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The Symbol of Christmas – Howard Thurman

As the day draws closer

As the anticipation builds

As the schedule becomes more hectic

As memories flood in of Christmas’s past

As the stress of daily news disheartens

I find these words of Thurman comforting:

The symbol of Christmas–what is it? It is the rainbow arched over the roof of the sky when the clouds are heavy with foreboding. It is the cry of life in the newborn babe when, forced from its mother’s nest, it claims its right to live. It is the brooding Presence of the Eternal Spirit making crooked paths straight, rough places smooth, tired hearts refreshed, dead hopes stir with newness of life. It is the promise of tomorrow at the close of every day, the movement of life in defiance of death, and the assurance that love is sturdier than hate, that right is more confident than wrong, that good is more permanent than evil. (from the Prologue to The Mood of Christmas and Other Celebrations)

Evening Prayer – 11 December 2018

The sun has set and the Vesper Lights flicker and glow

It’s been a long day, Lord

I have seen you in the midst of it

At times, though, I struggle

I struggle with the insanity in our nation’s capital

I struggle with the senseless violence and oppression

I struggle with the hatred and fear

I struggle with rabid nationalism and racism

In the midst of it all, Lord

When I don’t know what to pray

You hear my cries too deep for words

In your mercy, hear this humble prayer

Dona Nobis Pacem

Grant Us Peace

A wee prayer from the heart of your exhausted Padre…

Evening Prayer – 10 December 2018

The sun has set and the Vesper Lights flicker and glow

A day filled with paperwork

Yet in the midst of it, wonderful fellowship

‘Tis a blessing indeed to work with such wonderful people

At the end of the day, Christmas lights are up

A wonderful meal, fellowship, and wedding planning

Now, as my eyelids grow heavy, I lift this humble prayer

Dona Nobis Pacem

Grant Us Peace

A wee prayer from the heart of your Padre…

Evening Prayer – 9 December 2018

The sun has set and the Vesper Lights flicker and glow

Another busy Lord’s day is over

What a blessing to be in worship with our Community

Bells were ringing and the congregation was singing

Prayers for peace were lifted

In this season of so much commotion

We must respond to your call, O Lord

To slow down and simply be in your presence

Be still and know

Reveal to us in this season your way of peace

In your mercy, Lord, hear this humble prayer

Dona Nobis Pacem

Grant Us Peace

A wee prayer from the heart of your Padre…

Sermon – The Way of Peace – 9 December 2018

First Reading – Malachi 3:1-4

Second Reading – Luke 1:68-79

Sermon – The Way of Peace

Evening Prayer – 8 December 2018

The sun has set and the Vesper Lights flicker and glow

A busy day is completed

From fellowship, food, and laughter

To walking with a family through the Valley of the Shadows

To time spent in reflection and preparation

As my eyelids grow heavy

I lift this humble prayer to you, Lord

Dona Nobis Pacem

Grant Us Peace

A wee prayer from the heart of your Padre…

In Spite of it All – Angels Still Sing

God with us, Emmanuel! Thanks, Shirley!

A Pastor's Heart

Luke alone tells us of Mary’s journey to her cousin Elizabeth’s home after she learns she will be the mother of the long awaited Messiah. There must have been something about Mary’s face, a light – a radiance, that wasn’t there before. Elizabeth is moved to greet her with wonder.

Mary for her part cries out with joy, “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for God has looked with favor on me – the Mighty One has done great things for me . . . and holy is God’s name. God’s mercy is for those who fear the Lord from generation to generation. . . . God has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts. . . . has brought down the powerful from their thrones . . . and lifted up the lowly; . . . has filled the hungry…

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