As we move through this Advent season into the celebration of the Holy Nativity I pray for you the breath of God. Breathe deeply the love and contentment that only God can share. Notice the simple joys present every moment. None of our lives are as we would have them be right now. But this pause from our agenda driven busyness can be a gift that turns us around and points us back to the really important – God with us.
We are the church for the sake of all the world. We speak Christ (or not) in everything we say and do. Even now as we are limited, our neighbors and others notice how we live, how we care, how we talk, how we listen and they say, “That’s a Christian.” Will they know us? How will they know us? Do you remember the old song, “They will know we are Christians by our love”? You show your love by your pandemic precautions, by the phone call to check on another, by listening to the struggles of others. You are loved by God and I see you loving the world and it encourages my heart.
I hope you received and are using the Advent Packet that Vicar MJ put together for us. As we are all using these, we remember the community that is so precious to us and look forward together to that time when we can be gathered in the same place. Your Church staff and council are in need of your continuing prayers. As we struggle with the limits and opportunities of the Covid pandemic, new ways to share the Good News of Christ, the commission of Gospel living and the care and consolation of each other, we depend on your encouragement.
A couple of business items for the good of the order: We were to have a congregational meeting on December 6,2020.
- You have received via email or snail mail a copy of the 2021 budget. (If not please contact Vicar MJ and she will be sure you get one). It is again a barebones survival budget and is the same as last year except for the mandatory increase for the vicar from the seminary. If I receive no objections by January 1, 2021, we will accept the budget as presented. (Sister Davia – firstname.lastname@example.org or 717-243-9289)
- We have asked several people in the congregation to serve on the church council & none that we asked are able to serve at this time. If you would like to help by serving on council (one meeting of about 2 hours per month) please contact Vicar MJ. Otherwise we will continue with the current configuration until the pandemic allows us to meet in person again.
And a couple of reminders that cannot be put off so easily:
- Because we are not together each week, it is not as easy for us to create and share a Christmas Project. If you are able to collect toiletries, underwear, sox, scarves, hats and gloves for Safe Harbor & Carlisle Community Cares, please do. Then put them in a plastic bag and contact Vicar MJ. She will pick them up and make sure they get to the folks that need them. Remember the cold weather and the need goes way beyond December, so don’t stop because Christmas has passed.
- Then, as always our regular expenses continue. While we save some money with electricity, our bills continue and we are in need of your regular tithes and offerings. Thank you so very much for continued financial support.
Always, please stay safe and well. If you feel ill, call your doctor immediately. If you need help with shopping or errands, call one of us. If you want to talk or pray together, call one of us. We are assured the vaccine is coming in time – we simply need to hold on until it becomes available to all of us. God will see us through and we can do this. Each of us has done harder things in our lives.
Blessings in all things,
Sister Davia – council president