Greetings from our interim moderator.
Christmas is not cancelled as some may be trying to tell us. Christmas is coming – which is one of the many Carols we do normally like singing in Church at this time, as we light the advent candles that brightly burn in a ring. Although this year will of course be different!
I am sure those of you who have been able to be back in Church these past few weeks have enjoyed seeing people again, a little differently yes, but being part of the worshipping fellowship is something that many have missed, even if you are not permitted to sing at present, which for me is a huge part of worship in Church – I just love singing.
One of the songs which we may hear if we are able to do any shopping is one that the folks here at the Newtown Community Choir sing – the John Lennon song – ‘And so this is Christmas’, the line going on to say ‘and what have you done, another year over and a new one just begun’, which is a bit confusing as the new year does not begin until a week after Christmas, but for this year, the part that rings bells for me, is ‘and what have you done’, as we do come to the end of this year, how has this year been different for us. It is hard to comprehend that this year has been so different. I think about all the new things that we have learnt from the Springtime and the seasons that have come and gone. We have been fortunate that for a good part of lockdown, those of us who were able to go out managed to, and were amazed at the beauty of nature which seemed to flourish as all around was so quiet. There was a peacefulness, as people were not dashing around, in a hurry to get to and from places. The time has gone quite quickly, and now it is Christmas. I am not sure as I write what kind of Christmas it will be, but one thing I am sure about is that it will be remembered. I wonder though if the reason we celebrate will be at the forefront or whether it will be the restrictions that are part of our lives that we remember mostly. Of course Christmas is about more than the tinsel and the lights we see around, it is the very down to earth story of the birth of Jesus, God’s Son, and that will never change. The festivities, the services will be different, but the mystery of God Incarnate, God Emmanuel will be there for us, a timeless message of hope, of love. We may be facing a bleak mid-winter, and frosty winds may blow, but we will also find joy in the lights and the songs and in caring for one another this Christmas.
At the recent meeting of the Kirk Session, the Session decided that the Sunday Services planned this year will go ahead, but that there will be no service on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day
For the Sunday’s in Advent our services are as follows:
Sunday 6th December – Channelkirk
Sunday 13th December – Lauder
Sunday 20th December – Channelkirk
Sunday 27th December – Lauder
And you can book your place at the services by calling Billy on a Friday evening on 01578 722848 or 07384 720245.
However, I am planning to have a Christingle Service via Zoom on the 24th December and you are welcome to join the Zoom link at 3.45pm for our service beginning at 4.00pm where as we make our Christingles we shall hear the story of Jesus birth, and even sing some Carols, which we are not permitted to do in Church. The ID and Passcode are:
Meeting ID: 840 3816 9762 Passcode: 322937
And on Christmas Day, in the comfort of your own home, and you can even come in your PJ’s, join us on this special day, show off some of your presents and gifts that were under your tree for a short family service on Zoom as follows:
Meeting ID: 839 7827 2445 Passcode: 331175
I wish you all a very blessed Christmas and a prosperous New Year and look forward to meeting you all once again in a more normal way when the restrictions are lifted. Please take care and keep being kind to one another.
Advent, which begins four weeks before Christmas, is a great time for all Christians
as we prepare to celebrate the Birth of Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour.. Advent has three meanings, firstly, it is looking forward to the Birth of Christ, secondly
it is about Christ coming into our lives and
thirdly it is when we reflect on Christ returning to the world as King and Judge.
During this period an Advent Wreath is placed in Churches with five candles, one for each of the four Sundays and one, in the centre, representing Christ.
There is a variation in the themes for each of the four Advent Sundays
and in the colour of candles for the themes.. The first theme which we consider is HOPE, associated with the Prophet Isaiah
who forecast the birth of Jesus, ( Isaiah chapter 7. Verse 14 ). A purple coloured candle, the candle of HOPE is the first one which lit in
confident expectation of what God has promised.. The ancient hymn expresses it well
” All my hope on God is founded. ‘Without hope we have nothing, with hope we have
This year Advent Sunday was marked in Churches on 29th November.
Back then, on the following day, Andrew the fisherman, the first called disciple of Jesus,
was crucified in Greece, tied on an ‘X’ shaped cross. Saint Andrew was the brother of Saint Peter.
It is the tradition in many churches that the second Sunday in Advent (6.12.2020)
is held as Bible Sunday when we give thanks to God for the gift of His Word in the Bible. Christians believe that through the Bible God has spoken to all people
On the second Sunday of Advent the candle we light symbolises LOVE,
”That love that will not let me go ”
In earlier days when the Prophets, gave their message they were saying
‘This Word does not come from me’. God is a God who has made His will and His ways known: He is not a distant, silent God. Christ goes further than that. Not only have lawgivers and rulers and prophets spoken a word which came from God, we believe that in Jesus Christ ‘ the Word became flesh and dwelt among us’. God has spoken to us by revealing himself in a person, In Jesus Christ God has shown us His love and His power and His forgiveness and the hope of everlasting