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A Liturgy for a Blue Christmas

(This is not a Full Service, but a liturgy that could be inserted into worship at any suitable
time during the Advent/Christmas period with, or without, the addition of further hymns and
prayers. Christmas is not a happy time for everyone.

Leader: It is close to Christmas and for all of us this raises mixed emotions. It is a cliché to
say that this time is difficult. But it is. It can be. Some of us have lost children or parents,
sisters or brothers. Some of us have relationships that are crumbling or marriages or
partnerships that have broken. And they say this is a time for families.
All around are signs of wealth and everyone seems to be spending, yet we have no
money. Debt cripples us and we see no end to it, but others want us to ‘join in’. For some
of us work is a memory, or we have been put out of work at just the wrong time, if ever
there is a right time.
And how can we celebrate waiting for the results of medical tests, feeling unwell or
knowing that we are terminally ill.
It is easy to feel very alone or depressed.
No one here will make light of this or deny the reality of another’s distress. We are here
because we need to be here.
What I’m going to ask you to do is for no-one else to see unless you choose, for no-one
else to know. Write on a piece of paper, draw if you prefer, something which expresses
what you really feel. Swear if you like. Say what you dare not say outside. Let loose your

In the quiet give time for people to write or draw or simply to sit. When you judge that they
are done continue.

Leader: As we think on what we have written or drawn let us quietly listen to some music.
Music This should be sensitively chosen, need not be religious and must not have words.

Leader: So what is this Christmas?


Andrew Pratt (born 1948)
Words © Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England,
Please include any reproduction for local church and school use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd.

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