Sunnyvale Presbyterian Church
November 21, 2021
"Before the New Year"
Rev. Annanda Barclay Preaching

One of the frustrations I've had as a pastor over the past several years has to do with the general understanding of the liturgical calendar. The liturgical calendar is our spiritual calendar, the way in which the Church organizes the Christian year. In Christianity we have a circular, not linear sense of time. In other words, we believe that life is cyclical, which acknowledges the way life works on this planet, cyclically. 

Our spiritual/liturgical year is as follows: Advent, Christmastide (yes, it really is 12 days), Epiphany, Lent, Easter, Pentecost, and Ordinary Time. Each season is an area of spiritual focus and formation. This Sunday is, "Christ The King Sunday" and marks the end of our Christian year. The first Sunday in Advent is the beginning of our new year. Understanding the liturgical calendar has transformed the way I, as a professional Christian, practice my faith. It gives me a specific spiritual focus for the time of year, and is the primary calendar in which I locate myself in the context of time. 

In light of this information, I wonder what are your spiritual new year's resolutions? How have you understood the liturgical calendar in the past? Lastly, what is meaningful for you in having this spiritual/religious organization? 

This Sunday, we'll enter into conversation about the power of the calendar. As we enter into another cycle of endings and new beginnings, ritual and meaning-making are important. I'll speak on the calendar as a guide to support our sense of purpose. 

See y'all Sunday and thankful for you, 


If you're worshipping with us online, please join us immediately afterward for the virtual Coffee Hour.

Theme for Sunday

Jesus is not an impractical idealist: He is the practical realist"

— Martin Luther King Jr.
Questions for Reflection
  • Where do you see Christ in all creation?
  • How do you prepare for the Christian new year?
  • What rituals do you have to close out the Christian year?
Revelation 1:4b-8

John to the seven churches that are in Asia: Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood, and made us to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen. Look! He is coming with the clouds; every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and on his account all the tribes of the earth will wail. So it is to be. Amen. ‘I am the Alpha and the Omega’, says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.

John 18:33-37

Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.” Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”