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This Sunday marks the final Sunday in the church calendar year. It is known as Reign of Christ Sunday. On Advent 1, Hope, Nov. 28, we begin a new church year, and in the revised common lectionary this begins year C of the three-year cycle.
 
Did you know Tuesday November 30 is “Giving Tuesday.” Give of yourself on Tuesday!Looking for some unique ideas, the United Church of Canada is suggesting we consider on giving Tuesday the gift of a vaccine to another in our world. Donation can be arranged through the new Gifts With Vision catalogue, along with many other unique offerings. https://giftswithvision.ca/
 
White Gift Sunday is coming December 5. Here is what the Salvation Army has shared for what they are doing in Peterborough:
This year they are taking toys for children under 12
Gift cards for preteen and teens for local food places and stores
AND they are welcoming food supplies that will go into their hampers and into the general supply for the food bank they continue to run
Also welcome monetary donations as always
 
Thanks to Jane for getting that information for us. A reminder the office is currently open Mondays and Thursdays between 9 and 1:00.
 
Advent Event Update:
The movie night scheduled for tonight Nov. 19 was postponed and will now be combined with the Advent Event on November 27.Children, youth and young families are invited to come out for Christmas decoration making, decorating of church, a holiday movie and treats. Please contact Kevin and let him know you are coming.All are welcome! Kevin Fitzpatrick youngfamilies@graceunited.ca
 
Our moderator sent out this pastoral letter November 18, 2021
We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be made visible in our bodies. For while we live, we are always being given up to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus may be made visible in our mortal flesh. So death is at work in us, but life in you.” 2 Cor. 4:8‒12
I greet you as siblings in Christ.
At the beginning of this pandemic, the word “unprecedented” was overused. Every public communication from every community and every sector of society tried to make sense of what was happening to our families, our communities, and ourselves. In the church, the place where we understand ourselves to be a profoundly gathered people―as Jesus said, “where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them” (Matthew 18:20)—we worked hard to reimagine ourselves in new ways, almost overnight, striving to continue to be faithful to the gospel to which we are called.
It is you, often with your faith community leaders, who ensured that we continued to be church. You transformed your living rooms into studios, helped your folks cross the digital divide, managed the dilemmas of disappeared rental income, found pastoral ways to respond to rising mental health issues, strove to support families often separated or grieving…
You did all of this and so much more while dealing with your own family, navigating personal protective measures, lockdowns, online schooling, and parents in long-term care facilities. Some of you did this while also facing the pandemic’s deepening of systemic oppression. For clergy of colour and Indigenous clergy, you carried on being church amid layers of grief and increased hostility. Yet you all ensured that ministry to God’s people continued.
After almost two years, we have begun to emerge from “unprecedented.” As we do come new challenges as we face the decisions of reopening, vaccination mandates, and often contradictory public health and political pronouncements about the pandemic. Whether in communities of faith, regional offices, or the General Council Office, we are, however, slowly moving from pandemic to post-pandemic, not sure what we need to keep, what we can drop, what we resume from before.
I know that some of us have been stressed beyond measure. Many of us are exhausted. The deep gratitude that I want to share with you has sometimes not found sufficient words. I’ve heard you say that at times it feels like the support you need from your local communities of faith or from your denomination hasn’t been there. Difficult decisions, like the ones around temporary amendments to the pastoral relations bylaws and ending of optional health benefits, have felt punitive rather than prudent, and the speed at which they have been implemented has meant that our communications have not always been as pastoral as we would have wished. I am sorry about this. All of it.
It is important to me that you know that good people in all places of leadership in this church have strived to lead, support, connect, nurture, and decide in a situation that could never have been anticipated. They will continue to faithfully do that work until others are called into those leadership roles, as I am sure that you will continue to live faithfully into yours. I pray that we will find the grace to be able to lift each other up in the work to which we have been called.
Some of you have raised questions about the processes and transparency of decision making during this time. Thank you for those questions and recommendations. We continue, in a very complex communications and governance world, to seek to improve our processes.
I wonder how we might move from here, as the Apostle Paul writes, “afflicted but not crushed, perplexed but not despairing.” I hope you might hear my words of gratitude and let them settle in your heart, to speak words of gratitude to your colleagues, and understand their gratitude, for how the entire church has persevered together in these unprecedented times. I hope we might continue to find ways to support one another. As Moderator, with the General Council Executive, the General Secretary, and the senior staff of the national and regional offices, we are all open to receiving your best thoughts on what you, as ministry leadership, continue to need and experience happening in the church. I hope we continue to find ways to speak to one another with grace, even when we disagree, perhaps especially when we disagree. I pray that we can move forward in a renewing hope.
Together, in both our frustrations and our joys, we continue to be church, to live the gospel of Jesus Christ because you make that visible in your bodies, minds, hearts, and ministry. For all that you do to equip the disciples, while striving to be a disciple in these difficult times, I thank you, work to learn from you, and strive to join with you.
In the name of the One who continues to be our Hope, I remain,
The Right Reverend Richard Bott
Moderator / Modérateur
The United Church of Canada / L’Église Unie du Canada
Do you traditionally do an Advent calendar, take part in a food drive or white gift? This might be an additional idea of interest for Advent? Traditionally, in an Advent calendar, one gets a treat each day taken out of an Advent countdown calendar. With a reverse Advent calendar, one puts an item or items into a box each day and donates the food. These are also wonderful in lieu of gifts put together a reverse Advent box and donate it on behalf of a loved one.I could not find anything from Peterborough but offer this City of Kawartha Lakes Kawartha Food Source suggestion. You can always create your own.
30 Day Reverse Advent Calendar
1.   Stuffing
2.   Gravy
3.   Muffin Mix
4.   Stew
5.   Coffee
6.   Tuna
7.   Pasta
8.   Pasta Sauce
9.   Pancake Mix
10.  Canned Meat
11.  Kraft Dinner
12.  Canned Peas
13.  Canned Carrots
14.  Canned Potatoes
15.  Hot Chocolate
16.  Jello
17.  Fruit Cups
18.  Jam
19.  Maple Syrup
20.  Granola Bars (nut free)
21.  Chicken Noodle Soup
22.  Mushroom Soup
23.  Vegetable Soup
24.  Laundry Detergent
25.  Body Wash
26.  Shampoo
27.  Conditioner
28.  Winter Gloves
29.  Winter Tuque
30.  Your Favourite Treat
14 Day Reverse Advent Calendar
1.  Stuffing & Gravy
2.  Stew & Chili
3.  Granola Bar & Fruit Cups
4.  Hot Chocolate & Muffin Mix
5.  Coffee & Jam
6.  Two Types of Soup
7.   Pasta & Pasta Sauce
8.   Laundry Detergent & Body Wash
9.   Pancake Mix & Maple Syrup
10.  Canned Ham or Chicken & Boxed Mash Potatoes
11.  Shampoo & Conditioner
12.  Canned Peas & Carrots
13.  Warm Gloves, A Scarf and a Winter Tuque
14.  Your Favourite Treat
 
