The Seed: December 19, 2021

 

 

The Seed Newsletter

December 19, 2021

 

 

 

 

THIS SUNDAY AT CHRISTIAN TEMPLE

The Fourth Sunday of Advent will bring our Journey to Bethlehem to its conclusion as the shepherds lead the Centurion (and US!) to the stable.. Then we will have the opportunity to hear from our kids! Not only will they form a nativity pageant for all of us to see, but we will also be treated to the kids choir performing four songs they've been hard at work practicing. Join us for worship this Sunday,

 

SUNDAY'S SCHEDULE FOR CHOIR AND PAGEANT

This Sunday, December 19th, is a big day for all kids (and everyone) at Christian Temple! It's your chance to tell the story of Jesus' birth! In TWO ways! ALL KIDS ARE INVITED!!!

1. We'll have you all in various parts for the reading of the story (like a pageant but no speaking parts-or very few). We need sheep, donkeys and cows and shepherds and angels...No need to rehearse! You'll just come up and sit around Mary and Joseph and the babies, Jesus! ~ You'll get your costume in the classroom and then go sit by your parents until the call to come up!

2. The Choir will sing our Christmas songs. If you're in the choir, we'll sing Away in the Manger in costume around Jesus and then take off our costumes and sing the other songs. (Those who aren't in the choir can sit in the front row or go back and sit with their parents).

HERE'S THE SCHEDULE:

  • Choir arrives at 10:00 am (PLEASE try to be on time!) We'll practice our songs from 10-10:30 with Michael Stone playing the guitar and Pastor Rick playing the drum!
  • Non-choir members should arrive at 10 am as well​​​​​!  Costumes will be distributed shortly after that time (10:15 am).
  • A little before worship starts, everyone will go and sit by their parents in their costumes! After the pageant, we'll collect costumes, the choir will sing, and then all kids are welcome to sit with parents or go in back with Ms. Kecia for Children at Worship.
  • For those in the choir...please listen to the songs a few times this week! (See links below).            

We're Gonna Go Down to the Manger:   https://youtu.be/jaxS4q7Oo7c?t=695     

Can you Hear it:    https://youtu.be/jj6jDIf6ciE?t=3270

REMEMBER...NO ZOOM THIS WEEK...EVERYTHING IS IN PERSON!

 

IT'S NOT TOO LATE!  YOU CAN STILL GET A POINSETTIA!

UPDATE:  ORDERS DUE BY SUNDAY, DECEMBER 19TH

We have been able to extend our due date!  There is still time now to help make our Sanctuary both pretty and seasonal for our in-person and livestream services, won't you please consider contributing for poinsettias to on the Worship Center and baptistery?  

If you are willing to give a poinsettia in honor of memory of a loved one, please let the office know!  Online order forms are now available as well as printable forms to bring (or mail) in to Christian Temple.   The price will is $11 per plant.  We will also publish the names of those honored/remembered.  If we get enough, we might even be able to create our poinsettia tree! Thank you for your support.

CLICK HERE FOR AN ONLINE FORM   Once you complete this easy online form and submit your information, it will go directly to the church office.  No need to mail it in to Christian Temple!  You may pay for your poinsettia(s) on our Online Donation Site, located on the left-hand side of our Home page.  You are also more than welcome to drop your payment off at church or send it in the mail!

PRINTABLE FORM

 

BACK TO THE FUTURE AT CHRISTIAN TEMPLE- AN END OF YEAR CAMPAIGN TO PREPARE US FOR MINISTRY IN A NEW DAY!

Please see the attached letter to learn all about our effort to bolster our current ministries and prepare for our future. Many organization invite their participants to make a year end gift, especially if they've been fortunate during the past year. Consider this Christian Temple's invitation to do the same. We are only as strong as the generosity of our members makes us. So, make a gift to this congregation's "Back to the Future" program!

