25th December - Christmas Day
Before our final reflection, we'd like to thank you for following the Inclusive Advent Calendar, and to express our gratitude to all our contributers.
We've reflected on 24 different themes, but there are many, many more that we have not covered. Let us remember all those who feel excluded, whether or not we have talked about them specifically.
We have tentative plans for a similar project in the future. If you would like to be involved as a contributer, please do get in touch to let us know. You may also wish to explore the Inclusive Church website.
Wishing all of you a very merry Christmas
and a thoroughly inclusive new year
Alice & Andrew Ambrose-Thurman
There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus
We live in a world where everything is judged on how it looks and beauty is rated above almost anything else and often if something doesn't fit with the standards of the world then it gets left out in the cold.
Have you ever looked at someone and thought, that person doesn't belong here in the church?
Beauty comes in all shapes and sizes, beauty can have a past but its past doesn't get to define its future.
People are beauty-full, their story doesn't change that but sometimes their story stops people from seeing the beauty and it stops them feeling like they belong.
Beauty doesn't have to look exactly like me or exactly like you but it does look like us all.
Beauty always has a home with the creator of beauty, it has a home in the family of God.
How do you make a person realise they are beauty-full? It starts by living out God's love.
Never Lose an Opportunity of Seeing Anything Beautiful. Beauty is God's Handwriting.
Written by a member of the Salvation Army.
The Salvation Army is a Christian church and registered charity, working in 126 countries worldwide, that offers support, friendship and practical help to people of all ages, backgrounds and needs.
Loving God, you made me who I am.
I praise you and I love you, for I am wonderfully and beautifully made, in your image.
I praise you and love you, for we are all wonderfully and beautifully made, in your image
Help me to love as Jesus' love, help me to recognise true beauty
And every day let me remember that all beauty has a home in the family of God
And help that family grow Lord.
Lord, in this time of Advent open our hearts to those who feel excluded from Your church.
Help us draw in those on the margins and place them in the centre of our family.