Weekly Update - 27th November
Dear sisters and brothers
This coming Sunday marks the beginning of Advent and our preparations for the Christmas celebrations. As has already been said many times, this will be an Advent and Christmas like no other: but perhaps because of that we can focus on Advent in a new and meaningful way.
Of course we’ll tell the same stories as we always do during this season, and one of those stories is that of the birth of John the Baptist. You’ll remember that John’s parents, Elizabeth and Zechariah, had waited a long time to have a child, and it was while Zechariah was worshiping in the temple of God that an angel appeared to announce Elizabeth’s pregnancy (Luke chapter 1). The ‘miracle child’ would go on to proclaim the coming of Jesus and prepare people for his message of good news.
This Advent, therefore I want to encourage us all to wait with expectation and to turn our attention to God in worship as we do so. At the same time, we want to proclaim the good news of Jesus and do all that we can to help people hear that message. To those ends we are organising a few different things throughout Advent.
- You will find links below to a new booklet of daily prayers for use throughout Advent. These are the prayers we will be using at 12 noon every day for our broadcast on YouTube and on the phone. If you have not joined us before, I would really encourage you to do so during Advent. However, even if you cannot do so, I would urge you to set aside 10 minutes each day to say the prayers and read the Bible verses.
- We will be holding a short course on Wednesday evenings on Zoom throughout Advent. Nothing too heavy or too long, but it’ll help us keep our focus as we prepare for Christmas. Starts Wednesday 2 December at 7pm on Zoom.
- We’re distributing “Hearts of Hope” throughout the parish over the next couple of weeks. If you’d like some to pass on to neighbours or friends, or leave for people to find, please contact us.
- We’re planning on holding ‘in person’ services on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Sunday 27th December. Further details to follow
- And depending on what is allowed, we’ll run some other events to bless each other and others throughout the Advent and Christmas season.
For many people, including many of us, this could be a difficult and challenging Christmas, but the message of Advent is that there is hope for those who wait upon God with expectation and trust.
I have also enclosed the words for this Sunday’s service. Our Advent services will be a little different from our previous online services and so, if you have not already joined us on YouTube or via the phone, you would be most welcome to give it a try. If you would like help with doing that, or with anything else, please do contact me.
With love from Sarah and myself,
Rev. Ian Aitken
52 Ashgrove Road West
Tel. 01224 686929
Aberdeen: Stockethill Church of Scotland
Scottish Charity Number - SC030587