Rector's Message: Saturday, December 4, 2021
Updated: Dec 11, 2021
Sunday, 05 December
The Second Sunday of Advent
A Scripture Verse for the Week:
A Message from the Rector
The days have grown noticeably shorter. There is a chill in the air. The sun, low in the sky, has lost its warmth. The trees are brown or bare. The skies are filled with flocks of birds, chirping and honking their goodbye, heading south. A welcoming fire in the fireplace is once again appreciated as it warms the room and warms our hearts.
It is time. Time to prepare. After all, can Christmas be far behind? And so we wait. Welcome to Advent, this month-long season of waiting.
We don’t like to wait. Let’s get moving! Get on with it! And yet, wait, we must. For we are Advent people. As Christians, this is our season. We live in the gap – the gap between that first coming of the Son of God, a humble, vulnerable infant; and the Second Coming of the triumphant Christ who will come in power and great glory. We live in a state of waiting – waiting to see the face of God.
And in the interim, we get ready. This is the season to do the work inside that can’t be done outdoors. Prepare a fallow heart to welcome mystery; water a dormant soul with springs of joy. Cultivate awe. Plant a seed of hope.
The images and themes of this Advent season are captured in this prayer borrowed from our Iroquois sisters and brothers . . .
We wait in darkness!
Come, all you who listen,
Help in our night journey:
Now no star is glowing;
Come show us the pathway.
The night is not friendly;
The moon has forgotten us.
We wait in the darkness
with hope for the light.
O God, our times are in your hands: Look with favor, we pray, on these your servants as they begin another year. Grant that they may grow in wisdom and grace, and strengthen their trust in your goodness all the days of their life; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Rev. Robert Brown
VISIT THE WEBSITE: Here you can find a video of the Sunday service as well as the bulletin and the sermon. https://www.messiahgwynedd.org/
VIEW THE CALENDAR
Monday through Friday 9:30 to 2:30
IN CASE OF A PASTORAL EMERGENCY AFTER HOURS
Should you have an urgent need to contact the Rector outside of Church Office hours, please use his cell phone: 215-692-2667.
Don't forget to scroll down and read the "Reaching out to the Community" section to find out all of the great ways you can help to serve others this holiday season!!
2022 PLEDGE CARDS:
All 2022 pledge cards have been mailed. We ask that you please return your card by November 30. If you did not receive your envelope and card, please contact the office. Thank you in advance for your kindness and generosity!
Online Rummage Sale
Do you have items in your home that you no longer need or want? If so, please consider donating them to Messiah. We will post them online on Facebook marketplace and will arrange for the sale. All proceeds will go towards achieving our annual fundraising goal. Items that tend to sell online are furniture, clothing lots, shoes, accessories, books, seasonal products, home goods, sports and fitness equipment, electronic appliances, etc. If you have any of these items that you wish to donate, reach out to Jennifer Marsh at email@example.com with a detailed description of your item as well as photographs of the item from different angles. Jennifer will post the item on Facebook and will communicate with interested buyers to arrange for a sale at the best price. Once a sale is made we will coordinate with you to bring the item to the parish hall (either Jennifer will pick it up from your location or you may drop it off). If an item is too big (like a large piece of furniture) Jennifer will meet with the buyer at your location at a time that is convenient for you. The buyer is fully responsible for lifting and transporting large items from your location.
Wreaths Across America
Church of the Messiah cemetery was selected as an official location for the 2021 National Wreaths Across America Celebration. On December 18, we will be joining with the Gwynedd Chapter NSDAR and more than 3,000 participating locations across the country to Remember, Honor and Teach. The goal for the Church of the Messiah Cemetery is to raise enough funds to place eighty-eight wreaths at the headstones of all the local heroes laid to rest in the churchyard, to ensure that the individuals who served to protect the freedoms of our country are not forgotten by members of the church of the local community. Sponsorship is Simple: A donation of $15.00 provides two wreaths to decorate the graves of two veterans buried here at Church of the Messiah. Checks should be made payable to "Rector's Discretionary Fund," noted for "wreaths." Then plan to join us on Saturday, December 18 for a short memorial service and participate in laying the wreaths on the veterans' graves.
SPECIAL ADVENT & CHRISTMAS SERVICES AT
Church of the Messiah
4th SUNDAY IN Advent
Sunday, 19 December
8:00am Advent Festival of Lessons & Canticles
9:30am Advent Festival of Lessons & Carols
Readings, canticles and carols trace the grace of God from Creation to the Visitation and Annunciation, leaving us at the threshold of the Nativity.
Church School program
Join the Church School in the Parish Hall for the annual Christmas program.
5:00pm Family Christmas Celebration
The telling of the Nativity story and building of the Christmas creche. Shortened service format, designed with children in mind, and featuring Messiah’s young guitar students.
7:00pm Traditional Christmas Eucharist with Bell & Chancel Choir
Festive celebration of the Great Feast of the Nativity featuring music from Messiah’s choirs.
10:00am Holy Eucharist
Enter into the quiet, meditative beauty of Christmas morning.
1st Sunday in Christmas
NO SERVICES ON SUNDAY, 26 DECEMBER
2nd Sunday in Christmas
Sunday, 2 January
* Please Note: ONE SERVICE!
9:30am Christmas Festival of Lessons & Carols with Holy Eucharist
A series of lessons and carols recount the joy of Christmas, leading into the holy meal of the Eucharist. Special prayers for the new year, followed by special refreshments in the narthex.
