Grass Valley’s Peace Lutheran hosts Blue Christmas service to heal, lift up | TheUnion.com

Grass Valley’s Peace Lutheran hosts Blue Christmas service to heal, lift up

Trina Kleist
Special to The Union

A moment of spiritual lifting-up for anyone feeling blue at Christmas will be offered at 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 16, at Peace Lutheran Church in Grass Valley.

This inclusive Blue Christmas service allows people feeling loss and grief to acknowledge that pain. Losses may include relationship, job, health and even faith.

"If you're feeling blue or you're not connecting with the joy of the season, if you're feeling lonely, adrift, separated from people, grieving, out of step, this may be a service for you," said the Rev. Bill Wong, interim pastor at Peace Lutheran.

The central message of the service: God accompanies us in our sorrow as well as in our joy. Faith can be restored, bringing light to our darkness and courage to our journey.

“If you’re feeling blue or you’re not connecting with the joy of the season ... this may be a service for you.”

— The Rev. Bill Wong, Peace Lutheran

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Through music, song, prayer, the lighting of candles and Bible readings, this service also offers the hope of a loving and compassionate God. It assures participants that healing is possible. Participants also can write down their prayer concerns to have them lifted up.

Faith communities across the nation increasingly offer a December service that addresses the needs of those feeling the pain of loss. People often feel their own pain in even greater contrast amid the greeting-card joy of commercialized Christmas.

Blue Christmas at Peace addresses the feeling of being abandoned by God with a reading of Psalm 22: "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"

The service draws on hymns and other readings that call on God to "kindle our hearts and awaken hope," as expressed by one of the prayers. It reminds people of God's power to reveal divinity in our lives and throughout the world.

"We look for a connection with a loving, caring, embracing God," Wong said.

Peace offers Blue Christmas free of charge. The church is at 828 W. Main St., near downtown Grass Valley. More at http://www.PeaceLutheranGV.org or 530-273-9631.

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