ways to celebrate
advent & christmas
Worship opportunities and other activities during Advent
Centering Prayer on Sunday Mornings
Every Sunday during Advent, starting November 27, at 9:45am
Our regular Sunday morning worship service at 8:00 is on hold during Advent, so you are welcome to attend this time of prayer in place of attending that service. Joshua Gerras is facilitating this time for meditation and prayer. Centering prayer can be traced to Trappist monks. The practice focuses our hearts on God's presence. It can connect us to the root of our faith.
Midweek Vespers (evening prayer)
Every Wednesday during Advent (December 7, 14 and 21) at 7:00pm
This brief (30 minutes) vespers (evening prayer) service will use Holden Evening Prayer as the setting, which is a beautiful, rich, musical prayer service composed by Marty Haugen, whom you might recognize as the composer of "Gather Us In." The service includes lots of singing, much of it in a call and response format, plus a couple of Scripture readings and prayer. It will be a wonderful way to unwind at the end of the day in prayer and be part of the preparatory season of Advent.
December 11 at 9:15am
Topic: The Nicene Creed: Poetry and Theology
Jim Frazer will discuss the literary structure of the creed and how that reinforces its presentation of the Nicene and other doctrines.
Volunteer at Loaves & Fishes
Our Loaves and Fishes feeding program operates weekend days and federal holidays. We feed people in need in the community. If you are interested in volunteering with Loaves and Fishes, simply text Denize at 240-855-5874. Especially before Christmas week, there are additional volunteer opportunities for preparing giveaways in addition to food, such as clothing and blankets.
Godly Play will resume on November 27 and happen every Sunday thereafter. Children ages 3 to 9 are welcome to follow the Godly Play door person, carrying the children’s cross, from the sanctuary to the Godly Play Room shortly after the beginning of the 10:30am worship service. The Godly Play lessons will include a greeting, lesson, "I wonder" and "I noticed" questions, art response time, and a feast and sharing time. The children will return to their parents to participate in worship around the altar for Holy Communion and the remainder of the service.
Christmas Eve - Saturday, December 24
5:30pm Christmas pageant
8:00pm Lessons and Carols
Christmas Day - Sunday, December 25
10:00am morning worship
An Advent Invitation
Many are drawn to St. Stephen and the Incarnation for various reasons: We welcome all God's children, we care about our community, we help people around us, and we are a church of faith and action. The words that always follow the naming of these reasons are: "We are the activist church". This Advent, let us live into our identity of faith and action by connecting our service to others and our worship. You are invited to help others during Advent, by volunteering at Loaves and Fishes or another nonprofit, then bring your hard-working hands and heart from your all your action to prayer. May this season be a time that rejuvenates us and helps us see God moving all around us. May we know, beyond words, that goodness and love still exist in the world.