In December 2017, some members of Salem Chapel came to a Christmas Trail training session in Southmead. Following this training session, they were keen to run a Christmas trail of their own in 2018 – so the journey of planning and preparation began! Likewise during the summer of 2018 we connected with another church in Bedminster – St.Francis, who were also keen to run their first Christmas trail.
During 2018 we were involved with 2 separate churches in the Bedminster area who were thinking about running a Christmas Trail for their local school(s) – Salem Chapel, and St.Francis. It has been fantastic to journey with people in both of these churches as they met to plan and prepare for their trails. It was wonderful to see so many people from each church getting on board with the initiative in all sorts of ways that suited their individual gifts/talents. Both churches ran the “Christmas through the keyhole” trail – which can be purchased from Redland Education Centre website. BSC were involved with giving advice, supporting and encouraging the overall leaders, and offering help with training the wider team. There were some superb actors involved – wise men, shepherds, inn keepers, Mary and Joseph, but the stars of the show were the real life babies acting as Jesus! The children were captivated by the awe and wonder of a real baby in the manger! The schools that attended the two trails loved it and were keen to be involved next year. Both churches are keen to develop their connections even further with these local schools. Both churches also opened up their trails to the community to visit on a Saturday morning. These were both well attended, and enjoyed by local families. In 2019 – both churches successfully ran the Christmas trails again!
What an awesome experience was had by all at St Francis during CTTK. None of us quite imagined the incarnational poignance nor the emotional high of seeing a real baby in situ.
– Rev Andrew Doarks 2018