This Sunday, December 3, is the first Sunday of Advent, the season of preparation for the celebration of Christ’s birth. It’s also a time when we prepare for the coming of Christ into our lives in a new way for today. Further, we prepare for Christ’s return in power as Lord of all at the end of the age.

We do all that by focusing on God’s call through the prophets and through Jesus himself that we should prepare for coming of our God. That means repenting of our sin, deepening our worship, and working for justice in the world. Admittedly, that all runs a bit counter to the usual Christmas preparations of feasting at parties, trimming the tree, and buying presents. Well, no one said following Jesus is easy. Still, we believe that spiritual preparation is ultimately more rewarding. Plus, it doesn’t have to exclude the others. Let’s just make sure we have the priorities and the focus right. However we mark the days, remember that our primary goal as disciples is to glorify God.

We hope you will join us in worship during the Advent season. It keeps the meaning of Christmas centered on Jesus. It also helps you stay spiritually grounded during what is often a very busy time with lots of competing messages. Besides, it’s the start of a new church year, making it a nice point for renewing spiritual practices. If all that isn’t enough, we’ll have cookies.

Advent Worship Themes

Here is a list of the worship themes for Advent 2017 at Catoctin Church.

1st Sunday of Advent / December 3: “Hope for the End” using Isaiah 64:1-9 and Mark 13:24-37.

2nd Sunday of Advent / December 10: “Love Starts Over” using Isaiah 40:1-11 and Mark 1:1-8.

3rd Sunday of Advent / December 17: “Rejoice in Righteousness” using Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11, and 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24.

4th Sunday of Advent / December 24 (morning): “Peace in the Promises” using 2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16 and Luke 1:26-38.