St Stephen’s Hospital is lighting up the night sky this Christmas with a brand-new Advent Christmas Lights Display generously handmade by members of the local Hervey Bay Men’s Shed.
The lights illuminate the words hope, peace, joy and love which represent the four weeks of Advent leading up to Christmas Day and the birth of Jesus in the Christian tradition.
Work to create the lights started many months ago at the Hervey Bay Men’s Shed, where local resident Paul and a few other members of the Shed worked tirelessly to create the display.
“First, we had to order the materials in from overseas, including the fluorescent tubing which we were told would be the best option. The problem we faced was getting the right amount of tubing to the nearest metre,” Paul said.
“Then we constructed the frames out of aluminium so they were light weight and wouldn’t go rusty. Then we were able to glue the lighting onto the frames.
“It’s not what we imagined at the start, but we kept coming back to the project over many weeks. Finally, we finished and we were very happy to see the lights go off to be displayed at the hospital,” he said.
St Stephen’s Hospital Mission and Pastoral Care Manager, Reverend Keren Seto, said the lights were designed to share the meaning of Christmas with the community.
“Advent is a season of both expectation and anticipation of what is referred to as the second coming of Jesus and the final realisation of the reign of God. It’s also about preparation and remembering again the time when Jesus first came among us,” Keren said.
“When I first started at St Stephen’s, I wondered how we might visibly share the meaning of Advent and the Christmas season with our community.
“There are many ways this could be done, but the lighting up of the words related to the Advent journey is something I’d seen done at our sister hospital, Buderim Private Hospital on the Sunshine Coast and I was inspired to bless our community in a similar way.
“I hope the lights might provide a catalyst for conversation within our Hervey Bay community during the Christmas season,” she said.
St Stephen’s Advent Christmas Lights display will light up each night at 6pm in the lead up to Christmas.