Big Band Christmas with the Emerald City Big Band

Big Band - Charles

 

Emerald City Big Band
28th Annual Christmas Concert
Friday, December 15th, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
 
There is no better way for the family to hear the exciting and beautiful sounds of the holidays than enjoying live big band music. Greenville’s own Emerald City Big Band will be performing their annual Big Band Christmas Concert at St. James United Methodist Church Christian Life Ministries Center.  Adult donation at the door ($10),  youth/students free.
 
This concert celebrates the Emerald City Big Band’s 27th year of presenting holiday music to the Greenville audience.  The band’s twenty-two musicians will present a program of holiday instrumental  favorites. Vocalists Emery Davis, RaSheeda Waddell, and Ed Wheatley will sing. Christmas cookies, coffee and tea will be provided free during intermission.
 
Big Band Christmas
 


Moravian Lovefeast

 
On Sunday, December 17 at 6:00pm, St. James UMC will celebrate a traditional Moravian Lovefeast.  This traditional gathering which has its roots in the Moravian Church celebrates special occasions by sharing a simple meal with friends and brings to life the true meaning of unity, liberty and love for all who participate.
 
Year after year we look forward to the moment when the lights are dimmed and the trays of candles are unveiled. Made of pure beeswax – symbolizing purity – for 200 years, the illumination of these candles washes over one like a cleansing wave.
Plan now to celebrate the birth of Christ through this powerful and simple service.

 

 

P1270610

A History of the Moravian Lovefeast

December unwraps the spirit of the season in a medley of holiday traditions. For those seeking a diversion from the abundance of common holiday feasts and festivals, North Carolina offers an alternative unique to the southeast – the Moravian Lovefeast. This custom of celebrating special occasions by sharing a simple meal with friends brings to life the true meaning of unity, liberty and love for all who participate. It’s a tradition with beginnings rooted in the Moravian Church and appropriately named for the essence it embodies – Lovefeast literally translates to “agape,” the purest love, spiritual and selfless. The first Lovefeast took place in Germany in 1727 following the renewal of the Moravian Church. November 17, 1753 marks the arrival of the first Moravian colonists to Wachovia, North Carolina – the area known today as Winston-Salem. It was on this evening in the settlement of Bethabara that the Lovefeast tradition was celebrated anew in America.

The Lovefeast has managed to maintain its dignity and grace for 270 years and has been embraced by many denominations to celebrate events appropriate to its original intention – as a symbol of unity, equality and brotherly/sisterly love. Early Moravians adopted the feast as a celebration event, adding prayer, religious conversation and hymn singing. Today, Lovefeasts are song services opened with prayer, where children and members of any denomination are welcome. Over the years, elements such as location, timing and menu have varied depending on the denomination and region of the celebration. One might drink tea in the Caribbean, or eat peanuts in Africa, but in America, the traditional Lovefeast consists of a sweetened bun and coffee. A typical Moravian Lovefeast begins with baskets of Moravian buns, slightly sweetened dinner roles. Take one and pass them along for all to share. Next, cups of coffee laced with sugar and cream are passed down one cup at a time. Whether within the sanctuary walls of a church, in a park, or on an illuminated main street, one will always have the constants – purity, love and togetherness. Oh, and of course, good food and drink.

Once everyone has been served, the Pastor leads the Moravian Blessing. One might enjoy one’s Lovefeast meal with the backdrop of a choir singing hymns and anthems, or speaking quietly with one’s neighbors about spiritual journeys.

Lovefeasts are celebrated for a variety of occasions other than Christmas – Great Sabbath, church anniversaries, Epiphany, Christian Family Sunday – but it is the Christmas Lovefeast that has touched hundreds and thousands. Year after year the worshipping community arrives, eager for the moment when the lights are dimmed and the trays of candles are unveiled. Made of pure beeswax – symbolizing purity – for 200 years, the illumination of these candles washes over one like a cleansing wave.



Salvation Army Bell Ringing

St. James UMC has established a Christmas tradition to serve the Greenville community by ringing the Salvation Army bells on one day during the Christmas holidays. This tradition was initiated by the late Les Garner and coordinated for over 20 years by Mike Board. In 2016, we collected $8,462. Last year, the total was $10,678. These funds allow the Salvation Army to meet the needs of many people who are less fortunate in our community and saves them from having to pay employees to ring the bells on that day.
 
With your help, we will be ringing the bells at 20 kettle sites throughout Greenville on Friday, December 22. We plan to have volunteers ring for 2-hour periods at each site beginning at 10:00 am and ending at 8:00 pm.
 
This serving ministry is one that many have enjoyed! It not only provides a valuable service to our community, but adds a special reminder of us all to the true meaning of Christmas – the birth of Jesus.
 
We are now signing up volunteers to serve!  If you can help, please contact Tom Pauling at 252-752-5129 or 252-375-2267 or tpauling@suddenlink.net.
 
 
 


Angel Tree

kid w antlershttp://www.dreamstime.com/-image12179644
The St. James United Methodist Women are sponsoring the
2017 St. James Angel Tree.
 
The Angel Tree project provides Christmas gifts for children who are in foster care through the Methodist Home for Children and placed in foster homes or group homes. Be the light of Hope for these children as they celebrate Jesus birth this Christmas!
 
The Angel Tree can be found in the Fellowship Hall beginning November 15th. Please select the angels, purchase the gifts and bring them to the Fellowship Hall by Monday, December 11th.
 
Thank you St. James!
 

The King will reply, “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me”  ~ Matthew 25:45

 
 


IF:Gathering

You’re invited to be a part of IF:Gathering 2018 this March 17th!
Register today and Mark your calendars for this amazing women’s event.
 
Why should you join us for IF:Gathering 2018?
It will be a time of powerful encouragement, a strengthening of our faith, and a clarity of mission that we desperately need in these difficult times.
 
Get a glimpse of what the 2018 Gathering is all about:

.

At IF:Gathering 2018, we will look at one of Paul’s letters to Timothy as he reminded him of the power and responsibility of sharing the gospel. We want to give God away in the very places He’s put us, so we’re going to gather for the purpose of remembering why following God and making disciples matters. We all get tired, we all wonder if what we’re doing matters, so IF:Gathering 2018 will be the reminder–it will be the celebration. The work we’re doing to share the gospel on the earth is worth it and God DOES move through the little things that nobody sees.
 
WILL YOU JOIN US?!
 
St. James is a host for this event.  To register, click below.
 
For more information, visit the IF:GATHERING website.