Joy to the World! by Tami Skorczewski
“Every year we celebrate the holy season of Advent, O God. Every year we pray those beautiful prayers of longing and waiting, and sing those lovely songs of hope and promise”. —Karl Rahner

Bible Study. This Advent we prepare our hearts to receive the gift of Jesus, whose birth calls all creation to joy and wonder at God’s love. The word “Advent” means arrival or coming. (Source: gathermagazine.org).

Opening Prayer: Holy God, open our hearts to hear your Word in this season of hope and expectation. Like the magi who wondered at and worshiped the baby Jesus in the manger, may we allow ourselves to be vessels for joy, full of wonder at the gift of life made complete in your Son.

This month, the devotion focuses on four meditations:

• The Joy of Giving: “Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be complete” (John 16:24).
• The Gift of Presence: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life” (John 3:16).
• Toward the Light: “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it” (John 1:5).
• Room for Our Celebration: Christmas is about the joy we can feel because of God’s promise and God’s action—God’s extraordinary act of love for humanity.

WELCA’s First Gathering of the New Year. January Social, Saturday, January 13, at 10:00 A.M., in the Friendship Room. There will be a short Bible study and fellowship, installation of officers, 2017 final budget report and 2018 proposed budget, introduction of 2018’s Unit Wide Mission Projects, and WELCA directories handed out, including 2018 programs and luncheons. WELCA board members will provide light refreshments. There will be no charge for this event.

Communication. Copies of WELCA’s monthly Circle newsletters are located on the literature rack between the Church Office and Caring Ministries doors. Stay connected with WELCA!

“The Presence of Christmas,” William Arthur Ward
Christmas is not just a season,
Christmas is not just a day,
Christmas is more than a reason
For parties, presents and play.
Christmas is truly the essence
Of joy that the Savior brings;
Christmas is surely the presence
Of Jesus, the Kings of Kings!

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