Season of Advent joyous at Jefferson Street UMC

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 7, 2019

The season of Advent is underway, and Christians all over Natchez are celebrating the hope, peace, joy and love of God in these four weeks leading up to Christmas Day.

At Jefferson Street United Methodist Church, we are anxiously awaiting the coming of Christ as we honor this liturgical tradition.  Each Sunday in December, one of our church families will be lighting the candles on the Advent wreath.

At Jefferson Street UMC, we are rather traditional in our worship.  We use hymnals when we sing to the Lord, accompanied by Dr. Peter Bundgard on our beautiful pipe organ. We wear robes in the chancel area, have dedicated youth acolytes, and our pastor, the Rev. Bill Barksdale, proclaims the good news behind a wooden pulpit that is more than 150 years old.

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But though we have a high regard for our church tradition, we also have a high priority for hospitality.  All are welcome to worship and fellowship at JSUMC, even if it has been a while since you last came through the doors of a sanctuary.

We demonstrate our welcoming spirit by offering a delicious full breakfast every Sunday morning starting at 8:30 a.m. in the Christian Life Center. Once you have tasted Bobby Hall’s homemade gravy on a fresh biscuit, we know you will be hooked.

Today, Dec. 8, join us for worship at 10:30 a.m. as our adult handbell choir rings two familiar carols and our smaller children follow in their footsteps by ringing “Still, Still, Still.”

Students from the studio of Kathleen Mackey King will join JSUMC 4th-6th graders in singing “Angels We Have Heard on High.” Following worship, our children will enjoy lunch and an Advent workshop in the CLC from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

On Wednesday night, Dec. 11, we will enjoy the “Brothers in Christ” bluegrass gospel trio of Nathan Cobb, Lewis Smith, and Johnny Dillon from 6-6:45 p.m. Please be our guest for supper at 5:15 p.m. in the CLC.

Thursday night through Saturday night (Dec. 12-14) from 5:30-8 p.m., our youth will be out on the corner of Jefferson and Union Street, depicting a Live Nativity scene that poignantly reminds us of the journey Mary and Joseph made to Bethlehem.

Next Sunday, Dec. 15, our Chancel Choir will sing a Christmas Cantata that is guaranteed to keep your spirit full of Christ’s love.

“Keep the light of Christmas aglow, sharing hope and goodwill as you go, spreading peace on earth in all that you do, let the light of Christmas shine in you,” are the words that open next week’s cantata. The cantata is entitled “The Light of Christmas,” and will feature songs such as “An Advent Credo,” “In the Bleak Midwinter,” “Angels are Making Their Rounds,” and Michael W. Smith’s “All Is Well.”

The cantata is always such a blessing for me personally and I know that it will touch you as well.  The choir is made up of 25 volunteers who rehearse many hours in preparation for this worship service.

Indeed, all are welcome to Jefferson Street during the wonderful season of Advent.

Curt Smith is director of music at Jefferson Street United Methodist Church in Natchez.