Week of November 27

Dear Friends,
As we enjoy our Thanksgiving celebrations this week, we also prepare to begin a ‘New Year’ on Sunday. The First Sunday of Advent begins on Sunday, November 27. Here are some of the things to note this week:
First, Our Advent Celebration begins with the ‘Lighting of the Advent Wreath’.  We will begin promptly at 10:00 AM during Advent. Please make a point this season to arrive in good time for worship and be in your seats prior to 10. We will begin by calling the children forward to witness the lighting.
Second, this Sunday is also the deadline for our ‘Christmas Bags for Park Place School’ project. Please bring in your items before worship on Sunday and leave them in the Ministry Room (next to the Women’s Rest room).
Third, on The Third Sunday of Advent, December 11, we will ‘Liturgically Welcome our New Members’ during worship and then gather for our ‘Annual General Meeting’ over Pot Luck Lunch immediately after worship. Please mark this important date on your calendars and plan on sharing in the time of reflection, thanksgiving, and visioning.
Fourth, I am pleased to pass on some good news from Paul and Stephanie Bufford. The initial difficulties following Constance’s birth are fading into the past and the family is entering into a new phase of life. Give thanks for this blessing and continue to ask for God’s favor to be poured out upon this family.
Looking forward to worshiping with you on Sunday!

Week of November 20

Dear CtR Family,
Here are some of the things you need to know as we head into our new liturgical year (Advent begins November 27th!):
First, our ‘ADVENT PREPARATION NIGHT’ Event takes place Saturday, November 19 from 5:00 -7;00 pm. This is our annual event to celebrate the beginning of Advent.  You can participate in the “ugly sweater making contest” and make Advent themed crafts, including an Advent wreath and a Jesse Tree.  We will top it off with a potluck style dinner, so please bring a covered dish to share.  Please bring clippings from your evergreens, boxwoods, or holly trees to share for making the Advent wreaths.
Second, this Sunday, November 20 is ‘Christ the King’—the last week of the Church’s year. We come to acknowledge and celebrate Christ’s Kingdom as the best way of preparing to celebrate its inauguration during the Advent Season.
Third, This Sunday at 9:00 am I will host a ‘Q & A’  Session for those who have participated in our recent ‘Exploring Membership Class’. The session is open to anyone who has questions regarding the ethos, history, or direction of our community. Feel free to join us in the Ministry Room (next to the Women’s restroom).
Fourth, also this Sunday we welcome Carole Rosenfarb as our new Director of Music. Carole is the wife of Rabbi Joe Rosenfarb of Beth Messiah (the local Messianic Jewish synagogue on Granby Street). Carole is known to many of us through her past leadership of the music ministry at Messiah Anglican Church in Chesapeake. Please introduce yourself to Carole on Sunday and assure her of your prayers as she begins this new ministry.
Fifth, Sunday, November 27 is not only the First Sunday of Advent but also the deadline for gathering of the gifts for our Park Place School Christmas Gift Bags.  If you have not yet had the chance to pick up a ‘Sticky Note’ (detailing the ‘gift’ to be given—found on the table in the Fellowship Hall), please do so on Sunday.
Looking forward to worshiping with you all on Sunday.

Week of November 13

Dear Friends,
A few things to draw to your attention this week.
First, We need some portable heaters this weekend!
During Hurricane Matthew, Knox lost the pumps for its furnace and organ. It took them a long time to find replacement parts for the organ, which delayed the making of the claim for the furnace. The parts have been ordered, but have not arrived nor been installed! Thus, we are without heat for this coming Sunday. If you have a portable heater, would you bring it to the church on Saturday morning between 9 and noon? (the New Members Class will be meeting that day).
Second, with the Seasons of Advent and Christmas fast approaching, here are some key dates to put on your calendar:
  • Saturday, November 19, 5:00 PM, ‘Advent Preparation Night’   This is our annual event to celebrate the beginning of Advent.  You can participate in the “ugly sweater making contest” and make Advent themed crafts, including an Advent wreath and a Jesse Tree.  There will be a potluck style dinner to follow.
  • Sunday, November 27, The First Sunday of Advent.  As well as being the First Sunday of Advent, this is the day the children will be putting together the gift bags for Park Place School.  Please make sure to bring any donated items to the church on or before this date.  Contact Jennifer Brown at brownie7506@yahoo.com for more information.
  • Sunday, December 11, The Third Sunday of Advent and our ‘Annual General Meeting’ after worship (and with a Pot Luck lunch!)
  • Thursday, December 15, Park Place School’s ‘Christmas Presentation’  will take place in our sanctuary beginning at 11:00 am. This is a great way to show support for the school and make some relationships with the families of the children. All are welcome.
  • Saturday, December 24 beginning at 5:00 pm, ‘Christmas Eve Service and Pageant’.
  • Sunday, December 25, at 9:00 am, A Service of Carols and Communion.
Looking forward to worshiping with you all on Sunday.

