The Light of Christ was evident in Doncaster during Advent as the children of St Francis Xavier Catholic Primary School lit up the church of Sacred Heart, Balby, with a spectacular Advent service of light.
Their Christingle service, based on the Advent Gospels and an explanation of what a Christingle is, was “a fantastically moving moment, again – a great preparation for Christmas that everyone should experience”, as one grandparent commented. “It had a lovely sense of community with the priests from both school parishes involved,” – Fr Gus O’Reilly from St Peter’s and Fr Pat O’Connor from Sacred Heart, Balby.
The children provided a lovely, calm and peaceful environment in which the very poignant message of taking time to prepare was communicated to all those present. The children sang, prayed and reflected upon the three different comings of Jesus: for Jesus coming into our lives today; for Jesus coming finally as our judge; and of course for Jesus coming as a baby on Christmas Day.
The children demonstrated real maturity as the older ones supported their younger friends very patiently in their roles. The children’s musical skills were also incorporated well. The children’s singing was beautifully accompaniment by a very competent group on the violin, flute, recorder, guitar and hand bells.
The whole experience combined to create a real feeling of warmth which climaxed when each of the two-hundred and twenty-five individual candles on the Christingles (one for each child in school) was lit.
The atmosphere was wonderful and the children left the congregation with a few soul-searching questions to answer this Advent, as they all joined hands and circled their way around the congregation in church.