THIRD SUNDAY OF ADVENT
A note of joyful expectation marks today's worship. Isaiah announces that the desert shall rejoice and blossom. Jesus points to signs of God's reign: the blind see, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear. We wait with patience for the coming of the Lord, even as we rejoice at his presence among us this day: in word and holy supper, in church and in our homes, in silent reflection and in works of justice and love. We pray that God would open our eyes and ears to the wonders of Christ's advent among us.
THIS SUNDAY AT ST. MARK'S
6:30 am - Interfaith Shelter - Auditorium
9:00 am - Holy Communion with Children's Time - Sanctuary
9:45 am - Sunday SchoolSunday - School Room
10:00 am - Confirmation - Youth Room
10:00 am - Adult Forum: Christians in the Land of the Holy One - Auditorium
10:00 am - Refreshments and Fellowship Hour - Heritage Hall
11:00 am - Choral Eucharist Worship Service - Sanctuary
12:15 pm - Refreshments and Fellowship Hour - Heritage Hall
12:15 pm - Palestine: Unlimited Photo Exhibit - Heritage Hall
3:00 pm - Sunset Youth Orchestra Concert - Sanctuary
5:00 pm - Interfaith Shelter - Auditorium
ADULT FORUMS - DIG DEEPER INTO "PALESTINE: UNLIMITED"
This Sunday: "Christians in the Land of the Holy One"
Join us for a discussion with The Rev. Mark Stanger of Grace Cathedral, who lived in Jerusalem for over two years working on behalf of the Episcopal Church.
Next Sunday: "Palestinian Christians: Lost in World Events?"
The Rev. Mitri Raheb of Christmas Lutheran Church in Bethlehem will participate in a video conference with Dr. James Zogby, advisor to the President on Middle Eastern Affairs. They will talk about Christianity in the Holy Land and challenges to its future there.
Forums will resume on Jan. 8.
PREPARE ST. MARK'S FOR CHRISTMAS!
Join in the merriment on Saturday, December 17, from 9 AM until 12 noon, as we prepare St. Mark's for the Christmas season. With your help, we'll put the trees in place and decorate them that morning. Shepherds, Wise Ones, and Angels are welcome to lend a hand - or some myrrhth - after they've rehearsed their pageant roles!
We also need volunteers to help with the lighting at our 7:00PM and 10:30PM Christmas services and to read a lesson or serve as an Assisting Minister. Please contact Pr. Elizabeth if you can help! Thank you!
2017 PLEDGE CARDS
Two weeks ago we celebrated our Forward in Faith - Lifted by Love 2 campaign with a thanksgiving meal and fellowship.
We invite you to return your completed pledge card. You can place it in the offering plate, mail it to the church office, or pledge online via the St. Mark's website: www.stmarks-sf.org
Your pledges will enable St. Mark's leaders to make decisions regarding expanding or decreasing areas of ministry in 2017.
For example, we are planning to call a new Associate Pastor in 2017 - your pledge will support the salary of this gifted and talented pastor.
Thank you for turning in your pledges and for your generosity in giving throughout the year!
SPIRITUALITY AND AGING: COPING WITH THE HOLIDAYS
Join Pr. Tita and Pr. Elizabeth on Mondays, Dec. 5 and 12, from 11:00 - 12:00 for supportive conversation and strategizing about dealing with the holidays and the "December Blues".
Everyone welcome - especially seniors! Location is in Brockie Lounge of the Martin Luther Tower apartment complex.
SEEKING CHURCH COUNCIL NOMINEES
The Nominating Committee (Marisa Lee, Mark Semonian, Suzanne Smith, Pr. Elizabeth) seeks St. Mark's members with a love for ministry and an interest in leadership to serve on Church Council in the upcoming year. Please contact Marisa Lee (email@example.com, 650-303-3111) if you would like to learn more about Council service and explore running for Church Council during the annual meeting in January.
VOLUNTEER FOR THE INTERFAITH SHELTER
St. Mark's will be participating in the San Francisco Interfaith Council Winter Shelter program and will be hosting Dec. 10th - Dec. 17th and Jan. 15th - Feb. 4th.
Please consider volunteering for this very worthwhile ministry. Volunteers will be needed to serve at both Breakfasts and Dinners. Please contact John Elford at 415-490-7966 or firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to participate in this ministry, which helps so many people in need at this time of the year.
On Dec. 24 and 25, St. Mark's nursery care is closed. Parents can use the nursery on their own but must remain with their children in the nursery. Nursery care will resume on Jan 1 and is available from 8:30 - 1:30 pm.
MOSAIC TELEVISION SHOW WITH PR. ELIZABETH - DEC. 18
Tune into KPIX (channel 5) at 5:00 am as Pastor Elizabeth interviews members of the Greek Orthodox clergy from the Ascension Cathedral in Oakland.
