A new church year begins this coming Sunday with the first Sunday of Advent. Churches will mark this seasonal change in different ways, if at all. At Rainbow we will make some minor changes to our order of worship, including the singing of a few more hymns. Plus, there will be a few more candles than usual and we will have a new visual arts display to enjoy. During children’s time Sara Mwagura will introduce Team Advent. Here they are playing a friendly game of foosball on my desk (not my idea): Zechariah, Elizabeth, and John the Baptist vs: Jeremiah, Mary, and Joseph. Yes, poor baby Jesus is what everyone is trying to get to (as in the ball). And yes, his cradle is the net which you can’t see in this picture. Let me be clear: This was not my idea.
The traditional colors of Advent are purple or deep blue, reflecting the color of the late autumn’s night sky lit by moon and stars, just before the dawning of a new day. As one writer puts it, “The long nights are fertile ground for dreaming—imagine the desert blossoming and sheltering a mother and a child, imagine peace prevailing, imagine God all in all. Joseph dreams in this season—of a child to be born soon, whom he is to name Emmanuel, God-with-us.”
Imagine the dawning of peace, already here and yet still coming.
Imagine taking our place as those who notice and welcome this great dawning.