Church Action eNewsletter Week of December 10, 2018

Regional Council of Churches of Atlanta, Inc.
God calls us to some things we cannot do alone.
Church Action eNewsletter Week of December 10, 2018

Remember that there are dozens of events on the Community Events Calendar on our website Send your events and opportunities for the greater faith community to . And, please forward the eNewsletter to anyone you might think would be interested. They can sign up on our website or here.

1. Celebrate the holidays with an Atlanta Choral Guild performance of Benjamin Britten’s “Saint Nicholas” choral drama retelling the story of this seasonal namesake. Tuesday, December 11, 7:30 p.m. at Northside Drive Baptist Church, 3100 Northside Drive NW, Atlanta 30305.

2. Bring your children, grandchildren, friends, and neighbors to Mt. Bethel UMC’s Live Nativity and Bethlehem Walk on Wednesday, December 12, and experience the sights, sounds, smells, and tastes of Bethlehem with live showings at 5, 6, and 7 p.m. There will be crafts, weaving, storytelling, and music provided by the Mt. Bethel Christian Academy High Chorus and Band. Although there is not a cost for this event, the “Tax Collector” will be accepting donations for the United Methodist Children’s Home. 4385 Lower Roswell Road, Marietta.

3. Live Nativity, Friday and Saturday, Dec. 14 and 15, 6:00 - 9:00 p.m., St. Teresa's Church, 5725 Fords Rd NW, Acworth 30101. Presentations every 30 minutes, last presentation at 8:30 pm. Live animals, musical entertainment, and refreshments, no cost or advance registration required.

4. December 15, Park Avenue Baptist Church with the American Red Cross will host its first Blood Drive in order to be a part of the solution, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Email for information or follow this link and use the sponsor code PABC to sign up for a time to give. They need donors and volunteers, so even if you can’t give blood, you can still participate. 486 Park Avenue SE, Atlanta 30312.

5. Bethlehem Simulcast Service, Saturday, December 15, 9:30 a.m. Join the congregations of Washington National Cathedral and the Evangelical Lutheran Christmas Church in Bethlehem, Palestine, for an annual live simulcast worship service. Prayers, readings and hymns in both Arabic and English alternate between Washington, D.C. and Bethlehem bringing those of different lands, languages, and ethnic backgrounds together in celebration of the birth of Jesus. Online at or

6. DAY 1 Advent sermons explore Christmas with the gospel writers. The Rev. Tom Are’s sermon for Dec. 16 is “Christmas at Luke’s House.” He says, “At Luke’s house you won’t find the folks who are at the center of things. Luke’s house is filled with the folks that the world has passed by.” Hear it Sunday at 7:05 a.m. on News 95.5 and 750 AM WSB. For more information, to hear it now, and find other resources check the program’s website,

7. Tibetan Buddhist monks from Drepung Loseling Monastery will construct a Mandala Sand Painting December 16 to December 23 at Hillside International Truth Center, 2450 Cascade Rd. SW, Atlanta 30311. The painting begins with an opening ceremony of chanting, music, and recitation, December 16 at 10:00 a.m. The public is invited to come and view the monks at work. There is no admission charge. A spokesperson will be available onsite to answer questions. Find the schedule for the week and more at Live video streaming of the monks at work will be available on the website.

8. Experience Christmas traditions from the Arab world, Sunday, Dec. 16, between noon and 6 p.m. at the Alif Institute. There is no admission charge; lunch and treats are available for purchase. Shop at the Alif Bazaar for unique gifts. Learn about Christmas traditions in the Arab world. Create Arabic decorations. Find out more here. Bring your non-perishable food donations; all food collected between November and December 16 will go to a local charity.

9. Live Nativity at Lutheran Church of the Redeemer in Atlanta. The NEW DATE due to weather will be Sunday, Decc 16, 3-6 p.m. Come see, hear, and experience Bethlehem right on Peachtree St. In addition to live animals and the holy family, hear about the meaning of the season from artisans and religious leaders in Bethlehem. Watch out for the tax collector though! Free admission; free parking in 4th street lots.

10. Barbara Brown Taylor will be at the Decatur Library, December 16, at 4 p.m., reading from her new book, her first children’s book “Home by Another Way: A Christmas Story.”