A Reflection for This Day

A Reflection for This Day
The Rev. Dr. Brian G. Campbell
“The LORD will reign forever,
your God, O Zion, to all generations.
Praise the LORD!”
Psalm 146:1-10
It is finally over!
We have just lived through one of the most horrendous election cycles of our history, one which offered two of the most flawed candidates ever to run for the Presidency, and have now emerged as divided and entrenched as ever before.
Lord, have mercy.
I woke up this morning with Psalm 146 on my mind, and I thought I would share it with you:
Where do we begin this morning? Whether we are in the depths of despair, or secretly pleased by the results of the election?
We begin where the Psalmist begins, with praise:
Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD, O my soul!
2  I will praise the LORD as long as I live;
I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.
Then we go on with the psalmist to remind ourselves that our hope is not in any particular political system:
3  Put not your trust in princes,
in a son of man, in whom there is no salvation.
4  When his breath departs, he returns to the earth;
on that very day his plans perish.
Instead, we affirm the reality of where true blessing is to be found:
5  Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the LORD his God,
6  who made heaven and earth,the sea,
and all that is in them,
who keeps faith forever;
7  who executes justice for the oppressed,
who gives food to the hungry.
We go on to remember who this God is, and how he has revealed himself to us and to all:
The LORD sets the prisoners free;
8  the LORD opens the eyes of the blind.
The LORD lifts up those who are bowed down;
the LORD loves the righteous.
9  The LORD watches over the sojourners;
he upholds the widow and the fatherless,
but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin.
Finally, in the light of his gracious self-revelation, we confess– with all the saints– the glorious truth of the assurance of his purposes:
10  The LORD will reign forever,
your God, O Zion, to all generations.
Praise the LORD!
I commend this psalm to you this morning; may you take comfort and direction from it.
I also encourage you to pray;
-for yourself or for others you know who may be distraught (it is far better to lament in prayer than to vent on Facebook);
-for our nation (that God would protect us, help us heal our divisions, and guide and direct our leaders);
-and for the Church (that the People of God, by their life lived together, witness to the One who reigns as King of kings and Lord of lords).
“Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the LORD his God.”

Week of November 6

Dear Friends,
Here are some things going on this week here at Christ the Redeemer:
Firstly, don’t forget to “fall back” this Saturday, November 5th before you go to bed–set your clocks back one hour.  No excuses for being late for church this Sunday because you’ll get a whole extra hour of sleep!
A few other things happening this weekend:
Today through Saturday, Brian+, Janis, and Ann will be traveling to McLean, VA for the First Synod of Diocese of Christ our Hope.  Please keep them in your prayers as they travel to McLean to represent Christ the Redeemer.
Join us at Lafayette Park (in front of the Virginia Zoo) this Saturday, November 5th  beginning at 4:00 PM for our 2nd Annual Chili Bowl.  We will start off with a friendly game of flag football for all ages, then we’ll head to the church for our chili cook-off and contest beginning at 6:00 PM.  If you need to bring your crock-pot of chili early before the game, Jennifer Brown will be at the church from 3:30-3:45 for drop-offs.  Please contact Jennifer with any questions: brownie7506@yahoo.com
This Sunday, November 6th will be the second “supplemental session” for the ‘Exploring Membership’ class beginning at 9:00 AM before the service.  We will “Walk through the Service”—briefly note the historical formation of the Communion service; point out the ‘shape’ and ‘movement’ of the worship; and end with a ‘Q and A’ on all things liturgical.  This ‘Supplemental Class’ is open to all.  Join us in the Ministry Room (next to the Women’s Restroom).
If you signed up to bring a bag of food for the Ghent Area Ministries Thanksgiving Food Drive, please bring it to church this Sunday if you haven’t already done so.  We will be delivering the bags to GAM the beginning of next week. Thank you to all who have found it in their heart to donate food or gift cards!
We are now collecting items for Christmas gift bags for the students at Park Place School.  We need enough of each item for 43 kids (25 boys, 18 girls).  Please pick up a “wish list” post-it note or two from the mission table in the Fellowship Hall. The list of items is as follows:
Notebook paper
boxes of crayons (24 count)
glue sticks
#2 pencils
Please bring items by Sunday, November 27th.   Please contact Jennifer Brown with any questions: brownie7506@yahoo.com.  Thank you!
I look forward to worshiping with you all on Sunday.