Monday, 15 July 2024

Upper Lake United Methodist Church Christmas Eve service blends scripture with carols

UPPER LAKE, Calif. – The United Methodist church in Upper Lake, 676 Clover Valley Road, will hold a traditional Christmas Eve service of worship at 7 p.m. in the Sanctuary. 

The service, officiated by Pastor Wanda Celli, will be a blend of familiar Scripture readings and Christmas carols as she takes us on a journey through time to the celebration and birth of Jesus. 

During the service we will close out the Advent season, which began Nov. 29, four Sundays before Christmas and ends on Christmas Eve, with the lighting of the four Advent candles.

During the Advent season we focused on the four virtues Jesus brings us: Hope, Love, Joy and Peace. 

After the advent candles are lit we will light the remaining white candle (The Christ Candle) reminding us that Jesus is the Light of the World.

During Advent we remember our longing for, and need of, forgiveness, salvation and a new beginning.

Some are accustomed to celebrate Christmas on a single day but Christians, unlike the shopping world,  celebrate what is referred to as “the 12 days of Christmas” and lasts from sundown on Dec. 24 (Christmas Eve) through Epiphany of the Lord (Jan. 6).

Our Christmas season “begins with the birth of Jesus and gives us 12 days to encounter the extraordinary love, threats, dangers and opportunities God's Incarnation [in the birth of Jesus] set off then and still sets off today."

God entered our world, not as a conqueror but an infant, demonstrating the depth of God's love – with a vision of peace and love – for all creation.

During the Christmas Eve service a variety of Christmas carols will be sung and Mel O’Meara will sing “O Holy Night.”

The celebration of this night will end with the treasured tradition of singing “Silent Night” by candlelight.

In the spirit of true gift giving, a good will offering will be taken. All money collected will go to Church Women United / Shoes for School Children.

This outreach program will benefit qualifying public school children so they can concentrate on learning instead of their feet hurting because their shoes are too small, or too big, or that they are so worn that they provide little protection from the elements. Please consider a donation to this worthy program.

All are welcome, including children in pajamas, to this special service to quiet the Spirit while worshiping the newborn King, Jesus.

Church is more than a place to go on Christmas and to that end the Upper Lake United Methodist Church welcomes our neighbors and community as they search for faith and hope on their spiritual journey, not only at Christmastime, but throughout the year.

Darla Lewis is a member of the Upper Lake United Methodist Church.

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