FIRST SUNDAY AFTER THE EPIPHANY: Baptism of Our Lord
Sunday, 9 January
8:00am Holy Eucharist
9:30 am Holy Eucharist
The Nativity story closes with the visit of the Three Wise Men, and we begin the Season of Epiphany and Carnivale with New Orleans King Cake after both services.
News from SMG Clubhouse
Thanks to the wonders of modern technology and the hard work of several parishioners, we are able to offer a variety of ways to participate in Sunday services:
IN-PERSON – COVID precautions strictly observed
LIVE-STREAMED - the service will be broadcast on YouTube – follow the link posted on the church website (messiahgwynedd.org)
WEBSITE – at the close of the service, a video will be posted to the parish website (messiahgwynedd.org) for viewing at a time convenient for you
We are in need of intercessors for our prayer chain ministry.
When someone has a need or concern, they can be placed on our prayer chain. That person is prayed for daily and the concern lifted before the Lord. If you want to join this crucial ministry, please contact Ciara Prezuhy at 215-353-1343 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
GIFTS FOR LAUREL HOUSE AND INTERFAITH HOUSING
Stop by the tree in the Narthex and take a tag to buy a gift for a child or adult! Gifts should be returned by TOMORROW at the latest, and gifts should be unwrapped with the bottom portion of the tag attached.
Help us to Fill Gift Bags!
TOMORROW, we will be filling approximately 250 bags for the residents of Whosoever Gospel mission along with Silver Stream and Gwynedd Square care facilities, and we need your help! Please meet in the Parish Hall following the 9:30 service to chip in and fill some bags!
SUPPORT FOR MANNA ON MAIN STREET
We Continue to Collect & Deliver Non-Perishable Items
As you do your weekly shopping, please pick up some non-perishable food items, toiletries and cleaning supplies. These donations can be left on the back pew of the church or left outside the Rector’s office door. These will then be delivered to Manna to stock their shelves for distribution to meet clients’ needs.
IT'S NOT TOO LATE TO JOIN!
The Rector’s Zoom Book Study & Discussion
GENESIS - The Opening Chapters: Origins & Foundations
Wednesday evenings – 7:00pm
First Session: October 6 – November 10, 2021
Second Session: January 12 – February 16, 2022
The first book of the Bible is a book of beginnings. The first eleven chapters of the Book of Genesis bring us back to our origins and the foundation of life itself: the creation stories; the Fall; the first murder; the ark and Great Flood; the first covenant; Tower of Babel; and dispersion of the nations. We learn how we were created and about the origins of sin and its fallout through meeting Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, Noah and his family. We find ourselves drawn into tales of deceit, jealousy and outright failure. And woven throughout these earliest stories are the golden threads of God’s promises and revelation.
Our annual Christmas program will take place on Sunday, December 19 in the Parish Hall, following the 9:30 service!
Church School will continue to meet in person and virtually on Sunday mornings at 9:30 in the Parish Hall.
Following the CDC and diocesan guidelines, and for the safety of all:
all children, teachers and nursery volunteers will be strongly encouraged to wear a mask or face covering, regardless of vaccination status
seats will be spread out, when both sitting at a table or on the carpet
snacks and drinks will not be served
hand sanitizer will be available, as well as the restroom sink for hand washing
each child will be supplied with a bag of their own supplies to eliminate the need for sharing supplies
NOTE: Barbara Stevenson continues to need recipes and craft ideas to pass along to the parish through the weekly email messages. You can send your submissions to Barbara at email@example.com.
As we begin to prepare for the holidays, many of us look for things to serve when people drop in or for appetizers to serve at parties. There are so many delightful ones from which to choose. I’ve chosen three from my collection to share! Enjoy!
Sausage Parmesan Palmiers
2 Tablespoons butter
2 onions, sliced
8 ounce breakfast sausage
1 sheet frozen puff pastry ( 17.3 ounce pkg)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
1 large egg
Put the butter and onions in a skillet over medium heat and brown onions until dark, 40-45 minutes. Remove from skillet and set aside. Add the sausage to the same skillet and crumble; cook until done, 5 - 8 minutes. Roll pastry out to 10 x 12 inches. Sprinkle the cheese over the pastry, then the sausage, then the onions. Roll both sides of the pastry toward the center until they touch. Chill in the refrigerator for 20 minutes. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment. Slice pastry into 1/3 inch slices and transfer them to prepared baking sheets. Mix together the egg and 1 Tablespoon of water and brush mixture over the top of slices. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes.
Toasted Gruyere and Cranberry Cups
1 10 ounce bag frozen or fresh cranberries
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon orange zest plus 1/4 cup orange juice
4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup grated Gruyere cheese
48 frozen phyllo cups
2 Tablespoons chopped chives
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment. Mix the cranberries, sugar, orange zest and orange juice in a small saucepan. Place over medium heat and cook until the cranberries soften and start to burst, 8 - 10 minutes. Set aside. Combine the cream cheese and Gruyere in a large bowl with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula until smooth. Place the phyllo cups on the prepared baking sheet. Spoon about 1 teaspoon of cranberry sauce into each cup. Spoon about 1 teaspoon of the cheese mixture on top of the cranberry sauce. Bake until the cups are crisp and the cheese is melted and bubbling, 10 - 12 minutes. Sprinkle with chives before serving.
8 ounces shredded provolone cheese
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 can artichoke hearts, cut into pieces
Blend together. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
PLEASE NOTE: Last weeks recipe from Trevor Marsh had an error as it was copied. The recipe should read “ 1 part Parmesan Goldfish “ rather than just Parmesan cheese.