Sundays in Advent on FCCLive

  • Sunday November 29th – Advent week 1 
    Guest Preacher Dave Geenen.
  • Sunday December 6th – Advent week 2
    Communion and special music from Ernesto Estigarribia (Viola) & Sabrina Tabby (Violin) 
  • Sunday December 13th – Advent week 3
    Guest preacher Carol Holtz-Martin with special music from Ernesto Estigarribia (Viola) & Sabrina Tabby (Violin)
  • Sunday December 20th – Advent week 4
    with special music from the Campanella Ringers Quartet! Following worship stay logged in for Q&A with Pastor Becky!
  • Christmas Eve – December 24th 2020.
    5 pm & 10 pm Christmas Eve Services will be broadcast.
    Check back for updates coming in December!

Advent begins this Sunday, November 29

Updated Friday November 27th, 2020

One of the sweet songs in the New Century Hymnal is one written in Spanish, Pues si vivimos, and translated, “In all our living, we belong to God.”  We sang it a few weeks back.  In the NCH is has two verses.  The first is:

Verse 1: In all our living we belong to God, 
and in our dying we are still with God.
For in our living and in our dying 
we belong to God, we belong to God.

Originally it had at least four verses.  This streamlining of songs is certainly not something new.  One well known Wesley hymn, “O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing” originally had 17 verses!

Gotta be honest, I have been feeling a little down this year with trying to do church in a time of pandemic, with everyone working harder and getting less done, and what gets done is not as satisfying as usual.  A big part of the joy of church is seeing each other, and together singing God’s praises, and that is precisely what would put us in danger.  I am convinced we are doing the right thing, but it is not an easy path.

In this context please consider verse 4, which was left on the cutting room floor as the NCH was constructed.

Verse 4: ‘Til earth is over may we always know 
love never fails us, God has made it so.
Hard times will prove us, never remove us, 
we belong to God, we belong to God.

This Advent Season we will have our four Sundays of preparation for Christmas, with families lighting the candles in church and beautiful music provided by skilled musicians.  We will have two guest preachers, David Geenen and Carol Holz-Martin.  We are constructing a virtual Christmas Eve Service with Lessons and Carols.  It will all be beautiful, and at the same time not the same as usual, and we will clearly miss crowding together in the sanctuary, singing carols and lighting candles each of us.  I will miss standing at the top of the steps and ringing a bell for Salvation Army.

I am old enough to remember national tragedies that impacted us all, but in my recollection they happened and then were over, and we recovered.

The challenges of this year seem to grind on and on.  I think I need the verse four of this song:  Hard times will prove us, never remove us, we belong to God, we belong to God.

Here is to 2021.

Pastor Michael

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