Virtual Church – Advent II – White Gift – December 6, 2020

8:30 am

December 6, 2020

Virtual Service

Welcome to virtual church!

Each Sunday morning we will be sending an email to everyone in the congregation for whom we have email addresses, offering an abridged Sunday morning service — “virtual church.” For the latest news and updates from Walton, please check our Facebook page, Instagram and website.

Please contact office@waltonmemorial.com if you would like to be added to our email list.

Sunday Service Video (30+ minutes followed by the hymns)

Today’s service will be offered in 2 formats – a video and text. If you wish, you can download and print the service from this document – link – or you can read the complete service below.


Announcements

• Walton is implementing a new software system which can accommodate all our varied administrative requirements: people/membership database and facilities scheduling, donation tracking and receipting, and event registrations. “Planning Center” has been selected by the office staff, council and financial committee as the program that will best suit our needs. However, in order for us to be able to use the new program effectively, we need your help to update our contact information.

•  In many cases, we only have one email or phone number on file for each household. (For example, do you get this Virtual Service directly to your email, or does your spouse have to forward it to you?) Accurate email addresses and mobile phone numbers for each adult are key pieces of information for staying in touch with many in our congregation. If you think we may have out-of-date/incomplete email addresses or phone numbers for your household please let us know.
•  For those who receive letters or tax receipts we also need to make sure we have the correct postal address on file. If you have recently moved or are not receiving any correspondence from us, we may not have your new address.

For any updates please drop an email to office@waltonmemorial.com, with the subject line being “CHANGE IN INFORMATION”, or call the office 905-827-1643. This would really be helpful to make our new program work to benefit both staff and congregation. Thank you!

Daily Advent Email Devotional – Find greater meaning and inspiration as you prepare for Christmas, with a daily moment of guided reflection and prayer. Inspired this year by the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols (made famous by Kings’ College, Cambridge, in the UK), each day you’ll be sent either a Scripture passage or an excerpt from a carol, as well as a short reflection and a prayer. Internet links will also be provided so that you can watch and listen to the carols and readings offered up in worship.
– Throughout Advent, we will affirm and remember our endeavours across the centuries to glorify God and give thanks for the birth of God’s Son. Each day, the devotionals will remind us of God’s enduring relationship with humanity and encourage us to welcome and praise God in our world today.
– If you’ve received the Advent emails in a previous year, you should have received the Advent emails automatically, starting today, Nov 29th. To sign up to receive the emails, please visit: waltonmemorial.com/advent-devotional

•  Food Bank: On behalf of the Burlington and Oakville Food Banks, the Walton Outreach Committee would like to thank you for your generous financial donations since we entered the COVID-19 world. The need has increased hugely in our local areas – families who used to be able to scrape by have been forced to use the services of the food banks to put meals on the table. Families who were already registered are feeling the severity of their situation more than ever. The demand on the food banks is well-documented and we’d like to ask you to donate if you possibly can spare something. You can donate online at the Walton website, which means that the amount will go through your Givings Statement, or drop a cheque through the mail slot at the church, or post your donation to Walton Church, 2489 Lakeshore Rd. West, Oakville, ON L6L H9. We have been able to send your donations of $1400 to date – thank you for your generosity and for thinking of others through our current situation. Please be sure to designate either Oakville or Burlington Food Bank if you have a preference and add your envelope number if you know it.

 •  Walton’s prayer chain is open. Confidential prayers requests can be sent to office@waltonmemorial.com

•  If you need Rev. Jim for a pastoral emergency, please email him directly at jamescgillwuc@gmail.com

• Your generosity is so appreciated! The Mitten Tree is up and ready for your donations! We know many of our knitters have been working hard on mittens, hats and scarves. Our shoppers have been picking up items when they see them on sale. All donations welcome!
“Warm hands …and feet… and hearts”

Welcome

Like everything else in 2020, our White Gift service is a bit different this year. Today’s virtual service is a combination of favourite moments from past White Gift services — one being the explanation of how the White Gift Service came to be! You may not recognize some of our staff, but you may not recognize some of our children either, as they have grown so much over the last few months.

