Chalice News
 
Round Rock Christian Church


Embracing our neighbors with Christ-like love 
December 22, 2020
In This Issue
Christmas Eve Service 2020

Please join us on Christmas Eve at 7:00 p.m. via zoom to celebrate the birth of our Lord!  If possible, have a lit candle with you as you zoom in with us. Here's the link:


This link will be sent to you again 
at noon on Christmas Eve day.  
Why not forward this email to your extended family
 and friends so they can plan join us as well?


This Coming Sunday in Worship -- 
December 27, 2020

The First Sunday after Christmas

"Simeon and Anna"
Luke 2:22-40

A Message from the Pastor
 
"...tales of the glories of Christmases long long ago."
It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year (1963) written by Edward Pola and George Wyle

Is it possible to listen to this song (I love Andy Williams' version) and not be filled with nostalgia? Everyone has their own treasured memories of "Christmases long long ago." It can be tempting to idolize our own best Christmas experiences of the past and do our best to try to re-create those circumstances, feel again those same emotions, or somehow experience anew that same atmosphere. 

But our families change. We change. We move to a new home or even a new town or state. The culture changes around us. We can't re-capture what once was. We can't push "Replay." We can't go back in time.  Christmas 2020 is upon us, and it's up to us to celebrate under our new circumstances.

Pandemic or not, we still celebrate the gift of Jesus, the Word become Flesh. In his eyes, wearing a mask takes away none of our uniqueness or beauty.  To him, a zoomed or streamed worship service is every bit as precious as a gathering in a church sanctuary.  He knows our hearts ache because of separation from loved ones, and honors our tough decisions to remain safely at home.

So let's not spend too much time mourning what we don't get to do this Christmas. Let's not waste a single minute longing to go back to a different time and place. Let's instead believe that what God has in store for us in the days ahead is much better than anything we've been able to even imagine! 

I encourage you to take the time (the video is less than 3 minutes) to view a Christmas message of encouragement from our General Minister and President, Rev. Terri Hord Owens. When God's people long for the past, they are demonstrating their fear that God is no longer active in our world. Let's move forward!


MERRY CHRISTMAS, Round Rock Christian Church.
With much love,
Pastor Mitch
Welcome, Nancy!

Please join us in welcoming Nancy Fennimore to the RRCC family! Nancy transferred her membership to Round Rock Christian Church during worship on Sunday. Nancy was born and raised in Montana, and was baptized at First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Fort Smith, Arkansas. Most recently, she was a member of University Christian Church in Austin, and that is the congregation from which she is transferring her membership. 

She and her husband Gene, who recently celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary, have two adults sons, Adam and Nathan. Their oldest son, Corey, died in 2012 in an auto accident. Nancy is a Head Start manager in Austin, but has been working from home during these pandemic months. 



Ilene Kiser


Ilene Kiser would love 
to hear from you!

4521 Winona Ave.
San Diego, CA 92115

grammyik@gmail.com

RRCC Online Giving

Even though we are unable to meet in person,
RRCC has three ways you can still give your tithe:
  1. Go to the RRCC website rrdisciples.org and click on the "GIVE HERE" button at the top of the main page. Or use the link at the top of each newsletter. It will take you to the same place.
  2. Use your bank's electronic bill pay feature to have a check mailed directly from your bank to RRCC.
  3. Mail your check directly to RRCC.
Address your envelope to:
Financial Secretary
Round Rock Christian Church
22 Chalice Way
Round Rock, TX 78665
Year-End Giving Opportunity

       THE ROUND ROCK CHRISTIAN PERMANENT FUND

The Permanent Fund of Round Rock Christian was established several years ago through the Christian Church Foundation to expand witness and mission of Jesus Christ and to serve the human needs in our community and around the world. It provides a means to invest by giving gifts and bequests that enable RRCC to expand ministry beyond the general budget.

The account is managed is by a team of five members who hold the positions of immediate past senior trustee, the two current trustees, treasurer, and financial secretary as well as the moderator and senior minister who are ex-officio members. This team reports to the Guiding Board, which is the managing entity on how funds from this account will be withdrawn for ministry.

The Christian Church Foundation planned giving investment program includes two separate entities: congregational and personal (family or individual). In early 2020, the Permanent Fund Task Force reviewed and revised the operating policy and procedure for the fund and planned to host a planned giving seminar to provide information for church members to set up their personal account.; however, it has been postponed until 2021.

Our RRCC account has grown more than two thousand dollars this year by giving by members and reinvesting in a higher yield account to a current balance of over eight thousand dollars.

Prayerfully consider your 2020 gift to this fund. Each of us may contribute to the congregation's account via online giving or by mailing a check to our church, 22 Chalice Way, RR, 78665, attn. Financial Secretary, with memo: RRCC Permanent Fund. As with other giving these gift amounts are confidential and are included on members annual statement of giving.

