When we got to the church, they had a living Nativity scene in front of the main doors. It was very cold, but these folks didn't seem to mind. (We thought at first she was holding a real baby, but it was much too cold for that!
I was very impressed--they had not one, but two live camels! The other one was standing but didn't get a picture. I don't think I realized how big they are.
This little guy was warming himself by a big heater they had there. Can you blame him? But what a sweet smile.
There were of course, sheep and goats as well. What a wonderful reminder of the stable scene where our Lord arrived here on earth.
The first part of the evening was a reception with hor d'oeuvres and desserts. They had food tables but also had volunteers from the church--including the pastor--walking around with trays of goodies for the taking. It is indeed a VERY big church, but you might want to try to picture approximately 1500 women walking around, munching and visiting.
The program theme was "Starstruck" and the decorations were great. (for some reason this blogger didn't take ANY pictures and had to rely on the ones taken by Brenda.)
There was some beautiful musical presentations, but the highlight of the evening for me was the speaker, Carol Kent. She has gone through an "unthinkable" circumstance in her life, but encouraged us by how she is walking through this journey with the Lord's help, and that we too can experience victory and even joy, in spite of whatever circumstances we find ourselves in. She shared several scriptures that were so appropriate. (I believe most of them were from the paraphrase "The Message".) There is a CD of her message available, which I want to purchase. I'm sure I will need to listen to it again, as difficulties come my way.
My friend, Mary, who is currently going through a very difficult situation was very encouraged. I was glad I had the forethought to invite her to go with us.
For me, it was a wonderful start to the Christmas season. A big thank you goes to all of those who were involved in planning and serving, who gave of their time and talents to provide a wonderful Christmas celebration.