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Where Faith Comes T o Life! The Newsletter of First Baptist Church Halifax

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Vol. 21 No. 28 November 2011

ADVENT - A HOLY SEASON, TOO

y the time your receive this edition of First Baptist Voices November will almost be over and we will be drawing near to one of the busiest and most meaningful times of the year - Christmas! I can still remember how excited I was as a child when the preparations for his holy season got underway. In what may be considered an early burst of genius, the Christian Church developed a season of spiritual preparation for the celebration of Christmas - Advent! The name comes from the Latin word, adventus, which means “coming” or “arrival” and refers to both the arrival of Jesus as the baby born to Mary and Joseph, and the future coming fo the Christ at the end of the Age. Advent is now a season of four weeks leading to Christmas Day. It wasn’t long before some traditional themes were attached to the Sundays of Advent - hope, peace, joy and love. Nor was it long before John the Baptizer became a central figure of the season for his message of spiritual preparation for the coming of Messiah fits very well. In our day, there is great pressure to elongate the season on the one hand - Christmas decorations and sales appear in the stores right after Hallowe’en - and to compress it on the other - people want to get to the familiar carols and to baby Jesus as soon in December as possible! Although I understand these impulses and find myself caught up in them as much as anyone else, I know that my Christmas will be much more meaningful if I first take some time to travel the spiritual landscape of Advent. Here is some of what we may find: A deepened sense of longing - St. Augustine taught that our hearts are restless until they find their rest in God, but most of the time we are unaware that we even have a longing for God. Advent is a time to get in touch with the restlessness under the surface of our lives, and our longing for a sense of “safe rest” in the embrace of God.

A desire to repent, or “turn around” - John the Baptizer preached a message of repentance that people responded to in droves. Many of us, on the other hand, hear the word “repent” as a sharp judgement or a put-down. Why the difference? The people in John’s day were convinced that things were going in the wrong direction in their society and in their own lives. They wanted change. They wanted a new direction. That is what repentance is - turning around to go in a new direction. Advent places us where we can hear such a message and find hope for newness and blessing, if we have ears to hear! A source of light in the darkness - No doubt you have noticed how much the early arrival and lengthening hours of darkness this time of year impacts on our moods. I know my mood is affected! Advent asks us to truly notice the darkness around us, not just because sundown comes early and sunrise late, but because dark things are happening in our world and in our lives. In that context, the words of John’s Gospel on the coming of Jesus truly burst with joy: The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it. ... The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world (John 1:5, 9). God’s love in Jesus continues to offer light for the dark corners of our lives and world, a source of light that cannot be taken away! A true path to a joy-filled Christmas - Christmas can put a lot of pressure on people, pressure to be “merry”, pressure to make others “merry”, pressure to buy the right gift, prepare the most wonderful meal, host the best party, and so on. When Christmas finally comes, there is often a sense of “is that all there is?”. Travelling through the spiritual landscape of Advent helps counter that pressure and open our souls and hearts to the central message and gift of Christmas - the love of God freely given to be freely shared, the path to a joy-filled Christmas. Advent is a Holy Season, too! - Rev. Page John E. Boyd


FROM THE ASSOCIATE MINISTER

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o you have a favourite Christmas carol? Maybe you love Joy To The World or Hark, The Herald Angels Sing. For many, Christmas isn’t complete without singing Silent Night. The carol that holds the dearest place in my heart is one that isn’t among the list of frequent requests at carol-singing events. It’s not a new one, in fact the words are more than a century and a half old. The story begins… “Once in royal David's city /Stood a lowly cattle shed, / Where a mother laid her baby / In a manger for His bed: / Mary was that mother mild, / Jesus Christ her little child…” A British Bishop’s wife, Cecil Frances Alexander, first published these lines in her book “Hymns For Little Children” in 1848, and the following year her verses were set by H. J. Gauntlett to the tune we now use. Alexander’s words go on to share the story of Jesus’ birth within the context of His ministry. During the coming weeks our congregation will be preparing our hearts for the birth of our Saviour in many different ways, and we hope you will be able to celebrate with us. Advent begins on Sunday, November 27th, and we will begin marking the passage of the weeks toward Christmas with the lighting of the Advent candles each Sunday by families from our congregation. Following the service that morning, the Board of Christian Education invites you to join us in the Assembly Room for our second annual Advent Event, complete with a light lunch, carols, cookies, Christmas ornament making, surprises, and ending with “November Christmas”, the Hallmark Hall of Fame movie that was filmed in our church last year. “…And our eyes at last shall see Him / Through His own redeeming love; / For that Child so dear and gentle / Is our Lord in heaven above, / And He leads His children on / To the place where He is gone. “ And so the story continues. Blessings to you and yours as we continue in the light of God’s love. - Rev. Renée Clark

