Grace Episcopal Church                             November 2017
I have always wanted to have one of those homes where people frequently stop by to say hello and share a cup of coffee. The kind of home where there is always something good to eat and no one is in a rush, where conversations linger and friendships are built. You know those homes when you enter them. The ones that may be a little messy, where the kitchen counter still has a few crumbs from the morning toast or where kids' toys litter the stairs. It's the homes where you know that life is being lived. There is never enough time to clean up but there is always enough time to catch up.

Although our lives are busy and the demands on our time seem to grow by the day, the Advent Season asks us to slow down and wait, to get ready to open our doors and welcome in the blessing of the coming of Christ. Evelyn Underhill, an early 20th century Anglican writer and teacher, wrote in one of her Advent meditations that we should always have a humble eager expectancy as we enter this season. She states, "Our spiritual life depends on His perpetual coming to us, far more than on our going to Him."

What a beautiful thought - that this season is all about Christ coming to us - in the midst of our busyness and in the midst of our messiness. We may not have the cleanest homes or the fanciest food but we can open our doors wide in humble eager expectancy. Thanks be to God.


Morning Prayer
Wednesdays at 8:00am 
December 6, 13, 20

Potluck Advent Breakfast
8:30am Sunday, December 3
10:00am Worship
**Please sign up for a dish in the
Parish Hall.

Lessons and Carols
7:00pm Sunday, December 10
(see article below)

Hanging of the Greens
& Cookie Decorating
11:00am Friday, December 22
Light refreshments will be served
**All ages are welcome!


Sunday, December 24

10:00am Fourth Sunday in Advent
Holy Eucharist

4:00pm and 8:00pm Christmas Eve Services

For a copy of the full Advent Calendar, please click here 2017 Advent Calendar .

Of special note...

We will move to a single 10am worship service on Sunday mornings throughout December.

Why are we having a single service? Our liturgical calendar includes four Sundays in the Advent season. This year, the Fourth Sunday of Advent falls on Christmas Eve! That means we will plan two different liturgies for December 24. Many of you will choose to come to one of the Christmas Eve services. However, some of you may also want to observe the Fourth Sunday in Advent. As a result, we are having a simple service at 10am (Advent 4) followed by the Christmas Eve services at 4pm and 8pm.

And, since we already have a single service for the Advent breakfast on December 3, we thought it would be most helpful to keep things as consistent as possible throughout the holiday. It's also a wonderful way to bring our entire congregation together to celebrate the joy of the season.

Come and worship with us every Sunday morning in December at 10am! Our normal service schedule (9am and 11am) will resume on January 7.
It is easy to forget during the hustle and bustle of the season that Advent is really about a time of anticipation. To stay in that place of anticipation and to help prepare our hearts for the celebration of Jesus's coming, here are few links that you might enjoy.
From the Brothers of the Society of St. John The Evangelist Daily Word of the Day:
Register at   and start each day with a word of encouragement and hope from a brother of SSJE.

For Families:
Children's Printable Advent Calendar
Click HERE for an activity to use with your children to help share the meaning of the season.

Children's Advent Devotionals
Click HERE for a beautiful resource of coloring pages and readings to do as a family.

From the Episcopal Church:
Becoming the Beloved Community
Follow this special devotional from our denomination on how we may grow to become a Beloved Community this holiday season.

From the Anglican Communion:
Follow along with the worldwide Anglican Communion by signing up for this daily devotional.

Book Suggestions:

The Case for Christmas: A Journalist Investigates the Identity of the Child in the Manger.

Light Upon Light: A Literary Guide to Prayer for Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany
Sunday, December 10th at 7pm

Our choir has been working hard to create a beautiful service of Lessons and Carols this Advent season. The Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols was first celebrated at King's College, Cambridge on Christmas Eve, 1918. It has become a favorite tradition in many congregations and we are looking forward to sharing this tradition with Grace Church and the Goochland community. Please join us and bring a friend. A reception of Holiday Cookies & Hot Chocolate will follow in the Parish Hall. Please bring your favorite holiday cookies to share. A sign-up sheet is located in the Parish Hall.
Please support our Christmas Mother Family!

This year, Grace is sponsoring a family of four with two sons, ages 9 and 4. We will be collecting gifts and food for them and all contributions should dropped off at the church no later than  Sunday, December 17th . All presents should be gift wrapped and have a name tag. If someone prefers not to shop, they may make a financial contribution by noting "Christmas Mother" in the memo line of their check. We will also provide a grocery gift certificate.


Mark your calendars to help green the worship space for Christmas Eve on Friday, December 22nd from 11:00am to 1:00pm. We will also decorate cookies for the holidays! All ages are welcome.

To help make this a great day for our kids, we are asking for folks to bring sugar cookies (baked and ready to decorate). Please bring cookies to the Parish Hall kitchen by Friday morning.

Since we are moving to one worship service for the month of December, we have amended the original server schedule distributed in September.
Please click here for new schedule. 2017 December Server Schedule

We have yet to assign servers for Lessons and Carols as well as our Christmas Eve Services. Please let Cindy know as soon as possible if you are willing to to be a lay leader for one of the following positions:

December 10th - 7pm (Lessons and Carols)
8 Readers, Acolyte, Ushers

December 24th - 10am Service (Advent 4)
Lector, Chalicer, Acolyte

December 24th - 4pm Christmas Eve Service
Lector, Chalicer, Acolyte, Ushers

December 24th - 8pm Christmas Eve Service
Lector, Chalicer, Acolyte, Ushers

December 31 - 10am Morning Prayer Service
Lector, Acolyte, Ushers

Help us decorate the church with a poinsettia in honor or in memorium of the people who hold a special place in your life. Orders are due no later than December 17th. Poinsettias are $10 each. Order forms will be in the Narthex soon and may be placed in Cindy's mailbox outside of the church office once completed.
Grace Episcopal Church
2955 River Road West
Goochland VA 23063