Christmas Light Switch On

Celebrating Christmas with the good people of Durham.

Celebrating Christmas with the good people of Durham.

After church Sunday, we headed home for a quick lunch and one of the best parts of the week–the Sunday afternoon nap!  Ahhhhh.

Up and at ‘em!  Time to head into the City Centre.  It was the start of the Christmas celebration with the Christmas Lights Switch On.  We bundled up and headed out.

I will confess that the initiation of the Christmas lights in the middle of the city is one of my favorite events of the year.  In our home in the States, Fairhope, it takes place the Thursday before Thanksgiving.  It seems as though the whole city comes out for the big “flip of the switch.”  The event in Durham, UK lived up to our expectations.

After an obligatory stop off at Krispy Kreme for some wintertime fuel, we headed to the Market Square. The Market Square was covered with Christmas lights, including a roof of strung lights.  A large Christmas tree sits at one corner.  A lorry and wagon (that’s what we call a semi truck and trailer) was parked in the square and was transformed into a stage–complete with sound, lights, and a jumbotron.

Some local celebrities got the crowd singing Christmas Carols.  A local minister came to the stage to offer a message about Christmas and its real purpose–the celebration of the Savior, Jesus Christ, and his coming to the Earth.  The mayor came out to welcome the citizens.  Then Father Christmas was joined by a host of people to finally turn on the lights.

The family and I stood under the glow of the lights and the world got a little smaller for me.  I felt a connection to the family and friends around us–and those many miles away.  We are joined together by the same reason-the Savior’s birth.  That’s a purpose that transcends all time and space.  And for that, I am ready to celebrate.

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