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Dec. 8, 2013 – St. Matthew’s United Church eBulletin

Enjoy St. Matthew’s United Church weekly eBulletin. Contact the office to add
your email or to unsubscribe: stmatts@ns.sympatico.ca or 423-9209

Contents
•  St. Matthew’s Calendar
•  The Lunch Bunch Holiday Song this Friday
•  White Gift Sunday Dec. 15
•  The Return of the Anonymous Couple – Simplified
•  Bethlehem @ Barrington Choir
•  Welcome to ...
•  Thinking about ...
•  How you can create some Christmas cheer at St. Matthew’s
•  Advent and Christmas services
•  Out of the Cold Shelter – Volunteering
•  Emergency appeal for aid to the Philippines
•  Meeting schedule for 2013–14
•  In the Community – Concerts, lectures, conferences and more

St. Matthew’s Calendar
Wed. Dec. 11, 11 am – Bible study in the parlour
Fri. Dec. 13 – Lunch Bunch Holiday Song, 12:30–1:15 pm, in the sanctuary
Sun. Dec. 15 – White Gift Sunday

The Lunch Bunch – Holiday Song Dec. 13
The Lunch Bunch will present Holiday Song on Fri. Dec. 13 from 12:30–1:15 pm in the sanctuary. Enjoy some holiday music with the lunchtime choir conducted by Wayne Rogers. Admission is free but donations to the food bank are welcome. Hot cider will be available.

White Gift Sunday Dec. 15
Next Sunday during the children’s Christmas service there will be a presentation of White Gifts (clothing, toiletries, etc.). These gifts will be given to guests at the Christmas Breakfast the following week. If you cannot bring your gifts to church with you, please drop them off this week.

The Return of the Anonymous Couple – Simplified
The Anonymous Couple are challenging the congregation to increase givings again this year. They will match special donations contributed by the end of 2013 that are marked “Anonymous Couple Campaign”, up to a total of $10,000. The Stewards hope you will respond positively to this gracious offer.

Bethlehem @ Barrington Choir ...
All are invited to join the ad hoc Bethlehem@Barrington Choir to sing the nativity story through rewrites of contemporary pop/rock tunes. This year’s theme is “guilty pleasures” with a side order of “unescapable earworms” and it will be a lot of fun. The first rehearsal run-through of the tunes will be Sun. Dec. 15 at noon in the sanctuary. Tia Maria (playing the donkey) and her friends The Sheep are already excited to be joining us again.

Welcome to ...
Ÿ Luca Dini Ripley Geldenhuys Hood, son of Nicoletta Dini, who is the daughter of Laurette Geldenhuys and granddaughter of Johan Geldenhuys. Baby Luca was baptized on Sunday.

Thinking about ...
Ÿ Greg Bent and his family, as they mourn the loss of Greg’s father, Dr. Wilfrid I. Bent, who died on the weekend at age 103. Funeral service will be held Sat. Dec. 14 in Bridgewater.

How you can create some Christmas cheer at St. Matthew’s
Advent Tree:  Hats, mitts and scarves – We’ll be decorating an Advent Tree with warm hats, mitts, and scarves, which will be given as gifts to guests of the Out of the Cold Shelter and Sunday Breakfast. If you are knit or crochet and looking for a project, consider these!

Hanging stockings on the mantel – All are invited to bring warm socks to ‘hang on the mantel’ that will be at the door of the church. These socks are brought to Phoenix Shelter for Youth to keep residents’ feet warm during the winter.

White Gifts – During Advent there is a small tree at the door of the church bearing tags that identify a gift (clothing, toiletries, etc.) to be given to a guest at the Sunday Christmas Breakfast. Gifts can be brought to church on Sun. Dec. 15 (White Gift Sunday).

Cookies for the Special Christmas Breakfast – The Breakfast Program is looking for donations of homemade cookies to give to guests at the special Christmas breakfast. The cookies can be dropped off at the church hall on Sat. Dec. 21 from 1–3 pm during the set-up for the next morning’s festivities. Frozen cookies can be given to Michelle Jensen at church on Sun. Dec. 15, or pick-up can be arranged if needed. Contact Michelle, 420-9769, if you can donate cookies.

Advent and Christmas Services
Advent III Dec. 15
Sunday School service: “Peace on Earth”
AcabellA Handbell concert, Keshan Goodman Library, 2:30 pm
Advent IV Dec. 22
Choral Christmas Service with Choir and AcabellA Handbell Choir
Christmas Eve Dec. 24
Bethlehem@Barrington live nativity service, 6:30 pm   
Christmas candlelight communion, 10 pm     
Christmas Dec. 25
Christmas carol service, 10:30 am

Out of the Cold Shelter – Volunteering
Out of the Cold (OTCS) Shelter is looking for dedicated volunteers to help run the emergency shelter this winter. Each night last winter OTCS provided a safe and welcoming environment for up to 15 people, including men, women, youth and transgendered person. For many who have trouble accessing other shelters for whatever reason, the OTC Shelter is the last resort. It was staffed by volunteers with the support of a team of several agencies and shelters. This shelter is a community-based response to homelessness and the current housing crisis in our city. Dedicated volunteers are needed to help staff the shelter from Nov. 24 to Apr. 30. Evening, overnight and morning shifts are available, and all volunteer staff will receive training. For information: Kelly Adamson, Administrator; halifaxwintershelter@gmail.com or call
902-233-7910.

Emergency appeal for aid to the Philippines
Thanks to United Church partners already at work in the Philippines, we have the capacity to direct aid funds quickly to respond where the need is greatest. To make a donation online visit https://www.gifttool.com/donations/Donate?ID=1955&AID=3036  Alternatively, send a cheque to: The United Church of Canada, Philanthropy Unit – Emergency Response, 3250 Bloor Street West, Suite 300, Toronto, ON  M8X 2Y4. Note “Emergency Response—Typhoon Haiyan Relief” on the face of your cheque.

Meeting schedule for 2014
All meetings are held after the Sunday service
Congregational meetings – June 8
Session/Stewards/Board – Feb. 23, June 1
Executive of Official Board – Jan. 26, Mar. 30, Apr. 27

In the Community
AcabellA  Christmas – Sun. Dec. 15 at 2:30 pm, Keshan Goodman Library. AcabellA is St. Matthew’s excellent handbell choir, presenting its annual public concert for families.

Carols by Candlelight – Sun. Dec. 22, 7 pm at First Baptist Church, Halifax. The annual service of lessons and carols with the choirs of First Baptist Church (Lynette Wahlstrom, director of music) and special guests Kimberley North, flute; Katherine Fitch Loza, harp; Shawn Whynot, organ.

***
Church office: stmatts@ns.sympatico.ca, 423-9209
Pastoral care: Rev. Betsy Hogan, 423-9209
Sunday Free Breakfast: 8:30–9:30 am
Sunday Worship: 10:30 am
Minister of Music: Wayne Rogers, 429-1680
Choir rehearsals on Thursday: AcabellA Handbell Choir 6:15 pm, Choir 7:30 pm
Lunch Bunch Community Choir: Fridays at 12 noon September–June
On the web: www.stmatts.ns.ca