Dear St. Lukers,
We hope you have had a joyous Christmas week and you have found time to relax and enjoy the spirit of the season. In case you missed our Christmas Day email, let me say again how profoundly grateful we all are for the hundreds of you who helped to create such a beautiful worship weekend. Thousands joined us to light candles, sing carols, and hear again the story of love found in the manger. Our hope is many will come and join us as we begin our new sermon series in January entitled IMPACT • [or]. We will be looking at the scriptural stories of those who made an IMPACT for God’s kingdom with their faithfulness and ordinary lives, and kicking off a year where we will share the IMPACT of many of our own St. Lukers in the community and around the world. We hope you had a chance to read some of their stories in our “Celebrate” magazine you received on Christmas Eve. If you weren’t able to join us, you can pick one up in the racks in the worship spaces or in Building C.
This coming Sunday begins the season of Epiphany. When we recognize and claim the Light of Christ that shines in our lives and world. We begin with the gospel story of the wise men. There is one verse which has always been my favorite as I begin a new year. Matthew 2 shares that after being warned not to return to Herod to share where Jesus the child was, they went back to their own country by another route. Having spent time at the manger yourself, as you have gazed into the face of love, how will 2018 beckon you to return to life by another route? What will be different this year because Christ came? Will your life have IMPACT for Christ [or] something else?
This Sunday we will worship in the Sanctuary at 8:00, 9:30 and 11:00 a.m. with a service of carols and stories. Come just as you are as we sing the songs of Christmas, retell the story of Mary, Joseph, and the birth of Christ, and join the wise men as they travel to make their visit to Jesus. As we begin the celebration of Epiphany, we will light the candles, come to the Communion Table, bring in the New Year, and share in John Wesley’s traditional Covenant prayer to live 2018 both IN the light and AS the light. We invite you, your family, and friends to join us in this last worship time of 2017. We promise to even have coffee and donuts for fellowship, and songs and joy for worship to kick off your New Year’s celebration!
Join us in worship to begin the festivities of saying goodbye to 2017 by saying YES to the call of Christ to be IMPACT • [or] in 2018. I can’t wait to see you on Sunday!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year –
P.S. The church is closed this week to give the staff a much-needed rest with family after a busy Christmas season. If you have any emergencies, please do not hesitate to reach out via our website or the emergency number 407.876.4991 ext. 316. If you would like to make your year-end gifts to the church, you can click here, or there is a lockbox on the wall outside of Building C (make sure all gifts are postmarked on or before Sunday, December 31, or made online by December 31 at 11:59 p.m.). Thank you again for your generosity in the past year to help us reveal the kingdom of God’s love.