December 15, 2011
This report was provided by WRF Board member Dr. Craig Higgins.
In the latest ministry report for our congregation (which is posted immediately below this item on the WRF website), I spoke of our annual Christmas concert. Each year at this concert I do a brief (approximately 10-15 minute) talk (we bill it as a “homily”); the target audience are the friends and neighbors invited to the concert. This year, as an example, the theme was “And Heaven and Nature Sing,” based, of course, on the first verse of Isaac Watts’ carol, “Joy to the World.” I spoke on how heaven is revealed to us as a place of singing, how we human beings, created to voice creation’s praise, fail in this task, and how in Jesus we are again enabled to join the heavenly chorus in singing praise to God.
Writing these talks is always a challenge—the challenge of speaking the historic Christian message to secular urbanites/suburbanites. It is helpful that, in our culture, the celebration of Christmas presents an opening for this message. I would love to hear from anyone else with experience in such contexts. I’ve also considered putting some of these messages together in a book. If anyone would like to know more, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.