We Who Still Wait- advent poetry/art/meditation project…

We who still wait

Our advent collaboration, inspired and curated by Si Smith, and involving Photographer Steve Broadway, Ian Adam’s meditations and poems by me is now available!

You can get hold of it here in dowload for now, but hopefully you can order it in actual paper soon too. (It would make a lovely Christmas present I reckon, in fact some of you might be getting just that!)

Any help with the social media spreading the word thing would be appreciated as ever…

Here is the blurb from the Proost website;

This beautiful Advent product evokes the sense of waiting and watching at this season. Its available here as a download for £3.50.

Expect beautiful poems, challenging punchy prayers and thoughts and some beautiful photography in this devotion resource aimed at taking you through the 25 days of December up to Christmas Day.

From the book, this is from Elizabeth:

They say every flapping scrapping life is 
A brand new miracle
– I see them all in the street
Displayed there by their miracle makers
For the rest of us to worship.


Four great artists have come together to make this book happen.  Chris Goan, Ian Adams, Steve Broadway and Si Smith have brought their collective creative wisdom together to shape a wonderful book and it’s one we’re very excited about here at Proost.

In addition to this version there is also a Bonus Edition available which includes all of Steve’s original photographs for personal use.  That edition is £5.

A hard copy of the book is currently being created and will be made available shortly.

Ad venting…



We are all caught up in the Christmas madness again. Over the last few years I have railed and moaned about all the wasted money and fake snowflaking. I will not do that this year- partly because it has been said, but also because it is better to start closer to home.

However, I always find myself conscious of those who are outside the plastic bubble we make out of Christmas. I suspect that Jesus would be too. That is what this poem is about;


Ad vent


Who can ever expect the unexpected?

For what is hope to those from whom hope has been taken?

Why promise light but leave us in darkness?

I stand in this shit of tinsel and trimmings


The bells are not ringing


I live in the space between

What is

And what may never come.




A lovely word.

A female word that sometimes excludes men, but more often contains and holds us all.

A word containing the unknown, the still-to-be, the potential to succeed…

And the potential to utterly fail.

It is a word that is synonymous with Advent. Waiting in hope, uncertainty, and perhaps even fear.

Waiting for something to change, for something to be born into the mess of us all.

I read this today– another one of Cheryl Lawrie’s lovely poems.

Perhaps our mistake is thinking
that love will always come
in the shape we have known it:

a happy ending
a new beginning
a christ-child.

In this pregnant pause
while the earth holds its breath
waiting for what
it does not know,
let us have the faith
that even we,
with all our wise
and cynical
would not imagine
the shape that love
will take

and instead just
have the faith
that it will come.

First Sunday of Advent…




There is no patience in this waiting

No watching from windows

Or straining for the whispered step in the distance


There is no surprise in this coming

It has been shouted by stars

And sung from supermarket speakers


There is no mystery in this telling

It is a story told and sold a million times

Asset stripped and bankrupt


There is no meaning in this madness

All this plastic decoration

All this hollow celebration


Yet still

He comes

Aoradh advent sky lantern launch…

We are just in after a our sky lantern launch.

It was lovely.

We have been passing out lanterns to community groups, and selling others for charity, and invited people to decorate them with prayers and hopes.

Here are a few pictures-


I have decided to change the word ‘advent’ into an adjective rather than a verb.

Then, rather than being merely a calendic description, it might become a spiritual practice.

Instead of being a commercial break before the main consumption, it might then become a period of reflective anticipation.

Instead of being something to rush headlong past towards a glittering destination, we might start to savour the journey.

So tomorrow, the first Sunday of Advent- always on or around St Andrews day- I am going to begin…


Advent sky lantern launch…

Aoradh are planning a massed sky lantern launch on the banks of the river Clyde as a way of celebrating the season of Advent.

In doing this, we pray that we can learn how to wait in hope for the coming of light into darkness.

This is a repeat of an event we did last year- some photos of which are here.

We will be using lanterns made from 100% biodegradable materials- with no wire that can be of potential risk to any animals.

We will be selling the lanterns at a local shop, and making others available free for schools and community groups. And profit will go to a Christmas charity.

Here is the poster-

If you are fairly local it is well worth coming to join us- the spectacle is wonderful.

And the process of making prayers that float upwards is very moving.

This is the blurb that we include with the lanterns-



The light keeps shining in the darkness, and the darkness can never put it out…


As part of our Advent festivities, Aoradh invite you to be part of a celebration of light.


Each year, we are plunged into a whirl of busyness around Christmas- all the presents we buy, the cards we send, the pressure of making ready for a feast. All these things are good, but it is so easy to lose sight of the Christ-child. We wanted to encourage one another to step aside, and reflect…


Our intention is to use these paper sky lantern as carriers of our hopes, expectations and prayers in this season of waiting, and so make our deliberate preparation for the coming Christmas.


You are invited to write prayers and thoughts on the lantern, and to be part of a MASS SKY LANTERN LAUNCH from the West Bay Dunoon, on Sunday the 12th of December, from 5.00 pm– weather permitting.


(NB We will need fairly calm, dry conditions for the mass launch to take place. If we are not able to launch on the Sunday, then we will go for 5.00 on Monday- then Tuesday and so on.)


The spectacle of a large number of sky lanterns rising over the Clyde together is something that we hope will live in our memories, as a visual reminder of the rising possibility of hope.


And of light flickering in the darkness…


Be careful as you write on the lanterns- they are fragile!



Advent prayers rising…

We are back in this evening after another day spent out on Dunoons West Bay, serving mulled wine, mince pies, and having lots of good conversations with folk as the came to collect Christmas trees.

We had also set up some meditation things, did some music (oh my fingers!) and were selling Sky lanterns with the intention of inviting people to write prayers/thoughts on them, and participate in a massed sky lantern launch.

Why did we do it?

  1. To encourage people to be reflective and conscious of the season of Advent- a way for people to become more Spiritually aware, and open again to the Spirit of God
  2. To support work to raise money for CLANN (Community leisure development) and Christian Aid.
  3. To make a lovely spectacle that will linger in people’s minds
  4. To bring people together- and allow community to flourish, in all it’s different forms

And it was great!

We had a mixed blessing with the weather- it was calm, dry, but the Clyde was masked in freezing fog, and echoing with the mournful fog horns as ships passed out to sea.

However, the sight of the lanterns going off up into the mist was wonderful- eery, moving and affecting.

What was even better was the numbers of people who came and took part this evening- from schools, community projects, families, individuals.

Michaela described one family who lit the lantern, then stood together around it as it warmed up, arms around one another in silence. Then they let the lantern rise up into the night sky. Whatever their prayers were, may they be blessed…

Here are the promised photos- Andy took some more, so I will hopefully get to post a few of his soon.

Advent thing day one, Dunoon West Bay- a few pics…

Just back from a day out in the cold celebrating Advent whilst people buy Christmas trees. Tired but happy…

Here are a few pics-