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GOD COMING CLOSE

hen will we mortal human beings get it through our heads that the realm of God and the realm of humanity are not separated by a distance of hundreds of galaxies, but only by the veil of unbelief or the stone wall of sin? God is at hand. God rules in this world despite what the news headlines say. It is a war-torn world in every way: the wars of tribalism, injustice and marginalism, the wars of avarice, the war within the soul (1 Peter 2:11), the invisible war between powers of evil and good, which is, always, the Real War (Ephesians 6:12) Now I know this isn't the cheeriest thought for what people want to be the cheeriest time of the year--but we will gain the cheer if we understand that Christmas, the celebration of the birth of Jesus the Christ, is God's great intersection with our world and the restoration of our lives at our darkest, ugliest, most rotten parts. God is not far away. The realm of God intersects the realm of this world--because He created it and He has no intention of letting it be stolen away. You can see God come close when you consider the Christmas story Gabriel came to Mary. An angel and a young, unmarried woman. The Annunciation, as it is called (meaning "announcement"), was a moment in time depicted by artists a thousand times over. And why not? This conversation of an immortal with a mortal is a sure sign that God is at hand. The Annunciation was prior warning to the world that God was on his way. Here are the words: "Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end." "Jesus," Yeshua, means "salvation." Everyone needs to be saved. Countries may get a bailout, banks may be saved from insolvency, citizens may be given a tax break--but the kind of salvation real people need goes deeper. We needed a Savior who could free us from ourselves, shine a light in the dark tunnel of death, and teach us to be human again reaching and caring for others. Deep salvation. The world needed a Savior who Continued 0n page 3


Continued from page 2—God Coming Close

would cut through the veil separating us from God. We needed God, and someone who was one of us. And in Jesus, there He is, at one and the same time divine and human. The universe needed an eternal governor, someone whose reign ("kingdom") would never end. As we approach Christmas, you may want to offer a prayer like this to God: "O God, this world and my life have seen some difficult passages this year. There are more and more people around who say that you must not exist. But I know that you are not to blame for the mistakes people make, and I know that I am better off with you in a difficult world rather than without you. But I worship you now, not because of my need, but because of your call. You have announced that you intend to reign. I gladly come under your power, your truth, and your protective care. Use me as your instrument in caring for your world. I pray in the name of the Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen." - Rev. Nelson A. Metcalfe

Deaths Eric Stott, November 3, 2011 Verne Johnston, November 13, 2011

ADVENT EVENT!

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unday, November 27th is the first Sunday of Advent. The Board of Christian Education invites FBC folks, tall and small, to join us in the Assembly Room following the service for our second Annual Family Advent Event. Come and enjoy a light lunch, carols, cookies, making Christmas ornaments and ending with the movie “November Christmas” a scene from which was filmed in our sanctuary! Hope to see you there.

