Christmas, and a note of hope

Good day siblings in Christ,

Christmas Eve is THIS FRIDAY! We will have two different services, one at 10:00 a.m. and one at 7:00 p.m. The 10:00 a.m. service will more than likely have lighter attendance and is designed for those who also do not like to travel in the evening. There will be candles and Silent Night. The evening service at 7:00 p.m. will have our choir, singing, candles, and Silent Night. If you plan on attending the 7:00 p.m. service, our recommendation is to wear a KN95 mask. We will have 50 masks on hand if you need one. Both services will be streamed, but on Facebook only.

Speaking of Christmas Eve, we will premiere a brand new Nativity set. Two years ago, our set was damaged during packing and became unusable. Thanks to a gracious donation by one of our members, a new set was purchased and it is lovely. You will see it on Christmas Eve for the first time.

The Sunday after Christmas will be our annual Lessons and Carols service. We welcome anyone who would like to read in church that day. We have seven readings for those who would like to help.

I want to end on a note of hope. Last year, we had one Christmas Eve service and we were not sure we were going to have that. There were no vaccines, we didn’t know as much as we know now, and KN95 masks were not widely available. We celebrated, and no one was sick afterward. This year, as we watch the news, we are all experiencing a little PTSD and fears are elevated about the Omicron variant. This doesn’t mean to take it lightly, but recognize things are much, much different. Not only are most people vaccinated, but many people are now boosted. We have stronger masks and we have been worshiping in person for most of the year. Omicron is affecting those who are not vaccinated more than those who are vaccinated and that is why cases are so high.

The point is not to downplay anything, I and the council are taking this very seriously, but recognize it is also not the same as last year. We have gone through and are still going through a giant trauma, so care for yourself, rest, and do what is safe. We can also have fun, enjoy special moments, and celebrate the birth of the Christ child into our midst. If I do not see you this weekend, I hope you have a very Merry Christmas. Let the breath out that you have been holding.

Be love to the world.

Pastor Johnson