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"Advent is Here!"

Dear Friends,

The season of Advent is here! On the next four Sundays, starting on November 27th, we prepare for God’s wondrous gift: Jesus Christ, born in Bethlehem. At Advent, God’s people summon the courage and the spiritual strength to remember that the holy breaks into the daily. Advent is not a season for passive waiting and watching. It is a season of repentance, of opening up our lives and our souls with active anticipation and renewed hope.

There are a number of ways to “actively anticipate” the coming of our Lord. Let me mention a few:

First and foremost, attend Advent Sunday worship with your sisters and brothers in Christ at First Presbyterian Church. Through the scripture, music (choir, hymns, solos and duets), sermons, prayers and fellowship we will hear the story of God’s love for us.

Secondly, participate in the Advent study, “The Redemption of Scrooge.” This four week study following Coffee Hour on the Sundays of Advent is a great way to dig deeper into the story of Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol and find some important Christian themes.

Thirdly, help those less fortunate through participating in the Giving Tree, the annual Blood Drive on Friday, December 16th, and giving to the Christmas Joy Offering which will be received on Sunday, December 18th.

Fourth, participate in some of the holiday fellowship events, including attending and helping with the Cookie Walk and Victorian Luncheon on the 10th of December as part of Hawley’s Winterfest, singing Christmas carols to our shut-ins at the Caroling Party at Roger and Carol Rick’s home on Sunday evening, December 11th at 6:30pm, and coming to our Annual Christmas Dinner to be held this year on Tuesday, December 13th at Lukan’s Farm Resort.)

Fifth, celebrate the birth of Christ by attending Christmas Eve worship – either the Family Service at 5PM or the Service of Lessons and Carols at 8PM.

And, sixth, we would love to have you and your family attend a “Come As You Are Christmas Day Brunch and Service” at 10AM in Blough Hall on Sunday (Christmas Day) December 25th.

The Advent and Christmas season is always my favorite time of the year and I hope it is for you. And, quite frankly, after the divisive election we just went through in our country, we need the message of Christmas more than ever. “O, come, let us adore Him: Christ, the Lord!” Grace, Peace, and Love, Pastor Bill

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