This Week in First Church:
– Sunday, following the service – Choir practice
– Wednesday 1:30 WMS will meet. Please bring your copy of the Nov./Dec. Glad Tidings. We’ll be using the Christmas Worship Service.
– Thursday, 1:30 p.m. – Prayer Time
– Sunday, 9 December – Hanging-of-the-Greens service
– Saturday, 15 December, 7:00 p.m. – Hymn Sing
– Sunday, 16 December – Communion Sunday
– Monday, 17 December, 7:30 p.m. – Service of Remembrance and Hope, at St. Mary’s Anglican Church
– Monday, 24 December, 7:00 p.m. – Christmas Eve service
December 2 is Anniversary Sunday. 2018 marks the following anniversaries:
– the 156th anniversary of the first Presbyterian worship service held in Portage la Prairie (1862)
– the 145th anniversary of the establishing of the original Presbyterian congregation in Portage la Prairie, called Knox Presbyterian Church (1873)
– the 93rd anniversary of the establishing of our current congregation, when the congregation of Knox Church opted to become part of the new United Church of Canada (1925)
– the 91st anniversary of the construction of our current building, which was completed in December of 1927
– the 31st anniversary of the construction of the addition to our building that comprises the south entrance, kitchen, washrooms, and classroom (1987)
The Christian Year – December 2 is the first Sunday of Advent, the season of preparation for the festival of Christmas. Advent is about preparing for God’s coming into the world in Jesus Christ. We remember how God prepared the people of Israel for Jesus’ first coming through the words of the prophets, and how God revealed to Joseph and Mary that they would serve as Jesus’ earthly parents. We recall how John the Baptist prepared the people of Israel for Jesus’ ministry by “preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins”. At the same time, we remember that Jesus will come again at the end of the age, to establish the kingdom of God in the world in all its fullness — an event that we need to look forward to, and prepare ourselves for.
Advent is a time for us to look toward the future with hope and anticipation. It’s also a time to take stock of ourselves and renew our commitment to God, by identifying and turning away from sinful attitudes and behaviors.
Advent is the first of the six seasons of the Christian Year. It always has four Sundays. The symbolic color for Advent is purple, symbolizing preparation and penitence.