Father Tom Zaferes and Father Ninos Oshaana shares with Pr. Elizabeth their passion and stories about serving as Greek Orthodox priests. Don't miss this opportunity to learn more about orthodoxy and this particular congregation in Oakland.
NEW JOURNEYS IN FAITH GROUP STARTING IN THE NEW YEAR
All are invited to join this newest group of Journeys in Faith. Take advantage of this opportunity and set aside time this winter and Lent for faith reflection and renewal. Together, we journey to Easter, learning more about our faith and faith community. And, together we consider and prepare for joining St Mark's, being baptized, or affirming our baptism. Weekly meetings begin Sunday, January 8th. If you are interested or have questions, contact Liv Beck (email@example.com) for more information.
WE HAVE TWO GIVING OPPORTUNITIES FOR ST. MARK'S MEMBERS DURING THE CHRISTMAS SEASON. PLEASE CONSIDER SUPPORTING THE FAMILIES OF GRACE LUTHERAN IN RICHMOND AND THOSE FAMILIES LIVING IN BERNAL GATEWAY APARTMENTS.
BERNAL GATEWAY CHRISTMAS PARTY, DEC. 15
Bernal Gateway is an apartment complex located in the Mission District in which our own Lutheran Social Services provides support services for the families of this complex.
St. Mark's members are invited to donate wrapped toys for children between 6-14 years of age. Take a tag from the GivingTree and return the gift by Dec. 15 either by placing the gift under the tree or bringing the gift to the church office (located at 1031 Franklin St.).We need 25 gifts for the children of Bernal Gateway apartments.
Other donated items that would be appreciated are Family Gift baskets which would include Christmas Candy, Movie Gift Cards, or Grocery Gift Cards. Please mark these baskets for Bernal Gateway and place them under the Giving Tree or bring to the church of ce by Dec. 15. Many thanks for your generosity during the Christmas season.
CHRISTMAS GIVING TREE MORE THAN SHARING
Last year, one way of living out the Christmas spirit of sharing was through a giving tree. Cards with names of girls and boys and their ages from Grace Lao Lutheran Church in Richmond, one of our synod's mission church, were hung on the giving tree for us to pick and be able to buy appropriate gifts. We gathered and shared more than 30 gifts with these children who received them with excitement. Pastor Doris Ng and the congregational leadership expressed their deep appreciation. But the most exciting part of this ministry is its mutuality. We also received their gift to us: joy. Our giving tree is more than about sharing, it is about building relationship in Christ and strengthening a community of hope amidst a city with high poverty rate and unemployment are prevalent.
We share in partnership with the Grace Lao community outreach in their neighborhood. As our siblings in Christ, we are happy to receive their gifts to us again this year as we participate generously in our Christmas GivingTree. We will gather gifts until Dec. 18. This ministry is truly an exchange of gifts. Contact Pastor Tita for more information.
WORSHIP LEADERS THIS SUNDAY
Director of Music...Dr. Timothy Zerlang
Assisting Ministers...Liv Beck (9); John Barton, Phil Krikau (11)
Lectors...Suzanne Smith (9); Cory Schoolland (11)
Chalice Bearers...Steve Ernst, Nadine Robinson (11)
Acolytes...Linda Jackson, Clovis Curl (11)
Sacristan and Altar Guild...Richard Boyle, Ed Chitty
Ministry of Welcome...Viknesh Silvalingam, Rachel Letchumanan (11)
Coffee Hour Chair...John Elford, Marge Okuley, and Hiroko Nagata Next Week's Coffee Hour Chairs...Donna Dindia and Chuck Lewis
PRAYERS OF THE PARISH
Debbie Brant & Ted Bernardi
Natalie E. Bock
Lee & Irma Opitz
Tim Selander and family
LaVonne Strutz, mother of Geri Bailey
Pastor Rebecca Swee
For Seminarian John Barton completing his teaching parish time at St. Mark's
For the St. Mark's Call Committee interviewing pastoral candidates
For the victims of the fire in Oakland
For all military personnel, especially Will Lehmann in Afghanistan
For the growing families of St. Mark's, especially those who hope for and those who are expecting children
For the Kigali Parish of the Lutheran Church of Rwanda
For the Cordero de Dios congregation in El Salvador
For our Missionary, Pastor Kate Warn,YAGM coordinator in Rwanda For all Christians in the Holy Land, especially Bethlehem
For the people of the Singapore, Indonesia, East Timor
For the Kindergarten Cynthia Espinoza in Paraguay
For MLT Residents who are hospitalized or in hospice care
Every effort is made to keep the Prayers of the Parish current.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to add, remove or update
a name on the prayer list.