We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Sunday, December 22. 2019
If you're a Christian, when do you go to church on Christmas week?
It comes up because we "went to church" this morning with my father-in-law. We did indeed go, but they had canceled the early service today so we went to the diner instead and gave the waitress a big Christmas tip. We missed the memo. Mrs. BD and her Dad had 2 eggs benedicts; I had scrambled eggs and bacon.
When I was growing up (Congregationalist), we would often go on Christmas morning, sometimes to the candlelight service on Christmas Eve. Doing both is a real job for pastors, but they signed up for it. Our Congo church now only does Christmas Eve - 3 services. Pastor has a bunch of young kids.
I believe Roman Catholics still do a midnight Mass and a Christmas Day Mass.
A note at our favorite diner made it clear that they have planned a special Christmas Day meal, all day. That's really nice, especially for lonely people. Sweet friendly people work there. Greeks, mostly.
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I know some old school Methodist churches have a Christmas Eve service, but I didn't think most Protestants went to church for Christmas. We never did.
I've converted to Catholic in recent years, so of course, it's mandatory. My parish has two Christmas Eve vigils at 4:00, one traditional and one is the weirdo contemporary mass in the parish hall. Also, one at 6:30 that's contemporary and a very traditional midnight mass. I think 4:00 is a little early to be called a vigil, but I guess it's up to the bishop to decide such things.
We're going to the 4:00 vigil because midnight is too late for the little ones and we don't like mass with guitars. I call it the Dave Matthews Mass. The vigil fulfills the obligation for going to mass on Christmas.
Haven't been to communion since the new young feminist/minister handed the cup of wine and stated something like this: also let this wine remind us of the menstrual blood that is part of the life cycle. That's not an exact quote, but you get the message. My hope is that she has learned that that probably was not the best thing to say over the sacrament.
I lost my church in 2000. Too bad the new leaders of the Episcopal church (Sea/ORD) did not in fact believe in listening to their people--the new leadership just started forcing old ministers out, or taking over the properties.Buy into the homosexual as a victim of genetics or loose your church. A portent of things to come by the same crowd vis a vis our democracy. Funny to watch the same people now demanding impeachment of the president we elected. Just -- next step.
To answer your question I do my Christmas by using you tube to play the choir from the Anglican Cathedral in London, and reading from the old Book of Common Prayer for that day. Just me--my memories of a loving church before it was taken over by the mobsters, and having the words I know so well to read quietly. Keeping a loving heart toward all of my fellow humans has not been a challenge for me because I had a great little church with a wise, and loving minister. What has been hard for me is to accept the lies and the cruelty that came in to take over my religious tradition--straight out of a "turned" seminary.
Understand your pain. Our (Canadian) Anglican church is so far reasonably orthodox, but wonder when we'll have to kowtow to the new secular "wisdoms" or find ourselves stranded as the church leaves us.
We went to church Sunday - 4th Sunday in Advent. Christmas Eve, services were at 4:00 pm (children friendly) and 9:00 pm (candlelight and carols), with another service at 11:00 am Christmas Day. We chose 4:00 pm which was a very good service, albeit from the BAS (Book of Alternative Services) rather than the good old BCP>
BD, thanks to you and everyone else at Maggie's Farm for such a wonderful website.
Lutheran here, we did 10:30 church today, will do 5:30pm Christmas Eve service, as always. Blessings of the Christmas season to you and your family.
We often have tasks of one sort or another, and most Sundays are there for both services anyway. Never two whole services, even though one is traditional and one is contemporary, but making coffee and kid snacks, teaching Sunday School or going to adult class.
I joined the choir for Advent and Christmas for the first time since high school, so will be there for Monday service and Tuesday two of three services. We do still have an 11:00pm service, attended largely by the college kids and others returning to the nest for Christmas. Every few years we go to that, just to keep our hand in the game. We ordinarily go to only one Christmas Eve service.
