In recent weeks, I have heard a number of people that they cannot wait for 2014 to be over. It has been a hard year for them.
It has made me decide to offer a New Year’s Eve service, as a way to set aside the old year and look ahead to the new. It will be a simple service, with readings, prayers, and a few hymns. There is a tradition of this in the Church. It has been called a Watchnight Service. Traditionally, it has started around 11.00pm, so that the church could ring in the new year with church bells at midnight.
I’m going to try a different time, however. We’ll have it at 5.30pm on Thursday, 31 December, in Adare. That will leave you plenty of time to do whatever else you may wish to do on New Year’s Eve!
I’ll be honest: I’ve never much liked New Year’s Eve. I’ve always found myself being reflective, looking back at the old year and wondering what the new year would bring. I have found that it helps me to have some kind of worship on the evening, as a way to mark the transition. That is what much liturgy is all about: a way to mark the transitions we encounter by reflecting on what they mean for our lives, seeing them in relation to God, and asking for God’s blessings on them.
So, I invite you all to the New Year’s Eve service. In Adare, at 5.30pm.