2023 Advent Calendar

Every Advent, All Saints' team of writers, WordWorkers, creates a virtual "Advent Calendar."  Each day from the first Sunday of Advent through Christmas Day features a unique piece of original writing. The pieces range across scriptural devotion, Christmas memories, meditations, seasonal poetry, and extended fiction. You can easily explore the writings, or you can simply read them in the order they are posted.

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Merry Christmas
December 25th, 2023
Merry Christmas! May the peace, joy, grace, and love of Jesus fill your life. Whether you are hosting or traveling, calm or stressed, take the time today to enjoy Christmas with your family, whoever that might be. — The WordWorkers......
The Son of God
December 24th, 2023
The angel said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God.”– Luke 1:35There is a lot to unpack in this one short speech from the angel. Let’s take a look at a few parts.The wording used at the beginning of speech, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you,” is the same wording ...
A Cloudy Christmas
December 23rd, 2023
Last year, I wrote about the peace of snow falling at night. This year, we have yet to get an inch of snow. For many people, including myself, it is difficult for it to feel like Christmas when the weather is more reminiscent of late March.There are several elements that when missing make it not feel like Christmas. Besides snow and typical December temperatures, there is also music, Christmas lig...
The Best Gift
December 22nd, 2023
If you’re online at all between the beginning of November and Christmas, you’ve seen the articles that list “The 10 Best Christmas Gifts for ___,” with every possible combination of words in the blank. “10 Best for 11 Year-Olds.” “10 Best for Kids Who Love Curling.” “10 Best for Minnesotans Whose Favorite Color is Burgundy, Favorite Flavor is Butterscotch, and Favorite Meal is Brunch.”All of the a...
Candy Cane Stripes
December 21st, 2023
Peppermint is one of those love it or hate it flavors, and I love it. At this time of year, I always get candy canes to eat, as well as decorate my Christmas tree with. The cool peppermint flavor and the red and white colors evoke Christmas for me.Have you ever seen how candy canes are made? The white sugar forms a central core around which the alternating white and colored stripes are formed into...
Who is Santa?
December 20th, 2023
Do you remember going to see Santa when you were a child? I remember going to the rotunda at Ridgedale and waiting in line to see Santa. There was a fake wooden cabin surrounded by scenery and decorations. When we finally reached the front of the line, I got twenty-seven seconds to ask Santa for my Christmas gifts and to take a photo with him.In 2019, as we prepared for the Kids Christmas Program ...
Beauty and Distance
December 19th, 2023
This past spring, I went on a photography trip up along Minnesota’s North Shore just before Memorial Day. The smoky haze from the Canadian wildfires still hung in the air, but I still enjoyed hiking and taking photos. While not the shots that I had envisioned when planning the trip, I still came away with several great shots.At the end of the trip, I spent a day in Duluth. I awoke before sunrise a...
Self Reflection
December 18th, 2023
I’ve always been both in awe and jealous of people who have the dedication to keep a daily journal. I’ve kept a journal for trips that I’ve gone on, such as the Germany trip with All Saints or my family’s trip to Thailand, but I struggle to write a journal entry every day when I’m in my normal routine.Every time I try, I never manage to keep it up for more than two weeks. Eventually, I’ll have a b...
Rejoice Always
December 17th, 2023
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. — 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18Today’s reading from First Thessalonians begins with an encouragement to “rejoice always.” With Christmas Eve just a week away, with houses adorned with twinkling lights, with cheerful songs playing on the radio, some of us find it easy to get into a...
Baking and Making Memories
December 16th, 2023
When home begins to fill with the varied wonderful smells of baking cookies, Christmas memories come flooding back.It starts in late November with the peppernuts and springerlies. Old fashioned cookies that need time to harden before you dunk them in your coffee. As a non-coffee drinker, I don’t enjoy those cookies very much, though warm peppernuts fresh out of the oven are very good for the seven...