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Sunday, December 11 with / Domingo, 11 de diciembre con

The Rev. Kaji Douša

11:00 am ET
Third Sunday of Advent: Joy

Watch Pastor Kaji's latest sermon here
Dear Church,
As someone wisely sang: it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! Many thanks to Stephanie Wilson and David Sookai for bringing our sanctuary into Advent joy and Christmasy delight - it’s gorgeous!
Coming up, we have beautiful worship experiences planned. With Advent Joy and Love Sundays ahead, and the amazing encounter our music leader, C. Anthony Bryant, has planned for December 14, our church has much uplift in store!
Be sure to note our Christmas worship schedule. We will hold our Christmas celebration on Sunday, December 25 at our regular worship time of 11 am. Because Christmas Day falls on a Sunday, we have the rare opportunity to worship on Christmas Day instead of our usual Christmas Eve service, so please do plan accordingly. 
For this Sunday, our text comes from Galatians 4, where Paul explores what it means to be a child of God. It’s a beautiful, challenging text I can’t wait to explore with you in worship. My working title is: “When they try to tell you you aren’t free”. Join us in person or online - we can’t wait to see you.

In preparation for your reflections on this week’s scripture, I share Dr. Wil Gafney’s important reflection on this text:
"Slave language in the Gospels and Epistles is ugly. It is tempting to soften it to servant, woman servant, maidservant, etc. The blood more than six million Africans spilled in the Middle Passage cries out with the blood of every other enslaved person across time and space. We must confront slavery in the text and in the churches and institutions built on it and its rhetoric. We can retain the image of being adopted by God without a straw comparison to an enslaved person—who cannot even be considered a child according to Paul’s rhetoric—to establish our relative worth." *
How do we read this text and understand our belovedness? We will reflect on this, together.

Pastor Kaji

* Gafney, Wilda C.. A Women's Lectionary for the Whole Church (p. 56). Church Publishing Incorporated. Kindle Edition.

  Scripture: Galatians 4:1-7 (Year A, page 52): :

1 I say that as long as heirs are minors, they are no better than slaves, though they are the masters of all; 2 but they remain under guardians and trustees until the time set by the father. 3 So also for us; while we were minors, we were enslaved by the constitutive elements of the world. 4 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent God’s own Son, born of a woman, born under the law, 5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption like children. 6 And because you are children, God has sent the Spirit of God’s own Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” 7 So you are no longer a slave but a child, and if a child then also an heir, through God.

In Memory of Estella Pate

October 27 1945  - October 22, 2022

Memorial Service
December 18, 2022 1:30 PM, ET
Park Avenue Christian Church

Estella Mame Pate was born on October 27, 1945 in Illinois to Winnie and John Pate, their only child, whom they dearly loved. Estella’s small family was very close. When Estella was quite young they moved from Illinois to Tucson, Arizona, because of her severe asthma. The Pate family settled near Winnie’s sister Flossie Belcher, her husband, and their son Billy. As first cousins, Billy Belcher and Estella were very close and became best friends for life. Billy (now deceased) married Sharon, who kindly provided much of Estella’s earlier life information.
Read about Estella's rich and wonderful life here

Donations In Memory of Estella may be made to
Park Avenue Christian Church
1010 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10028

 or online at

Join Pastor Douša on Wednesday, Dec. 21
for a
Chanukah  Candle Lighting Ceremony

You are invited to join Pastor Kaji for the ceremony hosted by the Marlene Meyerson Jewish Community Center, with candles, music, festivities, and food.

The lighting begins at 5:00 pm, but you are also invited to meet Pastor Kaji at the center at 4:00 pm if you would like to attend a teaching about the history and context of this holiday observance.

Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan
The Samuel Priest Rose Building
334 Amsterdam Avenue at 76th Street
New York, NY 10023
Weekly Invitations to Community:
Upcoming Events

Saturday, December 10, Community Lunch Program, 1:00 pm, Manhattan Church of Christ 48 East 80th Street

Wednesday, December 14, 7:30 pm, C. Anthony Bryant and 5th Sunday present "God With Us"

Saturday, December 17, Community Lunch Program, 1:00 pm, Manhattan Church of Christ 48 East 80th Street

Sunday, December 18, Estella Pate Memorial Service, 1:30 pm

Tuesday, December 20, Finance Meeting, 6:00 pm

Tuesday, December 20, Ministry Council, 7:00 pm

Saturday, December 24, Community Lunch Program, 1:00 pm, Manhattan Church of Christ 48 East 80th Street

Monday, December 26 through Monday, January 1, office is closed

Saturday, December 31, Community Lunch Program, 1:00 pm, Manhattan Church of Christ 48 East 80th Street

Sunday, January 1, 11:00 am, worship will be ONLINE ONLY

Saturday, January 7,
Community Lunch Program, 1:00 pm, Manhattan Church of Christ 48 East 80th Street
This Week at The Park is published every Thursday by
Park Avenue Christian Church
1010 Park Avenue at 85th Street, New York, NY 10028

Church office:  212-288-3246.   Office hours are Monday through Friday, 9 am to 5 pm.