Richfield’s United Methodist Church of Peace is hosting a Longest Night/Blue Christmas worship service on Friday, December 21, 7:00 p.m. This service is a time to remember our losses from this year or years’ past. The loss may be any loss that affects you. It can be the death of a loved one, the ending of a relationship, the loss of employment, the loss of health or a catastrophic illness, the loss of crops, the loss of our retirement or the loss of a beloved pet. Loneliness, depression, aging and separation from families can also make the Christmas season more sad than joyous for many.
The longest night in the Northern Hemisphere is December 21, the winter solstice, which means literally “standing still.” Conversely, this date also marks the shortest day of sunlight of the year, the official start of winter, when the sun is the farthest distance from the earth. Tradition says that all creation stops and holds its breath to see if the sun will turn back from its wanderings, if the days will lengthen and the earth will once again feel the sun’s warmth.
In the gathering darkness of December, we anticipate the coming again of the Light of the World, Jesus Christ. It may only be the hope that marks Advent’s waiting that keeps us looking forward. It may also be that the “blue” of the Advent season (which symbolizes hope) is the very remedy we need for what makes us feel “blue” at Christmas.
Please join us for this time of remembrance and healing. This is an ecumenical service open to all, whether you regularly attend church or not, as pain knows no boundaries. Please invite a friend who is hurting this year. All are welcome. There will be an opportunity for everyone to come forward to light a candle as they remember their loss, looking forward with hope to birth of Jesus.
The church with the white dove, United Methodist Church of Peace, is located at 6345 Xerxes Avenue, Richfield.