Newsweekly for Sunday, December 17, 2017

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Worship this Sunday, December 17

Worship Series: Let it be whole

Worship Leader: Jeremy Nafziger

Song Leader: Matt Hunsberger

Preacher: Jennifer Davis Sensenig

Children’s Story: Duane Miller

Pastoral Prayer: Jason Gerlach

Musicians: CMC Choir, Jacinda Stahly, Isaac Dahl, Erika Metzler Sawin, Elias Nafziger, Monica Carlson, CMC 1st-6th grade children

Scripture: Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11; Psalm 126; John 1:6-8, 19-28

Bulletin: 121717-bulletin.docx


Upcoming CMC Events

Tues, Dec. 19    Monthly Gathering, Supper at 6 pm; Advent Readings and Carols at 7 pm

Sun, Dec. 24    Worship, 10 am, No Sunday School

Sun, Dec. 24    Christmas Eve Service, 6 pm

Sun, Dec. 31    Christmas breads, 8:30 am; Worship, 10 am, No Sunday School


CMC Events and Announcements

Funeral for Titus Bender. The memorial service for Titus Bender will be held at CMC on Saturday morning, Dec. 16 at 9:30, followed by a meal in the fellowship hall.

Monthly Gathering. The December monthly gathering is Tuesday, December 19. A taco salad supper will be served at 6 pm ($3 suggested donation). At 7 pm Matt Hunsberger and friends will lead a service of Advent Readings and Carols for all ages. There will be no childcare.

Christmas Eve Offering. Each year CMC designates the offering from our Christmas Eve service to go to a local ministry or charity. This year’s offering will go to The Cheese Ministry, which supports local dairy farmers and local food pantries. Donations will go to buy blocks of cheese from local dairy farmers, and the cheese will be donated to several food pantries in our community. For more information, see the poster in the Fellowship Hall.

Offering on December 31. Please note that donations collected during the offering in the December 31 worship service will be counted towards the 2017 budget and tax year.

Looking for a Small Group? The CMC Small Group Committee has created a small group opportunity called the Open Circle. It will meet monthly on Second Saturdays at 6 pm in room 109 of the church. This group invites folks who are looking for a way to connect with others in the church through fellowship, discussion and mutual support. So if you are new to the congregation, new to the idea of small groups, or are not currently in a small group and are looking for a way to connect, you are invited. The circle is always open! Children are welcome and there will be snacks. Contact Adam Yoder for more information at or 540-810-3376. The next open circle will gather on January 13, 2018.

Pastoral Support. CMC has a network of small groups and other friendships that provide a great deal of mutual care for persons in our congregation.  For some protracted or acute situations that households are facing we also have Care Teams.  These teams, led by a pastor, are usually 4-5 persons discerned by those seeking support and the pastor.  Households who might benefit from a Care Team include:  persons facing serious physical or mental illness and caregivers, challenging parenting circumstances, discernment in job transition or other major life events.  To assess whether a Care Team might be helpful, contact a member of Pastoral Team.

Interested in Being an Usher? Four new people are needed starting in late January. Ushers are on once a month and head usher once a quarter. Be in touch with Jennifer North Bauman if you are interested or need more information. or 540-801-9304

New address for Ken and MarthaJune Graber. Please note that Ken and MarthaJune have moved. Their new contact information is: Ken and MarthaJune Graber, 1548 Hawthorne Circle, Harrisonburg, VA  22802, 540-574-3816.

Sunday School Connection. Below is a weekly note for families of children (age 4 and up) who use the Shine curriculum. Each Sunday you will find faith nurture ideas that coordinate with the weekly Sunday school session plans. Note that these stories will not necessarily coincide with the CMC worship series during this quarter.

Faith Talk. Luke 1:26–56: “Mary says yes” Here are some ways to nurture faith at home based on this week’s story. (1) Read Luke 1:36–38, the end of Mary’s conversation with the angel. What words did Mary use to say yes to God? (2) Mary’s prayer included the words, “God has filled the hungry with good things.” Gather up items to take to a food bank. (3) Mary’s heart was full of joy. Tell about the happiest moment of your life.

Did you know? What name in today’s story means “God’s promise”? (Elizabeth)

Prayer for the week: Thank you, God, that you love each of us. Fill our hearts with joy. Amen.

Children’s Bible Memory Passages This Quarter: Early Childhood: “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace.” Luke 2:14a; Primary and Middler: And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favors!” When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.” So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in the manger. Luke 2:13–16

Advent Devotionals. Please take a look at the selection of advent devotionals on the shelf in the back of the sanctuary. You are welcome to take these to use with your family during this advent season.

Advent Reflections and Prayers. The special seasons of the Christian calendar (Advent, Lent) provide a specific time frame for us to resolve — once again — to prioritize spiritual practices that enable us to live God’s love in the world.  Instead of offering a weekly time of centering prayer here at CMC as we did during Lent, all are invited to join brothers and sisters in our community:

Emmanuel Episcopal @ 660 S. Main Street, Harrisonburg, welcomes us to a time of centering prayer on Wednesday evenings from about 6:00 – 6:45 p.m. and Friday mornings from 8:00 – 8:45 a.m.

Trinity Presbyterian @ 725 S. High Street, Harrisonburg, welcomes us to a 2-hour time of lectio divina (reflective reading of scripture) on the third Thursday morning of each month from 8:30 – 10:30 a.m.

If you have questions, contact Jane Hoober Peifer, Keaton Shenk, or Kathy Hochstedler.