 

CYF CHRISTMAS PARTY! DECEMBER 19TH (after worship about 12:15ish)

Note from Jayna-   Rick and I would like to invite you to our home after worship on Sunday for a Christmas party! You can hopefully come to worship and then we'll go to our house straight from there. So, it will start around 12:15 or 12:30. We'll be done by 2. We'll have lunch and munchies and a few fun games! Hope to see you then! Please let me know if you are coming, so I can be sure to have enough food!

If you are going straight to the house, it's 620 Coleraine Rd. But we can also take you there from church (or you can walk!)

Please be sure parents are there to pick you up at 2:00!  

(Remind me to get a photo of the group in Santa hats!)

 

COMMITTEE SEEKS NOMINATIONS FOR CONGREGATIONAL LEADERSHIP

Every year around this time Christian Temple forms a committee charged with the task of nominating a slate of officers for the year 2022-23 to be voted on by the board and congregation. That Nominating Committee has now formed, had its first meeting and invites anyone in the congregation who would like to put forward a name to be considered for any of the following offices, to do so. The offices are: Moderator, Vice Moderator, Secretary, Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, Financial Secretary, Trustee, Historian, Elder, Deacon or Steward. The committee is already considering some names based on current service, term limits, and customs of the congregation but would welcome the input of congregational members. Anyone who has someone they would like to nominate please contact one of the following people. Kathy Gobbel, chair; Betty Moore, Donna Goon, Jean O'Donnell, or Amy Luking. This contact should be made on or before Wednesday, December 15th.

The committee plans to present its slate of officers to the board for approval at its January meeting, That slate would then go on to the congregation to be approved. Once the slate is approved, officers' terms will begin on July 1, 2022.

Any questions? Contact Kathy Gobbel at kgobbel@comcast.net.

 

THE UNFOLDING JOURNEY TO BETHLEHEM

This year, as a nod to being careful about gathering too closely in person, we are offering our traditional Journey to Bethlehem experience in a non-traditional way! Each Sunday of Advent, during our morning worship service, we will share a couple chapters in the story.

Last week we dropped in on the poor frazzled Census Taker as he was trying to stay on top of his job of stamping the passports of all the people who were crowding the streets of Bethlehem. We also stepped inside the Bethlehem Inn for a quick rest and to learn of the couple who had to be settled in the stable out back.

This week will feature the last leg of our journey as we run into the shepherds just after they've been visited by the angel of the Lord!

 

Caption:

John Dennehy explains his predicament to the Centurion

 

 

 

 

 

Caption:

Rebekah and Matt Cerame welcome us to the Bethlehem Inn.

 

 

 

 

For those who haven't seen the entire journey, click here to view last year's video!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_UA2gMw07GI

 

MY TWO CENTS

It’s been a while now, but once upon a time I was the father of three little boys. These three have grown up to be fine young men who love and care for one another. I can say that now. But there were days when I had my doubts it would ever happen.

Three may be the perfect number for manifestations of God, points in a sermon, and legs on a stool. But the perpetually shifting alliances among brothers makes three a problem. Most days the oldest got to pick the teams. One day he’d befriend number two and they’d gang up on the unsuspecting youngest just to toughen him up. Then when that got boring the two on either end would go after the poor guy in the middle. Eventually, the two youngest would figure out they were being played and go after the big cheese when he wasn’t looking. Every day was different. But the one thing all those shifting alliances made certain: when trouble arose, it was impossible to learn “who started it?”

We tried separating them to compare their stories. We tried assuring them that confession would lead to bonus points when it came time for punishment. We reminded them that tattling wasn’t always good but sometimes it was necessary. It was always difficult to get to the bottom of the story. In fact, it was usually hard to get beyond, “It wasn’t my fault.” No matter how bad the trouble, it was never anyone’s fault.

Denying responsibility is a staple of the young. And to some degree it stays with us, right? That first impulse when something goes wrong is almost always to look to someone else as the cause. When we ask, “have you seen my keys?” isn’t there often an initial edge to the question that suggests someone other than us is at fault?

But over time we learn to temper the denial impulse. We bite the bullet and accept at least some responsibility when something goes wrong. As we grow, most of us do that personally. But on a larger scale? That is something else altogether.

