Advent: Gathering & giving

Practices for the Advent season

This week in our gatherings, we began our Advent series. We reflected together on both the darkness and the light of this season. For our Advent practice this month, we’re entering into prayer and reflection each week, along with lighting a candle to help us in our prayers.

This week, here’s the practice:

Begin with the candle unlit and consider:
What darkness is there in the way things are?

After a few moments of reflection, move on to considering this question:
In what ways have you seen the light breaking in, even if it’s only the faintest glow on the farthest horizon?

Light the candle and ask God to help you name the darkness, see the light, and hold out hope that the way things are is not the way they will always be. As you light the candle, you can pray,
Come, Lord Jesus, come.

 

Christmas giving 2018

This Christmas season we want to practice generosity, and we are excited to give through our annual Christmas fund. Our goal this year is $95,000, and we’re looking forward to what we can do to help our community, city, and world, with your help!

Community 
We’re expanding our children’s ministry space to better care for the children in our ministry, and to better allocate the volunteer leadership that allows our children’s ministry to thrive. We’re also adding a volunteer room and a nursing mother’s room in the expanded space. 

City 
We’re partnering with Hope Ministries to offer affordable housing to people who have completed Hope’s programs and are ready for their next steps. This year’s offering will allow Hope to purchase their first property and pilot the affordable housing program. 

World
– We’re contributing to World Vision’s Syrian Refugee Education Project,helping them increase early childhood education opportunities for children in Jordan and Lebanon who have been affected by the Syrian crisis.

– We’ll also begin scouting and designing our own SBCC strategy for the “world” part of our identity statement, discerning where and how we should partner and contribute beyond the U.S.

Please consider making a donation toward our Christmas offering goal of $95,000 in addition to your regular giving. You can designate checks with “Christmas” in the memo line or select the “Christmas 2018” fund online.

By contributing to this fund, donors acknowledge that the church has full authority to apply contributions designated for these projects to other purposes in the event a project is canceled or oversubscribed, or other needs necessitate such action.

Holiday calendar

Join us for some special gatherings (in addition to regularly scheduled Sunday & Tuesday gatherings) this month:

Sunday, Dec. 16 – Kids sing in all gatherings
Monday, Dec. 24 – Candlelight gatherings at 5 p.m. (with childcare) and 11 p.m (no childcare)

We will take a break from Sunday and midweek gatherings until Sunday, Jan. 6! Please note that we will also begin gathering on Thursdays instead of Tuesdays in 2019, beginning Jan. 10!

If you’re interested in finding a place to gather on Sunday, Dec. 30, consider joining River Park Grace at 10 a.m. or Keller Park Church at 10:30 a.m.