Dear ones in Christ,
More than at other times, Advent for me this year challenges the balance between the needs of a complex and hurting world, and those within my own self and family.
In the world, I grieve for things that feel so fragile and compromised right now. I grieve the loss of wellness in communities, nations and peoples. I grieve for people being excluded and dehumanized, and for fear that justifies the exclusion of some for the perceived well-being of others.
I also grieve the lack of wellness and wholeness in my own life. I spent Thanksgiving weekend in Portland, trying to help my mother decorate for Christmas. At this point, dementia has set in, and her physical condition is deteriorating quickly. It is so clear that living alone is not good for her, and so clear that she is unhappy and scared. But all she can do is hold on to the material objects that filled her life. Watching this trajectory, and feeling powerless to change these heartbreaking outcomes, is breaking my heart.
In the midst of this, I turn to Christ, and to the ever-present promise of God sending God’s divine Word into the world – both the big world out there, and the little world of my family and community and heart. All those hymns and stories and prayers, they feel so real! Light shining in darkness, hope for the world, the ever-abiding reality of God’s unchanging and redemptive love.
My brothers and sisters, it is this love that sustains our lives. This is the faith we share. May the promise of Advent be there for each one of you, in the big things that concern you, and also in the sphere of your own life, your family and those you love.
“Redeemer of the nations, come;
reveal yourself in virgin birth;
the birth which ages all adore,
a wondrous birth, befitting God.”
Att. Ambrose of Milan, 340-397. The Hymnal #55
Rise in Glory: Bob Lindstedt
Sad news: Bob Lindstedt passed away on November 21. Services for him will be December 2 at 4 PM at St John the Baptist in Portland. Notes can be sent to Carol and Anne-Marie Lindsted 2600 SW 75th Terrace, Portland, OR 97225. The Lindstedts celebrated with us at St Catherine’s whenever they were at the coast.
Cannon Beach Chorus Christmas Concerts
Christmas Around the World
December 3rd at 2PM
Concert at NCRD in Nehalem
December 9 at 7 PM
Cannon Beach Community Church in Cannon Beach
Six members of St. Catherine’s Choir sing in the Chorus. Enjoy the music as we offer songs from around the world.
One of our St. Catherine authors has 2 reflections on The Episcopal Café, a national independent Episcopal publication of news, reflections and essays. Tricia Gates Brown wrote in response to the Bible readings for the day. The essays can be found here and here.
Help Needed for Christmas at St Catherine’s
We have several dates for “Greening the Church.” Sign up for the one that works for you.
Saturday, December 18 Decorate the Windows in church.
Saturday, December 24 Altar flowers
Thanks to Bill and Ginny for getting a tree for the narthex (entry) and for stringing up outdoor lights.
Thanks, as always, to the cleaning crews for their faithful work each week. Room more to keep the garbage emptied, the floors mopped and the bathrooms sparkling. Teams of 2 work every 5-6 weeks. Let Ann+ know if you are interested in helping with this ministry.
Take a Survey for Diocese
From Heidi Pitts, Diocesan Director of Communications: There’s still time to give your opinion on how to improve the newsletter communications of the Diocese. You may or may not know that The OECN Churches Calendar is just one of three email newsletters sent each week by Diocesan Communications. Beginning in 2017, I want to combine the best parts of those three into one weekly newsletter that encourages us all in living out our Diocesan Vision Statement.
Click to take the survey here.
December 16 1 PM
coordinator, let her know if you can help
Christmas Events with Nehalem Bay Methodist Church
Lessons and Carols at the Methodist Church
at St Catherine’s with combined choirs
Covenant Community Church is now a supplemental Food Bank Site. Open Monday through Friday 9 AM to 2 PM. Area churches sharing ministry to support a community of care.