Carols By Candlelight Sunday, December 18, 7:00 p.m. Our annual service of lessons and carols The service will feature

First Baptist Church Senior Choir singing Palestrina, Bach, excerpts from Britten’s “Ceremony of Carols” and Magnificat — a choral commission by Ben Duinker Special music

A Cappella Carols by the Men’s Choir -

“Men Without Jackets”

Musical Team Lynette Wahlstrom piano Brandon Lange choral conductor scholar Shawn Whynot organ

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ADVENT MUSIC AT FBC

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he Magnificat is a text depicting the Song of Mary, an ancient Christian hymn taken from the Gospel of Luke 1:46-55. These words depict the Virgin Mary's words to her cousin Elizabeth, who is pregnant with her son, who will become known as John the Baptist. The Magnificat is inspired by Old Testament texts, and in Western Christianity, is most often sung or recited during the main evening prayer service. In Orthodox (Eastern) Christianity, it is sung at Sunday Matins. The original language of the Magnificat is in Greek, but for liturgical use in the church, is set in Latin or vernacular text. You will hear two settings of the Magnificat this season, Howell's Magnificat on Dec. 11th (English text), and our 2011 FBC Choral Commission “Magnificat” by Ben Duinker on Dec. 18th (Latin text). Come and experience the wonder of these beautiful works and ancient text. My soul doth magnify the Lord. And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. Because he hath regarded the humility of his handmaid; for behold from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. Because he that is mighty, hath done great things to me; and holy is his name. And his mercy is from generation unto generations, to them that fear him. He hath shewed might in his arm: he hath scattered the proud in the conceit of their heart. He hath put down the mighty from their seat, and hath exalted the humble. He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away. He hath received Israel his servant, being mindful of his mercy: As he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his seed for ever.

MATT AND LUCY’S VERSION BIRTH SUNDAY, DECEMBER 11, 1:00 p.m. Join the Sunday School students, teachers and C.E. members as they present their annual Christmas presentation in the church hall. The children have been working hard and are excited to perform for you, this endearing play about Christmas. CHILDREN'S CHOIRS AT FBC The Marshmallow Choir and Songsters have had an excellent introductory season this fall, and will be continuing another season with practices beginning Jan. 8th, 2012, 11:4512:45 in the church hall. Church and community members are welcome, ages 312! Children will learn all about choral singing, be immersed in fun music theory exercises, and rhythm games. They will experience such exciting Children's Choir repertoire as Copland's "I Bought Me a Cat" and Rutter's "All Things Bright and Beautiful". We will also be encouraging all singers 8-18 yrs to attend NSCF Summer Choir Camp, a wildly successful venture for anyone who loves to sing! For more information contact Lynette Wahlstrom, FBC Music Director, or visit our church website.

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CHRISTMAS MEMORIAL POINSETTIAS

MEN WITHOUT JACKETS

alling all male voices. Join us as we prepare our music for the Christmas season. One of the highlights now is the program for Sunday Dec 18 when we sing at Victoria Hall in the afternoon and then join the senior choir in the evening for the Carols by Candlelight Service. Rehearsal last Saturday of each month from 10:00 am until noon (some exceptions).

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hose who would like to make a donation toward the memorial Christmas Poinsettias may do so by contacting the office. 422-5203 or fbaphfx@eastlink.ca with details, by December 7th. The flowers will be in place on December 11.

Schedule Sat Nov 26 Rehearsal (start 9:30; men are invited to stay to decorate the sanctuary) Sun Dec 18 Victoria Hall (Christmas Communion service) Sun Dec 18 Carols by Candlelight Sat Jan 28 Rehearsal Fri Feb 10 Valentine’s Supper Sat Feb 25 Rehearsal Sun Feb 26 Church Service Sat Mar 24 Rehearsal Sun Apr 15 Victoria Hall (Easter Communion service) Sat Apr 28 Rehearsal Sat May 26 Rehearsal Sun May 27 Church Service Remember, we call ourselves "Men Without Jackets" because God never said we needed to dress up to sing his praises. For further information, contact our Director of Music, Lynette Wahlstrom. Men Without Jackets: Luke Morrison, Bryan Darrell, David Morse, Mac Philips, Ian McKee, Jim Stanley, David Bourque, Alan Manchester, Erick Lee, Joe O’Brien, Brian Ashton, Ken Margeson, Nelson Metcalfe, David Dexter, Paul Henderson, John Dalton, David Gibson, Garnet Colwell, Rex Deverell, Tom Crowell, Alan North, Jeremy Dutcher, Gordon Taylor, Kim Davison, Ed Tummers, Dahrl Whitney, Richard MacMichael. Guest Conductor: Brandon Lange. Guest organists, Patrick Salah, Shawn Whynot.

