- 9:30am: Prayer for our Church
- 9:45am: Sunday School
- 10:55am: Worship
- 3:00pm: After-School Tutoring
- 5:30pm: Wednesday Night Dinner
- 6:15pm: Wednesday Night Program
- 7:00pm: Choir Practice
You have been faithful in our call to offer hospitality to the homeless, and we’ve almost reached the half way point in paying for our new wheelchair lift. We continue to need your help in paying off this expense, which allows us the ability to welcome handicapped folks into our Fellowship Hall. While we have used some of our reserve funds to allow us to order the lift (which should be installed in the next few weeks), we really want to pay those funds back, so PLEASE make a donation to help with this important project. For more information on the installation, see Carnes Flatt.
The folks at bustedhalo.com have put together a great little video to help folks understand Advent. Check this out if you've been confused about the meaning of this season.
Last spring in the wake of the Lent and Easter season, I found myself pretty worn out. I was still going through the motions of ministry, but soul felt dry and I needed a break. Luckily, several weeks earlier, I had followed through on a desire that I had been carrying for many years to spend some time at the Saint Meinrad's Archabbey, a Benedictine monastery in Southern Indiana. So the day after Easter, I pointed the Corolla north and made my through Kentucky into the rolling hills of Indiana.
It was a formative week for me in many different ways, but perhaps the most important thing I experienced during my time at Saint Meinrad's was participating in the daily prayer times with monks of the Abbey. Monastic communities are a church tradition going back to at least the 4th century. They arose in the desires of faithful persons who withdrew from normal life to the deserts of Egypt in their search for God. Over time these "desert fathers and mothers" would gather together in communities focused around the Godly life, and the practice of prayer. Prayer became the first priority of these communities, and monks today continue to pray according to a schedule of "divine hours" which involves gathering together anywhere from 5 - 8 times daily for communal prayer. It was this practice that I experienced and came to love at Saint Meinrad's.
Every morning I would awaken between 4:30 and 5:00 a.m. to get dressed and ready for the "morning office" (also known as Matins and Lauds). Then I would make my way into the grand and gothic Archabbey Church, sometimes sitting in the dark until the bells began to ring and the monks arrived for prayer. We would then pray together, using the Psalms as our guide. The monks would be chanting the prayers according to a simple musical system, and then would read three complete Psalms responsively. It was a structured time, but I found it to be a holy time when God seemed near. Most important, the gathering of a community for prayer both held me accountabile to the practice, but also helped me to recognize that I am not engaged in the life of faith on my own, but rather in a community of love and support.
In comparing monastery notes with a community friend a few weeks ago, we both quickly recognized the longing for a similar experience in "the village." I recognized that this form of prayer isn't for everyone, but it offers and structured and communal means of connecting to God, and so we agreed to give it a shot, to gather at 6:30 a.m. every morning to pray a single daily office.
Trust me, our prayer time is based on the monastic tradition, but it isn't a slave to it. We have our own unique Old Hickory spin, but we've rooted what we are doing on the praying of the Psalms and offering up prayers for one another and our community. It's a short service -- 20 minutes or so -- but it draws on the ancient traditions to help a new generation of folks connect to the holy.
I hope you will come check out our prayer time some time during the Advent season, or maybe even commit to joining us on Monday through Fridays.
In doing so, I believe that you too will come to see the value of prayer in community.
Did you know that it is only 10 weeks until Christmas? Halloween is next week and Thanksgiving is just around the corner which means that the season of Advent is knocking on the door. We are getting ready for the season and here are some important dates to get on your calendar:
Sunday, November 27
The Sunday following Thanksgiving is the first Sunday in Advent (New Year’s Day in the Christian calendar!!) and we will be entering the season with our Hanging of the Greens Worship Service. That afternoon from 3-5 p.m. Kay Hereford Voorhees will be hosting a special Advent devotional “cut and paste” experience for folks of all ages as a way of getting ready for the season.
Saturday, December 3
This is the busiest day of the entire season!!! We begin that morning with our annual Breakfast with Santa event for the entire community. That evening will feature the Old Hickory Village Christmas Tree lighting followed by the Swinging for the Kids community dance to benefit the Christian Community Outreach Center. You won’t want to miss ANY of these events!!!!
Saturday, December 24
We’ll be hosting two Christmas Eve services, a kid friendly service at 5 p.m. and the traditional Candlelight and Communion at 11 p.m.
Sunday, December 25
Close on Christmas? Not this church! Plan on celebrating the birth of Jesus in word and song at our 10:50 a.m. Christmas worship service. We WILL be canceling Sunday School though.
The economic climate continues to be bleak for many, and the demand for food boxes at the Christian Community Outreach Center has been heavy, already depleting the bounty received through the Post Office Food Drive. Both cash and food donations are needed to help meet the needs of our community. Please feel free to make your donations here at OHUMC and we will make sure they are passed on to the Outreach Center.
Current Food Needs:
instant mashed potatoes
corn muffin mix
small cans chicken and dumplings
assorted canned beans
OHUMC is dependent on the donations of its members and friends to carry on the work of Christ in the Old Hickory area. We appreciate those who love the church and believe in what we are doing, and want to offer them a means of supporting our ministries financially online. Please click on the button above to make your donation.
(All online processing services charge a small fee to process your donation. This fee comes to around $3 per $100 donated and we ask you, if you are willing and able, to include the cost of processing in your donation. Thank you.)