CHRISTMAS IS NOT CANCELED! But it will be outside.
Can you believe that we are still dealing with this coronavirus pandemic after so many long months? Even though the virus continues to spread and many aspects of our lives are curtailed to help minimize this spread, please know that Christmas is not canceled! Nothing can stop the amazing Good News of the Incarnation: God became what we are by nature, so that we might become what God is by grace. All of the uncertainties and the injustices of human life were experienced by the Word made flesh. Our entire human condition was taken on and redeemed by Christ, and no one is beyond the reach of God’s redeeming work. Because of this fact, all of us are now invited to become something more: to share in the divine nature, to be imitators of God, to live in the joy and unity of God. There is no set of circumstances on earth that could ever cancel God’s ongoing project of redeeming humankind, not even a global pandemic.
So how will we celebrate the Nativity of Christ this year? Outside! That is the only way that we can safely accommodate everyone and still sing some of our beloved Christmas carols. On Christmas Eve, make plans to gather at 3, 4, or 5 PM on Saint Mary’s campus for a memorable Nativity celebration. Each gathering will be brief (30-40 minutes) and each will be the same. We will have candles, luminaries, firepits, hot chocolate, a few animals (sheep and goats, maybe more?), the biblical story of Christmas, and the singing of carols. God will be with us, and God will be glorified! It will certainly not be the same as usual, but this is going to be fun and a Christmas we will all remember for as long as we live.
Christmas is coming rain or shine or snow, so check the weather forecast and dress accordingly. Please wear a face covering and plan on giving everyone plenty of space. Each person or household can participate as much or as little as you feel comfortable.
For those who are simply unable to gather with us, our plan is to livestream the 4 PM celebration over the internet. See our Facebook page to watch this (www.facebook.com/ChurchofSaintMary/).