Merry Christmas! Tonight we will celebrate the birth of Jesus, the Light of the World! It's easy to become callous to the coming of Jesus into the world when all around we hear the story of the darkness coming into the world. But with God's coming to earth as one of us, the light shines in the darkness and it is more than enough to penetrate the darkness and change the world. You are invited to join us in person or online tonight at 7 PM for a candlelight service as we celebrate that God is here among us! The greatest gift is given to us, coming in a baby . . . in Jesus. If you stop by at 6:30 PM, you will have the opportunity to hear musical offerings brought by all ages into our sacred space.
Bring a friend for carols, the Christmas story, prayers, and candlelight as we welcome Christ into our world. There is room for you!
On Sunday, the day after Christmas, we recognize that attendance may be low. Some of you may be worn out from whatever you have planned for Christmas day and many of you may be traveling. Still, we recognize the importance of worshiping God in this season as we proclaim Joy to the World! For that reason, we invite you to join us in worship Sunday morning at 10:30 AM at church or online. We will be streaming a service that was recorded for us by the entire Synod of the Covenant (that includes participation by many different presbyteries including our own)! Carols in harp, with families, by soloists, by a variety of voices and instruments will be shared with us, and a sermon by Rev. Dr. Chip Hardwick, our interim Synod executive (and personal friend of Peg Baker and her children!) will be shared to celebrate the ongoing Christmas season. We will gather in the sanctuary to watch it together, knowing that not everyone has the ability to watch this via computer and that there is value in meeting together for worship. I pray you will join us online or in-person for this special service Sunday morning.
Merry Christmas, Church. O come let us adore Him.
First Sunday After Christmas
Office closed for Christmas
Celebration of Epiphany
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by Luci Shaw
In sleep his infant mouth works in and out.
He is so new, his silk skin has not yet
been roughed by plane and wooden beam
nor, so far, has he had to deal with human doubt.
He is in a dream of nipple found,
of blue-white milk, of curving skin
and, pulsing in his ear, the inner throb
of a warm heart’s repeated sound.
His only memories float from fluid space.
So new he has not pounded nails, hung a door
broken bread, felt rebuff, bent to the lash,
wept for the sad heart of the human race.
by Rev. Lauren Wright Pittman
Inspired by Luke 2:1-20 | Digital painting
In this familiar narrative, what stuck out for me in this reading was the juxtaposition of human and divine, the mundane and extraordinary, the
humbleness of a manger and the glory of a multitude of heavenly hosts. I wanted to image this dichotomy with the everyday, intimate, tender scene of new parents and their yawning baby, enveloped by the glittering, awestriking
magnificence of God.
The holy family is framed by an almond shape called a mandorla. Mandorlas have been used in Christian art to signify the glory of God, and can also represent the intersection and fullness of two things, like heaven and earth or spirit and body. Likely, the most familiar instance of this concept
is the shape made between the overlapping circles in a Venn diagram. I wanted to use this shape because this is the moment when human and divine intersect in the person of Jesus, and when the glory of God is birthed into the world. The golden field surrounding the mandorla is filled with my interpretation of the six-winged seraphim from early Christian art, representing the heavenly hosts filling the air with tidings of peace (imaged by olive branches). A seven pointed star hangs over the heads of the family, surrounded by seven other stars, a number that represents completeness.
—Rev. Lauren Wright Pittman