Should you need more details please contact trustee, Patricia Mouser.
2021 Worship Leader Sign-Up


The 2021 Worship Leader Sign-Up is available to view!

Click here to reserve your date to serve:


 
Upcoming Events 


There will be no events/meetings held in the RRCC facility until further notice.  
Many RRCC activities and events have been cancelled until further notice. Some are continuing online.

***Please note that Molly will be out of the RRCC Office December 21-24.

Tuesday, December 22, 2020
7:00 p.m.
- Shalom Congregation (via Zoom)

Wednesday, December 23, 2020
1:00 p.m.
- Caring Hearts Prayer Group (via Zoom) Link HERE
7:00 p.m.
- NO Chancel Choir (via ZOOM) Link HERE

Thursday, December 24, 2020 Christmas Eve
7:00 p.m.
- Christmas Eve Service (via ZOOM) Link HERE

Friday, December 25, 2020
Merry
Christmas!
RRCC
Office Closed

Saturday, December 26, 2020
8:00 a.m.
- Shalom Congregation (live stream)

Sunday, December 272020  
9:45 a.m.
Explorers Sunday School (via Zoom) Link HERE
9:45 a.m.
- Open Circle Sunday School (via Zoom) Link HERE
11:00 a.m.
- Worship (via Zoom) Link HERE
Evening
- Manantial de Vida Congregation (off site)

Monday, December 282020 
Luke 2:27-32
- Guided by the Spirit, Simeon came into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him what was customary under the law, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying, "Master, now you are dismissing your servant in peace, according to your word; for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel."

Tuesday, December 29, 2020 
7:00 p.m.
- Shalom Congregation (off site)

Events and details can be viewed on the RRCC Calendar
Keep Round Rock Warm
 
Some members have asked about this year's Keep Round Rock Warm, a program of the Round Rock Area Serving Center for children within the RRISD who need a coat for the winter. In past years, the Serving Center has placed coat collection barrels in the community for donated coats. This year, because of the pandemic, only new coats will be distributed. These are funded through donations and the "Coins for Coats" collection cans placed each year in RRISD school libraries. Donated coats and other gently-worn clothing items are always welcome, and are placed in the Center's "Treasures" thrift store.
 
Remember to include your monetary donations for the Serving Center's Food Pantry and other services in your regular donations to Round Rock Christian Church.
RRCC Newsletter Deadlines

Please submit your
Tuesday Newsletter articles and pictures 
before 10:00 a.m. on Mondays.
 and your Friday Reminders articles and pictures 
before 12:00 p.m. on Thursdays.
Thank you!
Chancel Choir

NO CHANCEL CHOIR THIS WEEK

 
Chancel Choir usually meets via ZOOM on Wednesdays at 7:00 p.m.:
Did You Miss a Newsletter?

Past newsletters dating back to mid-March 2020 are currently archived under the "ABOUT US" tab on the RRCC Website.

Upcoming Birthdays

 
December 27
- Barbara Barnett
Prayer Needs

LEADERSHIP
1. Our Guiding Board, Ministries Council, Elders, Deacons, Ministries and Teams 
2. Our staff: Jimmy, Mitch, Katie, Randy, and Molly
3. Our music ministries and their leaders: Randy Preston, Rod Walker, and Jimmy Horowitz
4. Our tech team: Gary Collier, Tara Pollock, Katie Maybaum, Randy Preston, Rod Walker, and Dan Knight
5. Our "Reopening" Task Force--Perry Mouser (chair), Gary Tucker, Gary Collier, Mildred Adair, Amy Tucker, Pam Knight, Amy Osteen, Tricia Mouser, Pastor Maria Rosario of Manantial de Vida, Omar Roque, Juan Pena, and Carlos Cortez of Shalom, Pastor Mitch Maxted, and Linda Glover
6. Our Caring Hearts Prayer Group
7. Our Stephen Ministries (Care Receivers and Caregivers)
8. Our partnership with Shalom Seventh Day Adventist & Manantial de Vida congregations (and their pastors Edy Rosa Paez and Maria Rosario) 
9. Reverends Christal Fisher (South Texas) and Andy Mangum (CCSW)

MEMBERS AND FRIENDS 
1. Acree, Mary -- ongoing fall concerns, but feeling better
2. Davis, Marilyn
3. Glover, Linda -- pain management
4. Greene, Emmiline -- sister-in-law Matilda Dunn is now receiving hospice care
5. Guilbeau, Rick & Cynthia. Cynthia's  father, Harold Hubbard, is receiving hospice care
6. Habtemariam, Solomon and Meaza
7. Mouser, Tricia -- rheumatoid arthritis infusion treatments and side-effects
8. Plough, Paul 
9. Pollock, Chris -- chest pains
10. Rilda and Charles Scarborough
11. Sherry, Bea
12. Shrader, James (husband of Patti) -- continued recovery from heart and leg surgeries; also Patti's sister is now receiving hospice care (lives in Missouri)
13. Terry Tucker, brother of Gary Tucker -- upcoming surgery
14. Walker, Lisa -- siblings Dale and Connie with health concerns (Dale recent brain surgery)
15. Wilson, Garvid -- began chemo/immunotherapy treatment last week; prayers for strength and manageable side effects

