lament our readiness to resent.

Blessed are those who are persecuted, misunderstood and falsely accused on my account, for great is their reward in heaven.


Holy One, have mercy               Human One, have mercy            Holy Spirit, give peace. Amen




Psalm 132         or         Exod. 33: 7-11      or        John 14: 5-14

Luke 1: 26-38                Matt. 3: 13 – 4: 11            2Cor. 4: 1-12


Silence for reflecting on the readings



:contemplate an icon or a painting (e.g. Botticelli’s ‘Annunciation’) and share thoughts
:meditation ~ either lectio divina or gospel contemplation
:draw or sketch your own ‘tent of meeting’ and its proximity to your ‘camp’ (Ex. 33) – depicting how Christ is immanent in your life.




Let’s hold in the light and nearness of God the human family worldwide, and especially today….


Silence or open prayer




Infinite and holy God,

No striving mind or will could hope to reach you.

Yet in Jesus you come to us,

Not just near, but in, for all time and eternity.

You choose our flesh, you bear its scars.

Our story is your story,

Your life is our light.


Be at home in us today

And help us to live as your body.

Meet us in the rooms and the streets we inhabit today.

Give us the courage we need to say “yes”

To you, to our neighbours, to the earth

And to all that is ordinary and fragile in our own lives.


When we walk in darkness,

Hungry for hope and aching for your presence,

On earth as in heaven  Your kingdom come!               Amen