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Pastor's Letter

December 4, 2015
Dear Friends,
I struggled with this week's message in the wake of the tragedy in San Bernardino, California; another shooting, lives lost, other lives shattered, the grief and, increasingly, feelings of uncertainty and anxiety. In this week's message I am talking about the gift of joy. It seems incongruous in light of this past week's event. But as I thought about it and prayed about it, I think it is something that is helpful.  
God's gift of joy isn't something that only appears during those special occasions like the birth of baby, a wedding, or getting that new job. Rather, if we look at the world in which God sent the gift of his son, Jesus; God's joy came into a world of violence, oppression, terror, injustice, hatred. How unlikely!   Yet, what we will discover is that God's gift of joy continues to appear, in our lives, at the most unlikely times, in the most unlikely way.
I look forward to worshiping with you this Sunday. Please be in prayer for the ways we can be a blessing to the neighbors around Buckhall UMC. Please pray for how God is calling you to be a blessing.
Yours in Christ,

Weekly Announcements

What's Happening This Week

Sunday, December 6th - 2nd Sunday in Advent.  Message: The Gift of Joy
       Hanging of the Greens 12:30pm to 2:00pm
Advent Series: Socks and Underwear
At Christmas we often dream of receiving the "perfect" gift, but many of us have experienced the reality of Socks and Underwear.   What if Christmas isn't about our expectations? What if Christmas isn't about getting what we want? Instead, what if the gift we've been given is what we truly need? And what if Christmas is more about what we give to others? Join us as we embrace the power of the true gifts of Christmas and their impact on our lives.    
12/13 - A Gift Returned: The Gift of Love (also "Undie Sunday" )
12/20 - A Gift Received: The Gift of Peace  
12/24 -   The Great Gift Giveaway     (Christmas Eve)
In keeping with the theme of "Sock and Underwear," Sunday, December 13th, is designated as: "Undie Sunday." On that Sunday, we ask that you bring in a package of new socks or underwear. The socks will be added to our winter version of "Kits for the Homeless." Any remaining packages of socks, along with the packages of underwear, will be taken to Rising Hope and other places for distribution among people who are homeless.
Advent Study -
It's not too late to - Step out of the busyness of the season and prepare our hearts by studying God's promises of hope.  
A 4-session Advent Study begins, "Travel the Highways of Advent,"
Daytimes:   on Tuesdays@ 10:30am
Join in a journey from the here of our everyday lives to the there of Christmas hope and life. Sign-up in the narthex or e-mail pastor Linda at bumc.lmonroe@verizon.net .
Sunday, December 13th - "Undie Sunday". See explanation above.
Monday, December 14th @ 7:00pm   - Service of Quiet and Reflection. This is a service of quiet, reflection, remembering, and healing. There are some people for whom this season is not "merry;" people who are grieving a loss, carrying hurts, have hearts full of memories, are bearing some kind of pain, or are feeling sad. Come into the quiet and experience the presence of God's love and peace. For questions, contact Pastor Linda at bumc.lmonroe@verizon.net .
December 18th - Last day to receive reduced registration fee for Bi-District Training (January 9th 2016)
Thursday, December 24th - Christmas Eve
5:30pm - Children's and Family Service - children dress in costume and help tell the Christmas story.   Candlelight and Communion
7:30pm and 9:30pm - Worship with Candlelight and Communion
Sunday, December 27th - Lessons and Carols @ 10:00am
Join in hearing the story and singing our favorite carols. Come as you are and bring Christmas goodies to share.









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