CHRISTIANS are using the social-media site Twitter to re-tell the Christmas story in novel ways this year.
In Germany, a Twitter-user called Joseph von Nazareth is journalling the nativity story from the perspective of Joseph. Describing himself as a “35-year-old third-generation carpenter from Nazareth”, he regularly updates the site with short descriptions from the Christmas story.
This week he started recounting the journey of Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem. In one of his 140-character tweets, he wrote: “Please note: my carpenter’s workshop is closed till January 1 because of census, we’re on company outing. Thanks for your understanding.”
The Bishop of Bradford, the Rt Revd Nick Baines, this week announced the winners of his Christmas Twitter competition, in which he asked people to describe the meaning of Christmas in one tweet.
Bishop Baines said that he was impressed with the standard of entries, and that the winners had “all managed to articulate something of the enduring significance of Christmas”.
His own tweet read: “Christmas is about God opting into the world in all its messiness and not exempting himself from it — showing he is on our side, one of us.”
The winning tweets:
More amazing than getting the whole Bible into a tweet — is God, who got all of himself into a man — Jesus.
The Revd John Hartley, Bradford
He came to visit and we were taken aback by the generosity of his gift. I keep meaning to invite him back.
Jane Barrett, Ilkley
The Invisible revealed, the Mystery made known, the Remote draws near and the Silent speaks, as Eternal becomes mortal and God comes to us.
Canon Andy Williams, Bradford Cathedral
The meaning of Christmas is an oxymoron — lowly pomp, servant king, light in the darkness, now and not yet, life in death.
Ruth Allison, Keighley