Friday, December 8

Reconciler Almost Weekly Update

A prayer: Christ, Savior of every life, you come to us always. Welcoming you in the peace of our nights, in the silence of our days, in the beauty of creation, in the hours of intense inner combat, welcoming you means knowing that you will be with us in every situation, always. - Brother Roger of Taize

Advent continues apace. Trish and I decorated the tree last night. We try to decorate the tree as close to the Feast of St. Nicholas as we can. I am not entirely sure why we do this...But I know I have a love for St. Nicholas. And yes, it is because of Santa Claus. Color me foolish, but I still find myself enjoying some of the more silly aspects of the holiday. Sugar plum fairies dance through my head. I have a Yukon Cornelius doll (Is there a better word for a 14" stuffed cartoon character?) that is unpacked at this time this year. I catch myself singing "Silver and Gold" like Burl Ives. I am a sucker for the sentimentality of the season.

And yet even I know that "white Christmas" barely begins to scratch the surface of Advent. Last Sunday we prayed the Great Litany from the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer. And it is indeed great. Long. Monumental. We pray for much.
That it may please thee to make wars to cease in all the world;
to give to all nations unity, peace, and concord; and to
bestow freedom upon all peoples,
We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord...

That it may please thee to preserve, and provide for, all
women in childbirth, young children and orphans, the
widowed, and all whose homes are broken or torn by strife,
We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord...

That it may please thee to give us true repentance; to forgive
us all our sins, negligences, and ignorances; and to endue
us with the grace of thy Holy Spirit to amend our lives
according to thy holy Word,
We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord.

That it may please thee to forgive our enemies, persecutors,
and slanderers, and to turn their hearts,
We beseech thee to hear us, good Lord...
For me, this is Advent. We are praying for God to enter into every aspect of our lives...all of our relationships and situations. There is no place where God is not already present, but the act of naming so much is powerful to me. Processing and singing, the ringing of the bells...they are holy reminders of Whom it is that comes, and that there is no place that God's Advent does not touch us and offer us salvation.

Announcements:

If you have any comments about last week's liturgy, please go here and share your thoughts.

On Saturday, December 16th at 11:00am, we will gather at St. James Cathedral Episcopal Church 65 E. Huron St. Chicago, IL to celebrate the ordination to the priesthood of Rev. Laura Gottardi - Littel.

Remember for Christmas Eve and Christmas day we are worshiping with Immanuel Lutheran Church. Services are 6PM Christmas eve and 10:00AM Christmas day. If you plan to attend either of those services the choir of Immanuel would appreciate more voices. If you are interested in singing with the Immanuel Choir at those services contact Tripp or Larry and they can direct you to the Choir director Scott.

You are invited to a Christmas party at the Community of the Holy Trinity 16th 7:00pm.

Peace and All Good Things!

Tripp Hudgins
Pastoral Team
Church of Jesus Christ, Reconciler