Advent 2012: The Sacred Story

Weaving tunes, composing symphonies: The Sacred Story incorporates our own sacred stories.

A shoot shall come out from the stump of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots. The spirit of the Lord shall rest on him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord*.    Isaiah 11:1-3

Rapt and wrapped

At the recent men’s group we listened to a segment of a talk given by Ian Morgan Cron at Greenbelt.  He related the story of a famous jazz player whose music at one venue delighted and awed his audience, that is until a discordant sound was introduced.  A mobile phone went off.  The moment had been spoiled and roughly dismissed.  A disappointed silence hung over the audience.  The player then put mouth to reed and played that self same mobile tune and incorporated it into his ongoing piece. Wrapped together the spell returned now enhanced.  

Stories that sing

A Jesse tree* shows the geneology of Jesus as a tree decorated with symbols which relate to his forebears and their associated events.  A theme of Cron's was owning our own story and also seeing within it the touch of Jesus, with it’s good and also ugly incorporated, much as the jazz player did the mobile tune.  My story is incorporated within our story incorporated withinthe story, so says Richard Rohr.  Our story is that of our faith community or of our spiritual heritage which extends from the Biblical record of faith stories.  The story is that of Jesus, the Alpha and Omega.

The story of Christmas is one part, and a very significant part, of the story, one that crosses our own.  The incarnation says

  • Matter matters
  • The source of all life is the Light of God
  • Yes to us and our story 
  • Here and now we are one

On each Sunday in Advent a reflection on these melodies or messages will be posted in turn on this site. These meditations will also include:

Symbols and stories

7 days of links to symbols and stories of Jesus’ forebears plus part of the Christmas narrative.

These make up the story and our story, within which I may see my own story. We read or recall the story (Lectio).  Whatever particular phrase or symbol strikes a chord, focus on that (Meditatio).  What desire emerges, express this through a prayer (Oratio) and share your thoughts.

A Question

A general question such as Is there anything I am excluding or not owning in my story?

Family activity: To populate and upload your own Jesse tree

A Jesse tree may be downloaded and each week symbols offered to populate your tree.  Each Sunday a fresh set of characters, symbols and short summary text will be emailed (contact us if you are not on the mailing list).  Print out, colour in and paste these and/or draw your own or cut out a relevant picture from a magazine.  At any point email us your Jesse tree or symbol and we will create a gallery of Jesse trees for viewing


Throughout advent we will post reflections in part informed by the theme of sacred stories.