Advent and Christmas 2021

Great joy for all the people

But the angel said to them,

“Do not be afraid; for see –
I am bringing you good news
of great joy for all the people…”

Luke 2:10 (NRSV)

During the past two years’ lockdowns, communities have become further disconnected and dispersed. People are tired and many are living in more difficult circumstances due to the ongoing pandemic. Internationally, many people live in danger; from threats of war to wildfires. But the message of Jesus’ birth at Christmas continues to be one of hope in our troubled times. God’s love is stronger than our fears. And as we aim to be an increasingly inclusive, evangelistic and justice-seeking Church, this is, importantly, a joyful message “for all the people”.

Recognising everyone’s fatigue and the Covid-19-related uncertainty that surrounds the approach of Christmas, this year the Methodist Church is encouraging congregations to simply reach out to their communities with the angel’s message – to near neighbours and to people living on the margins. To reconnect, and assure everyone that the Methodist Church is praying for them and cares about their community and concerns.
  

Resources for Christmas 2021

To help you to pray and connect with your community this Christmas, we have a number of resources available, all featuring Nativity, a painting by Dr He Qi – a Chinese artist living in California, USA.

Contemporary Reflections

Throughout Advent, we will post a series of contemporary reflections online, linking Luke 2:10 with characters in this painting, and current affairs and concerns in Britain and around the world.

These reflections can be viewed and downloaded here.

Follow our social media channels to see them: 
www.facebook.com/MethodistChurchinBritain
twitter.com/MethodistGB
www.instagram.com/methodistchurch/ 

God's Table: An Invitation to All - Christmas CD

Following the phenomenal success of the 2020 Christmas CD, we have another FREE CD of seasonal music and conversation for you to share, all copyright cleared (P&P charges apply).

Available to order soon from www.methodistpublishing.org.uk/features/christmas-2021

CDs will be dispatched after 8 November 2021.

PLEASE NOTE: The content of this CD is under copyright and may not be reproduced for commercial use or resale. All of the songs (music and lyrics) are in the public domain, all of the featured performers have given their permission for use on this CD and for any sharing, broadcast and online use, including streaming. © Trustees for Methodist Church purposes 2021. This CD may not be resold. All rights reserved.

Beneath the paper wrappings (StF 192) Words and music © Hole Music, sung by Rachel Williamson, accompanied by Shyrleen Pottinger (Scalloway Methodist Church, Shetland).  

O little town of Bethlehem (StF 213) Words © Phillips Brooks; music – traditional English melody. Sung by the choir of Morpeth Methodist Church and St George's URC, directed by Gillian Irvine.

Into the darkness (StF 173) Words © Thankyou Music, administered by tym@kingsway.co.uk

How hard was that journey (StF+) Words and music © Paul Thompson. Performed by Matt Beckingham (www.youtube.com/c/MattBeckingham).

Hark! The herald-angels sing (StF 202) Words © Charles Wesley; music by Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy. Sung by ‘Sedecim’, a chamber choir made up of pupils from Kent College, the independent Methodist school in Canterbury.

Love came down at Christmas (StF 210) Words © Christina Georgina Rossetti; music by Reginald Owen Morris. Performed by Caleb Dinger (www.calebdingermusic.com/home).

Posters and Postcards

You will soon be able to order FREE A2 posters, and packs of 20 postcards (£2.00 per pack + P&P), for your home or church. Both feature Dr He Qi’s striking painting and the Luke 2:10 Bible verse.

Please feel free to personalise the postcards and distribute them locally to help you reconnect. You could put stickers on them to advertise Christmas worship or social events, or you could ask your members to decorate the reverse with a Christmas greeting, ready to push through people’s doors.

Available to order soon from www.methodistpublishing.org.uk/features/christmas-2021

Do let us know how you decide to reconnect using yours!

You could share pictures of your Christmas connections on Facebook or Instagram @methodistchurch or on Twitter @MethodistGB.

 


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