Monthly Archives: December2016

hi archyive

Worship with us this Sunday at 10 am! We will have a worship service of lessons and carols followed by our Christmas Day Dinner.

There is no better place to celebrate Christ’s coming into the world than in the community of faith, and that is exactly what we will do this Christmas Day.  Not only will we reflect on the Christmas story while singing praises, but we will also be serving as the hands, feet, and face of Christ.  Please join us for worship on Christmas day and make plans to stay for Christmas Day Dinner to fellowship with our brothers and sisters in Christ.

Sacrifice, we understand its necessity, but usually only appreciate it in hindsight.  The willingness to desire power, prestige, wealth, and honor is a natural desire, but sometimes we forget that greater things can be accomplished in the long term, if sacrifices are made in the short term.
Our Christmas story, though dressed it up in a warm, loving framework, is a story where much was sacrificed for the arrival of Jesus.  Last week we talked of the scandal that Mary endured, and this week we will address the scandal that Joseph endured.
Joseph was betrothed, a kind of engagement, to Mary.  When Mary became evidently pregnant there were two options that most people would consider.  Mary had been unfaithful with another man, or Mary and Joseph had not waited for marriage.  In either case Joseph loses prestige, honor, and “face” with his family and peers.  He knew he was not guilty, and assumed that Mary was.  He had decided to secretly break the engagement and send Mary away as quietly as possible to lessen the scandal.  If any family has lived in this reality, you know the horrible sadness and shame that accompanies such moments.
However, God intervened in a dream to Joseph, and Joseph marries Mary and they travel for a census to Bethlehem, then later to Egypt.  Time heals many things, and gossip can lessen as time passes.  Mary and Joseph knew this and waited several years before returning home.
Yet, what is striking here is the sacrifice that Joseph made for the coming of Jesus.  He gave up his pride, family hopes, prestige, machismo, and much more so that Jesus could come into this world.  The question we must ask ourselves is, “What are we willing to give up so that Jesus can be born our lives?”  That is the question of Christmas.  May God bless us as we seek and find.
                                                      Peace,  Todd

CHRISTMAS EVE COMMUNION

December 24th at 3:00 and 5:00 PM in the Sanctuary. Note that both services will be 30-40 minutes long with identical worship order. There will be Christmas music at each service.

HOLIDAY SCHEDULES

Main Street Preschool will reopen on Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Aldersgate Mission will reopen on Tuesday, January 3, 2017

The Church Office will close at noon on Thursday, December 22nd and reopen on Tuesday, December 27th

YEAR END GIVING The Church Office will accept 2016 contributions through 12:00 noon on Friday, December 30th. To claim a charitable contribution deduction this year, you may also mail a check to the church, as long as it is postmarked by December, 31, 2016.

15th ANNUAL CHRISTMAS DINNER Christmas Day is on a Sunday this year! That means our Christmas Day Dinner will happen right a”er our combined worship service at 10 AM. This meal is for any and all in the church and community who would like to come together to share a meal at Christmas! Our goal this year is to truly have a family Christmas with our neighbors, and the greatest gift of all will be your presence. Please make plans to love and serve with us.

We will need donations to best serve our neighbors! As you make plans to bring your canned goods for White Christmas, these items are the most needed: green beans, sweet potatoes, soups and canned meals with pop-tops (Spaghetti O’s, Ravioli, and Chicken Noodle Soup).

Please be attentive to expiration dates. Other items needed: towels and wash cloths, socks, underwear, sweatshirts (Large and X-Large), and fleece blankets ($2.50 at Wal-Mart).