Advent 2023: How does a weary world rejoice?

Joy is often a companion to many other emotions. We can feel joy in addition to feeling many other things at once: Grief, Anticipation, Anxiety, Excitement, Disappointment, Exhaustion. Perhaps many of us live with the myth that joy is not something we deserve – or that joy is wholly out of reach. This Advent, we will hold space for our weariness and our joy. We will seek a Thrill Of Hope in our hurting world. We will welcome joy as we cry out for comfort.

Join us each Sunday in Advent beginning December 3. We hope to see you in-person or virtually this season.

Epiphany Sunday: we trust our belovedness (recording)

When we trust our belovedness, we live
and give fully—we are compelled to treat all of creation with tenderness and care. When we trust our belovedness, we have endless reasons to rejoice.

Star Words for Epiphany

We are once again providing star words via our website to all who may want them. Star words are often written on paper and picked at random to be used as a guiding word throughout the year.

First Sunday After Advent: we root ourselves in ritual (recording)

The experience of rituals, either good or bad ones or the ones that cause us to be weary, will allow us to rejoice.

Christmas Eve: we make room (recording)

Regardless of where the birth occurs, we know that Christ is born in a crowded, unlikely place. And yet, God makes a place here anyway. God draws the circle wider as shepherds and unexpected guests arrive.

Fourth Sunday of Advent: we sing stories of hope (recording)

If hope feels out of reach, the act of singing has the power to transform us. As we prepare to celebrate Christ’s birth, may we also sing stories of hope, justice, and joy.

Third Sunday of Advent, December 17: we allow ourselves to be amazed (recording)

How often do you allow yourself to be amazed? Wonder is all around us—can we recognize it? As we learn how to rejoice in a weary world, can we live in a way that allows amazement and wonder to surprise us often?

Second Sunday of Advent, December 10: we find joy in connection (recording)

In community our joy expands. When we can’t rejoice, we can carry each other’s joy. Through the prophet Isaiah, we hear God speak tender words of comfort; this is the comfort we can give to and receive from each other during this season.

First Sunday of Advent, December 3: we acknowledge our weariness (recording)

Sometimes weariness can harden us and prevent us from living fully. We’ve had hard journeys. Grief has left a scar on us. This is how we show up to Advent. Let us acknowledge the ways we, too, are hardened by disbelief. Like the psalmist, let us ask, “how long?” and plead for restoration.

Advent liturgy by Rev. Sarah (Are) Speed and A Sanctified Art with adaptations by Rev. Michael Cronin