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The GloryWay Quartet
Hello! We want each of you to be able to celebrate Easter safely at home with joy and thankfulness for what Jesus has done for us!
|With Easter quickly approaching, you can find a free-to-share packet that includes children’s bulletins for Easter celebrating the resurrection of Jesus. You will also find many other activity sheets, lessons and fun activities for you to do with or without children.|
Click here to download the Easter Children’s Bulletin Packet and more No email required.
|Our prayers continue for everyone’s wellness and safety during this time. Thank you to our ministry partners at Home Touch! Pastor Jeff Mount Calvary Lutheran Church, Greenville, MI|
P.O. Box 9290
Canton, OH 44711
In these anxious times, we who follow Jesus can be assured He is with us always. Thank you for wanting to continue to share that Good News with children and families. It is perhaps more important now than ever.
To help us stay connected and share the Good News with others, we want to continue sharing resources for everyone’s consideration and use, especially in our Facebook group. Please feel free to use our Facebook group as one of several ways to encourage one another. (Heb. 10:23-25, below)
During a recent Sunshine Club gathering, Helen Harms shared an activity called, “Exercising His Word”. I encourage you to check out this resource and possibly use it as a daily devotion exercise. Here’s a link: https://1drv.ms/b/s!AuEeHoujOjK60xQe078UCLTMCjuf?e=hKkeF2
Just pick out a few verses and do the exercise listed. Be creative!
Children’s Worship Bulletins has also put together a packet of free resources — puzzles, Bible activities, worship bulletins on carefully selected topics and Scripture texts — that you may use and share with others. We pray these will strengthen families, and especially young disciples in the church. You can find the page with links to the PDF files here: www.childrensbulletins.com/covid19-childrens-activities-for-churches
And don’t forget about free access to RightNow Media for personal, family, and small group bible study video devotions, as well as Children’s Videos.
“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together (voluntarily), as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” Hebrews 10:23-25
The celebration of Jesus’ nativity just ended, and here we find ourselves smack in the middle of the 12 days of Christmas. Or are those 12 days passed already? Aren’t they December 13th-25th?
Some time back I was standing in the elevator at the hospital, reading a poster on the wall: “Celebrate the 12 Days of Christmas with great deals!” There were savings promised at the gift shop each of the first dozen days of December. According to the poster, December 1st-12th were the supposed 12 Days. Are they?
In fact, both of these interpretations of the 12 Days of Christmas miss the mark. The truth underscores the deep delight of this holiday.
The ghost of Christmas passed
The “12 Days of Christmas” refer to the 12 days from December 25th through January 6th. Christmas Day is the beginning of a festival that carries on for nearly two weeks, up until the feast of Epiphany. “Christmas” isn’t just a day, in other words; it’s a season.
Now, few in our society would dispute that there is such a thing as the “Christmas season,” but they might define it quite differently. This season would extend from, say, Thanksgiving until perhaps December 26th, when the radio stations drop their Christmas tunes like a hot coal in the stocking and go back to their regularly scheduled programming.
But as the world gives up the ghost of Christmas passed, the Church is just getting started with her yuletide celebrations. She has waited and watched throughout Advent—which tends to just be lumped in with what author Gregory Jones calls “HalloThanksMas.” She has refrained from singing her Gloria in Excelsis (“Glory to God in the highest!”) until she can sing it with the angels on Christmas Eve. Now, she’s ready to party.
Which gets at the deeper reason why there are 12 Days of Christmas. It’s a fact of the calendar, yes, but it’s more than that.
Too much for one day
The real reason that Christmas is 12 days is that the feast is too glorious for just one day. As Elsa Chaney writes in her book, the suitably titled Twelve Days of Christmas, “So bright is the radiance of the Light which has come at Christmas, so awesome is the mystery we celebrate, that a single day’s observance barely initiates us into the meaning of the feast.”
There’s a lot of joy to pack into this stocking.
And so I think it is high time that Christians reclaim the 12 Days. Too long have we allowed our celebrations to be co-opted by the culture’s “Christmas season.” Keeping the 12 Days is a path toward greater joy, greater festivity and, perhaps, even greater sanity.
In one of my very first newsletters last year I suggested 10 ways to celebrate the 12 days. But those are just the tip of the iceberg—or the top of the tree, you might say. So how else can we keep this 12-day feast?
Kids Against Hunger food packaging, equivalent to 16,000 meals. Great turnout of volunteers from Greenville Area congregations, Saturday, Nov. 2!
Packaging these nutritious bags of food for up to two hours (10a-12p) requires 5 tables (10 persons per table) for every 10,000 meals. As in the past, we can package up to 20,000 meals with 10 tables, requiring approximately 100 volunteers. This equates to a cost for food supplies of about $500 per table (2000 meals packaged per table). Donations to our Benevolence Fund are most welcome to help pay for a table of volunteers. We’re thankful to Thrivent Financial for their commitment to this year’s event! Pastor Jeff
Mount Calvary will host a traveling Spoke Folk team of bicycling youth and adults from all over the country who share Christian messages of Good News and encouragement through a program of music, skits and puppetry engaging all ages. Our goal is to also have a bicycle safety fair. Volunteers will work together to welcome and support the Spoke Folk team as they develop relationships and share the Gospel with our congregation and the community.
