December Newsletter Message

500th Anniversary of Christmas celebrations influenced by Martin Luther

While a significant amount of time has passed (500 years!) since Martin Luther posted his protests on Wittenberg’s church doors which started the Reformation. His influence can still be found around us today.  This is especially true at Christmas time. 

Did you know before Luther’s time Christmas trees weren’t a regular part of Christian celebrations of Christmas?  Or that prior to Luther, Christmas gifts were rarely given on Dec. 25th?  Or that the Christmas carol staple “Away in a Manger” is associated with Martin Luther? Our midweek Advent services this year will merrily explore the influences Luther left on our modern-day observances of Christmas.  Hopefully these explorations of Luther’s influences will, like his influence in causing the Reformation movement, draw us closer to the grace of Christ, which is what our mission statement “To Know Christ and Make Christ Known” and Christmas are all about.

You’re invited to come enjoy a quiet night at church during a hectic season.  Relax over a good meal, listen and participate in soothing music, and celebrate a tidbit of tradition.  In the end we hope you’ll be able to feel like you gave your soul a hug and God the glory.  Don’t let society’s secular focus this Christmas season make a humbug out of you this year.  Mark your calendar [better yet clear your calendar] and join your church family in welcoming the new born king into your home and heart this Christmas.

Wed. Dec. 6th:  Thank Martin Luther for Christmas presents delivered on the 25th?

Wed. Dec. 13th:  Thank Martin Luther for “Away in the Manger?”

Wed. Dec. 20th:  Thank Martin Luther for the Christmas Tree?

Sunday Dec. 24th- 10:30 am Family Friendly Christmas Celebration

We’ll have visits from a Shepherd, a Caroler, and old Kris Kringle

Sunday, Dec. 24th- 10:30 pm Service of Carols and Candlelight

You may have noticed above that Christmas Eve falls on a Sunday.  Because of this there will be no extra Christmas Day service.  We normally have Christmas Day worship for several differing population needs: Those who don’t drive at night, Those whose family gatherings prevent them from worshipping on Christmas Eve, Those young families that find it difficult to be out late for a worship service, Those in the service/safety industry (Nurses, Police Officers, etc.) who work the holiday evening.  Instead of a Christmas day service this year we encourage our young families and those that prefer not to drive at night to join us for a full Christmas worship experience Sunday morning Christmas Eve Day.  Our Christmas Eve evening worship will be a bit later, hopefully allowing families that celebrate on Christmas Eve to leave the gift wrapping paper piles for a moment and thank God for the greatest Christmas gift ever.  Perhaps as we dismiss, the snow will be lightly falling and our carillon playing carols as we all wish each other Merry Christmas!

May your Christmas season be filled with Blessings from Above

Pastor Mike

 

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