Six New Things – Week of November 23


Rev. Elsa Anders Cook has been creating some lovely recipes, including a revamp of her Twinkly Lights in Blue Days: An Advent Small Group Discussion Guide for the Grieving and Broken Hearted, Pandemic Loss Edition, An Advent Invocation with some powerful music suggestions, and her beautiful Keeping Watch Under Pandemic Skies, a meditative walking experience developed for using church grounds from Advent through Epiphany, which includes a socially distanced Christmas Eve service. In a similar vein, check out the Southwestern Texas Synod (ELCA)’s videotaped The Longest Night Liturgy, designed for people who are experiencing loss, grieving, feeling hopeless or overwhelmed (who does that not include?): it’s free for any and all, Dec. 15.

Find more Advent and Christmas Worship resources in our lib guide.


Faith Formation in this season has gotten super creative! Worship Times lists 20 Creative Ways to Celebrate Advent in 2020 and more specifically offers Advent+Instagram: Photo-a-Day Challenge, which is fantastic! Illustrated Ministry keeps cranking out their beautiful artwork, offering new Christmas Coloring Pages and The Names of the Messiah Banner. Dwell has also shared a Jesse Tree-infused Faith Formation Ministry Advent Resources Roundup.

Find more Advent & Christmas Faith Formation ideas in our lib guide.


ELCA World Hunger shares their first-ever Christmas benefit concert, featuring Peter Mayer (longtime Lutheran and guitarist for Jimmy Buffet); proceeds support poverty and hunger relief in over 60 countries. The ELCA’s Justice for Women invites people to 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence (Nov. 25-Dec. 10) through their Twitter account and United Theological Seminary’s FVI: Create and Innovate Series welcomes Blyth Barnow, who will teach about the Narcan Worship Service (for folks struggling with opioid addiction) and talk about Harm Reduction and Faith (password, Hutt). Church youth are invited to discuss water justice and creatively share their water stories, guided by national touring artist, Joe Davis, in Growing Green Hearts‘ Water Where We Live: Youth Water Stories through Spoken Word.

Find more seasonal Social Justice engagement in our Faith Formation: Advent & Christmas lib guide.


United is joining with The Islamic Seminary of America in offering an amazing conversation with the authors of How Millenials Can Lead Us Out of the Mess We’re in: A Jew, a Muslim, and a Christian Share Leadership Lessons from the Life of Moses, moderated by Prof. Justin Sabia-Tanis.


Church Anew’s recent blog offered thoughts on Anxiety, Gratitude, and Social Distancing during the Holidays – all worth reading (plus, more!).

See more about Thanksgiving and Gratitude in our Thanksgiving and Worship: Thanksgiving lib guides.


And last but not least: The Damascus Project is offering Sermon Camp with Backstory Preaching: a roadmap to a new approach to preaching, rooted in prayer and best practices.