Photo by Kathy Bozzuti-Jones
Greetings, Beloved of God!
Christmas joy and blessings from the Faith Formation & Education team! We thank God that, even in this tender time of pandemic grief and loss, we can rejoice in the coming of the Light, the coming of Love, the great gift of God-with-us, Emmanuel!
As the year 2020 draws to a close, a poem by Mark Nepo, called “Adrift,” comes to mind. In it, the poet marvels at the human capacity to hold in tension or “make a duet of” both wonder and grief, at once. “In the very center, under it all,” he writes, thinking about all the ways we are graced in the midst of life’s challenges:
what we have that no one can take
away and all that we’ve lost face each other.
It is there that I’m adrift, feeling punctured
by a holiness that exists inside everything.
I am so sad and everything is beautiful.
Our team is grateful for this community of faith, dedicated to growing in the Spirit of holiness. We are grateful for our young families, seeking community and support in a time of home-schooling and lockdown, when we cannot gather in person, but continue to show up for one another, online. We are grateful for our community of young adults and elders, modeling a love of learning, consistency in staying connected, and dedication to spiritual practice. In short, we are immensely grateful to serve the Trinity Church community in offering faith formation and education, to companion the Church in its desire to know God and to know ourselves as part of God’s bright future.
A Prayer at Christmas
We thank you, Loving God, for your Christmas gift of the birth and life of Jesus. Thank you, especially, for the light of presence he offers to us as we navigate a challenging season of loss and grief, commingled with all the blessings of your abundant love and care. Thank you for coming into our lives again to offer the gift of peace and for inviting us into your vision of “peace on earth.” Thank you for the ways you inspire us to do the work of peacemakers and justice-seekers. Stir in us the spirit of compassion, so that we may put our lives behind your healing work of peace and justice in our homes, in our church, in our communities, and in the world. Amen.
Christmas Blessings and Peace in the New Year,
Christmas Season Resources
- Sometimes we think of Mary as a passive recipient of God's favor. Reading her story in the first chapter of Luke's gospel, we find a young woman who makes a choice. Poet Denise Levertov reflects on the courage to choose in “Annunciation.”
- A daily examen practice for parents, for the Christmas season and new year
- Sara Teasdale imagines the first Christmas carol as a lullaby for the infant Christ, sung to baby Jesus by his guests from near and far, all through that first night in Bethlehem.
- God is revealed in the many ways we encounter Love, and most perfectly in the incarnation we celebrate this season. Fr. Richard Rohr reflects on how God is revealed in human vulnerability in “Christmas Is Already Easter.”
- Charlie Brown is frustrated and feels like a pageant failure. Linus reminds him “what Christmas is all about.” Spoiler alert: It’s not about perfect pageants. May we all enter into the story of Emmanuel, however joyfully and imperfectly human.
- A classic Peanuts Christmas coloring page
- For families celebrating Christmas at home: 12 Days of Christmas Joy
- Family Worship: Home Edition
Children’s Time will be on hiatus December 27 and January 3. We will resume on January 10. Be sure to register for the program on Zoom, if you haven’t already.
Discovery will be on hiatus December 27 and January 3. We will resume on January 10 with a new series, Making All Things New: A Series on the Prophets of the Hebrew Bible. Learn more and register here.