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News for December 12, 2023

This Sunday, Dec 17: In-person service at 10am

This Sunday, December 17, is the third Sunday of Advent, so the theme is Joy. Our own Pepe Doyle will be offering some wise words on that topic.

Instant Choir rehearses at 8:45am.

Church Council will meet after worship.

The Giving Sunday offering for December is for the UCC's Christmas Fund, helping active and retired clergy and lay employees of the United Church of Christ.

Recent sermons

Check out our YouTube page to see recent sermons. Go to our archive of slides to see bulletins and slides used during recent services.

Starting in Sept 2023, recordings of our Taize services are also on the YouTube page.

Sabrina's cybersecurity talk is now posted. This is worth watching even if you heard her give it.

Due to a technical glitch, Polly's sermon on "The Hard Work of Peace" didn't get recorded. You can read the text here.

Caroling tonight at 6pm

We're going caroling in the neighborhood tonight! Meet at the church at 6. We'll have song books and penlights for you, and we'll brave the cold for an hour or so. Your reward is hot cider and cookies back at church. Friends and family of all ages are welcome to join in.

Christmas surprise for Jim M.

Sunday is the deadline for assembling the Christmas goody bag for Jim Mathews. Jim is bedridden now, on hospice, but still recognizes visitors and is happy to see people. For years his beautiful tenor voice graced our singing, especially at Christmas. If you'd like to contribute a small item to the surprise, give it to Karen or Jane by Sunday. They're visiting after church.

Advent activities calendar

Mark your calendars -- all the pre-Covid pre-Christmas traditions are returning this year!

  • Tues, Dec 12 -- Caroling in the neighborhood, 6 pm. We sing for about an hour, then retreat to the church for hot cider and cookies. Friends and family welcome.

  • Sun, Dec 17 -- Third Sunday in Advent. Pepe Doyle will talk about Joy. Instant Choir rehearses at 8:45.

  • Sun, Dec 24 -- Fourth Sunday in Advent and Christmas Eve. No morning service. Christmas Eve candlelight service of lessons and carols at 8pm. Choir sings.

Upcoming services and events

• Weds discussion group: Jan 10 (7 pm), Zoom

"Basic Bible Stories", meeting the main characters of the Old Testament. After the holidays, we'll move on to the story of Solomon.

• Book Group: Sun, Jan 28 (7 pm), Zoom

Al Hasse is still going to lead the Book Group! The next discussion won't be until after their move and the holidays, which will give you plenty of time to prepare your arguments, pro and con, on Sam Harris' "Free Will".

Links and resources

"Finding Light in Winter", a perceptive essay by Mary Pipher (author of "Reviving Ophelia"), from the NY Times.

Masterworks Chorale sings two Christmas concerts: Sat, Dec 16 at 4pm for kids and families and Sun, Dec 17 at 4pm for our usual more adult audience. Both concerts are at CCSM (the downtown church) and both are followed by a Cookie Extravaganza. Here's a sample from the Sunday program: Biebl's Ave Maria, sung by VOCES8.

Quote of the week

"The important point of spiritual practice is not to try to escape your life, but to face it -- exactly and completely." -- Dainin Katagiri

Weekly events

• Meditation group: Wednesdays at 7:30 am

In person at the church building.

• Sunday worship: 10 am

In person at the church building.

Image: Pepe Doyle (at PG)


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