Day 292 | Tuesday, 5 January 2021
COVID update. One Week ago: As of 12/28 at 3:00PM the number of cases in the county has risen to 3,415 with 399 active and 1,926 in isolation.
The cases in the following areas are: 14701 – 898; Dunkirk – 525; Fredonia – 469; Lakewood – 131; Bemus – 115 and Frewsburg – 129. Total deaths are now at 29.
As of Jan. 4 at 3:45PM the number of cases inn the county has risen to 4,097 with 689 active and 2,538 in isolation.
The cases in the following areas are: Jamestown – 1,079; Dunkirk – 689; Fredonia – 544; Lakewood – 162; Bemus – 133 and Frewsburg – 144. Numbers are spiking in the county and in Jamestown. Caution!
Here we are, the 12th day of Christmastide and I am not giving you a partridge in a pear tree.
Tomorrow is Epiphany. At one of the churches I served, we held an Epiphany eve party. People would bring their live trees and we would have a bon fire with them, sing some carols, and enjoy some refreshments. It was a joyful ending to the Christmastide season.
“Go, Tell It on the Mountain” words: John W. Work, Jr. 1907 (Luke 2:8-20)
(Refrain): “Go, tell it on the mountain, over the hills and everywhere; go, tell it on the mountain, that Jesus Christ is born.”
1. “While shepherds kept their watching o’er silent flocks by night, behold throughout the heavens there shown a holy light.” (Refrain): “Go, tell it on the mountain, over the hills and everywhere; go, tell it on the mountain, that Jesus Christ is born.”
2. “The Shepherds feared and trembled, when lo! Above the earth, rang out the angel chorus that hailed the Savior’s birth.” (Refrain): “Go, tell it on the mountain, over the hills and everywhere; go, tell it on the mountain, that Jesus Christ is born.”
3. “Down in a lowly manger the humble Christ was born, and God sent us salvation that blessed Christmas morn. Go, tell it on the mountain, over the hills and everywhere; go, tell it on the mountain, that Jesus Christ is born.”
“Holy and all-knowing God, we marvel at your choice of a group of shepherds to be first to receive the news of your son's birth. We wonder why you chose them. Would not a group of scribes, earnest students of your promises, have been a more plausible choice? Would not a group of children have been more suitable for being his first visitors and worshipers? Did you choose the shepherds perhaps because they lived close to nature? They did indeed. Living a life of hardship and of wonder, they were receptive to the startling news that your son was being born not a Prince, but into a humble peasant family. Yes, his humble birth spoke to folk like the shepherds, who knew that they were powerless, that they needed help. It requires humility to feel the need for a savior. The good news is for men and women who toil and suffer, hunger and thirst, and hope. And Lord, perhaps you chose these shepherds because they had time: time to think, time to feel, time to be aware of mystery. We who live by the clock are missing something. We try to do too much. We know our time on earth is short, but we waste a lot of our time on trivia, while we fail to hear your Angels sing. Mighty God, we think we understand why you chose those shepherds as the first ones to visit and worship the holy child. We pray that we may learn to live less artificial, more natural lives, closer to the basics, closer to you. We pray that we may never think of ourselves more highly than we deserve, knowing that apart from your grace we deserve exactly nothing. And we pray for discernment in our use of your gift of time, that we may seek and find moments, beyond the noise and bustle of life, just to be quiet with him who needed and cherished his silent times with you. Amen”
Today: Prayers for those who are administrating the vaccine.
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Rev. Douglas Knopp, Pastor Emeritus