Although not as traditional as some, our advent season is filled with family, joy and expectation, just the same. One of our favorite Advent traditions combines Christmas books and a sort of countdown.
Being a bookish family, a book-related Advent idea appealed to me immediately. I first heard about it from the lovely Sally Clarkson of MomHeart Ministry fame, but have seen other people share it since then.
The original idea is to wrap 24 Christmas themed books, and unwrap one each day to enjoy leading up to Christmas.
This is great for smaller kids, because as they see the pile grow smaller, they know that Christmas is getting closer in a real, tangible way.
We have added movies to the mix, just one or two per week, our favorites (think White Christmas, It’s A Wonderful Life, The Nativity, etc.)
The books are all types; we have the fun, very American ’Twas the Night Before Christmas, and The Grinch Who Stole Christmas, but also more meaningful and traditional The Three Trees and The Nutcracker. One of my favorites is Why Christmas Trees Aren’t Perfect which encourages service to others.
In the beginning, we didn’t have enough Christmas themed books to get us through, but this is where a thrift store can really come in handy! Over the years we have replaced some of the less-loved thrift store books with beautiful, meaningful, favorites.
It is possible that as our kids get older, the books may get more grown up too, but we will probably still have a few family favorite picture books in our pile!
For our family, to gather together and experience a story has become one of our favorite parts of the Christmas season. It is truly a joy to watch the kids unwrap a book and have their faces light up in anticipation!
Jesus and joy go hand in hand. The angels confirmed it that night, long ago. And this is one joy-filled tradition that transforms us and brings us closer together as a family.
We are excited to announce that we will have an in-person worship service outside at 8:30am in the MCC parking lot! We can’t wait to see you! In addition, our Sunday live-stream (on Facebook and Instagram) will move to 10:00am for the foreseeable future for those who are not be able to join us.
We’ve chosen for our service to happen outdoors as there are still a number of requirements and protocol for indoor gatherings. So, we are not inviting you to join us indoors at this time. Instead, come for our outdoor gathering, or continue to join us online later from home.
Please read the Guidelines for Gathering to Worship Together at MCC in its entirety so that you know what to expect when you come to our outdoor service. This will help you and those around you navigate a very new situation, hopefully in a way that is as seamless as possible. We believe that our unity will be expressed and strengthened as we serve one another in Christ this week so join us in extending grace to each other, amid our differing perspectives, and different views about how to live in this time.
“... submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.”
“Outdo one another in showing honor.”
“By this all men will know that you are My disciples,
if you have love for one another.”
Please know that we are making every effort for this gathering to be in full compliance with the protocols given by authorities. No single plan for our meeting will ever be the perfect solution in any one person’s eyes. We will all be making compromises. But as we defer to these guidelines set up by our elders and leadership, we will be serving our fellow believers, honoring Christ as best we can, and providing for a beautiful expression of worship to happen together.
Please stay home if any of the following apply to you:
- You are immunocompromised.
- You are feeling ill (running a fever, coughing, or showing other signs of sickness)
Please don’t put yourself or others at risk. Thank you for staying home and staying safe, because we love you!
All MCC Ministry in person meetings are suspended at this time BUT many ministries are reaching out through phone calls, emails and digital platforms such as Skype, Zoom, and Googlemeetings. Contact your ministry leader to see if this is an option for you!