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PRAYER CIRCLE

here are times in our lives when we all feel the need of prayers - illness, loss of a loved one, troubles of any kind. Here at First Baptist, we have a Prayer Circle, made up of people who have committed to responding to requests for prayer from anyone who asks. There are six in the circle at present, but we would love to have more. If you would like to be part of this important service to the congregation, please contact Deacon Pauline Allsop (492-1050). If you wish to make a request for prayers, contact Pauline or one of the Ministers, who will pass the request to the Circle.

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CRAFT AND KNITTING NEWS

wish to extend a “thank you” to all the faithful customers who supported us druing this past year, and at the Christmas Tea and Sale. Craft and knitted articles suitable for Hostess or Christmas gifts, will be on display and will be available for sale each Sunday from the Craft Cupboard in the Parlour. We are still collecting small baby food jars or other small (about 4 oz.) jars for future projects. Any further requests for information about craft items may be directed to Johanne McKee or Judy Whalen. Have an enjoyable Christmas season. - Johanne McKee

“When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives means the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving much advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a gentle and tender hand”

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TEA AND SALE A SUCCESS!

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his year’s First Baptist Church Tea and Sale was a huge success thanks to the incredible generosity and proficiency of our volunteers. We were delighted to accept help from the Scout troop who meet at our Church and the young people provided a wonderful balance to the services of the “old guard” at First Baptist. All the volunteers were grateful for the guidance and expertise of Wayne MacPhee and Alana Foster as they helped us before, during and after the event. The donations of food and items for sale from our congregation and friends in the community were marvelous and drew a great deal of admiration from our guests, who numbered more than 400. Our net revenue may even reach the lofty target set last year, but the best outcome of the event was the many happy guests who are already making plans to attend again next year. We wish to thank the following commercial donors to the Tea: Charles’ and Verne’s Flowers Scotsburn Dairy—Andrew Taylor Sobeys on Mumford Road Atlantic Superstores— Barrington St., Young Street and Joe Howe Drive.

Co-conveners Marjorie Stevenson and Robin MacInnis were very impressed by the kindness of the more than 100 people who agreed to help out during the event and by those who stepped up to volunteer their assistance even before we asked. Thank you to the Kitchen Crew headed by Naomi Mensink, the Servers, Pourers and Hosts who were overseen by Louise Schurman. Our thanks also go to the Table Conveners: Johanne McKee, Linda Macintosh, Marlene Dexter, Elaine Cox, Margie Flack, Sheilagh McQuinn and Eva Conn. Thalia Delano and Joan Leitch decorated the Church beautifully and they worked at the Christmas and White Elephant tables. Bud and Judy Whalen did a magnificent job organizing the Silent Auction and Warren and Esther Hoeg not only handled the Ticket Sales but they also set up the book room. At the end of the event several people stayed to help clean up and count up and all agreed that the 2011 Tea and Sale was fabulous. Many, many thanks are due to all the participants. The members of the Women’s Auxiliary are already thinking about the 2012 Tea and Sale and we hope that somebody from our congregation will volunteer to be co-convener with Robin MacInnis for that event. Please let her know if you are interested and likely to be available. Marjorie Stevenson & Robin MacInnis, Co-Convenors

FINANCIAL NEWS Christmas Offering

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very year we receive a special Christmas Offering that makes all the difference in whether or not we meet the commitments we make through our annual operating budget. 2011 has been showing the same general giving pattern as other years, with a shortfall of $44,000 at the end of the third quarter. What we do together in the final quarter, and especially in December, is what lets us begin a new year with small but necessary surplus to tide us over the lean times.

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MEMBERSHIP CLASSES

lasses will be held this winter to prepare people to join First Baptist Church Halifax on Easter Sunday (April 8), either by Believer’s Baptism or by transfer from another Christian Church. These classes will cover such questions as: What does it mean to be a Christian? Why do Baptists baptize the way they do? What is different about a Baptist Church? How can I continue to grow in my faith? If you are interested in participating in the classes, please contact Rev. John Boyd at srminister@eastlink.ca or 422-5203. The classes are always open to inquirers who have not made up their minds about joining the Church, but have lots of questions!


