Joy by Candlelight

by Rev Robert A Wendel

It is Christmas Eve in the Year of our Lord 1800. First Lady Abigail Adams is carefully placing a holly wreath and a single white candle in each window of the new Presidential Mansion. The uncompleted White House would be the home she shared with her husband John,  young country’s elected leader. Just a month before, on the first night under roof, the happy couple prayed together:

“O Lord, in Thy Name, we dedicate this house. We invoke Thy blessing upon all who now and hereinafter shall dwell here. May none there but a good and wise man ever rule under beneath its roof.” During WWII, FDR had these lines carved into the mantle of the State Dining Room.

Just as President and Mrs. Adams felt joy over the arrival of another Christmas holiday, so should we. That first year in the nation’s official residence was a difficult one. The streets of the capital were muddy carriage paths, conflicts were brewing all over Europe and felt on this side of the Atlantic. President Adams’ election was very bitter one. Some wondered if bad feelings would be forgotten.

Words in carols like — “Peace on earth, good will toward men” — seemed out of place in such a bloody world.” In the USA, Adams was told that something must be done or our Christmas religion would die.

Over the years the human situation has not changed much. There are still young people enjoying the excitement of living in new places, trying out new ideas in a world with plenty of wars, bitterness, and misunderstandings. For more than Twenty Centuries, Christmas has come again giving believers the chance to light simple candles in the darkness as reminders of the hope of Jesus.

The sight of holiday candles on Christmas Eve 2016 will lift both our hearts and excite our spirits, serving to remind you and me that Yuletide seems to come just when we need it most. For one hour, leave your burdens and worries at the door and join us on December 24th.”   There are many ways to think and do for others during December 2016. Consider supporting at least one of the community opportunities encourage by our church. Dec. 9th and Dec. 16th we offer a community luncheon and our deacons will hold our men’s breakfast on Saturday, December 10th at 8:00