Friday, November 14, 2014

Advent & Christmas Celebrations at St. John's Lutheran Church in Norfolk

Prepare to decorate your calendars with all of the following December events at St. John's Lutheran Church, Hwy 81 & Benjamin Ave in Norfolk:
On Saturday, December 6, at 5 p.m., the St. John’s Sunday School will present the 2014 Children's Christmas Program. Entitled “Shepherds, Sheep and a Savior," this 30-minute musical will present one of the most familiar parts of the Christmas story. God chose lowly, humble shepherds to be the first ones to see the Savior! Plan to attend the St. John's Sunday School Christmas Program at 5 p.m., as it will be in lieu of the regular Saturday evening 6 p.m. worship service. That's right. No preaching or communion Saturday night. We'll see you LIVE at FIVE on December 6th.
On Sunday, December 7, it's Celebration Sunday at St. John's. During our 8:30 and 11 a.m. worship services, we will gather to present our pledges and time & talent sheets for the upcoming year while the faith of John the Baptist comes alive in our midst. At Noon, a catered meal will be served at no charge in the fellowship hall to thank you for your offerings of time and talents, resources and relationships through St. John's. The information we receive on this day will assist us in the structuring of the 2015 Vision for Mission which will be submitted to the congregation at the January 2015 annual meeting.
On the weekend of December 13 & 14, baptized children of God at St. John's who will have attended December confirmation classes will receive First Communion at any one of the three worship services. We look forward to celebrating First Communion with the families of those baptized young people who will be taking part in the Lord's Supper for the first time.
On the weekend of December 20 & 21, St. John's Majesty Choir presents Canticles in Candelight: A Cantata for Christmas by Joseph M. Martin. Canticles in Candlelight is a musical service of illumination that gradually fill the sanctuary with music and light. With Scripture, narration, carols, and candles, this compelling cantata tells the treasured story of Christ's birth. From the hushed whisper of the "Processional" to the festive arrangements of beloved carols, this cantata has something for everyone.
Christmas Eve Festival Worship services will be held at 5, 7, and 9 p.m. on December 24, with descriptions as follows:
The family-friendly Festival of Light will be held at 5 p.m. This service is created with family in mind. Candlelight, Communion, and Celebration of Lights, all in 55 minutes or less! Worship is geared to the young and young at heart, as well as appropriate for people aged one to a hundred and one! The sermon is prepared to engage with everyone. To enhance our worship, bring your flashlights, glow sticks, smartphones, spotlights, and more. If it lights up, we'd love to see it! A service filled with song, hope, and the message of the Light of the World: Jesus Christ.
St. John's Festival of the Nativity will be held at 7 p.m. This is a traditional candlelight and communion service as celebrated for many years at St John’s. The Christmas scriptures, hymns, and a setting both familiar and festive: this is a time we gather and give thanks for the birth of Immanuel, God with us!
The final Christmas eve celebration of the night will be A Festival of Lessons and Carols at 9 p.m. This service is both contemplative and celebratory. Seven readings of Christmas prophecy and scripture are interspersed with carols and special music. No sermon is preached. Candlelight and Communion are given with a sense of the wonder of the Word made flesh, as we celebrate the coming of the Christ child.
No Christmas Day services will be held at St. John's, but join us for the 3rd and 4th Days of Christmas on Saturday, December 27, or Sunday, December 28, during our regular worship services as the 12 Days of Christmas continue to reveal the Light of Christ.
You are invited to join us at all of these December happenings at St. John's. Invite others with you! Happy Advent and Merry Christmas!
~~Rev. Dr. David Cox & Rev. Justin Wiese, Pastors of St. John's

Upcoming First Communion Classes and Celebrations

In the month of December, four First Communion confirmation class times will be made available for any baptized youth whose parents have discerned that their children are ready to receive the Lord’s Supper for the first time. These dates and times for class are December 3, 2:30-3:30pm; December 3, 5-6pm; December 10, 2:30-3:30pm; & December 10, 5-6 pm. All classes will be held in the sanctuary.

As St. John’s Church Council has supported and endorsed the practice of baptized members of any age being able to receive communion after mutual conversation and instruction between the child, parent(s), and pastor(s), these confirmation classes are open to children and adults of any age. Attendance is required at only one of the four scheduled class opportunities. Families must RSVP their intent on attending a class no later than noon of the day of the class by calling the church office (402-371-1985). If these times do not work for a family, Pastor Justin will happily schedule a personalized time as scheduling allows. As we review how God loves us and that God feeds us, using stories from the Spark Story Bible, we will follow an hour-long slide show, while students practice and learn how communion is received at St. John’s and other churches.

Baptized children of God at St. John's who attend a December confirmation class will be invited to receive First Communion at any one of the three worship services on the weekend of December 13/14. If this weekend does not work for a family, please be in conversation with Pastor Justin or Pastor David to discuss other options.

We look forward to celebrating First Communion with the families of those baptized young people who will be taking part in the Lord's Supper for the first time.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Thanksgiving Eve Worship Service

A Thanksgiving Worship Service will be held on Wednesday, November 26, @ 7 PM in the chapel.  If you have never participated in the Holden Evening Prayer, it is a beautiful celebration of music and prayers.  Please plan on joining us for this evening worship.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

November Confirmation Classes: 7th & 8th Graders

Reminder: 7th & 8th grade confirmation will be held the first three Wednesdays in November from 5-6 p.m. in the Community Room. Please use the north entrance to arrive and depart confirmation class. 

On November 5, students will be learning about Abraham & Sarah using a new resource called re:form.

See you then!

~~Pastor Justin