Our worship this Sunday starts with an invitation – the invitation from the angel to Mary to join in God’s story by carrying the Christ child. Invitation is not just the work of the celestial beings. Did you know that when asked how they came to visit a church for the first time, people do not respond about websites, postcards or signs? Overwhelmingly, people find a church for the first time through a personal invitation. Advent (and Christmas) is a special time when people are tenderly open to experiencing worship/church in fresh ways. You too can be an angel, by extending the gift of invitation to a friend or neighbor. If that makes you nervous, check out this document for some Tips for the Gift of Invitation.
This Sunday marks the beginning of Advent, our time of preparation for Christmas.This year’s Advent series, Baby’s First Christmas: A Photo Album of the Nativity, explores the characters who surrounded Jesus at the manger. We kick off with the exploration of Mother. I say Mother rather than Mary because we’ll look at Mary but also explore the mothering attributes of Jesus’s parents, both human and divine. Our scripture is a gripping one which captures the joy and agony of a parent’s love, that parent being God, our Creator, our Mother.
Cynthia Middleton will light the first Advent candle with a reflection from the perspective of Mary.
- Scripture: Hosea 11:1-11
- Sermon: “Love Leaves Its Own Mark”
It’s a great Sunday to invite someone to church. I invite you to share the beauty of this day with me.
May God bless you during this Advent season,