Sermons

December Sermon Notes

Advent is the season of preparation for Christmas but also calls us to anticipate the final victorious reign of Christ and to invite him to reign in our hearts today.

To prepare for Advent we are invited to make an Advent Wreath for use in Sunday worship. All that is needed is 5 candles. They may be arranged in a circle of four around the fifth one and decorated to look like a horizontal wreath but this is not absolutely essential. OR, we are invited to choose a room where we watch the on-line service and make the whole room our Advent Wreath. Each week we will focus on a different cardinal direction (north, south, east & west) and Christmas Eve we will use the center of the room. If we’re directionally challenged the cardinal directions are not essential – just choose 4 corners or 4 walls and pretend they are the cardinal directions. We will be “inside” our Advent Wreath.

From Advent through Epiphany, we’ll engage in a short series of sermons around names or titles used for Jesus the Christ. Who is it, exactly, whose birth we celebrate at Christmas? What do these names or titles tell us about the nature of God in Christ? Who is it that we are called to welcome into our hearts and lives?

– Pastor Norman

 

Advent Christmas Sermon Series:

 

November 29

Advent I; United Methodist Student Day: We celebrate our college students and the gift of learning.

Pointing the Way to Wonderful!

Mark 13:24-37 – "Son of Man"

There is urgency in this passage. What is it that causes us to be urgent? Preparing for the holidays? Dealing with the pandemic? What does the Son of Man say to us?

Special worship will be offered by our Bishop and her Cabinet (the District Superintendents). Watch for the link to view this in weekly emails.

 

December 6

Advent II

Living as God’s Children

Mark 1:1-8 – "Son of God"

As Jesus is God’s Son we are called to live as God’s children. What does it mean to live as God’s children?

Outdoor Communion Service will be offered at 8:30 AM under the American Legion Pavilion; please register for this service. 

 

December 13

Advent III

More Light Than Heat

John 1:6-8, 19-28 – "The Light"

Jesus sheds light in and on our world... in a time of bleak dimness! Are we shedding more light or more heat in the world?

 

December 20

Advent IV

Saved for a Purpose

Luke 1:26-38 – "Jesus"

The name "Jesus" is a variant of Joshua and means "savior." Jesus came to save us; that’s the miracle of Christmas... but from what? For what?

Watch for further information about other Advent and Christmas-related worship or meditation opportunities in the weekly emails.

 

December 24 – Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve Candlelight Worship livestreamed via Facebook Live at both 6:00 PM and 8:00 PM.

Celebrating the Birth of Jesus the Christ Child!

Luke 2:1-20 – "Christmas is a Surprise!"

God surprised the world with Jesus. God still is surprising us!

Luke 2:1-20 – "Celebrating a Covid Christmas!"

In the midst of loss, fear, loneliness and disappointment, love still is strong!

Special Christmas Eve worship will be offered by the Certified Lay Ministers of our Conference. Watch for the link to view this in weekly emails.

Christmas Eve Candles: In the "outgoing" box outside the Church Office are free tea candles to pick up for Christmas Eve worship. When we sing "Silent Night" and light the candles in the sanctuary during the livestreamed worship, we can also sing at home and light our candle there. We are making these available, but any candles that we already have at home will work also.

 

December 27

First Sunday After Christmas

Comfort for the Hurting

Luke 2:22-40 – "The Consolation of Israel"

The world into which Jesus was born was not unlike our own – beset by disease, violence and political turmoil. What consolation does the advent of Christ in our lives bring today?

Special worship will be offered by our Bishop and her Cabinet (the District Superintendents). Watch for the link to view this in weekly emails.

 

January Sermon Notes

The New Year’s Sermon Series, "Personal Power and Politics," will focus on themes of relationship, leadership and unity.

 

January 3

Epiphany: Celebrating the revelation of Jesus as the Christ, remembering the Visit of the Magi and pondering the universality of God’s love.

Kneeling Before Our Lord

Matthew 2:1-12 – "King of the Jews"

The Magi come looking for the "king of the Jews." This simple phrase unleashes fear and violence. Why? Maybe because Herod feared loss of earthly power. Jesus, however, is more than an earthly ruler. The real question is: Will he be king of our lives?

 

January 10

The Baptism of Our Lord: Celebrating the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptizer and our own baptism.

Mark 1:4-11 – "Relationships that Matter"

At Jesus' baptism God acknowledges him as the Son. They have a special relationship. As we enter into a sermon series focusing on challenging issues in a tough season, we explore the relationship between the preacher and the congregation.

 

January 17

Human Relations Day: Lifting up the right of all God's children to realize their potential as human beings in relationship with one another.

John 1:43-51, Mark 3:13-19 – "Team of Rivals"

Jesus calls together a very disparate group to be his disciples. Even his twelve apostles represent a very wide range of opinions! Tensions among and between them soon become clear. What can we learn from Jesus' disciples and their relationship with him?

 

January 24

Ecumenical Sunday: Repenting of divisions in the Church, celebrating the diversity of faith expressions, and striving for shared experiences of worship, service and witness across denominational lines.

John 10:14-16, Matthew 22:34-40 – "The Great Commandment for 2021"

Christ calls us to unity within our diversity. He also gives us the Great Commandment. What core values drive Christian unity? How can we, the Church, lead our nation to greater unity?

 

January 31

Leadership Sunday: Dedicating church leaders for 2021 and thanking those who served in 2020.

Psalm 146, Mark 1:14-20 – "Leadership Under God"

Jesus calls those who lead in ministry for a purpose. They are to serve that purpose before all else. The Hebrews scriptures are clear that God outranks all other leaders. What does the Bible, including the Hebrew psalms and Jesus' call of his disciples, tell us about the exercise of leadership?