Participate in Virtual Church

There’s all kinds of ways to participate in virtual church! If you (or your household or family) want to read scripture, all you need is a device to record a video and to be able to send that in (either by Dropbox or Google Drive). When you sign up, the scripture will be sent to you with more detailed instructions. 

When you sign up below, please indicate what date and what you would like to help with. Thank you for volunteering!

Scripture Readers
February 14 – Open
February 21 – Open
March 7 – Open
March 14 – Open

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A Year in Photos

2020 has been a difficult year. Even though we’ve been apart, it’s our relationships that have brought us even closer together. As the year draws to a close, and we look hopefully into the future, enjoy this slideshow of photos throughout the year!

Note: any photos with large groups of people, lacking masks and social distancing, were taken before mid-March 2020.

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Virtual Christmas Eve

Join us as we celebrate Christmas at home this year! There will be brass, organ, candlelight, and all the sparkle and warmth of our usual Christmas Eve services. While we wish we could be together in person, we know this is the way we can love ourselves and our neighbor by staying at home.

You can join us in a few ways!

We will be streaming live at 4 PM EST on Thursday, December 24 on Zoom, Facebook and here on our website. Can’t make it at 4 PM? Don’t worry. You can watch the video later at any time on both Facebook and the website.…

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Blue Christmas Service – Dec. 21

Blue Christmas is a time when we hold tenderly the difficult emotions the holidays bring. For many of us (especially in 2020), the holidays are not the most wonderful time of the year. If you are grieving, lonely, isolated, tired, weary, angry, or just need a place to be on the Longest Night of the year, you are welcome to this virtual service of prayer, music, and virtual Communion.

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Advent Blog 2020 – #MissionMonday Wrap Up!

Our last #MissionMonday Advent Blog post is a huge thank you to all our volunteers and to all who participated in our various projects!

We collected boxes and bags packed to the brim of toiletries for Emmaus, Inc., pantry items for Reading Food Pantry, and toys, hats, games, and more for City Mission Boston’s Christmas Shop!

From our Christmas Shop inventory in particular we learned:
We had 94 hats, with the majority (perhaps 90%) of those being hand knit. We also received 13 beautiful hand knit baby blankets. We received 76 toys and books for children. Overall there were 343 items

We all know generosity begets generosity. Thank you for being a blessing to others! And thank you in particular to Cindy Crampe, Sharon Ofenstein, Carol Patterson, Joann Sanford, Larry Piper, Linda Ananian, Betsy Schneider, Gay Williams, Shirley Holden, and all involved in helping make this socially distanced collection safe and possible.…

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Advent Blog 2020 – Devotional Download

“… the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord.” — the Gospel of Luke

The third week of Advent we light the candle of Joy (the pink candle!). This Sunday is also know as “Gaudete” Sunday. Gaudete is latin for “rejoice!” and comes from the first word of the Latin Mass from the 3rd Sunday of Advent (clearly a very ancient tradition to mark this Sunday as a joy-filled one!).

Joy is not the same as happiness, which may seem elusive in a time of loss. Joy is the deep river of assurance that is always there for us to dip into in spite of circumstances. Joy is not about denying suffering, but rather it is the embracing of the depths of all of life’s emotions that is the very thing that allows us to eventually feel the heights once more. The shepherds were very afraid when angels appeared and so they encouraged them, after they got over the shock, to rejoice because a baby had been born that would change hearts and help us find a better way.

Adapted from Dr. Marcia McFee’s Advent Resource

What is giving you joy this week? What are you celebrating in your heart?

“Somehow, not only for Christmas”
John Greenleaf Whittier – born Dec. 17, 1807

Somehow, not only for Christmas,
But all the long year through,
The joy that you give to others,
Is the joy that comes back to you.
And the more you spend in blessing,
The poor and lonely and sad,
The more of your heart’s possessing,
Returns to you glad.…

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Advent Blog 2020 – Devotional Download

Each Friday we will share a devotional reflection. A devotional is something that you can use for spiritual reflection (writing, poetry, images, etc.) that help prompt your meditation, prayer, journaling, or just to ponder throughout the day.

“… an angel from the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, don’t be afraid to take Mary as your wife, because the child she carries was conceived by the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you will call him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” Now all of this took place so that what the Lord had spoken through the prophet would be fulfilled: Look! A virgin will become pregnant and give birth to a son, and they will call him, Emmanuel. (Emmanuel means ‘God with us.’)”
— the Gospel of Matthew

This week we light the first candle on our Advent Wreaths and begin our Advent journeys. As we light our first candle of Hope, we recognize we need Hope in order to have Peace, Joy, and Love. Hope gives us the ability to aspire to these other three.

This week, if you are feeling despair, anxiety, or fear from the difficulty of this year (and the uncertainty of the future), allow this light to remind you that you are not alone. Remember: the angel’s message Mary, Joseph, and the shepherds was “do not be afraid.” We believe that the Christmas message of “God With Us” (Emmanuel) is why Jesus came to be with us. He was born into a world that was also experiencing trouble, unrest, oppression, and fear. God wanted to be with us then, and God still wants to be with us in a Spirit of Hope that never dies.

Adapted from Dr. Marcia McFee’s Advent Resource

What ways are you inviting hope into your life this week?
Write down a list of 5 hopes you hold in your heart today.

“Drawing Near”
A Blessing for Advent

It is difficult to see it from here,
I know,
but trust me when I say
this blessing is inscribed
on the horizon.
Is written on
that far point
you can hardly see.
Is etched into
a landscape
whose contours you cannot know
from here.
All you know
is that it calls you,
draws you,
pulls you toward
what you have perceived
only in pieces,
in fragments that came to you
in dreaming
or in prayer.
I cannot account for how,
as you draw near,
the blessing embedded in the horizon
begins to blossom
upon the soles of your feet,
shimmers in your two hands.
It is one of the mysteries
of the road,
how the blessing
you have traveled toward,
waited for,
ached for
suddenly appears,
as if it had been with you
all this time,
as if it simply
needed to know
how far you were willing
to walk
to find the lines
that were traced upon you
before the day
you were born.

—Jan …

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