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The Rev. Bronwen Boswell knows something about what Mary and Elizabeth experienced together two millennia ago.
As Christians across the globe prepare their hearts, homes and houses of worship to welcome and celebrate Jesus’ birth at Christmas, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has created a new online landing page that lists a wide variety of devotional and worship resources from across the agencies of the PC(USA) just in time for the Advent season, which begins on Sunday, Dec. 3.
While the world tries to rush us into Christmas, decorating the day after Halloween and packing it all up once the gifts are opened on December 25, Advent is a season of preparation that — like our holiday gatherings themselves — takes time and care.
Breathing is something so taken for granted that we rarely see it full of sacrality. It is breath that allows us to speak, sing, cry and laugh. It is breath that connects us to all of Creation.
“The advent of a new liturgical year offers congregations and church leaders a fresh opportunity to engage the Matthew 25 vision of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.),” says the Rev. Dr. David Gambrell, associate for worship in the Office of Theology and Worship in the Presbyterian Mission Agency.
Beginning with Advent, preachers, music leaders and the people who hear them each week will enter a year with Matthew’s gospel, thanks to the Revised Common Lectionary, which turns the focus to Year A beginning Nov. 27.
The Rev. Irvin Porter, associate for Native American Intercultural Congregational Support in the office of Racial Equity & Women’s Intercultural Ministries, has offered up many presentations on the Doctrine of Discovery and the more than 500 years of history between Native American and white people in this country. Porter told Between Two Pulpits hosts Bryce Wiebe and Lauren Rogers Monday that only once has someone responded, “I didn’t do any of that, so why should I feel guilty?”
An Advent wreath is a spiritual practice to help center ourselves and our prayers to God during this special season leading up to Christmas.
No matter whether we celebrate Christmas together or apart because of the pandemic, may we be embrace God’s loving grace.
Especially during Advent and Christmas, we are reminded to drop our arrogance and selfishness and embrace our call to humility.