Will Mary and Joseph visit your home this Advent? The parish posada, a statue of Mary, Joseph and the donkey, will travel across our parish again this Advent and parishioners are invited to act as “host” by taking it home for a night to share the Christmas story with family and friends, before passing it on to the next host. The posada will be blessed in St Edmund’s on the first Sunday of Advent (27 November) and parishioners wishing to host the Posada can do so using the Journey Rota, posted on the church noticeboard. The Posada will spend the first week of Advent journeying across the Harleston end of the parish and the remaining three weeks in the Bungay area, including St Edmund’s school. It will return to St Edmund’s church every Sunday and will accompany the children at Children’s Liturgy.
What is posada all about? Posada is an old Mexican tradition where young people, dressed as Mary and Joseph, travel from house to house asking for a room for the night and tell the story about the imminent arrival of Jesus, during the weeks leading up to Christmas. On Christmas Eve, they visit the local church and re-enact the nativity and place figures of Mary and Joseph in the crib.
The modern day posada uses nativity figures of Mary and Joseph and the donkey who travel from place to place within the parish. This gives individual parishioners (or schools, nursing homes etc) the chance to ‘host’ the posada and to create their own celebration of the real message of Christmas, making room for Jesus in their lives.
How can I host the posada in my home for a night? All you need to do is add your name and contact details to the journey rota (on the church noticeboard) on a date that suits you. The person who is hosting the posada on the day before you will deliver the posada to you at an agreed time. You are then expected to make arrangements for the posada to be delivered to the next host on the following day. If you are unable to get to church to complete the Journey Rota or have difficulty with delivering the Posada to the next host, contact Helen Kirby on 01508 518723 (Bungay) or Clare Foster-Clarke on 07952 702456 (Harleston).
For the evening that you host the posada, you might like to invite family and/or friends to join you in your celebration or you might prefer a quiet evening of prayer and reflection – it’s up to you. We provide a sheet with suggested prayers but you can adapt or add to these as you wish. We also invite you to share a picture and/or a short account of your experience of hosting the posada in your home, for inclusion in the parish website.
Finally, hosting the posada can be an opportunity to share our faith with family and/or friends but, above all, it’s a chance to celebrate Advent and think about our journey towards Christmas.
It’s as simple as that!