Today at staff meeting I proofed the worship order for the Christmas Eve Service. Oh, what a sense of accomplishment that was! Although there is still one more choir rehearsal before our special Sunday of music this weekend, it is finalizing the Christmas Eve service that allows me to feel that all the pieces are in place for our church's celebrations.
Sunday morning we will have lots of beautiful Christmas hymns, extra instrumentalists, and, as has become our custom, a sermon given as a first person dramatization by Pastor Randy. This year he is portraying the Innkeeper. He does this in costume, with all of his message memorized. The job of the choir is to sing two anthems that will support the theme of this sermon. People love this special service, and every year folks invite their friends and family members to come especially to experience it.
Then, Christmas Eve, we will have our traditional evening candle-light service. Scripture will be read. Again, there will be Christmas hymns and carols, soloists and instrumentalists, and the children acting out the Christmas story under Ellen's supervision. At the end, with all the the lights out, we will all sing "Silent Night" as we light each other's candles. The room grows gently brighter as we sing each verse. We all remember the Light of the World, whose birth we celebrate.
I still have some presents to get together. I still need to clean (and baby-proof!!) the house for the arrival of our far away children. Haven't done any baking yet. But all is well. We're ready to worship.