Sleigh bells may be getting ready to ring, but our hearts may not be singing. This season of merriment and cheer can also be filled with emptiness, sadness or grief. A time of year when we are supposed to celebrate hope, love, joy and peace may also bring to light our struggles with isolation and loss. While recognizing that the Christmas holidays may be joyous for some, many of us need a safe space to acknowledge our sadness. We need to know that we are not alone. We need encouragement to face the days ahead.
Are you aware that many congregations across faith traditions have adopted a special holiday service designed for those for whom the holidays might be difficult? Sometimes they are titled “Blue Christmas” services, but not featuring the Elvis song. These services are designed to comfort, to offer a time of reflection, healing and hope, and to provide solace in meeting you where life finds you.
A popular Taizé chant for this time of year is written below. It reminds us that we are surrounded by a love that will not let us go even in the midst of shadows and sadness. Here is a beautiful recording of the song performed by UU Community Church of Santa Monica.
Within our darkest night,
you kindle the fire
that never dies away,
that never dies away.
If this concept speaks to you, please join us for a service titled “Within Our Darkest Night,” hosted by Rev. Christin Green and the Pastoral Care Team, on Fri., Dec. 9, at 7 p.m. This service offers a sacred space for people living through dark times, a time for contemplation and an opportunity to share space with those in need of healing. Please join us as we offer comfort in knowing you are not alone.