We are in the middle of Advent, the season of the “in between” times. In between the first coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, taking human form “God with us” more than two thousand years ago and his expected second coming, which we celebrate with Christmas, when we commemorate his birth.
Scripture teaches us that each of us as individuals and all of us together as a community are to wait actively for the return of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Being his hand and feet on earth. Building his Kingdom here and now. All of us. That includes our children and our young people.
Summer Vacation Programme:
The Advent season in December is also a period of waiting in the school calendar, when the summer vacation starts. As a parish we embarked on a Summer Vacation Programme for the children of our parish and their friends. This week from Monday till Friday, every day from 7h30 till 18h00, the children in the age of 6 years and older, participate in a full and stimulating programme that aims to make them experience God and each other, while learning to express themselves in art, music, dance and drama. We take them on a nature excursion (due to the rain we took them to Monte Casino Bird Park in stead of the Rietvlei Nature Reserve as we had planned) and a cultural experience (the National Children’s Theatre).
The youth of our parish from 16 years and older are coordinating and facilitating this programme. They plan the activities, help the children and do the chores to make the programme run smoothly. As such, this is also a leadership development programme, as our youth is exposed to taking responsibility for activities and for the children in their care.
I am happy that St Monnica’s University, the youth ministry that was launched earlier this year, is well represented in our group of leaders this week. All in all we hope to instil both with the children and the youth of our parish, love for the church. Love for the values of the church. Love for the Lord whose second coming we are awaiting this period and whose Kingdom we are trying to build here, now and in the future through our young people and children.
Tomorrow, Friday 13 December 2019 is the last day of the Summer Vacation Programme and the children will show off what they did and learned this week at the Concert and Exhibition, which starts at 18h00 in the church hall. All parishioners are invited. Come and see what our children and youth accomplished and enjoy some Christmas Carol singing.
The Bible Challenge 2020:
Don’t forget that St Monnica’s parishioners and their friends are being challenged to read the entire Bible in 1 year in 2020. Participants will be supported by daily comments, questions and a prayer from over 100 theologians and biblical scholars from the worldwide Anglican communion. And the clergy and lay ministers of the parish will support you throughout the year as well. The registration process is open until the last Sunday of Advent (22 December). Please register the welcome desk on Sunday or contact the office for a registration form. You are reminded that you may bring the Bible you will be using to Church to be blessed between now and the 22nd of December 2019.
Let us wait actively this Advent with our children and youth and preparing for a daily encounter with Scripture next year, so we can continue to build the Kingdom of our Lord on earth.
Yours in Christ as always,