South West Norfolk Pastoral Charge...We Are Linked In LOVE!!

Whether you attend the Courtland United Church or Cultus United Church, you will be met with warmth and sincerity.  We are a 2 point charge known as the South West Norfolk Pastoral Charge. We welcome ALL to join us on Sunday mornings, or anytime...for worship and friendship! Under the loving and brilliant guidance of our Minister  Ted Smith, you will be enlightened and moved.

CULTUS UNITED CHURCH: Located at  748-6th Concession Road ENR, Cultus, Ontario            WORSHIPS on Sundays at  9:00am  

COURTLAND UNITED CHURCH: Located at 133 Talbot Street, Courtland, Ontario                   WORSHIPS on Sundays at 10:30am        

Our Mission Statement:   The South West Norfolk Pastoral Charge is called to be a Christian community empowered and inspired by the Holy Spirit and to follow the teachings of Jesus Christ.

CONTACT US:   EMAIL: swnpc@yahoo.ca                  Office Phone: 519-688-4050

OUR MAILING ADDRESS: South West Norfolk Pastoral Charge, P.O.Box 129, 119 Talbot Road, Courtland, On., N0J1E0

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CHECK US OUT ON FACEBOOK  

  https://www.facebook.com/pages/South-West-Norfolk-Pastoral-Charge/1607350796216192?sk=timeline

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                CHECK US OUT ON TWITTER:    https://twitter.com/SWNPC                 

Advent Upon Us

Advent is under way with the promises of Hope, Peace, Joy and Love. It marks the beginning of the new Christian Year..... the first scripture reading we engage in Advent this year is from Isaiah as the prophet proclaims:

"In the days to come the mountain of the Lord's house shall be established as the highest of the mountains... all the nations shall stream to it. Many people shall come and say, 'Come, let us go to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob. He will teach us his ways, so that we may walk in his paths.'  The law will go out from Zion, the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore. Come, O house of Jacob, let us walk in the way of the Lord."                                                                        (Isaiah 2: 2 - 5)

These are words of restoration and renewal and hope. And that gets to the very heart of Advent; Advent, new beginnings. God is ever creating in us and through us, and Isaiah's message foretells of a deliverance from a warring and oppressing world to a new world, and new ways of living that reveal God's vision for peace.

It's a prophetic vision that inspires us to better thoughts, actions and deeds. It's a vision that opens us up to new things and most importantly the new life that Jesus brings and offers to the world. Jesus coming to the world, God's love shared again and offered to the whole world. One of my favourite contemporary Christmas Hymns is entitled "Dream a Dream" (Shirley Erena Murray 1996). Here are some of the images offered:

"Dream a dream, a hopeful dream. Dream a time, this Christmas time, when no one's hungry or afraid; that weapons go and harvests grow, that friends are met and made. Dream a peace, our planet's peace, the greening of the earth at play, the holy ground, where life found, where God has touched the clay. Dream a gift, the Christmas gift that changes everything we see: the shimmering of angel wing, the Child, the Mystery"

Such hopeful words to describe such a beautiful story, God's love and glory revealed. As the season of Advent unfolds again my prayers for the world are that we will be able to slow down enough in the busyness of living to once again see the glory of God in the season; that we will witness and recognize God among us. May we see God in the compassion of those who tirelessly serve the poor; those who break down the barriers of prejudice; those who reach out in any way to share their gifts to make a positive difference in this world. May we see God close up and personal in our journey in worship, sharing of the scriptures, the eucharist, the music, all the building up to the glorious celebration of Christ's birth. Something new is coming, and God is bringing it. Let's ensure we respond to God's initiative that we might come to know even better the Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love that are beyond our understanding, but just might be illuminated for us when washed with the bright light of Christ.......

                    Come, all the world, let us walk in the way of the Lord! 

                                                           Yours in Christ's service.......       Pastor Ted.

South West Norfolk Pastoral Charge of The United Church of Canada
CULTUS  / COURTLAND UNITED CHURCHES

MINISTER: PASTOR TED (P.T.) SMITH

Music Leaders: Judy Dekorte /  Lynn Jennings / Gwen Booker

Office Administrator: Leslie Pettinger        Office Phone: 519-688-4050            Email: swnpc@yahoo.ca 


Sunday, December 8, 2019    Advent 3,  ~JOY SUNDAY~         

WE GATHER AS GOD’S BELOVED

GREETINGS AND WELCOME

CENTERING MOMENT AND COLLECT  

ADVENT CANDLE LITURGY: PEACE                                

SUNG RESPONSE: “Joy is a song that welcomes the dawn, telling the world that the Saviour is born. When God is a child there’s joy in our song. The last shall be first and the weak shall be strong, and none shall be afraid.” (VU# 7, verse 3 used with permission) 

PRAYER OF APPROACH: (Unison) We long for the day, gracious God, when water shall break forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert; when those who find themselves challenged will find their paths made easier. You have promised it. Help us to know that it can be real if we but open ourselves to you. Amen 

OPENING HYMN: “Joyful, Joyful We Adore You    VU# 232 

PRAYER OF RENEWAL: (Unison) In this Season of Advent, we are called to wait. Waiting is hard. We expect things instantly. We are very busy, and there is so much to do. Calm us down, O God. Help us to listen to the voices of this season. Help us to be open to Jesus coming into our lives in a new way. Help us to be patient with one another, and with ourselves. Hear us now, O God, as we pray in silence, asking for strength, for patience. (longer pause) 

WORDS OF ASSURANCE

God promises to be with us, always – to turn our deserts into gardens of blessing.

Let us be patient, therefore, and trust in God. Amen. 

MINUTE FOR MISSION

MISSION HYMN: “Living Christ, Bring Us Love”         VU# 599 

WE LISTEN

1st Testament Reading:          Isaiah 35: 1 - 10

Ministry of Music

Gospel Reading:                     Matthew 11: 2 - 11 

HYMN: “Jesus Shall Reign”                                           VU# 330 

MESSAGE: “The Blind See, the Deaf Hear, the Lame Dance” 

WE RESPOND

PRAYERS OF THANKSGIVING AND INTERCESSION

THE LORD’S PRAYER    

PRESENTATION OF OUR GIFTS

OFFERTORY: “Grant Us God the Grace of Giving”   VU# 540* 

CLOSING HYMN: “Joy is Now in Every Place”           VU# 45 

COMMISSIONING AND BENEDICTION *

CORAL CLOSING: “Joy is a song that welcomes the dawn, telling the world that the Savior is born. When God is a child there’s joy in our song. The last shall be first and the weak shall be strong, and none shall be afraid.” (VU# 7, verse 3, used with permission)

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The South West Norfolk Pastoral Charge is a faith community inspired and empowered by the Holy Spirit following the teachings of Jesus Christ and showing this by our deeds and our actions.