SECOND SUNDAY IN ADVENT
December 5, 2021.
GLORY BE TO JESUS CHRIST! GLORY BE TO HIM FOREVER!
TODAY AT ST. MARY’S
LIVE AUDIO STREAMING during today’s service is available on the Order of Service page. Recorded audio will be added following worship.
We are beginning the season of Advent. Advent marks the beginning of the Church year. It is an exciting time of year with its promises of hope, love, peace and joy. It is a time of waiting and expectation. Advent gives us time to take a step back from the busy-ness that surrounds our lives and reflect on our journey with God. During the season of Advent we are invited to pause and reflect on the fulfillment of the long awaited promise of a Messiah, one who will save us from our sins. We await the advent or coming of our Saviour, Jesus Christ.
Advent is a season within the life of the church, when Christians are intentional about remembering something that happened a long time ago; the birth of a little baby, the Son of God. Advent is about a memory of someone who entered history as one of us and changed the course of our lives forever. Jesus, through his life, death and resurrection, gave us a future with God.
During this brief Advent season, we are invited to focus on the coming of Jesus into our world in human form. During its four Sundays we journey with scriptures which reveal vivid images of trust, promise, and obedience. We hear the prophetic words of Isaiah announcing righteous judgment and restoration for those who follow the way of the Lord. The chaos we have created through our disobedience will be restored to the perfect harmony which God intended for creation. “The wolf shall live with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, the calf and lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them.” (Isaiah 11:6)
During Advent, we also hear the voice of John the Baptist, calling us from the wilderness of our lives, to repentance . We are invited to examine our lives, repent our sins and return to God. As the people of God, we are invited into a new way of living life….expectantly waiting, believing, and hoping for what we cannot yet see. John the Baptist points us towards Jesus, the Christ Child, the Son of the Most High God and invites us to open our hearts and minds and embrace Him as our Saviour. Jesus, too, awaits our response to his call.
What does all this mean for us? On one level, expecting the Christ child means offering ourselves as the place of Christ’s new birth. We offer ourselves as the place in which He can live. We can nurture our lives as his followers, confident in his guidance through the Holy Spirit. As we encounter Him in all we do, we can help bring about His will for not only our lives, but for the world. In so doing, we can shine as light in the midst of the darkness that surrounds us.
Unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given…..his name shall be Jesus, Emmanuel, God with us. May the coming of the Christ Child illuminate your mind, bless your soul and fill your hearts with the love of God.
PARISH LIFE NOTES.
Update from Vestry meeting November 23, 2021
- Thank you to all who donated funds for Ayen. $2675 has been received. $2000 will be sent to help with Ayen’s medical needs and $675 will go into the Rector’s Discretionary Fund.
- The Thanksgiving offering of $225 will be donated to Marion Centre. The Christmas offering will be donated to Carmichael Outreach.
- Thank you to Norma Trim and Sharon Klemke who will be coordinating the Advent Christmas Mitten Tree project.
- We will be conducting a short survey to gauge potential attendance at the Christmas Eve service and to determine whether to have one or two services. The current plan is for one Christmas Eve service at 7:30 PM, Christmas morning at 10:30 AM and December 26 at 10:30 AM.
- Our longtime, excellent and hardworking bookkeeper, Mike will be moving to Victoria in mid-December. Mike has agreed to continue doing the books and managing St. Mary’s website remotely for the short term.
- We will need a new bookkeeper and website manager, so please consider volunteering if your gifts are in these areas. If you know someone who would be able to do these tasks, please talk to them and let either of the Wardens know.
- Vestry is currently working on the budget for 2022. At the current time our projected budget shortfall is $30,000. The pandemic has been difficult in many ways, including Church income for the year. Our income from giving and rentals has decreased and many traditional fundraising efforts have been prevented. The 100 year old Church building continues to need maintenance and operating costs continue to rise.
- Vestry is looking for ways to decrease expenditures including talking to the Diocese to negotiate paying less for the Diocesan Fair Share.
- We are looking to form a Fundraising Committee to lead major fund raising events. Volunteers for this committee will be needed. If you have any ideas or are interesting in being involved in a fundraising committee, please talk to any Vestry members.
- At this time, we are asking individuals and families to prayerfully discern whether they can increase their monthly pledges and by what amount. What each household can do will make a difference. We are all in this together and value the uniqueness of our Parish, the Church community and the building. Thank you for your considerations.
Financial update at October 31, 2021:
|Year to Date income||$165,971.51|
|Year to Date expenses||$175,244.69|
|Net income||– $ 9,273.18|
2022 PLEDGES. Thank you to everyone who has submitted a pledge form for 2022 so far. This information will be a great help to Vestry in creating the budget for next year. The pledge form is still live on the church website. If you would prefer a paper form, please contact Yvonne in the church office. The form will be available on the website for one more week, until Sunday December 12
THE MITTEN TREE ON THE LANDING will be ready from December 5th to January 9th to be dressed with adults and children’s mittens, toques and socks. Please help keep out the cold. All donations go to Soul’s Harbour Mission.
THE QU’APPELLE HOUSE AUXILIARY (ladies from the Regina Anglican churches & their friends) has received a request from the Qu’Appelle House staff to help them with a mini Christmas craft sale for the residents. They are looking for “Christmas-y” type donations. This would be similar to the spring craft sale (except smaller), whereby the Auxiliary would arrange to collect small Christmas-type items and take them to Qu’Appelle House for the staff to coordinate the craft sale.
As with the previous craft sale, homemade food cannot be accepted due to COVID.
All proceeds will go to the Qu’Appelle House Auxiliary to help fund special events for the residents.
Please contact Judy, Brenda or Lynda to have your items picked up.
All donations will be delivered to Qu’Appelle House at one time.
Contact one of the people above ASAP if you have donations. Thank you in advance
PASTORAL EMERGENCY CONTACT. Revd. Paula Foster
WEEKDAY WORSHIP THIS WEEK
Tuesday to Friday
Morning Prayer at 8.30 a.m. and
Evening Prayer at 5.30 p.m.