Dear friends of Holy Trinity Chico –

Blessings to you during this third week of Advent!

Last Sunday, we looked at Luke’s account of the shepherds in Luke 2:1-21, who heard the good news of Jesus’ birth, went to see for themselves the Christ child, then told others about what they had experienced. They serve as examples of how we too can share our faith in Jesus with others based on our personal experience of his presence in our lives. If you missed the message, you can check out the sermon outline and slides here and the recording here.

The theme for this Sunday, the fourth Sunday of Advent, is “worshipping.” We will consider this theme by considering the story of the magi: these wise men who came from the east to worship and give gifts to the child Jesus. If you are unable to attend the service in person, please tune in at 9am using this Zoom link.

The passcode is: 0404. We will also record the service, so you can watch the recording after it is posted the following week.

Our Christmas Eve service is just around the corner! Join us at 4pm on Friday, December 24 for this special family centered celebration of the Nativity with creative worship, music and the Christmas story, ending with a candlelight singing of “Silent Night.”

If you are looking for a bible study where you can connect relationally and grow spiritually, we’d love to have you join us on Tuesday nights from 7-8pm at the church building. We pray, fellowship and study John’s Gospel. This week, we are studying John 19. We also have Zoom setup for those unable to meet in person. Please use the following link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82177078238

Danielle Penne will be starting another women’s bible study starting January 3 and continuing for seven weeks (skipping Feb 14) until Feb 21. The study will be on Gideon’s courageous stand against a stronger enemy. Priscilla Shirer does the teaching via DVD. Runs 6:45 to 8:15. Sign up on the table in the lobby. For a one-minute teaser, click here.

We also have a prayer group that meets on Fridays at noon to pray for our nation, state, city and church and would love for you to join us! We are asking the Lord to expose evil, frustrate the plans of bad actors, raise up his church is strong, vocal faith and restore righteousness, integrity and love in our land. Join us at the church building from 12-1pm. All are welcome.

Thanks so much for your continued prayers for those in our body who face health issues, losses, financial difficulties and other challenges. Please be in prayer particularly for David Calkins (hip pain, walking), Larry Ruby (recent heart procedure), Lorraine Freeman, Lynn Mount’s mom (apparent stroke), Greg Pietz (recovery from hip surgery), Danielle Penne (healing for her leg), Sharon Anderson (long COVID), Keri Oliva (cancer), Kaylinn Hignell (cancer), Laine Dahlberg (premature baby), Nola Taylor (hospice care), Barbara Trimmer (medical issues) and James Johnson (cancer).

One final thing. You probably heard that our governor announced new statewide masking guidelines for indoor public spaces beginning December 15 and continuing through January 15. You can read the guidelines at the California Dept. of Public Health website here: https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/COVID-19/guidance-for-face-coverings.aspx  At the bottom of the CDPH webpage, you will notice that individuals are exempt from these guidelines who have a hearing impairment or a medical or mental health condition that makes mask wearing a possible health risk. Many of us fit in one of these categories.

We feel that each individual needs to determine their masking practices just as they would any other health care decision. We encourage you to prayerfully evaluate the benefits and drawbacks of masks, given your health needs, then make an informed decision that is best for you and your family. As a church, we will honor your choice. Meanwhile, let’s all continue to follow sensible practices like hand washing and self-isolating when symptomatic. And let’s extend grace to and be understanding of others who might feel differently than we do.

Worshipping the Word made flesh –

Tom