CHILDREN’ PAGE— Can you colour and tell the story?

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FROM THE DIACONATE

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he past few issues of VOICES have been missing news from the Diaconate – but we’re back and hope to keep this communication alive and current in future issues. As you can imagine our collective decision to leave the Atlantic Baptist Convention was only the start of a busy series of activities – with three main objectives: 

to sustain and invigorate affiliations with likeminded Baptists in Canada and the United States;

to protect and to provide our ministers’ and staff’s financial and medical benefits over the transition; and

to review our mission activities and the opportunities for cooperation place local, nationally and internationally.

At a later Congregational Meeting we will be providing the results of this work but you may have noticed signs of strengthened associations during the fall meeting of Atlantic Baptist Fellowship and the stirring messages delivered by Rev. Jeff Haggray from Washington, D.C. We maintain strong links with the Alliance of Baptists and Rev. Boyd is chairing the Task Group on International Affiliations which may see stronger and more formal ties. We have maintained our association with the Halifax Region United Baptist Association and have contributed to that organization’s move to Incorporation using an inclusive model. This initiative may provide accreditation for our ministers especially in areas such as licensing to marry. Two other committees are examining the financial impacts of leaving Convention and our options for cooperation in Missions. Their reports will be presented at a Congregational meeting in the New Year. While all this is going on, we are examining our Goals for Ministry for the next few years. This work will provide focus for our Ministers and staff as they prepare their own plans and focus for us as the Diaconate as we consider new programmes and activities. While planning for the future, the fall has been a time of accomplishment – inspiring services and speakers, a growing Church School, continued outreach, and support to our refugee families – to

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mention only some. But as the fall turns to winter this becomes a time of great anticipation – the 27th of November will see the end of the liturgical calendar and the start of a new year with the season of Advent. In my family’s tradition, the last Sunday before Advent was always known as “Stir Up Sunday”. That name derives from the Anglican collect for the day which begins “Stir up, we beseech thee, O Lord, the wills of thy faithful people; that they, plenteously bringing forth the fruit of good works, may of thee be plenteously rewarded; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen” It was the time to get the Christmas cakes and puddings made – stirring up the fruit and flour, baking them in time to let them age in time for the great feast. Even though “Stir Up Sunday” has long been known as “Christ the King” or “The Reign of Christ “Sunday, for me there will always be an echo of plum pudding and dark fruit cake. I cannot complete this short update without an appeal from your Diaconate for your help and assistance. We all know that the work of the church is carried on the shoulders of volunteers – and we need help. The diaconate as well as our committees and boards are blessed by the work of dedicated individuals – many of whom have provided leadership over many years. New energy, new ideas flow from new people and we invite and encourage you to become part of the active ministry of First Baptist. - David Morse, for the Diaconate


WEDNESDAY NIGHT SPECIAL!

CHRISTMAS DAY IS SUNDAY!

lan now to block your Wednesday evenings for an 12 week DVD based study of the life and teaching of the Apostle Paul entitled, Eclipsing Empire: Paul, Rome and the Kingdom of God. Well known biblical scholars Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan are on location in Turkey, with additional filming in Greece and Rome, tracing Paul’s footsteps throughout the Roman Empire.

t doesn’t happen often (once every seven years or so), but this year Christmas Day falls on a Sunday. As in other years (with great success) we are planning our two Christmas Eve services at 4 pm (Family Service) and 11 pm (Communion Service).

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Rev. John Boyd will be leading the study. The overall plan for each evening is still being worked out and your input to John would be appreciated. One scenario would be to start at 6 with a light meal (pot-luck), ending the evening no later than 8 p.m. Another would be to start at 6:30 with coffee and desserts (pot-luck), again finishing around 8 p.m. There are other possibilities - email John at srminister@eastlink.ca with your thoughts. Watch your bulletins for details as to start time for each of the Wednesday evenings, beginning on January 4, 2012.

