Advent begins, Sunday, November 30. I hope you’ll join us for our Advent celebration that day! There are more details elsewhere in this month’s Hinge.

Advent is the four-week season that marks the start of the Church year and is meant to help us prepare for the coming of Christ. The focus is not only on the coming of Christ to Bethlehem some 2,000 years ago, but the coming of Christ into our hearts and lives today and the coming again of Christ in glory at the culmination of history.

This year during Advent, we are embarking on a church-wide study by Adam Hamilton called The Journey. We’ll look at some of the important people and places in the Christmas story. I pray you’ll join us for worship each Sunday, for the Sunday school and/or small group studies, and every day through your devotional time. Be sure to pick up one of the daily devotional guides. If you can afford $4, we appreciate your help in covering the cost. If not, consider it our gift.

The season of Advent leads into our Christmas Eve celebrations. As in the past, there will be three candlelight services — 5 p.m. children’s service; 7:30 p.m. traditional service with the choir; and 11 p.m. communion service. With three different service times, you should be able to find one that will fit in with your other activities. Although, I think that since Christmas is first of all the celebration of our Savior’s birth, worship should be our first priority and our other activities should fit around worship.

For our Hispanic/Latino members, their focus is more on King’s Day than on Christmas. King’s Day is the celebration of the coming of the kings or magi to worship the infant Jesus in Bethlehem. King’s Day is also known as Epiphany and occurs on January 6, twelve days after Christmas. This is the day that our Hispanic/Latino brothers and sisters give gifts to one another in remembrance of the gifts the kings presented to Jesus.

How and when we celebrate the birth of Christ it’s as important to keep Christ in the center of our celebrations. Tom and I wish you and yours a blessed Christmas filled with Jesus and the gifts he brings us — gifts of peace, love, joy, and hope.

In Christ’s love,

Pastor Anne

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