This Sunday is the when we lift up peace as part of our Advent celebration leaned up to Christmas. For some this is a wild and crazy season that is anything but peaceful. And yet we are supposed to find peace in this season. The world around appears crazy and people are fighting and division is everywhere. People reject those that don't look, act, and believe the same as they do. We are called to rise above the division and fighting of this world. We are called to embrace those that are different from ourselves. It can be hard to do but as Christians we should be able to create peace in the midst of the chaos of this world. We will spend some time looking at this in worship this week.
This Sunday we will be looking at Gospel message of peace in the 1950's classic Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. From Rudolph, to the elf that wants to be a dentist, to the Island of Misfit toys, we learn how rejecting those that don't look/act/believe the same as us deprives us of people that we might need to help us in the future.
The bulletin for this Sunday is attached. As always we are live-streaming on our Facebook page or our YouTube channel. For those that are watching when we livestream we do have a person that can see the comments posted if there are sound issues. While we don't want to fixate on every little sound issue we do want to know when something is way off and affects your ability to be able to enter into worship.I will warn those watch on Facebook they sometimes mute the video clips I use after the livestream. Unless you are watching worship when it is live I would recommend watching on the YouTube channel because the quality is better.
We are not passing offering plates so the wooden boxes are available to put your offering in. Of course you can also give online, use text to give (844-406-0358), or mail in the offering to church. This is a great time of year for those that are retired to make sure you have spent the required amount from your retirement accounts. If you have not you can send funds to the church to help support our ministries and it qualifies as part of your mandatory drawdown. Also, those that have stocks that have gone up and don't want to sell them and pay the tax penalty we have ways you can gift them to the church. You don't pay any taxes and actually can get a tax deduction if you qualify! We have worked hard to come up with many ways for you to support the ministries of our church.
We will be collecting prayers in the prayer box on the table in the parlor. Also, if you have announcement that you need to be shared please write them down and give them to me before the service. This will be an ongoing practice for prayers and announcements to help ensure that they are heard and understood by all (especially those worshipping with us virtually).
Just a quick note as you plan for Christmas Eve. We do have members that do not come to worship in the sanctuary because we do not require masks. They have been very gracious and understanding and have instead been watching online. This year we have multiple Christmas Eve services that are available. The 7pm Christmas Eve service has traditionally been very, very full. With COVID being a concern still and that service being a service that can be very full we are going to make that service a mask required service. If you are someone who can't stand wearing a mask you can come to the 5pm or 11pm service. This also allows our members who need the extra layer of protection to have a Christmas Eve service they can attend. While we have been calling the 5pm service the contemporary service, it is going to have the traditional Christmas carols and will end with candlelight and Silent Night and Joy to the World. It is just going to have a little more relaxed feel than the 7pm service. Both the 5pm and 7pm services are going to have violin, cello, banjo, and special singers led by Holly Phillips. Of course the 11pm will be the Christmas Communion service and for that service Joe Coleman will be leading the music. We will be live-streaming both the 5pm and 7pm services. Please invite people to come join us in any way people can.
I look forward to worshipping with you this Sunday. I am hoping we will add some peace to our lives and the world this week. I think all of us could use it. Feel free to invite others to join us.