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~ The Fourth Sunday of Advent ~
Valley News
December 21, 2018
"And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, and she exclaimed with a loud cry, 'Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why is it granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me?' "
~ Luke 1.41-43
     The wait is almost over! Christmas is almost here! We will be ushered into our celebration of the Nativity of our Lord with the passages below that conclude the season of Advent. I encourage you to read and reflect on the following lessons prior to our time together this Sunday:
  • Micah 5.2-5a
  • Luke 1.46b-55
  • Hebrews 10.5-10
  • Luke 1.39-45
"All in Good Time"

     You will find Jennifer's reflections on the fourth Sunday of Advent and the (brief) fourth week of Advent (Dec. 23-24) below. You can read her reflections on the season of Christmas here.

Fourth Sunday of Advent
~ Week of December 23-24 ~

     We’ll light the fourth candle in our Advent wreath this morning and we’ll remember that Christ brings with him peace. This kind of peace is not simply the peace of a quiet place, a snow-filled forest, or of people simply being nice to each other, but the deep and lasting peace that Mary sings about in her “Magnificat,” the peace of real justice, the humble being raised up, the hungry being filled. Truly, the anticipation of this kind of peace is something to inspire us to say along with Mary “My soul magnifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my savior!” (Luke 1:46-47).
This week:
 
     Christmas Eve (December 24) and Christmas (December 25-January 5th): Our long wait is almost over! Be sure to join us on December 24th for our Christmas Eve service as we celebrate the birth of Christ together.
Upcoming Events and Opportunities:
 
Family Adopted for Christmas Gifts
& Cards!
:
     Valley Church has "adopted" a family for Christmas this year. If you are so moved, please bring Christmas cards for the family this Sunday as the deacons will be delivering the gifts this Sunday afternoon. (The parents names are Doug and Monize if you wish to address them by name). If you desire to bring additional gifts, please be in contact with Beth Cunningham.
 
Christmas Tree Decoration:
     You are invited to grab a cup of coffee or tea following the service of worship this Sunday and join us as we decorate the Christmas tree in the sanctuary in preparation for our celebration of the Nativity of our Lord on Christmas Eve and through the season of Christmas.
Faith Formation Classes:
     We will not have faith formation classes this Sunday. We will resume faith formation with the teens on January 6, 2019.
Christmas Eve Candlelight Service:
A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols
     We will gather at 7:00 p.m. on December 24 for "A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols." We will behold "the development of the loving purposes of God . . . seen through the windows and words of the Bible" * and respond in the reverent worship of our God who became flesh and dwelt among us and lift our voices in his praise with joyful carols.

* from Eric Milner-White's description of the "A Festival of Lessons and Carols" (Mildner-White was dean of King's College Cambridge and designer of the first "Festival of Lessons and Carols" in 1918)
 
Pumpkin Soup Potluck:
     You are invited to join us as we gather for our second annual Pumpkin Soup Potluck following the service of worship on December 30 for a celebration of Haiti's independence day with our Haitian brothers and sisters in Christ and to simply enjoy delicious pumpkin soup (and other food!) and fellowship. Sign-ups are in the foyer.
 
Elder and Deacon Care Group
Meet & Greet
:
     Following a service of worship in January, you are invited to meet your elder and deacon and all the other members of your elder/deacon care group at a special coffee and snack meet and greet event. Each care group will gather after the service, Pastor Kurt will briefly explain the concept of the care groups, the elders will take a few moments to introduce themselves, and all the members will have an opportunity to meet one another as well. You can see who your elder and deacon are and who else is in your group here. Trent Nelson and Beth Cunningham's care group will meet on January 6. Florence Doller and Luci Huizinga's care group will meet on January 13. Charlie Huizinga and Mike Corgan's care group will meet on January 20. More details will be coming soon.
Resources and Opportunities from the CRC:

From Back to God Ministries International:
     CHRISTMAS REMIXED - Did you know the book of Revelation tells the Christmas story? It’s true. Complete with dragons and intense drama. Study Revelation 12 with Groundwork see the cosmic perspective on Christ’s birth and purpose revealed through the Apostle John’s vision. Listen now at GroundworkOnline.com and subscribe to Groundwork’s weekly emails for future episodes.
 
     Tip: On this fourth Sunday in Advent, retell the events leading up to Jesus’ birth using the figures in your nativity creche. Don’t have one? Use Lego or Playmobil people and blocks to make your own. Choose a narrator to read Luke 2:1-20 as the rest of you reenact the story. (Faith Formation Ministries: crcna.org/FaithFormation)
Valley Church

Gathered as God's family and sent into the world as agents of God's mission of renewal.

 
This Sunday, the Fourth Sunday of Advent:
 
Worship Service at 10:00 a.m.

Children pre-K through 5th grade will go to Sunday School following children's time.

You are invited to join us as we decorate the Christmas tree in the sanctuary following the service of worship.
That we might better pray for one another and God's world:
 
     We pray for healing, recovery, and strength for Ann de Jager, who was admitted to Lourdes hospital to treat some of the side effects from her chemo treatments. We pray for peace for George and the rest of Ann's family as well.
     We give thanks for a great KNO Live Nativity last Saturday, praying that God will continue to work the story of his incarnation through the lives of all those who were part of the Live Nativity and all those who saw it.
     We continue to pray for healing and health for: Daryl Whitacre, Frank Lockwood, Peter DeYoung, Beth Blake, Amy Beardsley, Jerry Krempel, and Sarah Peterson.
     We rejoice with Daniel, Lily, and Arthur Beardsley at the news of Lily's pregnancy, praying for health for Lily and the baby.
     We pray for safety for all who are traveling to visit friends and families and college students traveling to and from college over the next few weeks.
We pray for friends
and family of Valley members:
     we ask for guidance for Cody and Jessica Zuiderveen as they seek God's guidance for their future once their term as missionaries to Haiti ends later in 2019.
     We pray for: we give thanks for the good news of recovery and health for David Derzanovich's brother-in-law Tim and for his son Adam, praying for continued healing for both; we pray for God's peace for Luci Huizinga's brother Jerry who struggles with Parkinson's disease; for healing for Marcus' co-worker, Donna; for healing for the Monroes' nephew Joshua; for peace for Kurt Monroe's cousin, Kelly; for healing for the de Jager's grand-nephew Cole as he continues his treatments for cancer; for healing for Mike Flynn's mother, and for peace for her and the rest of her family; for continued recovery for Marcus Doller's mother; for Martheen Griffioen as she battles cancer; for healing for Jim and Becky Stocum's friend Eric who is battling brain cancer; for strength and healing for Alistair Krempel.
Sunday Morning Ministries
for December 23, 2018:
Greeter: Cindy Krempel

Ushers: David Derzanovich and Herleen DeYoung

Congregational Prayer: Florence Doller

Scripture Readers:
1st Lesson (Micah 5.2-5a): Trent Nelson
2nd Lesson (Hebrews 10.5-10): Paul Peterson
3rd Lesson (Luke 1.39-45): Ana Monroe

Nursery: Daniella Doller
Church Telephone: 607.648.8224

Church email: valleychurchny@gmail.com

Church website: valleychurchny.org