How do you prepare for Christmas? For many of us, preparation involves decorating a tree, exchanging gifts with friends and family, eating lots and singing carols, some of which will be about Santa Claus. This year, in addition to preparing for Christmas Day, my family is preparing to celebrate St. Nicholas Day on December 6. St. Nicholas was the Bishop of Myra in the 4th century and is known to us today as Saint Nick. His story forms the basis for today’s Santa Claus. Learning about Saint Nicholas’ his leadership of the church, his charity to the poor, and even his physical altercation with a heretic* inspires me to expand my own Christmas traditions.
We will observe the Advent, Christmas and Epiphany seasons through a worship series called “Prepare the Way.”
Week 1*: First Sunday of Advent - December 2 - Stand - Jeremiah 33:14-16; Luke 21:25-36 (Mrs. Lin Veasey Preaching)
Week 2: Second Sunday of Advent - December 9 - Refine - Malachi 3:1-4; Luke 3:1-6
Week 3: Third Sunday of Advent - December 16 - Do - Zephaniah 3:14-20; Luke 3:7-18
Week 4: Fourth Sunday of Advent - December 23 - Welcome - Micah 5:2-5a; Luke 1:39-55
Community Meal & Christmas Carols - December 23, 6pm in FLC (details below)
Christmas Eve (in your home) - Arrive - Isaiah 9:2-7; Luke 2:1-20
Week 5: First Sunday after Christmas Day - December 30 - Search - Luke 2:41-52
Week 6: Epiphany Sunday - January 6 - Find - Isaiah 60:1-6; Matthew 2:1-12
This Advent and Christmas season, may we prepare the way for our Savior Jesus, the Son of God who came to the poorest among us to bring good news and healing to our world.
*For an entertaining summary on the story of St. Nick’s involvement in the church’s belief about Jesus’s relationship to our Father, see this Wesley Bros comic: http://www.wesleybros.com/wesbros/visit-st-nicholas-part-3/ **Mrs. Lin Veasey will preach on the First Sunday of Advent, December 2, 2018. Lin is a Pastor for Church of the Covenant in Lenlock and Jacksonville First Presbyterian Church.