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December 26, 2020
If you missed the incredible Virtual Christmas Pageant, please click the image above to watch. If you would like to see the Christmas Eve Service with prelude, pageant, sermon, and communion, please click this link.
Tomorrow, the first Sunday after Christmas, we'll take a break. Please visit the Synod webpage for Christmas Lessons and Carols. Watch any time tomorrow after 10:00 am here. Download the bulletin here.

The Diocese of Maryland will celebrate Holy Eucharist at 11am  here

Please keep Linda Chinnia in your prayers. She has tested positive for COVID-19. We give thanks for all those who are working so hard to vaccinate and care for those suffering from the virus. See other announcements below.



From the Office, i.e. Carolyn Surrick....

Christmas Eve is always the same. There’s a mad crush to get presents wrapped (and maybe the last one or two purchased.) There’s prepping for the family dinner. There’s a lot of second guessing – pretty much about everything you can imagine, and then the complicated calculation about when to get to church for the Christmas Eve Service and children’s pageant. 
 
I love the pageant, and I love singing the carols but let’s be honest about it, the whole thing is fraught. You are trying to get dressed in a hurry and put on whatever is cheery and seasonal, but it doesn’t quite fit as well as it did five years ago when you bought this particular dress (which you only wear once a year.) You have to get to church really, really early. There’s no place to park. The church is one third full, but the pews have bulletins spread all the way across because there is a designated sitter, who gets there an hour early to secure the seats. Exactly twenty minutes before the service is going to start, kids start playing Christmas music on out of tune violins (badly) while their grandparents smile from afar. The ushers are freaking out because they have set up all the folding chairs that exist in the building and people are still standing in the back. The pastor understands that he has one shot at turning maybe three of the people who are there (who come twice a year, Easter and Christmas) into regular parishioners so the stakes are high for the homily. Funny, but not irreverent, warm but not gushy, smart but not overly intellectual…it’s a landmine.
 
When the service is over, there’s a dash for the cars, mothers are frantic, fathers are angry, and the kids are so wound up they could spin all the way home on their tippy toes. Ho, ho, ho.
 
But not this year. We couldn’t be together which seemed unimaginable. The notion that Christmas Eve was going to happen without our congregation in the pews, singing Silent Night, holding candles – well that was too much for even Pastor Stewart to accept. 
 
I don’t know about you, but when Sam Dowding appeared as the Angel Gabriel, and Doris Webb, Mary Schwartz, and Betsy Smith were the Three Kings, and the kids and the music and the families and the way that we were all there watching and celebrating together. For me, it was the best Christmas Eve ever. 
 
I sat on the couch, in Annapolis, with my mom. We listened, we sang, we broke bread, we laughed, and when it was over, we didn’t want to close the computer, because, honestly, I did not want that time with you all to end. It was not fraught. It was not frantic. No one was mad or anxious or selfish (bless us all for being human.) It was simply brilliant and beautiful – it is where God lives, in all of us. Amen.



Thank You!

What a terrific Christmas we celebrated together. Thanks to all of you who showed up in so many generous ways. Kyle Rudgers and his team of actors, videographers, and musicians worked their magic retelling the Christmas Story. Thanks to Cindy Burggraf, David Neff, the Bell Choir, Choir, and soloists. Pastor Don, Carolyn, Linda and Tony have helped make sure all the details were covered, and so many others delivered poinsettias and communion kits. Many thanks also to one you rarely see, David Alexander, who keeps our facilities clean and disinfected every night. What a saint! Yes, this is the miracle of Christmas, a community coming to gather to celebrate and spread the love of God, born in a stable. God bless us one and all.

Tomorrow, the first Sunday after Christmas, we'll take a break. Please visit the Synod webpage for 
Christmas Lessons and Carols. Watch any time tomorrow after 10:00 am here. Download the bulletin here.

The Episcopal Diocese of Maryland will celebrate Holy Eucharist at 11:00 am here.

Please keep Linda Chinnia in your prayers. She has tested positive for COVID-19. We give thanks for all those who are working so hard to vaccinate and care for those suffering from the virus.


Pastor Stewart+
 

Other Announcements

  • Thanks to everyone who has made a year end gift so far. We have deposited all of the checks we have received. A great deal of our mail has been delayed and some even was lost. If you have not noticed a check has cleared, please call the church office. If you need to check the balance of your pledge, please email or call the office. Click here to make a year end gift online.
  • There will be no regular Nativity - Holy Comforter Zoom gathering on Sunday, December 27.
  • There will be Yoga on Monday.
  • We will have Wednesday morning healing prayers at 10:30 am and Wednesday Night Live this week at 7:30 pm.
  • There will be no Thursday morning Bible Study on New Year's Eve. We look forward to our Sunday gathering again next week.
  • The Church Office will be closed December 24-25 and December 31-January 1. 
  • If the Christmas BT Times has not yet gotten to you, you can download and read it here

CARES Donations Needed

Please bring cereal, peanut butter, cooking oil, instant or regular coffee, Adult diapers for women and size 5-6 diapers for children. We are also collecting socks, sweatshirts and coats for those on the streets this Winter. If you are interested in volunteering at the food pantry, please click this sign up link. https://www.signupgenius.com/go/4090448aba92da31-cares
Thursday Evening Meditation Class
Our next meditation class will be a 45 minute Yoga Nidra on Thursday, January 7 at 7:30 pm to 8:15 pm. This will be a very relaxing meditation; turn off your video and listen to my voice. Yoga Nidra offers us many benefits and allows us to be more relaxed and better equipped to handle the difficulties in life. This class is offered to you free of charge. It is my way to give back to our Church community, while helping us all strengthen and unite together. To join the class please click on the hyperlink below under Join Zoom Meeting, you may be asked to enter a passcode: yoga Looking forward to spearheading this class and making it a class that we can all look forward to each week; where we will focus on our breath, bring our minds too stillness, so that we can go inward and feel the grace and peace that lies within us all.
Linda Mcgill
Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 410 236 9650.  Passcode: yoga
One tap mobile +13017158592,,4102369650# 
Here are all the Zoom links for our online activities.
These links should remain the same each week.

Sunday Worship @ 10:30 am (NOT ON DECEMBER 27. SEE ABOVE)
Followed by Coffee Hour

Click here to join or call in +13017158592, 81549645294#.
You can also watch the live on 
YouTube.


Monday Chair Yoga @ 10:00 am
Click this link or call 1-301-715-8592 then enter 4102369650#
Leader: Linda Macgill, 410-235-3612 or 410-236-9650 or email.

Wednesday Healing Prayers @ 10:30 am
Click this link or call 1-301-715-8592 then enter 87331904395#

Wednesday Night Live @ 7:30 pm
Compline Evening Prayers and Conversation

Click this link or call 1-301-715-8592 then enter 82573335080#.

Thursday Morning Bible Study @ 11:00 am
Click here to join  or call 1-929-205-6099 then enter 88586024640#
 
 

The Delaware-Maryland Synod of the ELCA has worship here on this website. The Episcopal Diocese of Maryland worships virtually at 11:00am at the Cathedral of the Incarnation. All services are cast on this worship page. Watch Washington National Cathedral's worship here.
 

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