Happy New Year
Yes, this Sunday is the first Sunday of Advent, the start of the new Christian Year. We begin again the cycle of telling the stories of Jesus and of our faith. This Sunday’s readings are about preparedness – being prepared for the coming of the Messiah. This is of course quite a different thing from preparing for the coming of Christmas. It’s not so much about preparing, as being prepared. We know that festivals like Christmas will in fact come whether or not we are “prepared.” Advent is often filled with the guilt of old memories and unrealistic expectations of ourselves and others. We understand what the prophet Jeremiah means when we hear, “The days are surely coming...” We may feel the pressure. But for Advent, we are invited, not to guilt, but to mindfulness. The preparedness for the coming of the Messiah is not about having the tree up, the house clean and gifts bought, it is about an inward attitude of openness to the experience of the divine in our lives
The Readings for Sunday are Jeremiah 33:14-16 and Luke 21: 25-36. With the children I will talking about looking for Jesus in our lives with the title “People look east?” and the title of the sermon is “The days are surely coming”
We have Sunday School. Come join the fun as we learn together the stories of our faith through the Seasons of the Spirit.
We could always use a few more people who are willing to give some time as teachers or helpers. If you are interested call the office or sign your name on the Sunday School sign-up sheet by the church office.
CONGREGATIONAL MEETING – NOVEMBER 22 (follow-up)
Last Sunday, we held a Congregational Meeting after church. One of the primary purposes of the meeting was to fill vacancies in our Church Board so that we could start 2016 with a full slate. You may remember the table below from last Thursday, but with a difference. Last week there were a number of red spaces indicating the vacancies. You will note that most of these are now blue indicating that we have had someone come forward to fill the position. I would like to offer a special word of thanks to those named in blue. However, they cannot work alone, those whom we have elected and appointed to serve as our board coordinate and envision the ways we as a congregation live out our ministry and witness, but it is the whole congregation that is the church. By the way, please note we still have an important red space open.
Education & Faith Formation
Ministry & Personnel
Messy Advent is this Saturday, Nov. 28 from 4-6 pm. It’s going to be a fun time, we have some interesting crafts planned. A big thank you to those who have volunteered. Kids, bring your parents or grandparents, aunts or uncles and have fun getting messy for Advent
Decorating the Sanctuary for advent/Christmas
The annual decorating of our church will take place following worship this Sunday, Nov. 29.
If you are able to stay to help out, it would be appreciated!
We especially need folks who are willing to finish the tree, put out nativity scenes, get up on ladders to do high decorating and put out lights on our deck.
Bissell Centre Winter Wish (formerly “White Gift Sunday”)
This year, Bissell is asking that we share the warmth of our lives by filling a stocking for a man or women in need, or providing a gift for a child. The list of items to go in each stocking, and info regarding gifts for children is available on the back table (BISSELL CENTRE WINTER WISHLIST). You can either pack your gifts in a stocking (available for a dollar at Dollarama stores all throughout the city) or drop them off in white plastic bags. The gifts must be at the church on Dec. 6 or 13 to then be delivered to Bissell.
GLENDALE HOT DOG LUNCH
Each year near Christmas, folks from Spirit West have provided a Hot Dog Lunch to the students at Glendale School. This year the lunch is on Wednesday, December 16. We prepare the food at the school and then deliver it to each classroom. It’s a fun time for both the students and the folks from Spirit West. If are available on December 16, and would like to help out, please call the church office for details and we will pass your name on to Doreen O.
Again this year, Spirit West will be providing Christmas Hampers to struggling families in the city. This year the Hamper Drive is being coordinated by Lori and Bill W. In response to concerns brought forward last year, the size and cost of the hampers has been reduced, though our hampers will be in keeping with those provided by other organizations. There are a number of ways to support this project. The full cost to sponsor a hamper is $150, but this cost can be shared with others (ie. 2 x $75 or 3 x $50). We are hoping to purchase frozen turkeys in advance, and are asking people to adopt a turkey by offering room in your freezer to store a turkey until the hampers are packed. You can also help with the Christmas Hamper Shopping Trip on December 19, starting a 6:00 pm at the church. When we have the family details of those to receive hampers, you can purchase a gift for a child in the family. Information and sign-up sheets are at the church.
Spirit West Women’s Group Christmas Party
The Spirit West Women’s Group Christmas Party will be held on Monday, December 7th at 6:00 PM in the Lower Hall of Spirit West Church. Tickets are $20 per person and include a full Christmas dinner with all the trimmings. All women are welcome – feel free to bring a friend! Please see Terri-Lynn H. or Liz O. for tickets. We will have laughs, games and a wacky gift exchange. For those who want to participate in the gift exchange, bring a wrapped gift with a value between $15 to $20 maximum (or something homemade!). If you are able to help out with the food or drinks, please see Colleen F.
SPIRIT WEST CHOIR – “JOY TO THE WORLD” CHRISTMAS CONCERT
Sunday, December 13th at 6:30. Join us, as in music and word we celebrate with joy God’s promise and gift of our Messiah.
Spirit West Prayer Chain
The Spirit West Prayer Chain is a group of people who have committed to continue our prayers of concern from Sunday through the week. To be part of this ministry, email your request to firstname.lastname@example.org . You may also email a request for prayer to the same email address. If you would prefer to talk to someone, you can call Shannon F. at 780-481-5262, Marian T. at 780-487-2851 or Bonnie C. at 780-444-2230.
SPIRIT WEST ONLINE!
Our Website is at www.spiritwest.org .
Our Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/SpirtWestUnitedChurch
- Monday to Friday 9:30 – 2:30
- Norma => 9:30 am to 2:30 pm, Monday to Thursday
- Larry => 9:30 am to 2:30 pm, Tuesday to Friday
(Rev.) Larry K. Wright, CD, BA, MDiv
Spirit West United Church