Grace Waves / Pastor’s Blog

Friends:

“We most need to pray when we least feel like praying.  Even when we seem unable to pray as we ought, we can trust the Spirit prays within us with ‘sighs too deep for words’, for the prayer of the heart depends not on our temperament or natural capacity for quiet but on the Spirit’s presence and gifts meant for each of us.”  Catherine of Siena

Christmas Schedule

  • Christmas Eve:  Family Service at 5:00 pm …. Who will be the Baby Jesus this year?  Guest singers/musicians/actors will fill the evening’s Story with delight!
  • Christmas Eve:Candlelight and Communion at 10:00 pm
  • Christmas Day: Worship at 10:00 am

Secret Santa Gifts and Gift Cards: Please bring your Gifts/Gift Cards to Worship this Sunday, December 16. The families live in Antioch, Pittsburg, Bay Point, Oakley and Concord. Please wrap your gifts and mark them with Family Name, Gender and Age of Child.  (For example, BAY Family.  Girl 7 years.)   A small group will drive to Martinez on Monday or Tuesday to deliver the gifts.

The Catechumenate (Adult Faith Deepening/Clarity of Calling) has begun.  A few other members may join in.  Keep Fei in your prayers and those who are contemplating participating in this time of discernment.

Sing-Along Messiah with the Contra Costa Chamber Orchestra and our own Elizabeth Hunter Ashley!  Sunday, December 16, 7:00 pm at the San Ramon Community Center, 12501 Alcosta.  www.San RamonArts.org for tickets.

Blue Christmas Services and Holiday Candle Ceremony:  Martha has sent us Christmas Resources for those facing grief and loss in this season of darkness.  See attachments below.

Christmas Caroling:  Gary will once again lead the way with his accordion as we sing cheer at the homes of members of Peace.  We are hoping to conclude the evening with Caroling for the Camp Fire families residing at San Damiano.  All are welcome to join in – singers and non-singers!!

Thanks to the Women of Peace and Ken who have decorated our Tree and the Gathering Hall!

Sretan Bozic! –  Christmas Tree Decoration:  As a child “Sretan Bozic” was spoken in my Croat family more than Merry Christmas. It reminds me of our being an immigrant family.  I would like to prepare ribbons or paper strips with Merry Christmas written down in languages from all of our diverse family backgrounds.  From Arabic Maltese to Finish.  We can prepare these on Dec. 16 and 23 and use them as additional Christmas decorations.  Sretan Bozic!    Ken

Christmas opportunities for Service

San Damiano Retreat Center is opening their facility for Paradise Fire Victims.  78 people can be housed.  If you know anyone who needs a place for the holidays please notify Lisa at San Damiano promptly.  Her number is: 837-9141.  If you wish to Volunteer to assist the days most needed are:  December 20 and 21 when people arrive and December 24 and 25.  Contact me if you want help.

“The Lord has so identified himself with us that our love for one another truly binds us to him as well:  I have put you among your neighbors so that you can do for them what you cannot do for me.  And whatever you do for them I will consider done for me.”  Catherine of Siena

Winter Nights Shelter:  in late January or early February we will provide hospitality (a meal, homework assistance, being present) with friends from Beth Chaim at St. Timothy’s Church.  More details to come.

Entre Culturas News/Partnership Eduardo and the women did the trip to a place call EL SALTO – which is a river that has waterfalls and some swimming holes. 22 women and 6 children came on the trip. They had lunch in El Salto ( fish filet and juice – according to the women it was very good.)  The women had a blast especially because they do not have the chance to leave the community to go on trips like this. Micaela and  Emelina came on the trip. Emerita seemed to most enjoy the trip…on the way back to Laurel Galan, since they had to go trough Managua, the bus take them to the main avenue in the city for the women to see all of the Christmas Lights and the Altars that are especially prepared for the celebration of the Concepcion of Mary.

The Third Sunday of Advent arrives this Sunday when we light the pink candle – a symbol of joy for all the people who cannot wait for Christmas!

Advent blessings,

Pr. Steve

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