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We will also have a service on Christmas Day at 10:30 am. This will be more informal than usual and we invite people to come casually dressed. The service will be entirely child-friendly and celebratory with carols and stories to help us mark the birthday of Jesus. One of the special aspects of Christmas is getting together with family and close friends. However, many members of our congregation, especially seniors, often spend Christmas Day pretty much alone. This year we can all be together as a First Baptist family, and the presence of children will brighten all our lives! See you there!!

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COMMUNITY OUTREACH COMMITTEE WHITE GIFT

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his is the time of year when we plan our White gift Program which will take place on December 11th. Here’s a great way for you to get involved! We are hoping to provide gifts for 80+ people and donate a minimum of $1000.00 for Christmas dinners as well as support a few other worthy organizations this holiday season. Volunteers are needed to:

purchase and wrap gifts

help pack the food boxes on December 16th from 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM at the Ward 5 Neighbourhood Centre deliver the food boxes, as well as the gifts, to the recipients on December 17th at 9:00 AM.

We’re counting on your support to make our White Gift Program a success again this year – a wonderful way to bring Christmas to families in need! A special thank you to Connie Enman who donated several lovely hand knit lap blankets for us to give to our White Gift families.

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BRUNSWICK STREET MISSION BREAKFAST PROGRAM

irst Baptist Church will be preparing and serving breakfast for the Brunswick Street Mission on Saturday, December 31 at 5:30 AM. Although a busy time of year for everyone, I’m hoping that we will have lots of volunteers sign up for this very rewarding outreach project. Thank you to everyone who volunteered at the Brunswick Street Mission on Saturday, August 6, arriving at 5:30 AM to help prepare and serve breakfast, make sandwiches, and clean up afterwards. Your generosity of spirit and hard work was greatly appreciated by the 71 people who came!

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GREAT CANADIAN FOOD FIGHT

uring the weekend of October 13, First Baptist Church participated in the Great Canadian Food Fight. After a very busy 48 hours, Feed Nova Scotia weighted a total of 70,883 kilograms of food! This put Halifax in second place (Regina was first). Thank you to everyone who, on short notice, brought in food for this event.

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First Baptist delivered 100 kilograms of food, which placed us in the Featherweight category (up to 249 kg). Thanks to Marlene Dexter and Valerie Brisco who delivered the food.

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SUNDAY SUPPER FOR ARK

hank you to everyone who prepared the Oriental Chicken Casserole, and to those who served, for the ARK Sunday Supper at St. Andrew's on October 2. Everyone loved the casserole! These meals are an important way for our church community to provide a hot meal for homeless people in our city who would otherwise go without dinner. Thanks again. HARVEST SUPPER & SILENT AUCTION

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big Thank You for supporting the Harvest Supper and Silent Auction, held on September 23, by attending the event, donating goods and services for the auction, preparing food, bidding on the auction items, and helping with the set up and clean up. The amount raised was $4,171.71! Besides my committee and the Refugee committee, a special thank you to Jennifer and Leslie Ferguson, Alex McQuinn, and Nathalie Mopoho. Thank you also to Naomi Mensink, Lucy Hayes Davies, Tom Crowell, Roberta Palmer, and Jason Davies for the lovely musical entertainment that you provided during the evening. Thanks to everyone for helping to make this a successful fundraiser! BREAKING BREAD FOR AFGHAN WOMEN

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reaking Bread for Afghan Women is a valuable fundraising initiative that supports education for Afghan women and girls. Breaking Bread reaches out to women’s groups all over Afghanistan to support teachers’ salaries at schools, educational programs such as literacy and English classes, and to buy books for libraries. The Community Outreach Committee continues to raise funds for this project at our supper meetings, where members donate $10.00 for a delicious homemade dinner. In September we contributed $750.00 to the cause. All Breaking Bread and General Donations, up to $150,000, received between May 1, 2011 and August 13, 2013 will be matched 3:1 by the Canadian Government (CIDA) as part of a teacher training project.


