Coming this Advent: A JRS-St Beuno’s Collaboration
by Judith Irving
Amidst all the difficulties of this year, one of the joys for us here at St Beuno’s has been our new collaboration with Jesuit Refugee Service UK (JRSUK), which has expressed itself especially on our social media, on Twitter and on Facebook. Perhaps you have seen our social media prayer posts highlighting the needs, creativity, joyfulness and wonderful faces and energies of JRSUK friends?
It was in summer 2020 that two members of St Beuno’s team (Inge and Judith) and Nick Hanrahan who is JRSUK’s Outreach Officer, began having conversations and then creating this social media partnership: a month of praying together integrating prayers, concerns, testimonies and photos and focusing on particularly relevant, important and often urgent needs. These prayer requests and reflections, appearing each day, journeyed through May and then culminated in June, for Refugee Week 2020, an event that appropriately celebrated the creativity, imagination, fun, joy, resilience and dignity of refugees. We want to thank all our St Beuno’s Friends – all of you – for praying and giving. It makes such a difference and we are so grateful, as are all at JRSUK.
As two of the works of the Jesuits in Britain it has been fitting that we share our work with one another and with our friends and those who encourage us. JRS is part of the social justice mission of the Jesuits in Britain and is inspired by Ignatian spirituality which St Beuno’s helps people to experience, and grow and live in.
It has been inspiring to know more of the wonderful JRSUK team and their work and to learn more about the amazing people they help and accompany. Since Refugee Week, we have continued to pray with JRSUK and to raise requests for needs and issues – and we thank you heartily for responding to these so generously.
As the year has unfolded, so we have continued to foster our relationship with JRSUK and all has continued to be fruitful. So much so, that now, for Advent 2020, we have created a JRS-St Beuno’s social media Advent calendar! Nick, Inge and Judith have written prayers together and each one of these has been beautifully and aptly illustrated by Carcazan; each illustration being a visual, reflective response to each prayer for the day. Look out for these daily Advent prayers on Facebook and Twitter (both on St Beuno’s and JRSUK’s social media) beginning from Sunday 29th November.