Advent and Christmas at Calvary Baptist Church will be different in 2020. However, different can be as much opportunity as challenge. We invite you to see the abundance and variety of opportunities we have to worship, grow and serve together in this Holy season. Here is an overview of what Christmas at Calvary will offer this year.
A Call to Worship
Advent Worship Series: An Animated Advent
|November 29||Rudolph: Red Nosed Reindeer or Modern Day Prophet||John 1:1-13|
|December 6||When Bad Things Happen to Good Snowmen||Isaiah 52:7-10|
|December 13||All They Need Is Love||I John 3:16-24|
|December 20||Lessons and Carols presented by the Calvary Worship Ministry|
A Service of the Longest Night, Wednesday, December 16, 6PM, Virtual Service
We acknowledge that this time of year is both a time of celebration and a time in which not everyone feels like celebrating. We gather on this night to light a candle of hope in the midst of the darkness and to support and care for one another.
Christmas Eve, December 24-An Intimate Worship Experience
Christmas Eve at Calvary will offer two distinct experiences: one virtual and one in person.
Christmas Eve—A Virtual Experience
The virtual Christmas Eve experience is designed as a guide for an intimate, at home celebration of the night. This online resource will offer a series of vignettes that may be viewed sequentially as a single experience or used to enrich the at home experience. The video will be available online on our You Tube Chanel and resource kits will be available from the church office.
Christmas Eve—A Live Encounter
We recognize that some will feel the need to attend an in person worship service on Christmas Eve. So, we will offer two in person worship experiences with a limited seating capacity. Registration will be required and available soon on the church web page. Each service will be limited to 45 minutes in duration and all of our Healthy at Worship Guidelines will apply.
5PM Our early Christmas Eve service will be planned with children and their families in mind, but will still feature most of the elements of our Christmas Eve Service.
7PM Our second service will feel more like Christmas Eves Past. While some elements will be adjusted to accommodate for our Healthy at Worship Guidelines, the service will usher us into that Holy Night we gather to celebrate.
Both services will offer an invitation to participate in Communion using pre-packed elements. And weather permitting, both services will conclude with worshippers gathered on the front steps and side walk on High Street to carry the light into the world and sing “Silent Night” together. (Our new pastor is in training now on when to raise and lower the candle.)
Each day of Advent beginning on Sunday, November 29, you will find Advent Devotions written by Calvary Staff on the church’s web page and delivered to your email inbox. These devotions are offered to help you enter the themes of Advent (Hope, Peace, Joy and Love) on a daily basis.
“The Glory of Christmas” is a virtual Sunday School experience including video vignettes and a discussion guide for use in Zoom Sunday School Classes and other Bible Studies. This church-wide study will help tie us to one another. The videos are light-hearted but poignant. The Study guide was written by our own Hank Ellington.
The Christmas Story for young children includes four videos (one for each week of Advent) about the Christmas story and music with Ms. Shari. Preschoolers will enjoy learning about the birth of Jesus and singing along!
Advent in a Box and Christmas Eve Kits
Throughout the season, we will distribute and make available a variety of Advent resources for use by families with children, older adults, and those who are sheltering-in-place. We also have simple advent wreaths including candles available for purchase for $10. Closer to Christmas Eve, we will also provide materials in support of the virtual Christmas Eve experience.
Opportunities for Ministry and Mission
One thing that never changes during this season is the opportunity we have to share the love of the Christ-child with our community. We offer you an invitation to participate in all of the following ministries.
- Christmas Project—This Calvary tradition has been sharing the light and love of Christmas for nearly half a century. You can find out more about it and ways to engage by clicking here.
- Caroling –This year many older adults are staying at home. We want to connect with them directly by sending out small groups (5 or 6) to go and sing a few Christmas Carols (socially distanced, outside while folks stay inside to listen). Caroling visits will be from December 20-23. Sunday School classes, families with children, youth and other potential carolers, sign up to carol HERE. If you want to be sure your home is on the list for a caroling visit, please contact the office.
- Appalachian Shoe Boxes – While the time for this has passed, it is important to note that Calvary packed 42 boxes for the work of Ministry Partner, Scarlette Jasper in McCreary County, KY.
- Christmas Missions Offering –While our Global Missions Offering will be in the first half of next year, we know that some want to give to missions at Christmas. You can certainly do this by designating your gift to the Global Missions Offering.
- Poinsettia Delivery – The youth ministry will be delivering poinsettias for those who ordered them but cannot be at Calvary to pick them up. Contact the church office if you would like to take advantage of this service.