St Alban's Church

Churchill Parken 6, Langelinie, DK 1263, Copenhagen, Denmark | Map


Today is: Tuesday 16th, 2019

Advent Appeal 2015 - A Message from the Chaplain

Posted on Monday 7th December, 2015

My dear friends,

One of the tasks which clergy are often asked to perform is to “say Grace” before a meal. And so I always keep an eye out for fresh ways to give thanks for what we are about to receive and to be mindful of the needs of others. I came across just such inspiring words recently in the writings of Archbishop Oscar Romero.

Romero, who is well-known for his courageous stand against political oppression and poverty when he was Archbishop of San Salvador in El Salvador, is reported to have often used the following Grace:

“O God, to those who have hunger give bread: And to those who have bread give the hunger for justice. Amen.”

That beautiful prayer came to mind when I read about this year’s Diocese in Europe Advent Appeal (details here). The Appeal is a response to the ongoing migration crisis. Writing to all Church of England congregations across the continent, the Right Revd Dr. Robert Innes, Bishop of Gibraltar in Europe, outlined the details:

"At Christmas time, we remember that the infant Jesus was a migrant – born away from home in Bethlehem and then fleeing with his family from Herod’s persecution to safety in Egypt. Today, migration is ‘the big issue’ across Europe. But whilst every country is talking about migration, some countries are affected more than others, and amongst the most affected is Greece. It is therefore without hesitation that in my appeal for Advent 2015 I encourage us to respond to the needs of migrants arriving in Greece. There are two projects.

One is the ‘Lighthouse’ project aiming to bring relief to migrants arriving on the island of Lesvos. Because of its proximity to Turkey, this is the island which has been receiving the highest arrival rate and where the conditions seem to be amongst the worst. ‘Lighthouse’ is a new non-profit organisation set up to meet some critical and acute needs.

The other project relates to our long-term support for Apostoli, the Greek Orthodox diaconal organisation providing assistance to refugees in Athens, and also on the islands of Chios, Samos and Kos. Funds will be allocated to the two projects as seems right when the money is ready for distribution in 2016.”

This Bishop’s Advent Appeal is an opportunity to show solidarity with some of the most vulnerable people in Europe and express our faith in practical ways. A retiring collection, in aid of the Appeal, will be held at the Carol Services on 13 and 14 December. Alternatively, donations can be made on-line at any time (see details here).

Can I ask you please to keep this Appeal in your prayers and to give as generously as you can? And can I also suggest that you consider saying Romero’s Latin American Grace at some meals this Christmas-time?

A happy and holy Christmas to you all.

“O God, to those who have hunger give bread: And to those who have bread give the hunger for justice. Amen.”

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