It’s Advent 3, the Pink Candle week.  The week of Hope.  And in my own life, too, there has been much hope.  Here are a few moments I’ve noticed:

Giving out Share Your Christmas to the families in our programs this year.  I am so grateful for the generous donations from so many St. Lukers.  They have allowed us to be very generous, and to expand our giving this year to even more households.  And we are living into our baptismal promise of respecting the dignity of every human being in a lovely way this year.  By giving these family gift cards instead of items, it allows them to go to the store and choose their own things.  Something that seems like no big deal for us — but it is a profound moment of autonomy for some of these families.  

This year’s Christmas Pageant (3pm on Dec 24th on Facebook and YouTube) is a delight!  Watching it gives me hope as I see our parish children participate and see this well-known story in new ways.

Our Christmas Festival Coffee Hour is going to be so much fun!  It won’t be the same as previous years, but we will have time to chat with one another, and to join in on singing some christmas carols, and even have a few fun, low-stress games.  The Zoom link is in your announcement email and on the calendar 4pm on Dec 24th.

We’re putting our finishing touches on our Christmas Cheer Drop Offs, which should be arriving on front porches on the 22 or 23rd.  (I’ll admit to being nervous about missing a household, animals absconding with the packages, and other worrisome possibilities.)  I was filled with joy receiving everyone’s cookies and supplies at drop-off last week.  I prayed for each one of you as we finalized routes yesterday, and will pray for you again as I pack your bags on Monday.  Thank you to everyone who baked, donated, and will be driving as a part of this hopeful adventure.

And this week, too, the first folks began receiving vaccines.  A few of my far-flung friends have posted photos of them getting the vaccine with the caption, “A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices.”  It brings new meaning to that phrase, and great joy and hope.  

Where have you noticed hope recently? Where are you looking forward to hope?

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