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Dear Congregational Family,

1. Advent/Christmas Season: “The lights of Christmas: The LIGHT of Christ!”

2. Advent Journey: As we continue our Advent Journey, we have lit the first two candles and focused on Hope/Prophecy and Love/Bethlehem. This week we will be focusing on Joy/Shepherds.

3. Sunday School Christmas Pageant: Sunday evening students from our S.S. put on a wonderful pageant (written by Pastor Osier!) through which they told us the Christmas Story! It was a great time of fellowship that followed as well. See pictures below.

4. Invite! Let me remind you again of the importance of inviting others to come with you to church for our Advent/Christmas Services!! In his book The Unchurched Next Door, Dr. Thom Rainer includes a number of surprising research statistics:

a. Of the “unchurched” (meaning those who attend less than three times/year), 82% said they would, IF they were invited.
b. But, only 21% of active church members ever invite anyone to church, and only 2% have invited an unchurched friend to church.
c. Seven out of ten (7:10) unchurched individuals have NEVER been invited to church.
d. Given the statistics already cited, it is not surprising that it was also found that very few unchurched individuals have ever had someone share with them about how to become a Christian.

5. Remember to be a child: As full (and hectic!) as this holiday season can get, try to keep the childlike wonder and joy of the miracle of Christmas! I am challenged by Emma Bombeck’s quote: “There’s nothing sadder in this world than to awake Christmas morning and not be a child.” Let’s keep a “childlike” heart as the children of God!

God bless you as we journey through Advent by,

“Growing Together in our Faith as the Family of God.”

Pastor Carlson

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