Pearls of Life
Many people at Emmanuel and in churches like ours in the great cities of the world lead busy and frenetic lives, but still long for silence and serenity and a connectedness with the living God, source and origin of all life and love, revealed to us most beautifully and radiantly in Jesus Christ.
Martin Lönnebo, Emeritus bishop in Linköping Sweden, one of the Scandinavian Churches linked to the Church of England through the Porvoo agreement, spent much time considering what could help us in praying, what a person needs when they are undergoing times of stress and indeed how the church could support young parents to pray with their children… And he came to the conclusion that a form of rosary could be a practical help for these purposes, and also a help in spiritual formation, which he finds even more important than physical or mental training.
He named the rosary “Frälsarkransen”, which means “The Wreath of Christ” (the name is in Norway and in Denmark “Kristuskransen”). He wanted to emphasise the meaning of silence in prayer.
Praying is not simply speaking in words, it is being in the presence of God, with open hands, listening. Just being. Seeing and touching the beads focus the mind and he heart and help us remember the most important things in life.
The pearls of “The Wreath of Christ” have many meanings, they carry many pictures and secrets. Every single one of them tells something about God and about us. In the beads of prayer you can also see the life of Christ from Betlehem – via Desert – to the mountain of the sermon “do not be afraid” – via the last supper – to the cross and to the empty tomb in the garden – the joyful morning of resurrection.
A short introduction to praying the Pearls
The golden God Pearl
This is the gateway to the Mystery, the beginning and the culmination of the journey in and with God.
Compassionate and loving God, revealed to us most beautifully and radiantly in Jesus Christ, you are boundless; you are near. You are light and I am yours.
The oblong Silence Pearls
The Mystery unfolds in silence, in the places where our hearts listen to the call.
In God’s silence may I be – quiet, still, craving nothing.
The white I Pearl
We cannot totally let go of ourselves, but we can understand our lives as something greater than ourselves.
I am a drop in God’s ocean that reflects the sky.
The white Baptismal Pearl
This is where we are reminded that we are connected to the Mystery which is God. This no one can take from us.
I am your child, my God, help me to grow, mature, in your love.
The Desert Pearl
This pearl represents stresses and temptations of everyday life, yet we are reminded how Jesus looked beyond these to the will of God.
Cleanse me so I will be clean. Heal me so I will be whole.
The blue Serenity Pearl
It is possible to give our worries and our joys to the Great One and actually rest in the comfort that all shall be well.
Help me, Lord, to live in the abundance of life which is your precious gift.
The Love Pearls
These remind us of the love and attention that is ours from before time, and all that we have to give.
Open me now to the strength and transformation of love that I long for.
The Mystery Pearls
These hold our innermost secrets of our hearts, even those that have not been revealed to us yet.
Large or small, I entrust the secrets of my heart to your compassionate and loving care.
The black Pearl of the Night
This pearl is for pain, suffering and loss, but it also is the place of our growth.
Be close to me in darkness so I find the light.
The white Resurrection Pearl
This pearl brings us out of the night and into new beginnings. It is the place of hope, resurrection and transformation of life.
Every breath – you in me – me in you.