A “Spoke Folk” Festival will be held at Mount Calvary, Greenville, Monday, July 22, beginning at 4:00 pm. “SpokeFolk” consists of a team of bicycling high school and college youth and adults from all over the country who share Christian messages of Good News and encouragement through a program of music, drama and puppetry for all ages. The group is stopping overnight at Mount Calvary, Greenville, as part of their 12-day bike tour in West Michigan. Cameron’s Bicycle Shop will also be there to show off their bicycles and offer bicycle safety checks. Activities begin at 4:00 pm, Dinner will be served at 6:00 pm, the Program begins at 7:00 pm, and an Ice Cream Social will follow. Everyone is invited to bike or travel over to Mount Calvary, Greenville, meet the team members, participate in some activities, and enjoy some food, fun and friendship.
POC: Pastor Jeff Wilhelm
Be part of the Action Team as we welcome the Spoke Folk 2019 team cycling to Greenville for an overnight stop, Monday, July 22. Bicycle Safety Fair, Food & Fellowship, Music, Skits, Puppetry & Ice Cream! Thanks in advance for your help!
Annette Solo from today (Palm Sunday)
Mount Calvary is pleased to host the 2019 EightCAP Walk for Warmth on Saturday, April 13, 2019. Registration begins at 10:30 am, the Walk around Baldwin Lake begins at 11:00am(transportation assistance available), and a Soup/Chili cook-offgoes until 12:45 pm.Proceeds from EightCAP’s events are used to help low-income households with energy bills, shelter or other basic needs.If you can’t attend and would like to sponsor/donate, Henry Kreft & Harold Swindell will be walking. Please contact either one to be their sponsor. More information is available at: https://www.8cap.org/get-involved
MARCH 6 and 10 Lent begins with Ash Wednesday this week, March 6. Receiving the imposition of ashes as a mark of the cross on our foreheads reminds us: “We live from ashes to ashes with the assurance of our Lord’s resurrection.”Before next Sunday, read Romans 10:5-13.In his Letter to the Romans, Paul uses three different Greek words and one idiomatic phrase quoted from Proverbs, which all convey or are related to the idea of shame (v.11). What are some things that might make you feel ashamed or disgraced? Someone might feel ashamed of the Gospel, but Paul insists he, himself, is not ashamed of the Gospel and neither should we be.How do you honor the Good News of the Gospel in your life?
JOIN THE TEAM
Hey! We’d love your help with our upcoming Thrivent Action Team.
|Opportunities For Success (Christmas Giving Tree)|
|Christian Growth Ministry Team (Pastor Jeff Wilhelm)|
|Now through Epiphany Sunday, 1/6/19|
|Opportunities for Success will receive monetary and material donations to assist local school students and their families in need. Items to be provided are socks, hats, gloves, sweatshirts, sweatpants, after school snacks, and personal care items. Please register as a volunteer participant! Thank you for giving! |
Advent, a preparatory time of waiting and watching, communicates the message of hope, assisted by the color of the sky, BLUE. Our Christian faith rests on the hope that Christ, who came in history assuming our flesh, will also return on the last day of time from that same blue sky he ascended into long ago.
During Advent we are urged to slow down, wait, and look past ourselves. We do this by taking our time (four Sundays and weekdays) getting to the manger. We do this by staging our journey to Christmas in steps — Advent greens, an Advent wreath, Christmas trees, a Christmas manger scene, and then “Joy to the World” and “Silent Night.” We do this by keeping Christmas long after the trees are put outside and the decorations packed away — a full twelve days that stretch out what we have waited so long to celebrate. It’s important to realize that when we over-schedule church activities, we mirror the busyness of the world in a bad way. Sometimes there are so many things going on at Church that it seems literally like a roller coaster ride to Christmas. Advent should be slower and much more deliberate. During this season, we do not compete with the harried schedules of the world around us by matching them event for event. No, we compete by offering what no one can find except in the Church — the Gospel of the Incarnate Lord Jesus Christ! Most importantly, we celebrate Advent by listening to the Word of the Lord, and by hearing that Word with the ears of faith, and by the joyful acknowledgment that the Christ of the manger has come among us to deliver the fulfillment of His promised gift of forgiveness, life and salvation.
Christmas is the season in which we hear the “tidings of great joy” that the Savior of the world was born in Bethlehem. The Second Person of the Trinity had to become man in order to redeem man. After the Feast of the Resurrection, then, the Feast of the Nativity is the greatest in the Church. The atmosphere and appearance of the church building, in addition to its message and music, reflect the exceeding gladness of this celebration.
A gift opens the way for the giver and ushers him into the presence of the great. (Proverbs 18:16)
God’s gift to us at Christmas is a little like a very special gift received in the mail. The gift looks plain on the outside, but God knows that when we take the time to carefully unwrap the package and get to know what’s inside, we will appreciate the gift very much. In fact, it’s the best gift we could ever receive!
Similarly, we are like the brown paper wrap. There are messages about Jesus Christ to be sent and delivered all around the world today and they can be delivered by people who are humble, simple, and plain, just like the brown wrap. You don’t need fancy words or clothes. Look at Jesus who was born in a barn. It was not a fancy place, yet God’s message and gift to us came so precious and beautiful, just like the fancy ribbon and paper.
Dear Jesus, help me be the sender of the Christmas message to someone who needs to hear your Word. You are the best gift anyone could receive. Use me, Lord to be the packaging wrap of brown, simple paper and not to be afraid to tell others about eternal life in heaven. Amen.