Dear friends in Christ,
I hope you’re all doing well this week. As we turn towards Thanksgiving, Advent, and Christmas, we have a number of things going on in the life of the church:
Sunday 11/21: Thanksgiving/Consecration Sunday
This Sunday we’ll be celebrating Thanksgiving, and we’ll also be dedicating our pledges. Please turn in your pledge card ASAP for it to be included. We’ll of course still accept pledge cards that come in after this Sunday. As of right now, about one third of cards have come in. Thank you to everyone who has made a pledge, will make a pledge, and for all the ways everyone contributes to this community.
Decorating for Advent: After Church 11/21
The first Sunday of Advent is 11/28, and we need to hang the greens to make our sanctuary ready for the coming season. Stay after church this Sunday to help make everything ready for Advent!
Thanksgiving Basket for Middlebury Families: Thank you so much to everyone who signed up to donate something for our Thanksgiving Baskets. We need to have all donations in by Monday, November 22nd at 10:00 am.
Star Tree: Stars will be available in the sanctuary on November 21st (This Sunday!) Through our Covenant to Care program, we have agreed to provide gifts to 60 children at Christmas in the Wellmore program in Waterbury. Ages for these children range from newborns to teenagers. Please pick a star, purchase the requested gift(s) (at a cost of no more than $35 per gift), and place the wrapped gift(s) with the star attached to the outside under the tree in the sanctuary (or the office) before December 16th at 10:00 am. You are more than welcome to choose more than one star! Stars for family members are grouped together on the tree and by color on the list.
Vegetables for the Middlebury Food Bank: The Middlebury Food Bank has asked for people to donate onion, potatoes, carrots, squash, and other vegetables that don’t require refrigeration to supplement the canned goods that are regularly donated. You can bring vegetables on Sundays, and volunteers will make sure to bring them to the Middlebury Food Bank.
Sock-It-To . . . Homelessness!: We are collecting socks through the winter months, to be donated to GWIM, for the homeless. We are collecting new or gently used socks for all ages and all sizes. We will accept mismatched socks you may have at home, but please match them up as best you can to make a pair before you donate them. You will find a basket on the Multiplication table where you can put your donations.
Advent and Christmas Plans
Advent Wreath Lighting; Each year we have members and friends of our church light the Advent Wreath on the four Sundays of Advent and during the two services on Christmas Eve. Please let me know if you’re interested in lighting the Advent wreath. People of all ages and family/life situations welcome.
Christmas Pageant 12/19: This year we’re able to have a Christmas Pageant on Sunday December 19th! So, I’m certainly looking forward to being able to enjoy that MCC tradition again.
Christmas Eve Services 5pm and 11pm: This year we’re also able to resume having indoor Christmas Eve services! The 11pm service will have communion. We’re planning to have Christmas Eve worship look relatively close to our pre-pandemic Christmas Eves, and that means we need volunteers to read the Christmas lessons. If you’re interested in reading, please let me know.
I’ve attached some pictures of the views on the green from the past week or so. In some of them, you can see how nice the front of the meetinghouse looks. Bob and Bill have finished repainting all the front of the church we’re doing this season, and it looks fantastic, especially on a sunny day. Someone noted recently at a meeting that when the light hits it the right way, you almost need sunglasses. Thank you Bob and Bill!
As we approach Thanksgiving next week, I made a playlist of Thanksgiving hymns and anthems from our church if you want to listen to some music from the season and see some familiar faces: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLckQ_4M4FSl2qymvT0YMyRizSMPscUiZf
This Sunday, I’m going to be preaching on the part of the Sermon on the Mount where Jesus says to consider the lilies, so I wanted to share this Thanksgiving blessing/prayer by Trevor Lloyd that references the gospel lesson for Sunday:
“May God who clothes the lilies and feeds the birds of the sky,
who leads the lambs to pasture and the deer to water,
who multiplied loaves and fishes and changed water into wine,
lead us, feed us, multiply us,
and charge us to reflect the glory of our Creator
through all eternity.”