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FOOD DRIVE

ur annual food drive was held on June 11th. Thank you to everyone who distributed flyers to local residents several days in advance and collected donations on Saturday morning. Thank you to the congregation who brought in donations to support the food drive. As well as all the donations of food and non-perishables, our congregation and our community donated $1,336.00 for the food drive. All donations will be given to our community food banks.

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REMEMBER OUR FOOD TRUNK

he third Sunday of each month has been designated as Food Bank Sunday, with donations going to local food banks such as Feed Nova Scotia, Ward 5 Food Bank, and the Parker Street Food and Furniture Bank to help feed those in need. Donations can be dropped off at other times as well.

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JUST US! COFFEE People and the Planet Before Profits

he Community Outreach committee has bags of coffee, boxes of tea, and chocolate bars for sale. Proceeds from the sale of coffee are used to buy food items for the Brunswick Street Breakfast Program (i.e., pancakes, sausages, eggs, hash browns, juice, fruit, and sandwiches). Buying Just Us! Coffee also supports the Fair Trade partnership between producers, traders or buyers, and consumers. Our regular coffee sells for $10.00 per bag, the decaf sells for $11.00 per bag, the tea is $4.00 per box, and the chocolate bars sell for $2.00 and $2.50 each. Thank you for your continued support of this Outreach project.

VALENTINE SUPPER

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ark your calendars for Friday February 10, 2012. The sentiment expressed in the toasts and the love songs, the exchange of hugs and the "passing of the carnations" will again celebrate the friendship and fellowship we share in our extended church family. In our church life, February is "Love your Neighbour" month. Why not include your neighbours in our celebration of love?

IMPORTANT DATES! The office will be closed on the following dates over the Christmas Season: Friday, December 23 after 12:30 p.m. Monday December 26 and Tuesday, December 27. Monday, January 2, 2012 Final date for 2011 financial contributions—December 31, 2011. Deadline for 2011 Annual reports— Monday, January 16, 2012. Annual Meeting—February 26, 2012.

No Scents Please A large number of people suffer from allergies, environmental illnesses and sensitivities to scents — some of them attend our church. To help make our friends, families and visitors more comfortable as they worship with us, we ask that all refrain from wearing scents wherever and whenever possible. Thank you for your consideration.

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50 YEARS AGO: Looking Back to 1961 The Life of the Church in 1961

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ith the construction and furnishing of the CE Wing complete, the congregation could turn its attention to new programs. Foremost among these were the Tom Allan Mission and the Africville Project, described in earlier issues. Mrs. Douglas Eisner formed a new group for both boys and girls ages 8-11 so that they could come to know, love and serve God. Mrs. G.M. Dewis chaired the Family Life Committee. The aim was to bring before the congregation as a whole, and in particular the parents, the urgent need for a revitalized Christianity for the day and age. Two meetings were held. The first was directed at the parents to present the pitiful grasp of Christianity held by the youth. The second was held for the entire congregation on New Year’s Eve. Dr. M.R. Cherry, Professor of Theology at Acadia, was invited to deliver the sermon. The service was well attended and served to help rekindle the flame of Christianity. C.N. Hirtle chaired the Finance Committee and formed two new sub-committees. A special committee was set up to give special encouragement to those preparing their wills to consider bequests to the church. And a special committee was created to give guidance for the use of funds designated for Memorial windows. The Visiting Committee, chaired by C.L. Illsley, completed their work of zoning the church territory. This was forwarded to the deacons with a plan for regular family contacts. Rev. H.M. Bartlett introduced the concept of Family Services. These were held for six weeks during the summer when the children

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would be allowed to sit with their parents in the sanctuary. The children would be invited to the chancel steps for a story after which they would leave for an abbreviated Sunday school program. When the Women’s Auxiliary donated a Philips tape recorder valued at $325, Lois Duffy formed an Audio-Visual Committee to oversee the purchase of new equipment and store, catalogue, control and distribute AV materials. C.R. Pelton noted the much improved efficiency and cleanliness of the new oil heating system. The deacons reviewed the membership lists and transferred 204 people to the "inactive list". Active membership was 655 and continuing to decline slowly after the peak in 1958. It was 1961 that space flight advanced. "Ham" the chimpanzee, became the first primate in space. Yuri Gagarin was the first man in space; and Alan Shepherd became the first American astronaut in space. And Charlie Brown flew his kite successfully for the very first time. Other firsts, Bob Dylan performed for the first time, as did the Beatles at an afternoon gig at the Cavern Club in Liverpool. Also the first FM stereo broadcast and the first integrated circuit. Research by Ed Tummers

