Action Zones 

Follow The Star 

FOLLOW THE STAR logoFor the second year running, the Church of England has adopted 'Follow The Star' as its branding for Advent and Christmas. You will see that it features on all our Christmas publicity. The concept is, of course, taken from the experience of the Magi who explained to King Herod, “We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him” (Matthew 2:2)

It strikes me that in our celebrity-driven modern culture there are many ‘stars’ competing for our attention. Very often stars also come and go, as our society goes after the latest personality or trend. Sometimes our modern stars fizzle and burn out under the scrutiny of the media or as we realise - like us - that they are not as shiny as we might have first thought

But the difference with the Christmas star is that it points, not to itself, but beyond itself. It points to the one who the Magi identified as the King of Jews and who would later be heralded as “the image of the invisible God, the first born over all creation” (Colossians 1:15). It points to the one who underwent the most extraordinary scrutiny and yet, at the end of his life, even his enemy found no basis for the charges against him (Luke 23:14)

As the Magi - along with the other visitors to the stable that first Christmas - rightly identified, the Christmas star pointed to the one who had been promised and would be both King and Saviour; the one who would offer life in all its fullness to those who believed in his name. No wonder, when they saw the star stop over the place where this child was, they were overjoyed!

This Christmas-time, when we see so much brokenness and hurt around us, we have the opportunity to follow the star afresh for ourselves and also to invite our families, friends and neighbours to join us on the journey. My prayer is that as we do so we will encounter again the one to whom the star points and who offers hope to us all
Wishing you a very happy Christmas
Rev Matthew Price
Vicar, St Mary Magdalene Church