We have some new videos as well from some of our Walton kids and teens who have kindly shared their gifts with us this year.

We are so blessed to have such talent in our congregation, and blessed to know that so many of you are willing to share whatever gifts you can, whether that’s reading scripture, singing a song, making a meal for a neighbour, knitting hats and scarves to keep others warm, or donating gift cards to support Wesley’s Christmas program.

Thank you so much for all you do, it is greatly appreciated!!!

Call to Worship

We come before God today to see his light in the darkness;
To resolve our conflicts with his peace;
To replace our worries with his joy;
To fill our hearts with his hope;
To be surrounded by his love.
We celebrate God’s gift of Jesus by sharing gifts of our own.
Come, let us worship!
(adapted from www.lords-prayer-words.com)

Opening Prayer

Loving God, we gather today to remember the birth of Jesus. We are reminded of how turbulent those times were 2,000 years ago.
We think of Mary, who delivered her baby in a stable filled with dirt and straw and animals.
We think of Joseph, who stood by Mary because he believed the angel.
Today we celebrate and give thanks that Jesus came into a chaotic world, with the message of hope and peace. Amen.
(adapted from The Gathering – Tricia Challoner)

The Lord’s Prayer – Junior Youth Group

Advent Candle Lighting: Hope

Good morning, our Advent journey continues our time of waiting. As we wait, we prepare ourselves and our world for the Prince of Peace.

We come to embrace the contrasts of light and of dark, creating the balance of life lived in diversity.

In the lively dance of perspective and practice, communion and connection is forged. In the building of relationship and in the sharing of story, we come to know one another as we listen for bonds of peace.

We come to strengthen all our relations.

We light the first candle reminding us of the way of hope. (First candle is lit.)

We light our second candle to signify Christ’s path of peace in a struggling world. (Second candle is lit.)

Let us join together in singing our candle lighting song.

Sing: Light one candle for peace,
One bright candle for peace,
Christ brings peace to every heart,
He shines, He shines.

Let us join as one community of faith in prayer:

All: We come to worship as those created in your image of self-giving love, O God. Teach us your steps of harmony and of wholeness – the rhythms of connection and through your blessing sustained through beauty. As you bless us with peace rooted in our shared vulnerability, may we invite others to trust us as companions along the way of transformation. Amen.

Junior Choir: Celebrate

Skit: “What is White Gift?”

Solo: “Silent Night”

Christmas Story Scripture Reading #1

Luke 2:1-7 (ICB)
At that time, Augustus Caesar sent an order to all people in the countries that were under Roman rule. The order said that they must list their names in a register. This was the first registration taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. And everyone went to their own towns to be registered. So Joseph left Nazareth, a town in Galilee. He went to the town of Bethlehem in Judea. This town was known as the town of David. Joseph went there because he was from the family of David. Joseph registered with Mary because she was engaged to marry him. (Mary was now pregnant.) While Joseph and Mary were in Bethlehem, the time came for her to have the baby. She gave birth to her first son. There were no rooms left in the inn. So she wrapped the baby with cloths and laid him in a box where animals are fed.

Flute Solo: “What Child is This”

Christmas Story Scripture Reading #2

Luke 2:8-14 (ICB)
That night, some shepherds were in the fields nearby watching their sheep. An angel of the Lord stood before them. The glory of the Lord was shining around them, and suddenly they became very frightened. The angel said to them, “Don’t be afraid, because I am bringing you some good news. It will be a joy to all the people. Today your Savior was born in David’s town. He is Christ, the Lord. This is how you will know him: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a feeding box.” Then a very large group of angels from heaven joined the first angel. All the angels were praising God, saying: “Give glory to God in heaven, and on earth let there be peace to the people who please God.”

Piano Solo: “Angels We Have Heard on High”

Christmas Story Scripture Reading #3

Luke 2:15-20 (ICB)
Then the angels left the shepherds and went back to heaven. The shepherds said to each other, “Let us go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened. We will see this thing the Lord told us about.”

