Second Sunday of Advent
December 09, 2012
Welcome one and all to Claude Church
Thank you for joining us in worship today. At the close of the service this morning we invite you to stay and join us in the Sunday School hall for refreshments and fellowship. Our guest Pastor this morning is the Rev. Jim Cooper. Again, welcome back, Jim, and thank you for your leadership in worship. If you are visiting us for the first time today, please sign our guest book in the front entrance vestibule. If you are looking for a church home, we invite you to consider worshipping with us on a regular basis.
The beautiful Poinsettias at the front of the church have been provided by Markus Knecht. Thank you from all of us, Markus.
Christmas Potluck Luncheon
Next Sunday, following our morning worship service, we will gather together in the Sunday School room for our annual Christmas potluck meal. We hope you all will be able to stay and join in this time of fellowship with your church family.
Christmas Eve Service
Christmas Eve is a time to relax and slow down and focus on the real reason why we celebrate Christmas. It is been a tradition at Claude Church for many years for us to have a Christmas Eve worship service of special readings and Christmas Carols. This tradition continues this year. The service begins at 7:00 pm and we hope to see you here.
Tonight! - Orange Peel Carollers at Claude
We look forward to you all joining us here tonight at 7:30 pm for an evening concert and carolling with the “Orange Peel Carollers”. It is not too late to invite your family, your neighbours and your friends. Help us fill our sanctuary and enjoy the music of the Christmas season. Tickets are only $5.00 if you order them through www.ticketscene.ca or you can buy them at the door for $10.00.
Within ourselves there exists the possibility and even the necessity of experiencing and serving something unimaginably great and inconceivably real. Jacob Needleman, Money and the Meaning of Life
Help Fill Our Food Sharing Box
At this time of year, all of the local Food Banks struggle with an increased demand for help from their clients and their supplies of food run very low. We appeal to you to bring an item of food with you each Sunday and place it in our Food Sharing Box which will be located in the Sunday School Hall. Please help us fill our box each week.
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 9 - 2nd Sunday of Advent
Pray that the Presbyterian Church in Canada’s Gifts of Change catalogue will be widely used by congregations and individuals to promote more meaningful gift-giving this Christmas.
MONDAY, DECEMBER 10 - Human Rights Day
Pray for people around the world who have been denied the right to freedom, justice, a fair wage, equality and dignity as much loved children of God.
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 11
Pray for Presbyterian World Service & Development and our program partners as they continue to defend human rights and uphold the dignity of all people.
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 12
Pray for those preparing the new Presbyterian website as it undergoes restructuring to be more user-friendly and effective.
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 13
Pray for all our Canadian military personnel who are posted outside of Canada and will be celebrating Christmas in a different cultural milieu.
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 14
Pray for congregations as they prepare Christmas baskets for their communities. May receiving families and congregations join together to celebrate Christ’s birth.
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 15
Pray for our mission staff – for safe travel during the Christmas season and for family reunions that affirm God’s faithfulness and love.
God who is with us always, We pray for those who migrate from their homes to another country, seeking work and better lives for their families. We are thankful that you travel with them and guide their steps. Give us a greater awareness of the migrants in our midst: agricultural workers in Canadian fields and live-in caregivers tenderly caring for children. May we be ever mindful of migrant workers around the world who are away from their families and communities this Advent and Christmas season. Challenge and help us to welcome strangers, newcomers and migrants in our communities and advocate for them – that all may be treated with dignity and respect. This we pray in the name of Christ our Lord. AMEN Prayer by Rev. Leslie Walker. Rev. Walker is the Associate Minister at Grace Presbyterian Church in Calgary, Alberta and a participant of the 2009 migrant mission study trip to the US /Mexico border region lead by Justice Ministries.
International Migrants’ Day is December 18
I was a stranger and you welcomed me. Mt 25:35
There was no place for them in the inn. Luke 2:1-7
At Christmas we are mindful of the long journey made by Mary and Joseph from Nazareth to Bethlehem. Today, hundreds of thousands of migrant workers travel from their homes to host countries for work.
Canada hosts thousands of migrant workers from Mexico, El Salvador, Honduras, Jamaica and other countries under the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program and Temporary Foreign Worker Program. Many women travel from the Caribbean and Asia to work as live-in caregivers in Canada. These workers are not granted the same rights as Canadians. Fair remuneration, quality of living conditions, workplace safety, job security, language barriers, and access to insurance and benefits are frequent challenges. In many provinces agricultural workers are not allowed to join trade unions whether they are Canadians or from other countries. Reminded of Mary and Joseph’s difficult journey, we welcome migrant workers who are away from family and community during Advent, and through the rest of the year. We heed the call to welcome strangers, newcomers, and migrants in our communities.
Welcoming the Stranger
Find out if there are migrant workers in or near your community. Find out what programs or services are available for migrant workers and find ways to support them. Visit the Agricultural Workers Alliance website awa-ata.ca.
Language barriers are isolating. Support efforts for migrants to make connections with other people who speak their language and/or come from their home country. Find out about ESL training opportunities.
Offer advocacy and support as migrants become established, particularly in the areas of housing, employment, education, medical care and legal rights.
Extend hospitality and the offer of a spiritual community of belonging.
Write to your Federal Member of Parliament encouraging Canada to become a signatory to the Convention on the Protection of the Rights of all Migrant Workers and Members of their Families. Contact Justice Ministries for information.
KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives’ Migrant Rights Program www.kairoscanada.org/dignity-rights/migrantjustice/
KAIROS’ Advent study resource “Seeking Shelter” www.kairoscanada.org/home-page-feature-2/seeking-shelter-advent- resource/
Factsheet on the International Convention on Migrant Workers from the Office of the United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights www.ohchr.org/Documents/Publications/FactShe et24rev.1en.pdf
Reports and Resources from the Agricultural Workers’ Alliance www.awa- ata.ca
The Presbyterian Church in Canada
Equipping Presbyterian Youth
Gifts to Presbyterians Sharing help support Canada Youth. The Presbyterian Church in Canada’s national youth conference nurtures faith, equips youth and adults for effective and faithful leadership, and offers excellent Christian education and service opportunities. This energy-packed gathering of youth, young adults and youth leaders builds Christian community as it provides opportunities for young people to experience Christ in dynamic and focused ways. Nancy Law, an adult advisor at the 2012 conference, reflects “It is astounding that so many youth anxiously awaited worship with the level of anticipation they would normally reserve for their favourite band. How awesome is that! Coming from a small church, the experience of worshipping with 500 people was wonderful.”
An Advent Message from the Moderator
During the Advent season, we celebrate two great gospel truths: Jesus has come and Jesus will come again. As followers of Jesus we live between these two truths. As we wait, we offer to God our worship, we bear witness to Jesus in word and deed, and we work so that God’s will in heaven will become a reality in our world. My prayer is that Jesus may be and become more and more the center of our life so that we may be and become more and more the church God is calling us to be. On behalf of the 138th General Assembly, and in the name of Jesus, the only king and head of the church, I wish you a blessed Advent season. The Rev. Dr. John Vissers, Moderator of the 138th General Assembly,The Presbyterian Church in Canada
It is our mission to make holy the secular aspects of Christmas just as the early Christians baptized the Christmas tree. And we do this by being holy people—kind, patient, generous, loving, laughing people—no matter how maddening is the Christmas rush.