Coming soon. Feb 2012: The Africville Project May 2012: New Directions August 2012: Reaching Out


Worship at First Baptist

December 2011—February, 2012 November 27: Advent 1 Isaiah 64:1-9; Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19 1 Corinthians 1:3-9; Mark 13:24-37 Wake Up! - Rev. John E. Boyd Music: Bach

January 8: Baptism of the Lord Genesis 1:1-5; Psalm 29 Acts 19:1-7; Mark 1:4-11 The Beginning of Life - Rev. John E. Boyd Music: Palestrina

December 4: Advent 2; Communion Isaiah 40:1-11; Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13 2 Peter 3:8-15a; Mark 1:1-8 Turn Around - Rev. John E. Boyd Music: Britten

January 15: Epiphany 2 1 Samuel 3:1-20; Psalm 139:1-6, 13-18 1 Corinthians 6:12-20; John 1:43-51 Here I Am, Lord - Rev. Renée Clark Music: Handel

December 11: Advent 3 White Gift Sunday Isaiah 61:1-4; 8-11; Psalm 126 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24; John 1:6-8, 19-28 Feel the Joy - Rev. John E. Boyd Music: Howells Sunday School Presentation—1:00 p.m.

January 22: Epiphany 3 Jonah 3:1-5, 10; Psalm 62:5-12 1 Corinthians 7:29-31; Mark 1:14-20 The Great Adventure - Rev. John E. Boyd Music: Messiaen

December 18: Advent 4 2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16; Luke 1:47-55 Romans 16:25-27; Luke 1:26-38 Say " Yes” to God - Rev. John E. Boyd Music: Duinker Magnificat -FBC choral commission Carols by Candlelight, 7 p.m.

January 29: Epiphany 4 Deuteronomy 18:15-20; Psalm 111 1 Corinthians 8:1-13; Mark 1:21-28 Who Do You Speak For? - Rev. John E. Boyd Music: Tchaikovsky

December 24: Christmas Eve Family Service, 4 p.m. Featuring the participation of Children and Families Soloist: Jason Davis

February 5: Epiphany 5 Isaiah 40:21-31; Psalm 147:1-11, 20c 1 Corinthians 9:16-23; Mark 1:29-39 Praying With Jesus - Rev. John E. Boyd Music: Chilcott

December 24: Christmas Eve Communion, 11:00 p.m. Isaiah 9:2-7; Psalm 96 Titus 2:11-14; Luke 2:1-14 Come and See - Rev. John E. Boyd Soloist: Natasha Sider

February 12: Epiphany 6 2 Kings 5:1-14; Psalm 30 1 Corinthians 9:24-27; Mark 1:40-45 Choices Jesus Made - Rev. John E. Boyd Music: Haydn

December 25: Christmas Day Isaiah 62:6-12; Psalm 97 Titus 3:4-7; Luke 2:8-20 Inter-generational Service Music: Choral Quartet

February 19: Transfiguration Sunday 2 Kings 2:1-12; Psalm 50:1-6 2 Corinthians 4:3-6; Mark 9:2-9 Let Your Light Shine - Rev. Renée Clark Music: Tallis

January 1: Christmas I; Communion Genesis 1:26-31; Psalm 8 Revelation 21:1-6a; Matthew 21:33-46 “Have Dominion?....” - Rev. Nelson Metcalfe Music: Choral Quartet

February 26: Lent 1 Genesis 9:8-17; Psalm 25:1-10 1 Peter 3:18-22; Mark 1:9-15 Wilderness Companions of Jesus - Rev. John E. Boyd Music: Mendelssohn Page

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Advent 2011  

Advent 2011 edition of First Baptist Voices, the quarterly newsletter for First Baptist Church, Halifax, NS Canada

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