"Let heaven and nature sing ... "
Last week, we shared favorite memories from some of the members of our team in Part 1 of our Christmas Memory series. Today, we're excited to be able to share three more!
Christmas is a special time of year, a time to celebrate the joy that was brought to the world by the birth of our Savior. For you as a church, Christmas also mean having extra staff on hand for children's ministry, extra service times, extra chairs, extra coffee ... extra effort. And often, after the carols have been sung and the candles extinguished ... it can feel like all you have to show for it is wax on your floors and a whole lot of decorations to take down.
But, as always, we believe you and the work you do matter. So, we've asked some members of the Fishhook team to write out their favorite church related Christmas memories. Because, we truly believe that, even as attendance numbers settle back to normal and decorations go back in their boxes, the memories made at your church during Christmas time are lights that shine on for years to come.
My absolute favorite part about Christmas is attending the Christmas Eve service at my Grandma's church.
It's the same quaint little church that my sisters, cousins and I were raised in. It's the same church my husband and I were married in. It's the same church that always has a way of making me feel like I'm home. My whole family packs into two pews (in the same general area each year, because, obviously, it wouldn't be Christmas if we sat somewhere else.) The kids talk loudly as they pass crayons and paper back and forth, and the sound of their parents' shushing (and quiet laughter) echo throughout the sanctuary. We sing carols and, usually, (hopefully) I get to watch my Grandma play the organ. It is beautiful and peaceful. I'm grateful for this tradition and the old stain glass windows that serve as its backdrop each year.
For a long time my small, childhood church hosted a live nativity at Christmastime.
Even though it was sometimes bitter cold, I always loved going to see the Christmas story unfold and then grabbing some cookies and hot chocolate afterward. One year, when I was twelve, I was asked to play the part of Mary. It was thrilling! I had a wardrobe and an entourage. Plus, the pounds of makeup applied to my very fair skin gave me the tan I had always dreamed of. However, the experience of playing Mary was also a little awkward, because my “aged” youth pastor (he was actually just 30 years old) played the part of my pretend husband, Joseph, and I had to act like I was going into labor. Reviews of my “performance” suggested that my interpretation of Mary’s labor pains was a little over-dramatic. Nevertheless, it was a lot of fun.
I have the best dad in the world, so naturally he’s a part of most of my favorite memories.
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