25 December 2022

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24 December, 2022

“She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” Mat 1:21


 Today is Christmas Day. Though not the actual day today we celebrate God’s love in the birth or incarnation of Jesus when he became human being over 2000 years ago. At the same time it is more than just an historical event and we celebrate the ongoing presence of Jesus within our lives, and we also celebrate the future promise that he will come again. If that wasn’t enough It is also the last Sunday of the year and so a time to reflect upon 2022, the year that was. As much as COVID was still with us, for Emmanuel I think 2022 has been defined by the Story  The whole of Church Study that is taking us through God’s story in the bible  Our small groups have been revitalized as people have engaged in the story and come to a better understanding of God’s big plan for the world. Our Sunday School, boys and girls brigade, YDG, even Playgroup and Tiny Town have all joined us on this journey in their own way and level. We will be continuing the story in 2023. It is a fantastic series. However like anything we do the programs and activities are only a means to engage with the most important part of our church. You. People are the most important part of Emmanuel and 2022 has proved that once again. As we rebound from COVID, people have been more careful of their own health and well-being. That makes the effort of our many volunteers even more amazing. Thank you for those who have led small groups, youth activities, the Brigades, Sunday School and playgroup. We are blessed by those who go into the schools either teaching CRE or as Kids Hope mentors. The feedback from them, and from the students and school shows its impact. We are blessed by those who maintain our property and keep everything operational, ordering supplies, volunteering in the office, serving through Community helping Hand, tidying the buildings and grounds, cleaning, managing bookings, the list is endless. And in that we have the blessing, and the challenge. There are so many people serving but there is always more that could be done. Thank you to all of those who play their part, and if you would like to be more involved please let me know. One can not reflect upon the year without giving thanks for the Church Council, and particularly its executive, to Nathan and Chris, and Ross. We particularly thank Ross and Kristy who have concluded their term on Council and will not be a part of Council for 2023.  Thanks to Jess and Dom who have filled so many gaps and organised so many of our activities and groups. We have been richly blessed. As we look to next year I am excited about what it holds and the potential that it can bring. We praise God for this journey that he takes us on.           God Bless,    Brian

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18 December 2022

Front and Centre

When I was younger there was a campaign about keeping the Christ in Christmas. It was about using Christmas rather than Xmas when we write about Christmas. For more and more people Christmas is more about celebration and party and holiday rather than a gift from God to save the world. But it did get me thinking, where is Christ and Jesus in our Christmas, in our celebrations, and even further where is Jesus in our lives? As we get caught up in the hustle and bustle of Christmas, of preparing for Church and family events, as well as the end of year parties do we lose sight of the reason for the season. Does Jesus actually get pushed to the back seat, or even out of the car as we try and fit everything else in? If you can take some time this week to reflect upon what Christmas means for you and what Jesus means to you and how do we reflect that in how we celebrate over this festive season. As we celebrate the birth of Jesus some 2000 years ago (give or take a few years) we are also celebrating the Jesus who comes alive when we make a decision to follow him. Jesus comes into the world at Bethlehem but he also comes into the world each day as we connect and rely and turn to him. But wait there is more because Christmas is also about the future hope that Jesus will come again to reign over the world. And so at Christmas we celebrate the past, present and future incarnation of Jesus. How good is that? So please allow yourself some time to reflect upon this big picture stuff as you open presents and eat ham and prawns. Allow yourself space to spend time with Jesus, and to grow in that direction this Christmas give yourself the space to celebrate the reason for the season.

God Bless,

BrianGod Bless,

Brian

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11 December 2022 Emmanuel Events

What's happening at Emmanuel

Sunday 11 December 11.30am Church Council break-up

Sunday 11 December 4pm Service of Solace

Saturday 17 December 9-11am Christmas Art Event

Sunday 18 December 5pm food, 6pm Community Carols service

Tuesday 20 December Carols singing to shut-ins

Sunday 25 December 8am Christmas Day service

Sunday 1 January Start of summer services.

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