People of God!

Although I always lament the "Cave Days" as I call them with it getting dark SO VERY EARLY, I still love December with Advent and Christmas! And we have some great things happening!

But first, our new Family Life Director, Russell Baumann, and his wife, Emilie, will be bringing their belongings in a U-Haul this month on Monday, 12/17, around 5:00 pm. Our Board of Elders will be recruiting a crew to help them unload. We will also be looking for some folks to prepare a dinner than can be delivered to them as well. As part of their welcome, we will be having a "Pantry Shower" which can include food items -- frozen or non-perishable, as well as gift cards to area grocery stores and even for gas stations. Items should be donated by Friday, 12/14. Please bring them to the church and place them on the table across from the Library.

After Russell and Emilie settle in a few days and getting his office set up, they will be traveling to Fort Wayne to enjoy Christmas with Emilie's parents. He will be in office on January 2, 2019!

Looking ahead, we will be installing Russell the first Sunday in January -- the 6th. We will celebrate that event with a dinner after church. More information will be coming about this in the future.

Our Sunday School will once again be having a float in our White Lake Christmas Parade on Saturday, 12/1, at 2:00 pm. Please bring in bags of candy they can hand out along the parade route. WE NEED LOTS!!!

Our traditional mid-week Advent worship beginning on Wednesday, 12/5, at 7:30 pm. Our Advent Series this year is "What Child Is This?" The birth of a certain Child two thousand years ago in Bethlehem prompted a poet in the nineteenth century to ask a very uncommon question in a hymn: "What Child Is This?" It was an uncommon question because it asked about the birth of a very uncommon Child.

"What Child Is This?" The angels who announced this Child's birth on Christmas Eve answered the question like this: "a Savior who is Christ the Lord." The hymnwriter answered it this way: "This, this is Christ the King." They both want to make known the identity of this Child.

The goal of this series is to set before us the unmatched blessing of our Lord's Incarnation -- God becoming man in Jesus Christ! I invite you to join us for worship as we journey through Advent together. And then enjoy some fellowship and refreshments in our Narthex after each service.

Our annual Christmas Cantata will be Sunday, 12/9, at both services in the morning and one evening performance at 7:00 pm! This is always an outstanding choral presentation of the Christmas Message! Make sure you experience it and invite a friend to come with you!

The St. James Sunday School Christmas presentation will be on Saturday, 12/15, 6:30 pm. Come and see our youngest ones share the wondrous Christmas story!

Christmas Eve worship falls on a Monday this year with our two candlelight services at 7:00 pm & 10:00 pm. This is always such a beautiful service and I look forward to celebrating our Savior's birth with you, our church family!

And don't forget to end out the year with our New Year's Eve Worship at 5:30 pm on 12/31 with communion!

Speaking of family... our family is going to be growing again. Our son Micah and his wife Audrey will be adopting a newborn baby girl in February. The whole Clan rejoices with them and we celebrate this new addition to the family! She will be much loved by all of us! We are also looking very forward to the Clan Christmas gathering at our house over the weekend of December 7-9-10! It will definitely be a wee bit crowded, but it will be great to all be together. It is always especially a delight to see our herd of grandkids all together!

I look forward to making this journey through Advent with you, celebrating our Savior's birth, and looking forward to our New Year together!

  ~ Pastor Brooks