OTHER
1. Mahomet Christian Church in Bertram (burned on 12/9)
2. All who don't know Jesus
3. COVID-19 (the ill, their families, medical professionals, essential workers, treatment and vaccine researchers, the logistics of distributing and administering the vaccine safely and efficiently)
4. Those who have lost jobs during the pandemic; businesses that are struggling
5. A transition of power in Washington that is marked by good communication and good will
6. All people who are persecuted for their faith throughout the world 
7. Our military personnel and families
8. International cooperation in responding to climate change challenges
9. Development of an immigration policy for the U.S. that is fair, just, and responsible 
10. For all efforts toward affordable health care for all Americans; that pre-existing health conditions not be a barrier to securing health insurance coverage
11. U.S. lawmakers and community leaders to work together to solve the problem of frequent, deadly mass shootings
12. All teachers, administrators, students, and parents. Our neighborhood schools: Union Hill Elementary School and Hopewell Middle School.
Sunday School Classes
.
[There will be no Sunday School classes at the church for the foreseeable future. Some classes will be meeting via Zoom during this time of social distancing.]
 .
Early Childhood Class (ages 4-7) -Taught by Lisa Walker

Intermediate Class (3rd - 5th grade) - Taught by Jennifer Kienzle 
Chi Rho Class - (6th - 8th grade) (studying the book, "Middle School TalkSheets" for ages 11-14.  "These TalkSheets present every aspect of Jesus' life in a way that young teens can connect with as they learn to apply the lessons to their own lives.")
 .
CYF Class (9th - 12th grade)  
 .
Open Circle (primarily adult women) - 9:45 a.m. Sunday mornings via ZOOM, Studying The Cherry Log Sermons by internationally recognized preacher and accomplished teacher Rev. Fred Craddock. "These sermons on a variety of topics and texts show Craddock's deft use of storytelling, an astounding ability to interpret the biblical text for our day, and a keen pastoral sensitivity to the everyday needs of listeners." ALL ARE WELCOME!  Link HERE
 .
Explorers (mixed adults) - 10:00 a.m. Sunday mornings via ZOOM, Facilitator is Mildred Adair; studying the New Testament Book of Acts, using the resource by John MacArthur. Link HERE
RRCC is on Social Media

Follow us on Social Media!

We can be found on:
Twitter as @ChurchRound
Instagram as rrccdisciples
Photo Submissions

Submitting a photo? Awesome! 
We love pictures of congregational life!
Please remember to include
identification (who, what, when, where, why) 
 for each photograph submitted to the office.  
Also, please indicate where you would like the photo to be used (RRCC website, social media, weekly newsletter, etc.)
.
Please email photos to the church office: info@rrdisciples.org
RRCC Office Hours


Mondays:
9:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Tuesdays:
2:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Wednesdays:
9:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Thursdays:
9:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Fridays:
9:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Elder's Prayer Corner/Closing Message


Luke 2:7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger because there was no place for them in the inn.
 
Standing at the Manger

Only in Luke do we find a reference to the manger.  Matthew Powel points out in his book, The Christmas Creche, that various mangers reflect both a common faith and the unique culture of the people who created them. "The manger scene continues to proclaim that all people are welcome at the stable of Bethlehem."

St. Francis of Assisi is most responsible for the popularization and promotion of the crèche or manger. Although Nativity scenes were in use long before 1223, that year St. Francis used a simple crib scene as a prop to reflect upon the mystery of the Incarnation: a straw-filled manger flanked by a live donkey and a live ox, "a memorial of that Child who was born in Bethlehem." He wanted to physically represent the hardships of the infant Jesus, lying on hay in a manger with the ox and donkey standing by. 
 
I was in Macedonia working with "gypsy" refugees when I saw first-hand real swaddling. The new mother laid her day-old infant on 3 light cloths and proceeded to expertly and efficiently wrap the cloths firmly around her crying infant, one by one, until he was swaddled so firmly that he slept, and did not have to have his head otherwise supported when held. "That," I thought to myself, "must be what is meant by 'swaddling' in the Bible." Our Lord's first binding was one of love.
 
Prayer: Lord, bless all who look upon the manger; may it be a reminder of the humble birth of Jesus, and raise our thoughts to him, who is God-with-us and Savior of all, and who lives and reigns forever and ever.