Swedes attended church Christmas morning, "Var Halsad Skona Morgenstund," (All Hail to Thee, O Blessed Morn) but I don't think even the Lutherans have done that for years. I know the hymn and custom from family stories, not my own experience.
I like the nostalgia and the hymns, certainly, but we could get a lot of that at home. Both worship and gathering with the saints are commanded, and we are fortunate that we enjoy both anyway. There have been seasons we enjoyed it less because of conflicts or style, but we still went.
Makes me sad to read that, faculty wife, but i know only too well of what you speak. We went to the Lessons and Carols service at my erstwhile Anglican church this am. Our congregation separated from the Episcopal years ago. We had to leave the old 19th century era church building when we had to choose between the property and the faith itself.
I had begun the Episcopal as a young man on the run from a fundy church where i got a legit grounding in bible but missed the deeps. Then the pedos, gays and appeasers came out of the closet, and it's been all i can do to stay churched at all. Even now, it's been so squirreled around that i could barely sit still this morning. Then I realized that He is still willing to get crucified for and by us all every Sunday morning, and I recovered in spite of the janky guitars, jumbled readings and fumbled sermons. Not like it used to be or oughta be. The pastor informed us of a nifty 'app' we could get for daily office, as I groaned. That's enough Christmas services for me. It's almost enough to drive me back to the Orthodox Church I checked out and checked off the list a couple years ago. The Pope is wacked but in an unintended way i see his point, 'tho he puts a whole new spin on rigidity.
If these modern times can't kill the church, the gates of hell don't stand a chance.
I'll join you on youtube listening like true worshippers, dependent on grace.
"If in 1,800 years we clergy have failed to destroy the Church, do you really think that you'll be able to do it?"—Cardinal Ercole Consalvi to Napoleon Bonaparte, after the general had threatened to crush the Roman Catholic Church
Thank you mharko. I will turn toward you and extend my hand (or give you a hug) and say: "peace onto you." :-)
Merry Christmas to all,
Growing up Anglican, and most of our relatives and neighbors were too, my family used to do a Christmas eve party for families and friends, which ended only when many of our guests went to midnight mass at the cathedral. We were always too tired and had to clean up after the party. The highlight of the Christmas Eve party (and prior Thanksgiving dinner) was when we would do the loyal toast to the Queen. Somewhat in jest since we're half the world away and no one's family has actually been in England for well over a century, but customs always die hard and I enjoyed it.
The cathedral has basically gone pagan now with the New Thing religion, so I don't go to any Christmas stuff which is basically New Age about the solstice, etc. I generally try to listen to the Festival of Lessons and Carols service from King's College Cambridge while sitting at my desk at work, which here starts at 10 a.m.--that's my tradition fix.
Now go to a rather fundamentalist Bible church where Christmas is not a biggie, but Christmas Eve they are going to have an open air service in the courtyard of the local YWCA where we will sing (real) Christmas carols and light and hold real candles while we sing. (Banned from indoor churches because of the fire danger.) That sounds like heaven and I am praying the weather is good.
After church today (a low key pre-Christmas service) we picked up and took some visiting friends from Japan to brunch at the local diner (they had specifically wanted to eat "American food," ironically my wife and I generally eat Chinese or Korean food these days). Both my wife and I had the eggs benedict. With our Japanese friends, one ate a big old-fashioned hamburger and fries, and the other ate ham and eggs (food you would not normally get in Japan although of course they have Makudonarudos everywhere). One of them was somewhat dismayed by the portion size of his ham and eggs meal--"you could feed a whole family with this in Japan--ookii sugiru (too big)." Reminder that we take a lot of things for granted, we have a large bounty in our life we don't always appreciate.
My son and I stopped in a Mexican restaurant this week while Christmas shopping and were seated right next to a table with a young white guy and probaby his uncle. We could hear their conversation and the young man was just a couple days back from over a year in Japan. Obviously he was used to Japanese portions because he couldn't get over the extremely large spread on his table. He didn't know what to do with all of that food.
