Dear Trinity Church, Advent begins in the dark. Literally. It is the darkest time of the year. Advent, which begins our church calendar, begins facing this darkness. Advent is a season of forced emptiness (which is another phrase for God's spaciousness). Advent is a season of paring down (when our consumer culture is about stocking up). Advent comes to us as a gift of darkness, emptiness, and says - will you enter this period of waiting with me? Will you pause to remember and recognize your own emptiness and darkness - and practice longing for the light? Some Advent legalists won't put up a Christmas tree, or listen to a Christmas carol until December 24th. That's not what I'm talking about (though I do admire their fortitude!) I'm talking about making mental space to remember just how badly we once needed Jesus in our lives, and still do; how dark the darkness was, and still can be - and so that we can cry with the ancient hymn: O Come! Please Come! Come be with us - near us - in us! This is why all the traditional Advent hymns and readings are about the 1st and 2nd coming of Christ - about longing, expectation, hopes still not yet fulfilled. Tears still not wiped away. Virgins lighting lamps. Thieves in the night. "Joy to the World" which we will sing on Sunday is about the Second Coming, not the first (check out its lyrics!). In Advent, we reach one hand back to the longing for the first coming of Christ, and one hand forward in longing for the second coming - and wrap ourselves with hope in the present. We are in an "eschatological pause" (says T. F. Torrance) in the One Coming of Christ. This Sunday, we will start the lighting of our Advent Wreath, we will listen to poetry that interacts with "O Come, O Come Emmanuel," we will hear musicians, we will watch short Godly Play lessons. In all of this, we are practicing the Art of Longing. Come and renew your hope with us! AND PLEASE ALSO JOIN US AT 7PM FOR EVENSONG, ON THE FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT. The Trinity Youth will help us enter the season with the girls leading the Evensong Choir and boys doing the readings. (Livestream & recorded). And following Evensong, at 7:30pm we will have our Youth Bedtime Stories with Tom Ross sharing his story of the "advent" (coming) of Christ into his life. And because I said I was not an Advent legalist (ha!), I am sharing this amazing Advent playlist I discovered with you early. (Although I do confess that I won't start any Advent/Christmas music until the day after Thanksgiving, and the first thing I play before anything else must be Handel's Messiah at full blast!) O Come Emmanuel! Julie p.s. - This Sunday, we invite you to do a BRIEF PARISH WALK AFTER CHURCH. During coffee and donuts after the service, please consider taking 10 minutes to walk one street near our church and hand out Advent invitations to our parish neighbors. And, finally, if you missed it last week, here's Advent to Epiphany at-a-glance.
Trinity Christmas Choir
Join the Trinity Christmas Choir // Practices begin Sunday, December 5
If you can read music, this is a low-commitment choir that somehow pulls off a Christmas concert in just a few rehearsals. MEN WE NEED YOU TOO!
Sunday 8am - 12/5, 12/12, 12/19
TIME CHANGE: Thursday Pizza & Choir practice - 12/23, 4-6pm
Christmas Eve - 12/24 two concerts: 7pm family concert & 11pm candlelit concert
If you'd like to get your music binder before our first rehearsal on 12/5, please get your music from Julie at 8am service on Nov 28th. (Probable songs: Once in Royal David's City, Angel Gabriel, Coventry Carol, Jesus Christ the Apple Tree, I wonder as I wander, Lo How a Rose, Silent Night, O Come All Ye Faithful - or some configuration of these songs!)
Text Julie Canlis at (206) 953-4128 if interested.