“I Believe ... Even When...,” the theme of Advent and Christmas Worship at Trinity Lutheran Church this year, is based on writing found left by an anonymous Jewish poet on a concentration camp wall during World War II, “I believe in the sun, even when it’s not shining.”
Despair and heartache has touched ALL of our lives in 2020 – the year of PANDEMIC - PROTESTS - POLITICS, a year unlike any of us has ever experienced. We are tired, scared, lonely, sad, angry and yearning. We are yearning for what was. As Christians, though hardships, pain and loss continue to touch our lives, we cling to what never changes – God’s ever-presence, God’s steadfast love and mercy and the Light of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, the Light that NO darkness will ever overcome. Yes, in the midst of all of the chaos, uncertainty, and fear we once again give voice to the promise that God is with us! Trusting this certainty, We Believe ... Even When ... we’re so, so tired of this pandemic, we’re scared of getting ill or losing a job, we’re lonely and missing our loved ones and we’re grieving the loss of the way it was.
The focus of our 2020 Advent and Christmas worship centers us on the HOPE and PROMISE that comes to us in the manger, the reason we can “Believe ... Even When...” The Light of Christ, which guides us out of darkness and directs our ways, will be represented in candles, luminaries and lighted paths. Trinity’s outdoor space will be prepared for people to experience a pilgrimage of prayer and peace, an opportunity for quiet worship and meditation at our outdoor worship space. A lighted prayer path, including verses and scriptures to read, will traverse past the Nativity scene as it leads to our worship space. There you will find the lighted altar and cross directly in front of comfortable benches where you can spend some time in meditation, prayer and worship. Quiet seasonal music will enhance this time to focus on the Light. Our outdoor space will be available to all seeking a place for personal prayer and worship.
Our mid-week Advent worship, 7 p.m. on Wednesdays, Dec. 2, 9, and 16, will be live streamed on Trinity’s Facebook page and uploaded to our YouTube channel, as will our Sunday morning 10:30 a.m. worship services. Sunday’s 10:30 a.m. worship can also be found on the radio at KVGB - 1590 AM / 97.7 FM. Advent Worship at Home Bags will also be available. (Call the church for information on receiving one, 620-793-7894). The candles, scriptures and devotions in the bag can be incorporated into your own “worship space” at home. Pastor Barb Jones and Pastor Jon Brudvig will be offering online devotions/prayer pause moments throughout Advent on our Facebook page. Please join us this Advent and Christmas, at the corner of 24th and Adams in Great Bend, focusing on the Light of Christ, the reason we can Believe ... Even When ...
The Rev. Barbara Jones is copastor at Trinity Lutheran Church, Great Bend.