December 8 St. Mary Schola Christmas Concert
December 10 Maine Pops Christmas Concert and Fundraiser
December 16, 17 Renaissance Voices Christmas Concert
December 24 10:00am Advent IV Service in the Chapel
5:00 pm Christmas Eve Family Service and Christmas Pageant
10:00 pm Candlelight Christmas Eve Service (music begins at 9:30)
December 25 10:00 am Christmas Day Service
January 7 Epiphany Lessons and Carols 4 pm
The Flowers on the altar today are given by Parker and Suzanne Roberts to the Glory of God and in celebration of the life of William James Peterson.
About Today’s Music: The service music we introduce on this first Sunday of Advent might sound familiar to many of you. It comprises the Kyrie, Sanctus, and Fraction Anthem from the St. James Advent Service, published by the St. James Music Press. This service setting is arranged for congregation, optional SATB choir, and organ by British composer, Richard Shephard and it is based on the well-known Advent hymn, People Look East. Because the Kyrie is not an exact quote of the tune, and to facilitate learning, we will sing the Kyrie twice – once with the melody emphasized by the choir and organ and again with more of the accompanying harmonies added. While all are invited to sing both times, some may find it helpful to listen the first time through.
The Explorers are reading Newell’s Listening to the Heartbeat of God, chapter 5, and watching a DVD on Celtic Spirituality. Join us at 8:45am on Sundays in the chapter room.
Meet Katie Holicky and learn about the new Portland Area Youth Group! Katie runs the Portland Area Youth Group which we have been invited to join. We are one of four churches, the others being Trinity, Woodfords and Hope Gateway, that are members. The group gets together twice a month for fun and fellowship. We will still meet on Sundays after church but this is an additional chance to spend time together with young folks from other churches in the area. It should be a blast. All youth and their parents are invited to meet with Katie and learn more at 11:30 this morning in the lower hall.
Twilight in the Chapel: We are delighted to welcome musician Gary Richardson to our twilight service tonight. Please join us at 5:15 in Emmanuel Chapel for an intimate and welcoming Rite II Eucharist with The Rev. Anne Fowler.
Choral Evensong today will honor our vergers! Please join our cathedral choir, Bishop Lane and Dean Shambaugh at 4:00 as we celebrate the ministry of David Savage and install Thurl Headen as our new lead verger. A reception will follow in the parish hall.
Welcome Diocesan Council and Search and Transition Committees! St. Luke’s is honored to host and provide parking for this weekend’s meetings and combined retreat of the Standing Committee, Diocesan Council (including our own Suzanne Roberts), Bishop Search/Discernment Committee (including our own Kenna Haines), and Bishop Transition Committee (including our own Fred Fowler and David Fernald).
Mandala Ornaments and the Flower of Life: Friday, December 8, 4-5:30 pm. Discover how many of our most beloved Christian symbols derive from the ancient flower of life and make ornaments for your tree, to use as gift tags or to give to a friend. Whatever your age, if you can color, you can enjoy this workshop! Sign up on the bulletin board or see Linda Carleton.
Altar Guild Polishing: Come Vergers, Flower Guilders, Choir, Ushers and Greeters. Come people who sit near the back and those in the front. Bring an old t-shirt and join in the fun of polishing Cathedral treasurers. On Saturday, December 9th at 10am we will be polishing alms basins, and chalices and things you probably can’t even name. No sign up – just show up!
Interested in helping out in Sunday school? Come join us for our regular teacher’s meeting on Sunday, December 10 at 9:00 in the Sunday School resource room.
Maine POPS Christmas Concert to benefit St. Luke’s: The Maine POPS Concert Band is delighted to present a Christmas Concert at St. Luke’s, December 10 at 2:30 pm, featuring a wide variety of audience-friendly music that’s sure to have something for everyone! Selections will include Christmas and Hanukah favorites and special music for the season from from Carl Orff, Gustav Holst, Leroy Anderson, Rodgers & Hammerstein, and many more. The band includes St. Luke’s members Tom Wadsworth, Chuck Hornberger, and Ben Shambaugh. This is a free concert and a fundraiser, with all donations going to St. Luke’s.
Advent Evening of Refection: Join us after the community supper on Thursday, December 14 for a chance to reflect and share what it is that troubles us during this season of Advent as well as what give us hope and strength.
Advent Quiet Morning: Join us Saturday, December 23 from 8:30-11:30 in the Chapel. The morning will start with Morning Prayer and end with the of Noontime Prayer. In between will be time for contemplative prayer and meditation on scripture. Join us for some centering calm before the celebration of Christmas.
Thursday’s Theological Study group meets at 7 pm in the Chapter Room. We are delving into the theology of Paul Tillich’s The New Being and Anders Nygren’s Commentary on Romans. For more information, call Bob Hanson at 899-1131.
Stewardship Update: As of November 30, we have received 130 pledges for $316,024.16. For comparison, as of Dec. 4 last year, we had received 113 pledges for a total of $246,495.00. From the Stewardship Committee and the entire Cathedral community, heartfelt gratitude to those who have so enthusiastically responded to the Stewardship Campaign. And to those who have not yet pledged, please remember how important each pledge is to the continued health and growth of our beloved Cathedral. Pledge forms and additional information are available at the entrances or www.stlukesportland.org
Financial update-from the treasurer and finance committee: We are cautiously optimistic about year-end projections for 2017. Our expenses are under control, but our revenues are down. We need your help. If all can pay pledges in full by year end; if we can welcome newcomers to our glorious Advent and Christmas services and concerts, and if we avoid unnecessary expenditures, we will finish the year in the black. We do need everyone’s help to make this happen.
Holiday Fair Update: While numbers are still coming in, it looks like the fair will net around $11,000 – a record for St. Luke’s. Thank you Fair Chairs and Volunteers. Congratulations!
Mitten Collection: This year the Kneeler’s and Knitters will be combining with the mitten tree to collect warm hats, mittens, gloves, scarves and adult socks for clients of St Elizabeth’s Pantry as well as children at the Riche and East End Schools. We need both adult and children’s sizes, with socks specifically for adults only, men’s sizes. Thank you!
Christmas Pageant Information: In a change from the last few years, the pageant will be part of the 5 pm Christmas Eve service. All children and youth are invited to participate in either a speaking and non-speaking role. Rehearsals will be on Dec 10 and 17, after church and a final rehearsal at 4 pm on Christmas eve just before the service. On Dec 10, we will distribute scripts, practice the songs and generally organize ourselves. On Dec 17, we will distribute costumes and do a complete run through of the pageant. On Christmas eve we will have a dress rehearsal, please be dressed and in the Nave at 4 pm for that rehearsal. Please speak with Sarah Dowling, Pageant Director, if your child wishes to participate. We welcome children of friends and family, too! Sarah at firstname.lastname@example.org or 865-9768.
Interested in helping immigrants get a home? Supporting Immigrant Tenants (SIT), a program of Community Financial Literacy, is a new group in town with the mission of providing help to new Mainers with by using a revolving loan program for security deposits and running educational sessions on landlord-tenant issues. It is based at Hope Gateway, 185 High Street in Portland (899-2435). As security deposits are the number one request made to St. Luke’s during the week and as the amounts needed are far beyond what the Dean’s Discretionary Fund can provide, I am thrilled that St. Luke’s has used some of its community outreach money to help get the new program up and running. Recognizing St. Luke’s role as one of the founding partners, SIT has offered space for a St. Luke’s member to serve on their board. Please see me If you are interested in this important ministry of helping new immigrants get a place to live. – Dean Shambaugh