It may be hard to believe, but Advent is once again almost upon us. As we prepare to flip the annual calendar from November to December, we also will be entering a new year of the church a week from Sunday. To quote Paul, “we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters” about what is going on at Trinity UMC this year for Advent and hope that we can join together in preparing ourselves to welcome Jesus into the world once more, to rejoice in the mystery of God-With-Us, to
“Behold Him come,
Offspring of a virgin’s womb.
Veiled in flesh the Godhead see,
Hail th’ incarnate Deity!”
We’ll be focused throughout Advent and Christmastime this year on the motif of Jesus as the Light of the World. “The light shines in the darkness” of our world and gives us a new perspective on God, on ourselves, and on this world.
You can take the Advent light of Christ home with an Advent Wreath, candles and a booklet which contains ways you can observe Advent at home. Please click here to complete our online order form or call the church office at (803) 786-1637 to reserve your Advent Wreath and candle. (Note that we have limited supplies, so reservations are “first-come, first-served”).
Another part of the way we’ll behold Christ’s light is through Amy Jill Levine’s book Light of the World which she calls a “Beginner’s Guide to Advent.” Amy Jill has helped me to see the familiar stories preceding and announcing the birth of Jesus anew and has shone new light on these passages by filling in some of the most recent research into their first-century Palestine context. If you are already part of a small group or class, your group may be deciding to take up this book. We are also starting some new groups in which you can Connect and Grow which are open to everyone:
- On Thursdays, Rev. Carsten Bryant will be leading a short Morning Prayer service with Holy Communion at 8:30am in the Sanctuary which will be followed at 9:15am by the book study in the Fellowship Hall.
(December 2, 9, 16, and 23)
- On Sundays at 10:15am during Connection Time in the Youth Building, Bonnie Riley will be leading a book study.
(November 28, December 5, 12, and 19)
- Bonnie will also be leading Tuesday evening group at 7:00pm in the Seekers classroom.
(November 30, December 7, 14, and 21)
Crafts and Carols will be November 28, the first Sunday of Advent at 5:30pm when the Blythewood Tree Lighting ceremony at the Blythewood Town Hall ends. We’ll start around 5:30pm in the Youth Building with various crafts for children, youth, and adults, like Jesse Trees, wreaths, and Christmas cards, while eating cookies, sipping cocoa, and singing Carol Karaoke. Then we’ll process to the Fellowship Hall for a brief service of Advent songs and Scriptures lessons, finishing around 7:30pm.
The Blythewood Christmas Parade Tailgate Party will be the afternoon of December 12, centered around the town parade’s procession which begins at 3pm and will come past the Trinity campus. You’re invited to enjoy fellowship and bring sustenance; cocoa and games will be provided.
Finally, we will be worshipping on Sundays as usual at 9:15am in the youth building in the contemporary service and at 11:15am in the sanctuary for traditional. On Christmas Eve, join us at 5:00pm in the Youth Building for a child-friendly service with contemporary music. We’ll also hold a traditional service in the Trinity Sanctuary at 7:30pm. Both will be candle light services with opportunities to take communion. December 26, the first Sunday after Christmas, we’ll have a blended service at 11:15am in the sanctuary and then return to normal the following Sunday. We hope you’ll come worship with us!
The greatest gift of all is our Lord Jesus Christ, and I hope Advent and Christmastime can be a time when Trinity comes together in celebration, both on Sunday mornings and throughout the rest of the week.
Pastor Scott and Pastor Carsten