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    Nov 03, 2013

    Celebrate all that is right and good this time of year!

    Celebrate all that is right and good this time of year!

    Series: All

    Category: Fall 2013

    Keywords: celebration, gifts, transformation, change

    Holidays 2013

            The leaves on the trees are changing into radiant colors and some are already falling.  Change – transformation − is in the air.  We know that the next eight weeks, called the “Holidays,” will be filled with changes in our environment, our church gatherings, our family and personal life.  The transformation that will take place during the 2013 holidays can be busy, stressful, and challenging as we seek to celebrate all that is right and good this time of the year with God’s help.

            We begin our journey this next eight weeks with the deeply moving worship on All Saints’ Sunday.  On that day we read the necrology – a listing of all those we have loved who have been received “into the arms of your (God’s) mercy, into the blessed rest of everlasting peace, and into the glorious company of the saints in light.”  We the church and as individuals celebrate their lives among us as a gift from God knowing that they helped shape and mold us into who we are today.  Each one of them still lives in our hearts, souls, and minds. They are always a part of our story. We strive to live into the legacy they gave us.

            Later we celebrate, with a change, Thanksgiving Sunday, as all three services come together as one united body in worship and then feast together during a traditional lunch. (see the article in this Messenger for details.)  In preparation we are challenged to write down all the thanksgivings you want to celebrate with God.  At the same time you might also want to think and pray about your New Year’s Resolutions since the next Sunday is the beginning of our new liturgical year – Year A.

            This year there will be another change as we enter the season of Advent because a very talent group of parishioners has been designing with me new transformative dressings for our sacred space and the physical environment for the seasons of Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany. They have used their artistic gifts in order that we may be more fully engaged in the seasons and become more consistent in what we say, pray, teach, and believe as Episcopalians.

            As we journey with Mary and Joseph to the Bethlehem stable and witness once again the birth of Jesus, prayerfully we will see in our hearts Mary placing Him in the manger because there was no room for them in the inn.  May we make the time to be still, watch, listen, see, and smell, and thereby take in all these seasons into our hearts and souls.  May we celebrate with God what is right in our world because God has given us the gift of Emmanuel and the gift of the saints − you who are the people of God − St. Theodore’s.