a welcoming, affirming, justice-seeking congregation

Welcome to Worship on this First Sunday in Advent This year, our Advent Theme is “Getting the Message,” and today’s sub-theme is “Recognizing the Messenger.” You are invited to consider the theme as you look at the bulletin cover week by week throughout the season. Many thanks to those who have planned for Advent worship and/or created the atmosphere in the sanctuary, and to all who will be offering leadership in this holy time leading up to Christmas. Special thanks to Peter, Eileen and the Immanuel Choir for their meaningful and inspiring ministry of music.

The Luke ProjectThis morning, we begin The Luke Project, with various members of the congregation telling us the stories of Luke’s Gospel. During the Advent and Christmas seasons, we’ll hear stories from the first two chapters of the Gospel According to Luke. The Luke Project will resume for the season of Lent. Many thanks to the storytellers who have taken on the task of bringing us Luke’s message during the Advent season.

Songs for the Waiting: Devotions Inspired by the Hymns of Advent This morning after worship, those who will be reading the Advent book of meditations are invited to take a few moments to greet others, then bring your coffee or tea and gather with Ann Naylor (Guiding Elder for Faith Formation and Lifelong Learning) and Nancy Sanders for half an hour of reflection on the week’s readings. Since today is the first Sunday of Advent, there will be no expectation that you will have read any part of the book prior to our gathering.

Back Forty Update As a courtesy to our neighbours and a step in meeting the requirements of the City’s zoning process, Discovery Homes and the United Church’s EDGE Network will host an Open House at Immanuel on Thursday, December 8th from 4:30 to 6:30. This will provide Gordon Gray and Barb Myers an opportunity to introduce the proposed Immanuel Village condominium development to the neighbourhood. All are welcome to attend.

Pre-Advent Dinner Again this year, our Pre-Advent Dinner was a special time. To those who planned, set up the space, helped out in the kitchen, brought food to share, or just came and participated in any way, thank you.

2017 United Church Calendars are now available. They are $6.00 each and there are only 9 left. Please call the office or see Pat Schulz after worship.

Advent Study Books are ready for pick up in the AMEN corner after Worship for those who ordered them. The cost is $21 each.

Christmas Flowers Anyone wishing to contribute to Christmas flowers please see Joan Macdonald or call her at 204-661-1966. Thank you.

Christmas Tree Decorations Choose from the box by the AMEN corner or bring some of your own and hang a decoration(s) on the tree outside. Let’s brighten up the tree for Advent.

On December 4, 2016, we are holding our annual Amnesty International Write for Rights letter writing event. Each year around December 10th, International Human Rights Day, people from around the world come together to write letters calling for the protection and promotion of human rights. Amnesty supporters in 140 countries wrote more than 3.5 Million messages in 2015. Your words protected people and communities around the globe whose Human Rights are under attack. Please join us after worship on December 4, 2016 where we will have available, information on the urgent cases highlighted for 2016, writing materials and sample letters. If you have any questions please contact Karen Turk or Marg Smith.

White Gift Sunday is December 4th. We collect non-perishable food items, children’s gifts, hygiene products for babies and adults and really hope to gather cash funds to support refugees and the hungry. Please help as best you are able, and bring what you can on December 4th, 2016.

Observer Subscription Renewals If you would like to renew or start a new subscription, please call Sharon in the office or if paying by cheque, please make it payable to Immanuel United Church and mark “Observer” on your offering envelope. The cost is $25 and the deadline if Tuesday, January 3, 2017.

Hurricane Matthew The United Church of Canada is calling for prayers, and has launched an appeal for donations that will provide humanitarian relief to Haiti, Cuba, and nearby Caribbean countries devastated by Hurricane Matthew. If you would like to donate please mark “Hurricane Matthew” on your envelope.

THIS WEEK AT IMMANUEL

Tuesday, Nov 29th 9:30 am Study Group Upstairs Lounge
5:00-9:00 pm Yoga Sanctuary/Auditorium
8:00 pm Bettors Anonymous Upstairs Meeting Room
Thursday, Dec 1st 7:00 pm Choir Practice Sanctuary/Auditorium
8:00 pm Bettors Anonymous Upstairs Meeting Room
Friday, Dec 2nd 8:00 pm Alanon Group Upstairs Meeting Room
Saturday, Dec 3rd 2:00 pm Bettors Anonymous Sanctuary/Auditorium

I will be in the office Tues, Wed and Thurs mornings. Have a good week!

Sharon Vandenberg, Office Administrator

ADVENT AND CHRISTMAS EVE WORSHIP SCHEDULE

All of our Advent and Christmas Eve services will include special seasonal music

offered by Eileen Metcalfe, Peter Fyne and the Choir.

During Advent, the stories of the season will be told by our Luke Project Storytellers.

Sunday, December 4 at 11 a.m.

Advent Two Worship: Welcoming the Messenger

Luke’s Story of the Angel Gabriel’s Visit to Mary

White Gift Sunday and Amnesty International Write for Rights

Lighting of the Second Advent Candle

Sunday, December 11 at 11 a.m.

Advent Three Worship: Hearing the Messenger

Luke’s Story of Mary and Elizabeth, and Mary’s Singing of The Magnificat

Lighting of the Third Advent Candle

Sunday, December 18 at 11 a.m.

Advent Four Worship: Becoming the Messenger

Luke’s Story of the Birth of John the Baptist, and Zechariah’s Song

Lighting of the Fourth Advent Candle

Saturday, December 24

7:00 p.m.

Christmas Eve Worship

Lighting of the Christ Candle

9:00 p.m.

Christmas Eve Worship

Lighting of the Christ Candle

Sacrament of Communion

PLEASE NOTE

Although Christmas Day falls on a Sunday this year,

we will not be holding a worship service on Christmas morning.

Sunday worship will resume on New Year’s Day at 11 a.m.

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