for Advent 2014: The Feel of Waiting


The short season of Advent is rich in liturgy and text.  The setting and worship space call us to the season of anticipation in a variety of ways.  One way to engage with the season is to fill the baptismal font with objects that call out themes in the day’s scripture readings.  (These objects could also be set to the side of the font, on a stand, if replacing the water in the font is not desired.)  Placing something new in the baptismal font engages lesser-used senses like smell and touch, and brings attention to the lectionary readings in a new way.

Sunday Scripture Object
Advent 1,
November 30
Mark 13:24-37:  “Keep alert” Lit candles
Advent 2,
December 7
Isaiah 40:1-11:  “In the wilderness”
Mark 1:1-8:  John the Baptist
Advent 3,
December 14
Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11:  “A garland instead of ashes” Pine needles
Advent 4,
December 21
2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16:  “A house of cedar”
Psalm 89:1-4, 19-26:  “God the rock of my salvation”
Cedar chips or stones

Continue reading “for Advent 2014: The Feel of Waiting”

for Advent: Prayers of the People stations


The “Christmas season” (between Thanksgiving and Christmas) is a frantic time.  Families are coordinating travel, stores are packed from open to close, and budgets and patience are stretched as we try to find the perfect gift for everyone on our list.

During Advent 2012, Light of the World Lutheran Church (in Dakota County, Minn.) turned the Prayers of the People into prayers by the people.  Small decorated tables were set up throughout the worship space to encourage reflective prayer.

We can invite worshippers into a time of rest and peace by creating space during the Prayers of the People for quiet reflection, guided meditation, and focused prayer. Continue reading “for Advent: Prayers of the People stations”

for Advent: Community-Made Icon

During Advent 2012, the community of Light of the World Lutheran Church worked together to craft an icon, made of cut-up Christmas ads.  The idea came from House for All Sinners and Saints in Denver:

HFASS Advent Icon

“This is the icon we created during liturgy over the 4 weeks of Advent. Every piece of this is from ‘Christmas’ ads: circulars, catalogs and all that junk that comes in the mail and the newspaper. We created 1/4 of it each week. An Artist in the community traced the image onto poster board indicating what color should go in each shape. People ages 6-65 cut out the right color from the ads and glued it in the space. Easy and subversive.” (Nadia Bolz-Weber, Sarcastic Lutheran, December 29, 2008)

During the Christmas season, we are bombarded with the idea that we don’t have enough.  This activity is meant to call us to remember what we’ve already been given. Continue reading “for Advent: Community-Made Icon”