The Word became a Refugee- sermon for Christmas Eve Watchnight 2015

In the name of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Amen.
We three kings of Orient are
Bearing gifts we traverse afar
Field and fountain, moor and mountain
Following yonder star.

They have haunted our Christmas imagination for centuries. They still haunt our Christmas cards, our carols (of course), our crib scenes. Continue reading

Sunday Bulletin 13 December 2015

WORSHIP THIS WEEK
Sunday 20 December: The Fourth Sunday of Advent
10am: All-Age Service at St Stephen’s
11.15am Morning Worship at the Old High led by Heidi Hercus
followed by Christmas Pies in the church

SUNDAY BULLETIN ITEMS should be sent to the Church Administrator. The deadline for all items is Wednesday at noon. Please keep items as brief as possible, and give a contact phone number and email.
MINISTER’S NEW EMAIL Due to data protection concerns, the Church of Scotland has asked all its ministers to use new email addresses for all church business. Peter’s new email address is PNimmo[a]churchofscotland.org.uk. Please change your computer/phone/tablet settings accordingly. Apologies for this unavoidable inconvenience. The email address of our Church Administrator, Pat MacLeod, remains the same: invernesschurch[a]gmail.com. (On both cases, please replace [a] with @).

NEWS FROM OUR CONGREGATION
For further information and contact details for any items listed below:
E-mail: invernesschurch[a]gmail.com (For all e-mail addresses replace [a] with @)

CHRISTMAS PIES, TEA AND COFFEE will be served in the Old High Church at 12.15pm after next Sunday’s service. Please come and join us, even if you have worshipped at St Stephen’s. We need some helpers – please stay for a moment after the service today at Old High.
CHRISTMAS SERVICES Download our Christmas leaflet here
Next Sunday Services are at the usual times- 10am All-Age Service at St Stephen’s; 11.15 service at Old High followed by Christmas Pies.
Christmas Eve- All-Age at St Stephen’s at 6.30pm, Watchnight at St Stephen’s 11.30pm.
Christmas Day and St Stephen’s Day at St Stephen’s at 10.30am.
First Sunday of Christmas Services at the usual times (10am and 11.15am) led by Reader Stuart Robertson
CAMERON HOUSE will hold a Christmas Service at 3.30pm next Sunday, led by our Minister, who is their Chaplain. All welcome!
ST STEPHEN’S GIVING TREE presents should have been returned by today. Grateful thanks to everyone who gave generously to the needy people in our city. Your gift may be the only one someone gets! If you have forgotten to bring your gift you can still deliver it to Cliff Sim no later than 16 December.
LUNCH CLUB will meet at 12.30pm on Thursday 17 December at the Craigmonie Hotel for Christmas dinner. Transport is available. Please consider joining us for good food and fellowship. Contact Rae Swan.
HOME GROUP Wednesday 16 December at 7.30pm at Winnie Stafford’s. New members welcome.
OLD HIGH FLOWER ROTA The flower list for the Old High is currently being prepared for 2016. There are a few spaces (mostly in the second half of the year) and if you would like to add your name please contact Sally McCubbin.
OHSS MAGAZINE will be available for distributors to collect today.
ST STEPHEN’S FLOWER CONVENER Annette Stoker has kindly offered to take on this role, but wishes to share it with someone. If you can help, please contact Jill or Annette.
CROSSREACH Christmas catalogue available at church doors. Contact Rae Swan.
WORD FOR TODAY New issue (Nov-Dec) of ‘Word for Today’, daily bible readings are freely available in the church vestibules.
HEALING SERVICE There will be a Healing Service in St Stephen’s today at 4pm to which all are invited. Contact Ruth Martin.
GOOD NEWS FROM ARMY CHAPLAIN REVJOHN DUNCAN who sent the following email: “Thank you for your good wishes. The good folk of Leuchars voted for me! I am now the Minister elect at Leuchars, Fife. The Presbytery of St Andrews will decide the date of the Induction Service. However, I plan to move to Leuchars at the beginning of March 2016.” We wish John all the best as he comes to the end of his Army career and moves back into Parish ministry in a town which is about to become an Army barracks town!

