Thursday
December 24, 2020
T h u r s d a y , D e c e m b e r 2 4

(Music and stories for children with Therese Macali)


Download order of worship HERE.
REFLECTION ON PSALM 148

Praise the Lord!

The psalmist calls upon all of creation to praise God: heaven, earth, moon, angels, stars… and my personal favorite “sea monsters”. Nothing is separated out, nothing is excluded, all things are invited, called together to join in singing, praying, and rejoicing.

The praise offered to God includes all of the created order. What songs do cedars sing? How will the fog finds its voice? Have you heard snow pray? Will it be a blessed cacophony, divine harmony, or all of the above?

In this psalm, we are learning that humanity is only a part of the whole. Extreme inclusiveness is the reality. Notice in this psalm, that it is NOT just everything that breathes, BUT everything that is.. is invited to PRAISE GOD!
I share this photo, taken on a hike off of Hwy 40 West.
This rock is covered with gray crustose lichen. Some of the most bizarre organisms on the planet, lichen thrive in all climates and geographic zones on earth. They ARE NOT individual organisms but a composite life form consisting of at least two and sometimes more ,completely different species which live in symbiotic, mutually beneficial relationships. Crustose simply means “flat, paint-like”. They are slow growing and can be very constant across time. Lichenometry is the science of determining the age of exposed rock surfaces by “reading” lichen. Lichens have been used for thousands of years by humans for food, natural dyes, medicines, and hide tanning. To me, these lichen perfectly reflect the wide open sky above the trail at the Canada del Oro. I share the photo because it seemed to me that they were praising God and reflecting the sky. In what meter do the lichen sing?

Prayer:
O God Who sets us in our place and orders all things in heaven and on earth. Help us to dwell as fellow creatures with your creation. Help us to be formed as a people who belong to You and the universe that you have created and shared with us.

May our praise reflect your radiance and beauty. Bestow upon us, the radical vision shared by the psalmist, that all belong, all are created as intimate friends, dear to you.

Open our ears again to our calling and vocation to enjoy our Creator and all the gifts. May we treasure each other, our lives together and what you have given us as dearly as you treasure us. Amen.
-- Rev. Kelly Giese
LUMINARIAS: One Night Only, Free Viewing for All!
Thursday, December 24 | After Sunset
Even though the church building is closed, the spirit of the season is alive. Our own Abide Service wanted to light the way for the Christ-child on Christmas Eve by “lighting up” St. John’s with luminarias. So view your favorite service online this Christmas Eve, then any time after sunset drive by the church to see our building lit up with the traditional New Mexico decoration of luminarias. For those of you who have been sequestered at home, this is a great reason to get you out of the house while keeping you safe within your vehicles. There is no service associated with this event. It is merely for your enjoyment and meditation during this season of joy, peace and love. We hope you will come and enjoy the wonder, beauty and humility of this glorious occasion of our Savior’s birth.
#ADVENTALTARSPACE
Sanctuary Chrismon Ornaments, Photo from Jarrod Conyers!
2020 GIVING STATEMENTS
As. St. John’s brings 2020 to a close, we would like to Thank You for your faithfulness and giving during this year of the pandemic. We appreciate your generosity and love for St. John’s United Methodist Church. You have enabled the church to “switch” programming and to continue the good work of the church.

 In order to be included in your 2020 Giving Statement, mailed contributions MUST be POSTMARKED by DECEMBER 31, 2020, and credit card transactions MUST be before DECEMBER 31, 2020. If you would like to drop off your contribution, the Church office will be closed on Thursday, December 24, Christmas Eve at noon; Friday, December 25; Monday, December 28; and Friday, January 1, 2021. Debbie Brown is in the office from 9:00 am until 2:00 pm on normal business days.
Sundays | 9:30 & 11:00 am
St. John’s will live-stream a worship service on Sunday morning at 9:30 am (Contemporary) on the Abide Facebook page and 11:00 am (Traditional) on our Youtube Channel. We hope you’ll worship with us! (Pastors Pam and Kelly will lead, along with Shea Perry, Jim Ahrend, and Matt Greer). We hope that you’ll participate by singing and praying at home! Any questions? Email Matt at mgreer@stjohns-abq.org.

Sunday Community Activities: Click HERE to view all Sunday School Classes & groups! Join us in the virtual Sonshine Coffee Zoom immediately following the 11:00 am Worship with church Leadership Team members hosting. Zoom registration is HERE
Thursday, December 31 | 5:30 pm
This has been a difficult year and we have the opportunity to begin the new year with a service of healing and wholeness, bringing our weariness, aches, sadness and concern before the Christ Child laid in a manger bed. There will be a time of “anointing”, so please have a little bowl of oil ready. We will sing songs of the Taize community and have times of silent reflection during our worship experience. Please look for the worship guide and the link to the live-stream on December 31st at 5:30.
CONGREGATIONAL CARE: Prayer Requests
The Gruen family in the passing into glory of Marge

Ann Boland and family in the passing into glory of Bob

Roger and Donna Eaton in the passing of sister Virginia Davis

Donna Bruce in the passing of her brother

Karen and Hal Tidler in the passing of their brother-in-law
VIRTUAL PRAYER QUILT
Jamie Arrington is the recipient for the prayer quilt on display for December 21 - January 4.

In lieu of tying knots, please pray this prayer (or your own prayer) for Jamie: “Heavenly Father, we pray for health and healing as Jamie recovers from surgery. Amen."
 DECEMBER SPECIAL OFFERING: Two Ministries for Children
This month, we have the opportunity to support two wonderful ministries dealing with children. The Methodist Children’s Home in Waco, Texas, has helped troubled children (ages 12-18) find a place to heal and grow in a loving Christian environment for over 125 years. Younger children thrive in homes of loving foster parents. “They (MCH) are here for me when no one else is.” “They never give up on us.” “I now know that God’s going to be there for me.
      A second Methodist-supported haven for children is Providence Place in San Antonio, Texas. Its motto says it all: “Giving God’s Children a Faith, a Family, a Future.” “Providence Place loved me and helped me make the best decision for my child without any pressure,” said one birth mother in the open adoption program. And, as an adoptive couple puts it, “It is indescribable the joy that Abby has brought into our lives.” Providence Place also helps young adults with physical and/or cognitive disabilities develop their full potential and learn to live on their own with minimal assistance.  Both of these fine ministries rely on our generous donations.
Contact Us
www.stjohns-abq.org
(505) 883-9717
2626 Arizona St NE | Albuquerque, NM 87110
Office Hours (call only): Monday - Friday, 9:00 am - 2:00 pm
Questions? Contact Shea Perry at communicate@stjohns-abq.org