Praying Advent

Led by Canon Jane and George Brooke

Friday 4th December 4.00pm - Sunday 6th December 2.00pm 

£175 - Includes en-suite accommodation, all meals and refreshments


Advent is a time of expectation. 

This retreat will focus on advent prayer:

-the guidanc of grace

-the longing of love

-the stature of waiting

-the harnessing of hope


Session 1 (Friday Evening):

The Advent Collect: the Structure of Grace.

This session will look closely at the form and contents of the Advent Collect to bring out its depth of meaning and enhance its regular use as a reference point for all advent prayer.

Sessions 2 & 3 (Saturday Morning):

The Advent Antiphons: Longing for Mercy, Love and Justice through Scripture, Song and Sonnet.

These two sessions will engage with the Advent Antiphons, known most widely through the hymn O Come, O Come Emmanuel. The sessions will look at different aspects of each to highlight their significance in the journey of Advent prayer. Attention will be given to the use of scripture, to how they can be used for meditation, and to how they have inspired composers and poets.

Session 4 (Saturday Afternoon):

Waiting with God: the Construction of the Meaning of Christmas.

This session will rethink the place of waiting, beginning with a dialogue with Canon Vanstone’s Stature of Waiting. Particular attention will be given to silence in waiting.

Session 5 (Saturday Evening):

Writing an Advent Litany: Expressing Hope.

In addition to compiling the intercessions for the Sunday Eucharist in small groups, there will be the opportunity to create an Advent decoration.


Canon Jane Brooke, Canon Missioner and Vice-Dean of Chester Cathedral, has taken the lead in recent years in identifying and celebrating the Benedictine past at the Cathedral, through encouraging reflection on the rule of Benedict and the use of lectio divina. She has also engaged in various ways with the prayer of the Melanesian Brothers and Sisters.

George Brooke, Professor Emeritus at Manchester University, has taught Biblical Studies for over 40 years. He has led retreats and study sessions in several settings, most recently with Lenten spiritual reflections on the Psalms of the Passion Narratives at Chester Cathedral.


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