OTHER NEWS

HIGHLANDS SUPPORT REFUGEES urgently needs winter/waterproof clothing for Babies/Children/Women/Men: Underwear (new) Sturdy shoes (all sizes) Tents, Torches, Tealights, Tarpaulins, Sleeping bags/Blankets, Babies Bottles/Blankets. We have space to fill in a lorry heading to Serbia at the end of November, and are in the process of organising a container to Greece in the next few weeks. We need volunteers to help with sorting/packing at the Old Education Centre, Castle Street Dingwall. Contact James jemshewangmail.com
REFUGEE WELCOME VOLUNTEERS NEEDED The Highland Third Sector Interface are looking for volunteers who are interested in supporting the incoming Refugee families. A volunteer Greeter will provide a local, personalised series of one-to-one sessions with a resettled refugee family or individual, to support their integration and access to community services and supports. The long term aim is to provide a more robust integration for refugees coming into Highland. Volunteers require to be available for training on the 26 and 27 February, and for a minimum of two hours on a weekly basis for 8 weeks, over a 2-month period around March/April 2016. (This could vary but applicants will be kept fully informed). To download the role description and application form www.highlandtsi.org.uk. The deadline for application is the 8th January 2016. An information meeting has been arranged for Friday 18 December 2015 at 3pm, Smithton Church, Inverness. Please let us know if you are coming along by emailing eventshighlandtsi.org.uk

Christmas Services

CamelsJPEGOur Christmas Services poster is now online!

On Christmas Eve we have an all-age service at 6.30pm and a Watchnight Service at 11.30pm, both at St Stephen’s.

We also have services at St Stephen’s on Christmas Day and on St Stephen’s Day (Boxing Day) at 10.30am. Bring your gifts along on Christmas Day!

For more information, please call 01463 250 802.

Christmas services at St Stephen’s

Unexpected ChristmasOur services for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day are all at St Stephen’s:

Christmas Eve

6.30pm All Age service
11.30pm Watchnight Service

Christmas Day

10.30am Christmas Day service (bring your gifts along!)

St Stephen’s Day (26 December)

10.30am St Stephen’s Day service at St Stephen’s

There will be services on the Sunday after Christmas at the usual times of 10am (St Stephen’s) and 11.15am (Old High).

Ding Dong Merrily Old High: celebrating the Inverness Christmas Lights Switch-on

Ding Dong poster and leaflet

Once more, we will be celebrating the Inverness Christmas Lights Switch On with a family carol service at the Old High.

Follow Santa down Church Street to the Old High to enjoy traditional carols, as well as the fun of the hilarious Out of the Box Puppets with their unique take on Christmas.

A chance to celebrate the real meaning of Christmas!

For more information, please contact invernesschurch(a)gmail.com.

Download the poster here, or leaflets here.

Christmas 2013 at Old High St Stephen’s

mary-joseph-jesus colour

Christmas Eve

6.30pm All-Age service led by the Minister

11.30pm Watchnight Service at St Stephen’s led by the Minister

11.30pm Watchnight Service at the Old High led by Jonathan Appleby

Christmas Day

10am All-Age Service at St Stephen’s (bring your gifts along!)

St Stephen’s Day (26 December)

10am St Stephen’s Day Service at St Stephen’s, with Holy Communion

Sunday 29 December

11.15am Congregational Service at the Old High Church led by Rev John Duncan, Army Chaplain at Fort George (no service at St Stephen’s)

Download our Christmas leaflet– a pdf file you can print out and put somewhere handy!

For services in January, click here .

Christmas offerings for Syria Crisis appeal

Since the conflict in Syria began in March 2011, more than 100,000 people have been killed, over 2.2 million refugees have fled to neighbouring countries and at least another five million people have been displaced inside Syria.

The number of vulnerable people is increasing as the humanitarian crisis deepens.

Christian Aid are working through partners in Lebanon and Iraq to respond to the growing Syrian refugee crisis.

All our offerings at our Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and St Stephen’s Day services will go to Christian Aid’s Syria Crisis Appeal.

Click here to find out more about Christian Aid’s work with Syrian refugees and to donate direct to Christian Aid.

Click here for details of our Christmas services.