So the shepherds went quickly and found Mary and Joseph. And the shepherds saw the baby lying in a feeding box. Then they told what the angels had said about this child. Everyone was amazed when they heard what the shepherds said to them. Mary hid these things in her heart; she continued to think about them. Then the shepherds went back to their sheep, praising God and thanking him for everything that they had seen and heard. It was just as the angel had told them.

Anthem – Youth Choir – “The First Noel / Pachelbel Canon”

Offering of Ourselves, Our Gifts, Our Tithes

This is the season of gifts, and so we give thanks for all we have received. As we have been blessed, so we offer blessings here, that together we might do God’s work or justice and peace for all. Let us present the blessing of our offering.
(Sheryl Spencer, The Gathering 2019)

♥ by secure online payment from your bank or credit card – waltonmemorial.com/donate

*Important Note*Please enter the donation in one person’s name (preferably the name shown on the credit/debit card) even if you give jointly with another person. As with cheques and cash, donations made online are automatically credited to both adults in the same household regardless of which one made the donation.

♥ by cheque through the mail slot at the Church office entrance or by Canada Post.
♥ by monthly PAR payments. To sign up contact stuart@waltonmemorial.com.

Offering Prayer

Generous God, it is fun to give. The look or sound of delight from the recipient is a great gift. May our offerings be pleasing and delightful to you. Let them bring hope to those in need, ministry within this community, and love to those hurting. With these gifts, we commit ourselves to the way of love. Amen.
(Laura Turnbull, The Gathering 2019)

Piano Solo: “Jolly Old St. Nicholas”

Youth Story – “A COVID Christmas Poem”

‘Twas a Month Before Christmas 2020

 T’was a month before Christmas,
And all through the town,
People wore masks,
That covered their frown.

The frown had begun
Way back in the Spring,
When a global pandemic
Changed everything.

They called it corona,
But unlike the beer,
It didn’t bring good times,
It didn’t bring cheer.

Contagious and deadly,
This virus spread fast,
Like a wildfire that starts
When fueled by gas.

Airplanes were grounded,
Travel was banned.
Borders were closed
Across air, sea and land.

As the world entered lockdown
To flatten the curve,
The economy halted,
And folks lost their verve.

From March to July
We rode the first wave,
People stayed home,
They tried to behave.

When summer emerged
The lockdown was lifted.
But away from caution,
Many folks drifted.

Now it’s November
And cases are spiking,
Wave two has arrived,
Much to our disliking.

Frontline workers,
Doctors and nurses,
Try to save people,
From riding in hearses.

This virus is awful,
This COVID-19.
There isn’t a cure.
There is no vaccine.

It’s true that this year
Has had sadness a plenty,
We’ll never forget
The year 2020.

And just ‘round the corner –
The holiday season,
But why be merry?
Is there even one reason?

To decorate the house
And put up the tree,
When no one will see it,
No-one but me.

But outside my window
The snow gently falls,
And I think to myself,
Let’s deck the halls!

So, I gather the ribbon,
The garland and bows,
As I play those old carols,
My happiness grows.

Christmas ain’t cancelled
And neither is hope.
If we lean on each other,
I know we can cope.

By: Shawna Hickling, Calgary, AB, Canada, November 19, 2020

Ballet Solo: “That’s Christmas To Me”

Benediction

God bless you, keep you, send you. You are the messengers. Go, continue the ministry of Jesus Christ. You are the messenger, You are the minister. Go, bless the world, God is leading. Amen.

Walton’s Musical Message

This morning on Facebook and on YouTube, we’re sharing a video where Linda shares with us several of our favourite hymns! Sing along!

♬ Introit: Advent 2
♬ Imagine
♬ Candle Medley – A Candle is Burning, Peace is a ribbon
♬ Look Toward Christmas
♬ In the Bleak Mid-Winter
♬ Saviour Dwell With Us

In case you missed it…

Here is Rev. Jim’s mid-week update from Wednesday, December 2nd