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News for November 21, 2023

This Sunday, Nov 26: In-person service at 10am

This Sunday, November 26, our guest preacher will be Rev. Celestine Fields. Celeste is our new Associate Conference Minister, working with Davena to support the 100+ UCC churches in northern California and Nevada.

Party time after worship, as we say farewell to Al and Susan Hasse. Feel free to bring something for the refreshment table and don't forget to sign the big card.

The Giving Sunday offering for November is for Samaritan House, our fantastic local social services organization. "Fighting poverty. Lifting lives."

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 Black Madonnas didn't get recorded. In lieu of the video, you can read the text and see the pictures here.

Musical Advent calendar sign-up

The musical Advent calendar started out in 2020 as Polly's gift to the church during COVID lockdown. That first Christmas we couldn't do any of our usual holiday traditions, so we invented a new one! If you sign up for the calendar (and it's entirely optional), then you will get an email every day during Advent with a piece of Christmas music. Not the usual carols that everyone knows, but something a little different. The youtube clip comes with a short paragraph of commentary about the carol, the lyrics (and translation if it's not sung in English). This will be the fourth year and so far there are no repeats! Who knew there was that much Christmas music? If you've gotten it previously, you're still on the list; if you're new, just tell Polly you want to get it. Advent starts on Dec 3.

Christmas surprise for Jim M.

Karen and Jane are assembling a 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, get it to Karen or Jane by Dec 10.

Advent activities calendar

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

  • Fri, Dec 1 -- "Deck the Halls" soup supper, 6pm. Come help decorate the church for Christmas (hang the garlands, put up the tree, get out the Advent banners etc). Bring a little something to share for a potluck soup supper.

  • Sun, Dec 3 -- First Sunday in Advent, Rev. Terri Echelbarger preaching. Instant choir rehearses at 8:45. Congregational meeting after worship.

  • Fri, Dec 8 -- Advent Taize service, 7:30 pm. Christmas-season chants by candlelight, Hilary Lewis on viola.

  • Sat, Dec 9 -- Christmas Smorgy, 6pm. We all get dressed up in our party clothes, the tables are decorated, the church is decorated (see "Deck the Halls" above), and family and friends are welcome to come too. See Marilyn G. if you want to contribute to the after-dinner talent/no-talent show.

  • Sun, Dec 10 -- Second Sunday in Advent, Rev. Polly Moore preaching. Instant choir rehearses at 8:45.

  • 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. 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.

Upcoming services and events

• Weds discussion group:Nov 22 (7 pm), Zoom

"Basic Bible Stories", meeting the main characters of the Old Testament. We've met Samuel, Saul and David (as a boy). The book of 2 Samuel will take us through David's reign as king. All are welcome to join these gatherings.

• Farewell Party for the Hasse's: Sun after worship, Nov 26. It's official: moving day is Dec 2. Come say good-bye to Al and Susan as they head up to Enso in Healdsburg.

• Congregational Meeting: Sun, Dec 3 after worship. The annual meeting to vote on next year's budget.

• Advent Taize service: Nov 10 (7:30 pm), in-person and on Zoom. A contemplative time of chant and prayer.

• 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

Songstress Tammi Brown, who has graced our worship with her music more than once, is battling cancer. If you are moved to help, friends have set up a GoFundMe page.

Here's a video from Penny Nixon's Affordable Housing event on Oct 5. Inspiring!

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.

Quote of the week

"The more light you allow within you, the brighter the world you live in will be." -- Shakti Gawain

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: Rev. Celestine Fields


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