Sandwiches are beautiful, sandwiches are fine. I love sandwiches. I eat them all the time…” These are lyrics from a children’s song popularized by Raffiand we always had fun in my classroom doing creative writing and drawing of our fun sandwiches! Would you like to share sandwiches? Grace ismaking sandwiches in support of the One Roof Community Centre. Please contact Colleen if you would like to join in every second Monday morning.
 
Santa Needs Help - Honduras Project 2021
GPIF thanks you for donations already arriving to support uevo Children's Village & for contributions to help fill the store rooms. Please help us to ensure that every Child gets a special gift this Christmas with the help of Mae and her faithful helpers shopping for us.
Financial donations can be processed thru GUC by e-transfer or cash, debit & cheques payable to Grace United Church with Santa Needs Help in the memo line dropped off at the Church.
Help us to help Santa  "Share a Little Bit of Love" this Christmas.
Please contact the office or Jane if you have questions: bleeckerjane@gmail.com
 
Do you or a team or group have something you would like to share for discipleship moments. Let us know as we continue to seek to lift up the life and work in and beyond our community of faith.
 
Upcoming:
• Sunday November 21 Celia Hunter preaching, Susan Sweet Lebeau worship leader
•Sunday November 28 Advent 1 Hope Sharon Preaching, Kevin leading Communion and Baptism, Paula Pound worship leader (Sharon’s final worship service)
• Sunday December 5 Advent 2 Peace Susan Sweet Lebeau preaching, Paula Pound worship leader
• Sunday December 12 Advent Joy, Celia Hunter Preaching, Susan Sweet Lebeau worship leader
• Sunday December 19 Advent 4 Love, Kevin preaching, Inter generational service
• December 24 Christmas Eve service of Readings and Carols 7:00 P.M.
 
Prayers Please
This is a struggling time for people. Everyone is carrying concerns and joys. Pray for all you love, for each other, for this community of faith and for needs locally, nationally, and globally. Thank-you for all prayers.
 
Prayerfully,
Sharon
 
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