On the third Sunday in Advent, DBC decamped to Dean Wood Care Home in Woodingdean to conduct a morning service for the residents. Members of staff joined us to swell the numbers and around 50 people gathered for an hour of traditional carols and readings.

It was a joyful occasion. John asked the questions, what is the essence of Christmas? Why did Jesus come? Well, one of the reasons is to bring lasting peace on earth. We all need peace!

John retold the beautiful story of the Christmas Truce in 1914.  It is often celebrated as a symbolic moment of peace in an otherwise devastatingly violent war. We may like to believe that for just one day, all across the Western Front, men from both sides emerged from the trenches and met in No Man’s Land to exchange gifts  and play football, however this brief festive reprieve was far from a mass event. Where it didn’t occur, Christmas Day was a day of war like any other. Where it did, accounts say that men from both sides sang carols, left their trenches and met in No Man’s Land. It was only a brief respite of hostilities though – a fragile peace! John reminded us that God sent His son Jesus into the world. He is the Prince of Peace and the bringer of peace; a peace that will last for ever. This brings us hope and comfort.

It is such a blessing to go and share the good news of Jesus with the lovely folk at Dean Wood.  There isn’t the opportunity for residents to go to church and so to visit the home on a monthly basis and to conduct a carol service is a real joy for the DBC team. It is evident that it means so much to the residents. To sing hymns/carols and listen to familiar Bible stories and verses jogs the memory and brings a sense of well-being and peace.

We look forward to continuing our visits to Dean Wood in 2019.