Merry Christmas everyone! It’s been another year of upheaval and I think we are all weary of lockdowns and keeping up with changing regulations. As a result, some are splashing out and celebrating being able to be together in big and bold ways, while other feel the need to keep things simple and quiet.
However you celebrate, I pray that you are able to reflect on all that God has done for us this year, through the challenges and disappointments, and that you experience his joy and peace as you trust in him.
Upcoming Services & Events
Each of our Christmas services will be held at St John’s and livestreamed, so you can attend in person or invite friends over and celebrate from home. And the recent changes in government regulations mean that we can welcome EVERYONE, regardless of vaccination status, to our in-person services. The mask mandate has just been reinstated for indoor gatherings, for everyone aged 8+, so please come prepared.
You can find more details for our Christmas services, here.
Friday 24 December – Christmas Eve Family Service
Arrive from 4:30pm to enjoy the Animal Farm, before the service begins at 5:00pm.
This service has a relaxed family focus and features carols and a performance by St John’s Kids.
There will be a cleared area for sitting on the floor at the front of the church, particularly for kids (and agile parents/grandparents), so feel free to BYO cushion or beanbag!
Friday 24 December – Christmas Eve Traditional Service
11:00pm, candlelight service featuring carols and an inspiring message.
Saturday 25 December – Christmas Day
9:00am celebration including Holy Communion
Sunday 26 December
10:00am Zoom service only today – join here (Meeting ID: 819 9108 2223 Passcode: 430669).
Friday 31 December – New Year’s Eve Celebration
An open invitation is extended, particularly to young families and others for who midnight celebrations may be improbable, to celebrate on New Year’s Eve together.
Arrive from 4:30pm.
Anthony Beale Reserve Playground, 277 St Helena Rd.
BYO Picnic Dinner (BBQ facilities available). As well as a playground and oval, there is a half basketball court and junior skate ramp, so bring bats, balls, skateboards, scooters, etc.
After the busyness in lead-up to Christmas, and the day itself, we all need a bit of a relax. But while doing so, it is important to keep up spiritual rhythms within our family – reading and talking about the bible together, praying, etc.
And Christmas doesn’t end on Christmas Day. In fact, the Twelve Days of Christmas start on Christmas Day. So, you might like to use this 12 Days of Christmas devotion to help you engage with the season further as a family.
Don’t beat yourself up if you can’t find time to start this on Christmas or Boxing Day, but when you’re ready, use the reflection and questions to guide conversations with your family and choose between the activity and song suggestions as appropriate for the age of your children and your personal preferences.
I am having a break over the next few weeks, but there is always someone monitoring messages to the office so, if you have a need, please don’t hesitate to call.
Kylie – Children & Families’ Minister
Image Credit: Jeff Jacobs from Pixabay