Decorating of the Chrismon Tree
The youth have begun decorating the Chrismon Tree that is standing next to the pulpit. Each week, the youth will put ornaments they have made on the tree and explain their significance. This week’s ornaments:
Lily: The lily represents resurrection. This is based on the blooming of the flower from the seemingly dead bulb.
Shell: The shell is a symbol for baptism. It reminds Christians of the water they are baptized in. It is also a sign of pilgrimage: pilgrims to the Holy Land would drink out of shells.
Anchor Cross: The anchor cross was used by early Christians as a symbol of their faith when they hid under persecution.
Circle and Triangle: The circle and the triangle represent the eternity of the Trinity.
Butterfly: The butterfly is an ancient symbol of resurrection, as a beautiful butterfly emerges from a seemingly dead chrysalis.
Bottony Cross: The cross is the symbol of life that springs from death—the gift of the cross. The three leafed clover at the bottom connects us to the Trinity. There is also a connection with Aaron’s staff that budded and was preserved in the Ark of the Covenant, showing that life comes from death, and renewed life from difficult circumstances.
Candle: The candle represents Jesus as the Light of the World.
Circle Chi Rho Butterfly: This symbolizes God’s wholeness and eternity. The butterfly symbolizes resurrection.
Crown: The crown is the symbol of the Prince of Peace, King of Kings, and Lord of Lords—Jesus.
Advent and Christmas Calendar
Nov 27 Advent 1 Advent calendar craft 11.30-12.30
Youth Pageant rehearsal 12.30-1.30
Dec 4 Advent 2 Advent window star craft 11.30-12.30
Youth Pageant rehearsal 12.30-1.30
Dec 11 Advent 3 Youth pageant in Sunday worship
Advent rose window craft 11.30-12.30
Youth at the Waters 2.00-3.00
Dec 18 Advent 4 Greening of the Church 11.30-12.30
Dec 19 Deadline for Christmas Flower memorials
Dec 21 Longest Night service 7.00 pm
Dec 24 Christmas Eve 5.00 special music
5.30 Christmas Eve Service
Dec 25 Christmas Day 10.15
Jan 1 Feast of the Holy Name 10.15
Service of Lessons and Carols
It was so wonderful to have so many putting together Advent Wreaths—many thanks to Brooke Cox and Cathryn Ensley for putting together and putting out all the materials. A few tips:
1. Keep your wreath hydrated—spritz it at least daily and/or soak in the sink 1-2 times a week. We keep ours on a large plate to protect the table. If the candles burn low, stop lighting them. The branches become dry and go up in flames very quickly, especially at the end of Advent.
2. Use your wreaths at dinner, or at a bedtime snack, last cup of tea, or just 10 mins. before people start off to bed. Light and extinguish the candles while you are there.
3. If you chose the purple and rose candles, the rose one is for Advent 3, Gaudete (Joy) Sunday which is also Mary’s Sunday. Both sets (red, rose-and-purple) have deep traditions. Each Sunday has a specific theme:
Advent One: Watch
Advent Two: Turn from the bad, and turn to the good
Advent Three: Rejoice
Advent Four: Recognize
Here is a prayer moment to use when you light the candles. You can have a small prayer moment each day of Advent, or each Sunday when you light a new candle. The parts in bold are to be said out loud. When you get to Week Two, add Advent Two’s scripture to Advent One’s—so by Advent Four you will be saying all four lines. The same pattern follows through all four weeks.
Opening: Light candle, and recite the verse(s):
Advent 1: “And what I say to you I say to all: Keep awake.” (Mark 13:37)
Advent 2: “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.” (Matthew 3:2)
Advent 3: “Are you the one who is to come?” (Matt 11.3)
Advent 4: “The Lord is with you.” (Luke 1:28)
Reader 1: The Redeemer shall come. (Isa. 59:20)
All: A light to lighten a world of darkness. (Luke 32:2)
Reader: The candle of watching, (week 1)
repentance, (week 2)
rejoicing, (week 3)
recognizing. (week 4)
Let us pray.
God our Light,
Quiet our minds that we may watch for you; (week 1)
Expose our sins that we may repent and prepare for you; (week 2)
Reveal your love that we may rejoice in serving you; (week 3)
Open our eyes that we may recognize and welcome you. (week 4)
Make our lamps shine and proclaim to all the world that darkness is at end; there is Light for those who seek it and love for all. Amen.
If you have any concerns or thanksgivings, offer them here.
Say together in closing:
Creator of the stars of night,
Creation’s everlasting light,
Jesus, Redeemer, save us all,
And hear your people when we call.