First Third Conversations

Getting Lost in the Holidays

A blog post by Rachel Schwenke

Last Sunday, as I was attending to the craziness of Sunday mornings with youth and parents gathered round, I lost track of my 3 year old daughter Lily at church. At first, I just assumed she was playing with the other kids in the lobby or dining hall. Then I broadened the search to include my office, the youth room, and the reception area, where there is candy to tempt her. I hoped she wasn’t playing in the sanctuary and falling into the baptismal (again)! I recruited

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Christmas and December 26th

A blog post by Brigette Weier

At the beginning of December every year, alongside bills, advertisements, endless catalogs, and credit offers, we start to receive Christmas cards from family, friends, and people we can't remember how we know. It's always fun to get anything other than bills, so going to the mailbox takes on the air of a mini retreat in my day. But there is always one piece of mail that comes in the midst of in those cheery -- albeit somewhat self-aggrandizing reminders of how cute

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Why Worship during Advent

Advent WreathA blog post by Timothy Siburg

Image Credit: Advent Wreath by Chris Wolff on Flickr

The Centrality of Worship

Worship is central to the church’s practice and understanding of who it is. We worship to praise and give thanks to God. In worship we join together as the body of Christ in song and the Word. We remember God’s promises and receive God’s promise of forgiveness and reconciliation.

It is important to worship in Advent as it is throughout the year. Advent, though, is a particular

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Immanuel

By Julie Hagen

Christmas is quickly approaching and the to-do list that might otherwise stress me out, seems somewhat insignificant this year.  Instead of finishing my end of year budget at work and wrapping gifts at home, I’ve been reading stories of children, teachers and administrators whose lives were all cut too short.  Our lives have been rocked by the death of those 20 innocent children and 6 adults in Newtown, CT. 

Earlier this week, Terri wrote a powerful

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