St. Mark s United Church, Cannifton 2015 Christmas Newsletter

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1 Message from Rev. Ryan St. Mark s United Church, Cannifton 2015 Christmas Newsletter It s not my birthday? So much of the Christmas Season is given over to the ritual of gift exchange that it can get to be exhausting. In my house, the questions start at Thanksgiving: What do you parent s want for Christmas this year? So begins a several months journey of gathering reconnaissance on wants and needs, and skilfully sharing it among family members so everyone gets what they want and there are no duplicates. Add to the additional complication, two birthdays within a month of December 25 and you can see why I find it exhausting. Perhaps you do too? Sometime in the last year, I discovered an article called Christmas is not your birthday, written by Rev. Mike Slaughter, the Lead Pastor and Chief Dreamer of Ginghamsburg United Methodist Church, near Dayton, Ohio. In 2004, Slaughter invited his congregation to have a slim Christmas, because it s about Jesus. He asked that they give as much for hunger relief in the Sudan as they would spend on gifts for their family and friends. Like all parents with kids, we struggle with the mass of gifts from family and friends, and sometimes feel that the joy of gift giving gets lost in the flurry of paper and bows. Perhaps a slim Christmas would be more meaningful? Maybe a Christmas focused on people other than our friends and relations, the people who often came to Jesus for help, would help us to remember why we celebrate this day. Blessings, Rev. Ryan 1

2 Message From the Board Chair. I just wanted to wish each and every one a very Merry Christmas. This has been a very productive year and we are looking forward to all the adventures of We have welcomed families from the sub-division who have joined us to worship and be a part of our community. I would like to take this opportunity to say Thank You to all the Board Members for all their hard work this year. Please come and join us during this very Special Holiday time. God Bless, Bonnie Beer-Watson Message from Stewardship October 2015 General M & S Building Fund Budget $97, $10, $14, January to $71, $ $4, Sept. October $8, $ $ Totals $79, $6, $5, This does not include the $10, from the Manse fund. The General Account which was very low in the summer has improved. The Mission and Service donations for 2015 are down significantly. At this time, it is obvious that we will not be meeting our goal. This will be the first time in many years that we have not met our goal. Recently, to bring attention to the Mission and Service fund, the Sunday School children have been presenting information about the work of the Mission and Service at the beginning of each church service. We have also had a blitz on the value of donating through PAR. (Pre-authorized remittance) regular donations are very helpful for the treasurer. Over the past number of years there has been a drop in the number of donors using envelopes (89 down from 150). For 2016, we reduced the number of boxes we purchased to 115 and changed the donor numbers. (Please note that everyone will have a new number.) Season Greetings to One and All, Dona Plumton Stewardship Chair. 2

3 St. Mark s is planning a Yard Sale in the spring. Take a moment to clean out your cupboards and basements for goodies that you don t want. Stay tuned for more announcements on this venture. Remember One man s trash is another man s treasure Church Office Hours Tuesday through Thursday 10:00 a.m. 2:00 p.m. Upcoming Events at St. Mark s November November 29 th : First Sunday of Advent: Hope Christmas Cantata: 3:00 p.m. Come join the Shared Church s Christmas Cantata Behold the Star Free will offering to Gleaner s Food Bank. Refreshments to follow in the Lower Hall. 3

4 December December 1 st : December 6 th : Annual U.C.W. Potluck Christmas Dinner: at 6:30 p.m. in the Lower Hall. Please bring your own place setting, cutlery, etc. All ladies are welcome. Second Sunday of Advent White Gift Service: Peace The Sunday School will lead this service and we look forward to children of all ages participating. There will be white gift envelopes available for a few Sundays preceding the service. The monies donated through these envelopes goes toward supporting the foster child for which the Sunday School is responsible. Congregational Party: follows the White Gift Service. Pizza will be served, and there will be sign-up sheets at the back of the church several Sunday s prior to this, so they will know how pizza to order. It is also requested that those attending the luncheon bring non-perishable items for Gleaner s Food Bank. December 13 th : Third Sunday of Advent: Joy The service will include Communion by Intinction. For the Children, it will be open Sunday School. They will be playing games, so they are asked to bring their favourite board game. Christmas Cantata: 3:00 p.m. at Emmanuel Foxboro. Come join the Shared Church s Christmas Cantata Behold the Star December 20 st : Fourth Sunday of Advent: Love For the Children, it will be open Sunday School. They will be playing games, so they are asked to bring their favourite board game. Christmas Carolling: At 4:30 p.m. we will be going carolling in our community. Wear your Christmas hat and meet at the church at 4:00 p.m. December 21 st : December 24 th : Messy Church 5:00 p.m. 7:00 p.m. Theme: The Light of the World Two Services Christmas Eve. Family service at 7:30 p.m., Communion Service at 10:30 p.m. 4

5 December 28 th : Wassail Carol Service: This is your last chance to sing Christmas Carols so come and join in singing these familiar hymns. The service will be held in the Lower Hall at the regular Sunday morning worship time 10:30 a.m. Light refreshments will follow this song fest. January January 3 th : Epiphany Sunday: This will be an evening worship service beginning at 5:00 p.m. We will have a casserole potluck supper, crafts/activities based on the Epiphany theme, a short worship service, after which we will move outside for a fireworks display by Scott Gelsthorpe. Everyone welcome. Please note there will be no morning service that day. 5

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