Advent

December 3 – First Sunday of Advent
So that you are not lacking in any spiritual gift as you wait for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ. ~1 Corinthians 1:3-9

The new church year begins with a season of waiting. Paul’s words to the church in Corinth is a reminder to us today. As a community of faith- a whole-you are not lacking any spiritual gift. While you wait, it is time to see what ways the gifts of the whole body of Christ can be used to share the good news. 

December 10 – Second Sunday of Advent
A voice cries out: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. ~Isaiah 40:3-4

What is in the way of your path to God? Is it other little gods like money, material items, or distractions? The call is to clear these obstacles from our path and simplify. Think of how straight and smooth your life might be when God is given top priority and the obstacles put into proper perspective. 

December 17- Third Sunday of Advent
He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. ~John 1:7-8

As Christians we work to make sure that “Jesus is the reason for the season.” Our Christmas cards and decorations provide a witness to our faith. How can we continue this same witness the rest of the year? How do we steward the good news in the off-season?

Poinsettia Sign-up

There is a clipboard on the kiosk in the gathering space to sign-up to purchase a poinsettia in memory of a loved one. The poinsettias are $7 each. Please put money into the offering plate (marked clearly). You may take your purchased plant home at the end of the Christmas season.

This Week and Beyond – December 13th

This Week

Wednesday, December 13th
9:00 am – 1:00 pm Pastor Amy’s Office Hours @ St. James
5:45 pm QC Studio Z – Zumba (fellowship hall)

Thursday, December 14th
9:00 am – 1:00 pm Pastor Amy’s Office Hours @ All Saints

Friday, December 15th
9:00 am – 1:00 pm Pastor Amy’s Office Hours @ St. James

Saturday, December 16th
9:30 am QC Studio Z – Zumba (fellowship hall)
1:00 – 3:00 pm Food Pantry & Clothing Closet
4:00 – 7:00 pm Together in Christ Live Nativity @ St. James (soup supper served in the fellowship hall)

Sunday, December 17th
9:00 – 9:45 am Ardor rehearsal (sanctuary)
9:30 – 10:15 am children’s Sunday school (downstairs classroom)
9:45 – 10:15 am Men’s Choir rehearsal (sanctuary)
10:30 am Worship
11:30 am Fellowship time (gathering space)

Monday, December 18th
No Office Hours for Pastor Amy
5:45 pm QC Studio Z – Zumba (fellowship hall)

Tuesday, December 19th
9:00 am – 1:00 pm Pastor Amy’s Office Hours @ All Saints
12:00 pm e-weekly articles/announcements deadline
5:30 pm Fit4Mom Stroller Strides class (fellowship hall)
6:30 Council meeting (library)

Wednesday, December 20th
9:00 am – 1:00 pm Pastor Amy’s Office Hours @ St. James
5:45 pm QC Studio Z – Zumba (fellowship hall)

Beyond

Sunday, December 24th
9:00 am No worship @ St. James
9:00 am Ardor rehearsal (sanctuary)
9:30 am No children’s Sunday school
9:45 am No Men’s Choir rehearsal
10:30 am Worship – Advent 4 @ All Saints
4:00 pm Christmas Eve Worship with Holy Communion and candle lighting @ St. James
7:00 pm Christmas Eve Worship with Holy Communion and candle lighting @ All Saints

Monday, December 25th
Christmas Day – Office Closed

Sunday, December 31st
10:30 am Worship – Lessons and Carols

Tuesday, January 23rd
6:30 pm Together in Christ Parish Board meeting @ St. James

Wednesday, January 31st
5:30 pm Worship Planning meeting (library)

Word for the Week

Sunday, December 10, 2017 Second Sunday of Advent Introduction

John called people to repent, to clear the decks, to completely reorder their lives so that nothing would get in the way of the Lord’s coming. The reading from Isaiah gives the context for this radical call: the assurance of forgiveness that encourages us to repent; the promise that the coming one will be gentle with the little ones. Isaiah calls us all to be heralds with John, to lift up our voices fearlessly and say, “See, your God is coming!” We say it to one another in worship, in order to say it with our lives in a world in need of justice and peace.

Prayer of the Day

Stir up our hearts, Lord God, to prepare the way of your only Son. By his coming strengthen us to serve you with purified lives; through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

First Reading: Isaiah 40:1-11

In grand, flowing, poetic lines, the prophet announces that the exile of God’s people in Babylon is over. The Lord will deliver Israel and will care for her as a shepherd cares for his sheep. This word can be trusted, because the only enduring reality in life is the word of the Lord.

Psalm: Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13

Righteousness shall prepare a pathway for God. (Ps. 85:13)

Second Reading: 2 Peter 3:8-15a

This short letter deals with pressing concerns regarding the final advent of Jesus, especially concerns that could arise over its apparent delay. The author of the letter calls on Christians to anticipate the promised coming of the Lord through conduct dedicated to God.

Gospel: Mark 1:1-8

The Gospel of Mark does not begin with a story of Jesus’ birth but with the voice of one crying out in the wilderness: Prepare the way of the Lord.