Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
The upcoming week is one of the most emotional weeks in the year. For some of us, it is a time filled with joy and laughter and love. We eagerly await the converging of family and friends, the giving and receiving of gifts, the beauty of all the decorations, and elaborate feasts spread before us. We look forward to attending church services and hearing once again about the birth of Jesus who was laid in a humble manger because there was no room for them in the inn. We look forward to singing carols and lighting candles. These traditions and rituals give us a sense of peace and connection with generations.
For some of us, this is harder time of year. We are keenly aware of the losses we have experienced, the empty places at our tables and in our hearts. We feel more poignantly than usual the pain that comes from strained and even broken relationships with those we love. This pain and loneliness can make it difficult to feel the joy that is at the heart of this season.
Wherever we find ourselves this year, the message remains consistent: God chose to appear in our world in the form of a baby. A baby born to poor, peasant, refugee parents. A baby who even in the humbleness of a stable represented the hopes and dreams of the people.
Jesus would grow into a man who comforted people who were grieving and hurting, who would speak a word of hope to those living in despair, who would lift up the lowly and challenge those in positions of power. He welcomed those who had been cast out and were living on the margins. We welcomed the outsider into the center of his community. All were welcome and embraced in Jesus’ community of love and care.
From the time he was born until the time he died, Jesus lived and ministered among ordinary people like you and me. He knew our pain and our struggles and sought to bring healing, wholeness, and peace.
If you are grieving, feeling sad or lonely this year, I encourage you to come to our Blue Christmas Service. It will follow our Community Meal at Trinity Center on Saturday, December 21.
Wherever you are in your life right now in your life or your faith journey, you are invited to join us for a Family Friendly Christmas Eve Service. All families are welcomed as we celebrate the diversity of the Family of God that is united and bound together through the love of Christ. We will walk through a path lit by luminaries as we gather in the Sanctuary at 4:30. This will be a service of lessons and carols, candles and communion.
Together we the Body of Christ. Together we are part of the Family of God. Together we worship on this holy night. And together we will go out to be the light of God in a world still living in darkness and despair. O, come let us adore him, Christ the King!