December 25, 2016 – Christmas Day

Christmas Day   December 25, 2016   Psalm 98, Hebrews 1:1-4, John 1:1-14, Isaiah 52:7-10          ***************************** How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news – who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!” I seldom think of feet as particularly beautiful… But the prophet is talking about beautiful feet on the mountain today – a theme the apostle Paul recycles almost word-for-word in Romans 10. And beautiful feet need some protection, so we’re told in Paul’s letter to the Ephesians (ch 6). Where it is written – put on the whole armor of God, which includes put on our gospel shoes. As shoes for your feet, Ephesians elaborates, put on whatever makes you willing to proclaim the gospel of peace. I seldom think of shoes as spiritual armor (even Good News shoes). But the season of Christmas light coincides with a time of natural darkness in our journey around the sun. And the powers of spiritual darkness are also still at work. And our Isaiah text, assigned for Christmas Day every year,  has become been a favorite for me… Because of the beautiful-feet-in-good-news-shoes-connection. Our daughter Rohi still enjoys shoes – but when she was younger – two-to-three- years old – she absolutely loved shoes – especially her mother’s shoes. She loved to put her little feet deep inside her mother’s sneakers and dress shoes. But her everyday routine was putting on Reah’s flip-flops. We’re in the habit of taking off outdoor shoes when we come in the house, and putting on flip-flops as our indoor footwear. Rohi, in those days, had three pairs of flip-flops for her personal indoor use, each pair stylish with a blend of cheerful colors, each pair fitting her small feet comfortably. But she always wanted to wear her mother’s plain blue flip-flops – which were enormously giant-sized on her little feet. Whenever mom couldn’t find her indoor shoes, we knew Rohi had them on again. We also knew because when Rohi had her mom’s shoes on, they sounded like snow-shoes on floor boards – as she trekked around the house spreading good news – clomp, clomp, clomp… And like daughter, like father – this is how I also see myself as a gospel pastor – clomp, clomp, clomping around… Feeling a bit ridiculous – as if I’m wearing snow shoes indoors, as I try to fit into these way-too-big-for-my-feet gospel shoes. Happy Christmas, good news people! Your feet look great. Even my funny-looking feet look good this morning. Our gospel shoes look good on us… But it’s the message that make our feet really beautiful. “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news…” *** In the coming to birth of Jesus, God squeezes God’s own self into a human womb – God’s infinite eternal nature entering into human life, human culture, human community, bodily. In Jesus, born a child in a stable, surrounded by farm animals, we see (in the words of Hebrews) “the reflection of God’s glory, and the exact imprint of God’s very being…” And if we’re feeling inadequate as messengers of this gospel truth – as I nearly always am – not to worry. It’s a good thing, and probably a necessary thing, to acknowledge...

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Week of December 25, 2016 – Cataumet

ANNOUNCEMENTS Bible Study No Bible Study this week, December 29th.  Will resume on Thursday, January 5th, at 1:00pm. OTHER ANNOUNCEMENTS Bourne Food Pantry   Please remember to bring in your food items. They are much needed! Kids Backpack Program   Please leave your items for the kids backpacks in the bin in the office. EVENTS EVERY WEEK Sunday                        8:00 am                        Choir practice Sunday                        9:00 am                        Worship Sunday                          7:00 pm                          AA Meeting Monday                          7:30 pm                        N/A Meeting Tuesday                         9:00 am                        VNA Exercise Tuesday                         7:00 pm                        AA Meeting Thursday                       9:00 am                        VNA Exercise Thursday                       7:00 pm                        N/A Meeting Friday                            7:30 pm                        Adult Children of Alcoholics Meeting Saturday                        9:00 am                       Osteo...

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Week of December 25, 2016 – Bourne

THIS WEEK IN THE LIFE OF THE PARISH Sunday, Dec. 25th:  11:00 AM  Worship at Cataumet UMC Sunday, Jan. 1st:  11:00 AM  Worship The Church Office will be closed this Tuesday and Thursday but will be open on Friday the 30th. Messages and emails will still be checked if anything should come up, and Pastor Tim can be reached at the parsonage. Merry Christmas! OUR BIBLE STUDY GROUP will not meet this week, and will resume meetings in January. CHILDREN’S CLOTHING EXCHANGE: We continue to accept gently used warm winter children’s clothes, sizes 0-14, which may be dropped off at the Thrift Shop or in the church hall. The exchange is open the first Saturday of each month from 9:30am to 12pm. BACKPACK PROJECT: These items are urgently needed: Cereal-cold, any kind, Oatmeal packets, Jelly, Mayonnaise, Canned tuna, Canned chicken, Canned pasta with meat-raviolis, lasagna, spaghetti with meatballs, Hot cocoa and Microwave popcorn. A complete list is available in Crain Hall.  ...

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