We go to a Methodist church and generally go to our usual 10:30 Sunday service during the week and we go to the 7:30 pm Christmas Eve service. It's a beautiful service where the lights are turned low at the end and we all light a candle.
Like you Mudbug we usually attend the Methodist Church but have fallen away due to the leftist pushing the modern ways in the church. We usually attend the 8:00 traditional Christmas Eve service where they light the candles and sing Silent Night at the end. Makes me cry every year. We moved recently and aren't very close to our old church so we have two days to figure out where we will go this Christmas Eve. As faculty wife said they are trying to ruin every old tradition and belief with their new found enlightenment. I doubt God is very pleased with the direction of many denominations.
Associate Reformed Presbyterians all, my family attended a traditional (our local congregation has no other type) service at 11:00 this morning. We listened to a seasonal sermon based on God's Word. We sang traditional carols. Last week was our annual festival of lessons and carols, a yearly departure from the normal order of worship and indescribable in its beauty. Tuesday night at the conclusion of Christmas Eve communion we will hold candles aloft (our fire codes must differ) as we close by singing Joy to the World. BTW, we ARPs are not to be confused with PCUSA, and our beliefs shouldn't be either.
Southern Baptist here but, grew up in a rural community where services alternated between the Baptist, PCA, and ARP. Sang a lot of songs out of that green backed hymnal.
I hear you on the branding thing. Don't confuse LCMS with ELCA, for many of the same reasons.
Perhaps the anti-candle thing is coming as much from the church insurance companies as the fire department:
Ecclesiastical Insurance Co.: we really don't want you to use candles in your church at Christmas
As a kid 40 miles to town over dirt roads—if I wanted to saddle up, I was welcome to go ahead. After we sold out and moved to the “city”, I had better ideas for a Sunday morning.
LCMS with a bunch of other Midwest transplants. Last Wednesday was the Choir carol festival (our director's new in-laws were taking them on a cruise this week). Yesterday was regular service. Christmas Eve it's 7:30 candlelight, then 10:00 Christmas Day. Sunday we go to one service (usually the lowest-attended of the year) for Martyrs.
Last year went to the 6:00 "Contemporary" service at the request of Mrs. Dan, and when about the fourth person walked in with Hawaiian shirt and flip-flops, I turned to her and said "I've made a decision."
She responded "I agree" before I could even get out that we weren't doin it again this year.
Tp me there's just something about going that casual that makes people not take things seriously.
I don't think that's a solid way to judge people's seriousness. I know folks who give almost 20%, have adopted special needs children, volunteer to teach Bible or Sunday School classes and visit the grouchy sick and elderly that no one else wants to, who would wear hawaiian shirts and flipflops to service. Though hardly ever at Christmas, because it is New Hampshire.
As for style of music (this to the thread in general, not Dan), I have led worship under a few formats for a small congregation, and it is difficult. I find that I am grateful for any music provided for me by others, because I don't have to choose it, rehearse it, and try to get a polite, respectable congregation to get their heads up from mumbling into their hymnals. And then hear them complain about how much better it all was in the old days.
Our Catholic parish has a Christmas Eve mass (the vigil mass), a midnight mass (sung high mass, in Latin, by candlelight), and a Christmas day mass. As hidebound traditionalists, we go to the midnight, of course.
A “real job”???
In Orthodoxy, there are nine services during Holy Week and the last one starts at 10:30 p.m. that Saturday and ends at 1:30 a.m. and is followed by a feast.
My wife and I are United Methodist and our church has a Christmas Eve candle lighting service, and no service on Christmas Day (even if it falls on a Sunday). We essentially run our small, semi-rural church and are of a like mind with our pastor. The service is as traditional as Methodists get (Communion,Creed, and Lectionary every Sunday). We have eschewed most of the electronic gimmickry that many churches have adopted, mainly because we don't have the people or money.
Not sure what will happen to us after the almost inevitable split next year between the progressive and traditional factions. Our area of the country is a bastion of the progressive faction, and not sure how much longer we can keep our head down and hide.