December 20, 2019
I was trying to figure out a way to explain our Christmas service to some very young children. I realized that what we do in church to celebrate our Faith in Jesus is the same as what we do at a child’s birthday party. We invite their friends and family to gather for a meal and celebrate the child’s birth. Christ’s Mass – the first Mass or Holy Communion service of Christmas has all the same elements:
1. We invite friends and family to gather
2. We talk about the person
3. We renew relationships, sing, pray have special food
4. We go home with a special gift
1. We invite our friends and family to gather
December 17, 2019
Opening Prayer, Introduction
Christmas, Easter and Pentecost are the most important festivals in the Christian year of teachings. At Christmas we celebrate the miraculous birth of Jesus as the coming of God into the world. On Easter Sunday we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus as a sign of our own resurrection. On Pentecost we celebrate the Holy Spirit of Jesus being poured out on all believers.
Christmas is preceded by the four Sundays of Advent during which Christians prepare for the coming of Jesus. Our first reading from Isaiah is a prophecy – words given to Isaiah directly from God over 500 years before the birth of Jesus. The part we read is the good news in a book that is mostly a warning to the people of Israel to turn from their rebellious and sinful ways. They ignored this warning and were overrun by other nations including Babylon and many were taken into captivity for 40 years. This prophecy gave those in exile – and us, hope of a better future.