People, just look around and behold all the ways we are in trouble. The planet is warming. Guns originally designed to feed our families and protect the innocent are taking both from us at an alarming rate. People of color are much more likely to be poor, and much more prone to get sick, than white people. Policing in our cities isn’t working very well. The list goes on.

But despite these obvious signs of trouble our collective, societal response isn’t much different than what we heard from our boys back in the day: “I didn’t start it, so it must be someone else’s fault.”

Maybe, as a country we will one day mature into being more self-reflective about the trouble we are in. But, until we can get beyond our national toddler mentality, we are going to have a really hard time getting to the bottom of things. Sometimes, it is, at least partially, our fault.

Shalom  ~Rick

 

CHILD CARE IS NOW BEING OFFERED DURING WORSHIP

We have been fortunate to secure the services of Brooke Kruse during the season of Advent and Christmas. Brooke loves kids and is eager to provide care for our littlest ones. She will be in the nursery about 15 minutes before worship begins and will stay until all the kids have been picked up by their parents. And, while she will be available for the early service on Christmas Eve (4pm), she will be attending the later service, so no child care will be available at the 7 pm service.  

Thanks to Brooke for helping us expand our ministry in this important way!

 

CHRISTMAS EVE AT CHRISTIAN TEMPLE

 

4PM INTERGENERATIONAL SERVICE OF WORSHIP

This year we are bringing back our early Christmas Eve service- a service especially designed for families with children- and families who have other things to do later in the evening! The plan is to hold the service outside (weather permitting) to accommodate all those kids too young to be vaccinated. There will be carols to sing, the story to hear, a message just for kids, communion and, of course, the candlelit singing of "Silent Night". And, this year, you get to keep your candles!

Be watching church publications closer to time to see where the service will take place. But, if we are outside, we will likely be in the upper parking lot in the front of the church.

 

7PM CANDLELIGHT COMMUNION SERVICE OF WORSHIP

Fans of our traditional service of worship on Christmas Eve are invited to come to the sanctuary at 7pm, with a mask to add to your Christmas Eve outfit. This service of music, prayer, communion and candlelight will usher in Christmas in the way to which we've grown accustomed. Keep an eye on church publications in case pandemic conditions will preclude our being able to gather together.

 

UPDATE: WORSHIP SIGN-IN CHANGE

Due to increased numbers of people attending worship- a good thing!- we will no longer be asking people to be "signed in" for each service. We will continue to let the congregation know immediately if anyone who has attended worship on a particular day begins to show symptoms of Covid-19  or receives a positive diagnosis. And, of course, we ask anyone for whom this might be the case to let the office know right away.

Thank you!

 

 

NINE O'CLOCK FORUM

The Nine O'clock Forum session, led by Joe Pettit, is using the advent book, "Honest Advent", by Scott Erickson. Join us as we talk about the real issues that confront the world and the church during this celebration of Advent.

Joe says that, while folks are welcome to purchase the book (which is a wonderful resource) reading the material beforehand is not necessary!

 

 

DO YOU KNOW SOMEONE WHO ISN'T RECEIVING THE SEED?

Our email distribution lists are almost up-to-date, but we are concerned that we may have missed a friend or two during this process. If you know of anyone who isn't receiving the J&C and/or The Seed, please ask them to let the office know. Contact Robin at 410-747-2041 or at office@christiantemple.org. Thank you!

 

ZOOM LINKS!

Wednesday Bible Study, Wednesdays (9:30 AM)

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89678926477?pwd=Yno4ZW01RER0a00zNGlnWUFyWE9wQT09

 

The Well, Thursdays (6:30 PM)

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89200881845

 

9:00 Forum, Sundays (9 AM)

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/602793616

 

Kids' Choir  (10 AM this Sunday!)

REMEMBER...NO ZOOM THIS WEEK...EVERYTHING IS IN PERSON!  JOIN US AT 10:00 AM!

Children's Choir, Sundays (10:15- 10:45 AM)

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87001372088