Almost 2,000 years ago, the story goes, a clutch of sleepy shepherds were watching over their sheep on a star‐brightened hillside. It was a still, peaceful night. Suddenly the darkness was filled with a strange light. The stillness was broken by angelic voices singing “Glory to God in the Highest, on earth peace, goodwill to all.” So begins Christmas, the most beautiful and meaningful celebration of the Christian calendar.

Advent – the season of “going toward” the birth of Christ – and Christmas have a long history. These seasons and their customs have developed through many centuries and many countries. Old customs and observances are refined, renewed, replaced; new ones are added. Some of our customs have pagan origins but have been “converted” by redefining their meanings. What is significant for us is not what they may once have meant but rather what they mean for us today.

On Friday, November 24th, our church will begin to wear its Christmas finery. Our Christmas tree will stand in the sanctuary; its lights shining for us. We will get ready for the birth of the child by preparing our sanctuary, and we will ready ourselves and the sanctuary of our own hearts. As we decorate our church, not only will we explain the history of the symbols of these special seasons, but we will rededicate these symbols – and ourselves – to the service of God. The service will begin at 7:00 pm, and the youth participants need to arrive by 6:00 pm.

Parking will be at a premium; please consider using the Glendale Glitters Free Shuttle. Park in the north parking lots of Glendale Community College (off 59th Avenue, north of Olive), and the shuttle will drop you off at the northwest corner of 59th Avenue and Myrtle. The shuttle runs from 4:30 – 10:15 pm each evening, and there is an ADA bus in the rotation of shuttles. If you have any questions, please contact Karen Render or Rebecca in the church office.