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Saturday, August 18, 2018

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Welcome to the Mary’s Dream campaign home page. To make sense of what follows, we suggest you first read the Mary’s Dream story opposite.

If, like us, you were moved by that story, we invite you to join the Mary’s Dream campaign to try and ensure that the “dream” does not become a reality.

We reacted to the story with a brainstorm which generated close to one hundred suggested “birthday presents for Jesus” that we thought would please Him. We put together a handout which contained the story and a selection of those suggestions and distributed it in our Parish on the first Sunday in advent.

That handout was well received and we’ve had many enquiries from other parishes which would like to take up the campaign too - hence this web site.

If you think your parish or community might also like to participate, guidelines for creating and distributing your own Mary’s Dream handout can be found here (see box with the links on the right).

If you are in a position to action the Mary’s Dream campaign, we encourage you to do so.  If you are not, perhaps you could forward this web site address to someone who might be able to.

Thank you


The Mary’s Dream Campaign Team


Mary's Story

Birthday Presents for Jesus

Dear Friend,

As Christmas approaches I’d like to share with you a simple story I came across some years ago called “Mary’s Dream”:

Mary's Dream

“I had a dream, Joseph. I don’t understand it, but I think it was about a birthday celebration for our son. The people in my dream had been preparing for about six weeks. They had decorated the house and bought new clothes. They’d gone shopping many times and bought many elaborate gifts. It was peculiar, though, because the Presents weren’t for our son. They wrapped them in beautiful paper and stacked them under a tree. Yes, a tree, Joseph, right inside their homes! They’d decorated the tree with sparkling ornaments. There was a figure like an angel on the top of the tree. Everyone was laughing and happy. They gave the gifts to each other Joseph, not to our son. I don’t think they even knew him. They never mentioned his name.  I had the strangest feeling that, if our Jesus had gone to this celebration, he would have been intruding. How sad for someone not to be wanted at his own birthday party! I’m glad it was only a dream. How terrible, Joseph, if it had been real!"

(Author Unknown) 


I shared the story with my parishioners at the time and some were so moved by it that they resolved to compile a birthday “Presents for Jesus” Christmas list for themselves and to share with others. My hope and theirs is that you will read the list of suggestions that follow and give one or more of the suggested presents to Jesus this Christmas along with your other gifts. Or you may think of another present that He would enjoy. I’m sure that if you chose any one of the presents listed, or gave something similar, Jesus would be delighted. And I’m also sure, given the delight Jesus enjoys in receiving His birthday gifts, Mary and Joseph would also smile with satisfaction knowing her dream was in fact unreal.

God Bless

Father John Archbold OMI


Mary’s Dream Campaign Guidelines

Thank you for your interest in the Mary’s Dream Campaign. To best participate we suggest that you prepare a handout that is appropriate to your parish community for distribution separately, or as a newsletter or bulletin insert, on or about the first Sunday in Advent each year. To assist you, please find attached four samples of the handout that you can use or amend:
a) Two Single Sheet/Two Page versions (ie to be printed on 2 sides of A4), and
b) Two Double Sheet/Four Page versions (ie to be printed on 2 sides of A3 then folded to A4).
One version of each is in the earlier Microsoft word “.doc” format and the other in the “,docx” format.
If you are unsure as to which to use, use the “.doc” one.

They are provided as templates for you to download and tailor to best suit the needs of your parish or community.

Whichever option you choose, please ensure that the final document you produced is approved by your Parish Priest, Parish Council or Community Leader before it is printed and distributed.

If you do take up the campaign we ask two things of you.  Could you please:
a) keep the front page format. To maintain this as a “campaign” we feel it is important that the first page be consistent across all parishes and communities, and

b) email any new “present” suggestions you generate to so we can update the current set for everyone to consider next year.

One final thing - the Mary’s Dream campaign is run by a very small team of volunteers. Unfortunately we do not have the resources to assist individual parishes. So if any of this is not completely clear, please let us know so we can change things for next year. In the interim you could:

a) use the simplest of the options that will work for you this year and build in the sophistication you a seeking next year, or

b) ask whoever is running the Mary’s Dream campaign in a neighbouring parish for advice.


However, we hope this will not be necessary. These guidelines have been independently checked, and, provided you have someone who is competent in Microsoft Word, you should have everything you need for your own parish campaign here on this web site.

Thank you and best wishes


The Mary’s Dream Campaign Team

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