The following are highlights from the latest edition of WesPress, the official newsletter of Westminster Presbyterian Church, Ottawa.
News from Session
Reports due January 13, 2019 for Westminster’s Annual Report
All Westminster Teams and groups are asked to send their 2018 annual reports to the church office (firstname.lastname@example.org) by this date. These reports are a key way for the congregation to review the life of the congregation in 2018 and prepare for 2019. The church office will assemble all these documents into the Westminster Annual Report so it can be circulated prior to the annual congregational meeting.
Annual Congregational Meeting – Sunday, March 3, 2019
Mark your calendar! After a communal lunch, the congregation will review the reports and financial affairs of 2018 and approve a budget for 2019. There will also be a report on the search for our new minister. The Annual Report for 2018 will be available a few Sundays before the meeting. Westminster has a narrative budget to show how your donations are used to support God’s message and his people in the life and worship at Westminster. The meeting will also decide Westminster’s contribution to Presbyterian Sharing which supports the national church, its programs and our national and international missions. Westminster Trustees, Auditors and any vacant positions on congregational roles will be appointed.
Worship Team News
The Worship Team is quite busy this year as we support our supply ministers & worship leaders with our worship experience each Sunday. We are a part of the body of Christ: One body – many parts. We offer the congregation the opportunity to be a part of and to actively participate in the worship service on Sunday mornings. We do this by arranging for greeters at our entrance doors to welcome everyone into worship. We encourage others to read the scripture lessons and we are looking for others to support our Audio-Visual technology. Please consider saying ‘Yes’ to serving. For more info about serving during worship, please contact Catherine Mackay, Maureen Cleary, Betty Jean Bone or Carol Ann Joiner.
Worship Leadership for December For most of December, Rev. Bill MacLellan will be leading our worship services. Our Christian Education Team and the Sunday School will lead the All Ages Family service on December 16th. At the end of December & the first week in January, Rev. Tony Boonstra will lead our worship services.
Historical Roots of Advent
The calendar year may begin on January 1, but for Christians, the Christian year begins with Advent – four weeks before Christmas. Advent is the beginning of a cycle of time that celebrates the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Christ. The church has observed an Advent season for over 15 centuries. It may originally have been a time of instruction for people who were preparing to be baptized on January 6, on Epiphany. History reveals Advent traditions of varying lengths, but our waiting time is now the four Sundays before Christmas.
Finding Meaning in the Tradition
Advent is the time when Christians prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus. We recall those who waited and prepared for a promised Christ child: the prophet Isaiah, Mary, his mother, and John the Baptist. We also think about God’s promises that are yet to be revealed under the reign of Christ, in “the age to come” or “the day of the Lord.” Advent is oriented in both the past and the future. As we get ready for the birth of Jesus and for the promise that Christ will come again, we use gifts of spiritual preparation: worship, prayer, singing, Bible study, fellowship (Christmas parties!), and service to others.
Questions for Personal Meditation
- What am I waiting for?
- Who am I waiting for?
- How am I preparing?
- What gives me joy in this season?
- What might I discover from that?