Music and Worship Leaders Retreat. The annual Music & Worship Leaders Retreat at Laurelville Mennonite Church Center will take place January 5-7, 2018. This program gathers a wide variety of individuals interested in worship, including new music or worship leaders looking to become stronger leaders, experienced leaders looking for a refresher course to help them improve their effectiveness in their congregations, or anyone with a love for music and worship who is discerning their gifts and interested in exploring that more. More information can be found here: If you have any questions or have interest in attending this year's retreat as a representative from CMC, please contact Katie Derstine (

'FIRST FAMILIES' AT CMC – A photographic review of November worship services focusing on characters and relationships from the book of Genesis and a photo flashback to EMU's Homecoming and Centennial celebrations, Oct. 13-15, continue on display on the "Community Mennonite Church: Today" bulletin board on the west wall of the fellowship hall. In addition, you'll find posted a yuletide Christmas shopping apology, 'A Mall and the Night Visitor" – a "Virginia Ham" column from the 12/14/2000 issue of Mennonite Weekly Review – and a CMC congregational report for Sept.-Oct. from the 12/4/2017 issue of MWR.

ADVENT-AGEOUS ADVENT-URE – Return with us now to those thrilling days of yesteryear by gazing eastward to a double-photo collage full of people and events from Advent 2016, shining brightly on the "Community Mennonite Church: Yesterday" bulletin board on the east wall of the fellowship hall. Do you see what I see . . .?     Jim Bishop

Events and Announcements from the Broader Community

Good Company invites you to their annual Christmas concert on Friday, December 15 at 7:00 p.m. at Park View Mennonite Church. This festive family-friendly event will feature arrangements of favorite carols, old and new, and a reception will follow. Good Company is a 6-member a cappella group based in the Shenandoah Valley, and will be joined for portions of this concert by local harpist and organist, Virginia Bethune. Admission by donation. For more information, visit

Shenandoah Valley Choral Society Concert. The Shenandoah Valley Choral Society, led by Curtis Nolley, presents its annual Christmas concert on Friday, December 15, at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, December 17 at 3:00 p.m. at Bridgewater Church of the Brethren. The concert will feature G. F. Handel's “Messiah” accompanied by the SVCS Chamber orchestra, and guest soloists.  The second half of the concert includes a variety of new and traditional carol settings, and will feature the premier of a new carol by local composer John G. Barr. Tickets are available at the door, locally from Choral Society members, Red Front Supermarket(Harrisonburg), Bridgewater Foods (Bridgewater), and on-line at Admission is $15 for adults/$12 for seniors and students.

Longest Night Services.

Trinity Presbyterian Church will hold a Longest Night service on Dec. 21 at 7pm. This is a service designed to offer space to name and hold in prayer our losses and struggles during the Advent and Christmas season, and to share the deep peace of Christ in the midst of the busyness.

Immanuel Mennonite Church will hold a Longest Night service on December 21 at 7 pm. Typically held on the longest night of the year, this service is an opportunity to bring to God our pain, laments, and sorrows that we are carrying. Led by leaders from Bethel AME, John Wesley United Methodist, and Immanuel Mennonite, the service will consist of prayer, Scripture reading, and the lighting of candles.

Are you considering becoming a foster or adoptive parent, but don’t know where to start? You are invited to attend an informational session at DePaul’s office in Harrisonburg on Monday, December 18 at 6 pm at 36 Southgate Ct. Ste. #102, Harrisonburg, VA 22801. Foster parents can be single individuals, married or cohabitating couples, with or without children. DePaul has over 40 years of experience in screening, approving, training, and providing supportive casework services to foster parents. For more information or to register, contact Chris Tompkins at 434.977.9847 ext. 3509 or

An Invitation for Young Adults: Shenandoah Valley Faith & Light would like to invite young adults into friendship with persons with intellectual disabilities. Join us once a month on a Friday evening for an informal, get-to-know-you supper, followed by worship. In June, we will celebrate new friendships with a weekend worship retreat at Camp Overlook. There is no cost to you for these activities, other than your time. For more information, contact Dave Gullman (pastor at Pleasant View, or Derek Yoder (student at Eastern Mennonite Seminary,

Shenandoah Valley Men's Chorus 2018:  Our first practice is on January 7th at EMHS; practice from 2:30-4:15 p.m.  Practices are scheduled for subsequent Sunday afternoons in January and February with final concerts scheduled on February 25, 2018. You are invited to join our group and participate. (Come early for registration and to pay for your music: $20 or $10 for students). For more information, contact Roman Miller at

Studying for a healthcare profession? Is service part of your studies? Consider a 4-week or more term of study in an underserved mission location in a cross-cultural setting. This program is for medical students, dental students, Masters in Nursing students, physical therapy students, Masters in Social Work students and other students in healthcare-related fields at the masters or doctoral level. Educational grants available for Anabaptist students! The Student Elective Term (SET) program's application deadline for 2018-19 academic year is May 15, 2018. For more information and application form, see or contact MHF by phone or email: 888-406-3643 or

Gift and Thrift, Inc. is looking for volunteers interested in supporting the mission of Mennonite Central Committee. Volunteers are a vital part of our mission. Many volunteer opportunities are available including donation receiving, electronic and furniture cleaning and repair, pricing and tagging of household items, sorting, hanging and tagging clothing, sorting and scanning books for retail and online sales, customer services and more! Individuals or groups with any level of time commitment (3-4 hours daily, once a week, monthly, etc.) are welcome. To volunteer, or for more information contact Gift and Thrift at 540 433-8844 or email We would love to have you be a part of our volunteer community! Our goal is finding the right fit for you.

Community Mennonite Church
70 South High Street Harrisonburg, VA