11. Experience one of the most beloved of Anglican traditions A Festival of Lessons & Carols at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church, Sunday, Dec. 16, 5 p.m. Stay for the Christmas party in the Parish Hall with dinner and caroling around the piano. Bring your hats and gloves as this year they will be caroling St. Anne’s Lane and delivering cookies to Fire Station #26. Childcare for age 4 and under, 4:30 – 6:30 p.m. No reservations required for the special lasagna dinner ($7/adult, $5/child, $25/family max). 3098 St. Anne’s Lane, Atlanta 30327, (404)237-5589,,

12. There are a few seats left for the Amerson House Spirituality Center Advent Quiet Night, Dec. 16, 5:30 – 8:30 p.m., to register Email Kimberly

13. The holidays can be difficult for some - join St. Teresa’s for “The Longest Night: Blue Christmas Service,” a beautiful service filled with Taize music, prayer, and time to remember those who we will miss. Wednesday, December 19, 6:45 – 7:45 p.m., St. Teresa's Episcopal Church, 5725 Fords Rd., Acworth, Georgia 30101.

14. The Alphabet House presents “A Christmas Story,” a comical musical that expresses the gifts Jesus shares with us. The Salvation Army, 2090 N Druid Hills Rd NE, Atlanta 30329. Thursday, December 20, 7:00 p.m., $15, kids 6-12 $8, kids 5 & under free. Get Tickets.

15. Santa Claus comes to visit Mount Pisgah UMC Friday, December 21, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Santa will be a sensory friendly Santa! Pictures will be taken and offered by professional photographers. All will be invited to do arts and craft and play games! All families with disabilities are invited to come! This is a free event. Mt. Pisgah, 9820 Nesbit Ferry Road, Johns Creek 30022.

16. Baroque Candlelight Christmas at St. Bartholomew's Episcopal Church, Atlanta, Saturday, Dec. 22, 8 p.m. New Trinity Baroque's annual concert features holiday-themed baroque concertos in a candlelight setting. This year's program includes some of the most popular as well as never-before-heard Christmas cantatas and concertos. The AJC described it as "the most satisfying concert of the holiday season – a model of how to do it."

17. The Division of Family and Children Services is requesting your support for their annual Secret Santa Program begun more than 25 years ago in partnership with Clark Howard’s Christmas Kids gift drive. It provides gifts for each child in foster care, purchased from a wish list submitted for each child. This year, there will be 10,000 children who need Christmas gifts. For more information contact Donna Pettigrew-Jackson, or (404) 558-0690. The Secret Santa Program is funded solely by charitable contributions, any dollar amount is appreciated and will be used only for this program.

18. The Theology Matters series at First Presbyterian Church of Atlanta consists of short, seminary-style courses that are designed to deliver high quality engagement of the Bible, theology, and church history in a format that is accessible and engaging for lay audiences. Each live course is developed into a digital course that is offered for free .

19. Register for Peacebuilders Camp at Koinonia Farms this coming summer and celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Some events coming up early in 2019 for your new calendar:
Stranger Things: Faith and Science in Dialogue. Explore the relationship of science and faith through this 4-week Adult Education course taught by Dr. Paul Wallace, a former NASA scientist and current Lecturer in Physics at Agnes Scott College, and Dr. Ryan Bonfiglio, Scholar in Residence at First Presbyterian Church and Visiting Assistant Professor of Old Testament at Candler School of Theology. Wednesdays, January 9, 16, 23, 30, 7:00 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church in Midtown. Free of charge and open to the public. For more information and to register, visit

The Office of Recovery Transformation partners with the Silence the Shame/ Hip-Hop Professional Foundation to present the Faith and Community Based Capacity Building & Recovery Initiative to partner with the Faith-Based Community to enhance safe and effective referrals for services, improve community partnerships with local, regional and statewide providers, and provide education about behavioral health, recovery, and stigma. Register at Atlanta Session - 1/12/2019, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Loudermilk Conference Center. Contact for additional information or registration issues.

Grace Episcopal Church welcomes Phileena Heuertz, author of “Mindful Silence: The Heart of Christian Contemplation,” retreat, Saturday, January 12, Gainesville.

GIPL’s Second Annual Green Team Summit, Sunday, January 27, features an keynote address by the Ray C. Anderson Foundation’s Executive Director, John Lanier, educational workshops, and a farm-to-table dinner. Find out more

Presbyterians for a Better Georgia presents Advocacy Training - Tuesday, January 29, 2019 at First Presbyterian Church Atlanta: Click here to register.

Mental Health Day at the Capitol 2019 will be January 29. This day of learning and advocacy is hosted by the Behavioral Health Services Coalition.

Visit our website for the community calendar, the Clergy Tool Box for Mental Health Ministry, daily devotionals sites, and much more…

Peace, Ethel Ware Carter

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