This will become a ‘gallery’ of FLC Advent this year, sharing sermons, some advent art we have done as a community, PT’s random thoughts, some of our music, and whatever else fits.
Gospel Lesson: Luke 21:25-36 (link to NRSV)
Theme: God is in the dark. Look close. The Light is there.
This was the first Sunday in Advent. It also (by random chance) was the evening that our Jewish siblings lit the first candle of the Chanukah menorah, which is a different tradition certainly but has a common thread of light scattering darkness. I started the day by seeing this on one of my feeds:
In the sermon, we reflect on Jesus’ strong command that when we begin to be afraid and may want to hide ourselves, we should “stand up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”
December 9th: Clear A Path, God in the Strangest Places
Gospel Reading: Introducing John The Baptist, Luke 3:1-6
Today the reading begins with what seems like an Imperial Announcement. The Roman world worshiped the Emperor and also his ‘client kings’ as divine, or at least more connected to God than any ordinary person or even the local religious leaders. So the beginning, naming the emperor and the local client kings sounds like how an imperial proclamation would be made. Only it abruptly changes to speak of a nobody in a backwater town.
Today we can also share our anthem, written by our own Cynthia Gonzales.
Finally, we share our Advent banner. It was done by our Sharing Life Together faith growth group. Our congregation places a high value on expressive arts, particularly music, but also a growing interest in visual arts. Pastor Tim is writing more about the process and symbols of it. It is also mentioned in the sermon above. Each quarter is inspired by the readings for one Sunday of Advent. When his writeup about it is finished he will post a link here.
December 16th: Turn Around!
Gospel Reading: John The Baptist calls for reconciliation, Luke 3:7-18
John’s call is for repentance, which literally means “turning around”. We illustrated this with the ‘hook’ shapes on the bottom left side of the banner.
December 23rd: Magnifying God
Gospel Reading: Mary’s Song, Luke 1:39-55
Today, we close Advent with Mary’s Song, pointing to God moving for justice and a re-orienting of the world around us.