The familiarity of the Christmas story can sometimes dull us to its shocking and uncomfortable elements – and to the miracle of the season.
To open familiar stories up again – and to make them ‘new’ and alive – Janet Killeen uses voices or perspectives that make the reader wonder ‘What’s going to happen next?’ ‘Who is this?’, rather than thinking ‘I know what’s coming.’
In her stories and poems, Janet reveals the contemporary relevance of the Bible, as well as transporting us back to what it might have felt like at the time. She writes:
‘My hope is that an image in a poem or story or the breakthrough of a sense of smell or sight or touch may stir your imagination, so that, for a moment, you can hold both now and then together in an instant of time, and travel afresh towards Bethlehem.’
Janet spent many years leading small groups in various church settings, and so Towards Bethlehem also includes material for individual and group reflection.
Janet Killeen studied English and American literature, and taught in a London comprehensive school for over thirty-five years. She has published poems, short stories and two novels, and is a regular contributor to Wild Goose books.