Outreach Mission – Grandma House of Hope in Anaheim

A vignette of the the Edavaka Mission’s (Church Mission) outreach activity to Grandma’s House of Hope in Anaheim on Nov 13th, 2013. For more information, please visit http://grandmashouseofhope.org/



Power of the Gospel at work in India

Light in the Darkness
A documentary film featuring real people and stories from the country of India. Conflict over religion extends to every culture and country on the globe today, and India is no exception. This documentary presents an amazing mission field where God is doing a great work; lives are being changed, and churches are being planted.



Christmas in Dark Places

Christmas in Dark Places

It used to be summer when Christmas came round,
Neath tall southern skies, over sun-scorched ground,
With the backyard cricket, the barbies, the beach,
And munching on mangoes to watch the Queen’s Speech.
The slatherings of sunscreen, the glorious glare
And toasting the glow in the warm evening air.

It used to be summer… when I was young.
A golden age in a land far flung.
But there came a point, I crossed a divide,
Went up in the world and summer had died.
December is dark now, the nights close in,
So we huddle together as kith and as kin.

It’s winter now when Christmas rolls round,
We celebrate still though with different surrounds.
We mull the wine and strike the matches,
Light the fires, batten the hatches,
Gather around the warming beam
Of family love or a TV screen.
So safe inside, no place to go,
We toast marshmallows and let it snow.

Our summer’s gone, if you’ve been around,
you’ve felt the fall: life’s run aground.
We’ve gone up in the world, seen summer die.
So what’s our hope? The dark defy?
Stoke the hearth? Retreat indoors?
Rug up warm with you and yours?
The shadow reaches even here,
But THIS is the place for Christmas cheer.

It’s dark, in the bible, when Christmas is spoken.
Always a bolt from the blue for the broken.
It’s the valley of shadow, the land of the dead,
It’s, “No place in the inn,” so He stoops to the shed.
He’s born to the shameful, bends to the weak,
becomes the lowly: the God who can’t speak!
And yet, what a Word, this Saviour who comes,
Our dismal, abysmal depths He plumbs.
Through crib and then cross, to compass our life.
To carry and conquer. Our Brother in strife.
He became what we are: our failures He shouldered,
To bring us to His life: forever enfolded.
He took on our frailty, He took on all-comers,
To turn all our winters to glorious summers.

It’s Christmas now… whatever the weather,
Some soak in the sun, some huddle together.
But fair days or foul, our plight He embraces.
Real Christmas can shine in the darkest of places.



O Holy Night: Kings College, Cambridge



Jesus Christ the Apple Tree

The tree of life my soul hath seen
Laden with fruit and always green
The trees of nature fruitless be
Compared with Christ the apple tree

His beauty doth all things excel
By faith I know, but ne’er can tell
The glory which I now can see
In Jesus Christ the apple tree

For happiness I long have sought
And pleasure dearly I have bought
I missed of all; but now I see
‘Tis found in Christ the apple tree

I’m weary with my former toil
Here I will sit and rest a while
Under the shadow I will be
Of Jesus Christ the apple tree

This fruit doth make my soul to thrive
It keeps my dying faith alive
Which makes my soul in haste to be
With Jesus Christ the apple tree



O Holy Night | “Believe Again”

Dianne Tubbs’s rendition of “O Holy Night” that’s part the Christmas special “Believe Again.” After hearing the way she sang the Christmas classic, the producer was moved to consider that this version actually captures what the song is really about: the night of Jesus’s birth.



Angels we have heard on high

“Glory to God, Glory to God,” are the first words in the video, sung quietly by the artists as they play a piano in a most unique fashion. The video, “Angels We Have Heard on High (Christmas w/ 32 fingers and 8 thumbs),” features four musicians grouped around a piano, each playing a different part of the instrument.



O Come, Emmanuel

An excellent piano and cello version of O Come, Emmanuel by the Piano Guys.
(Note: Enjoy the music, no endorsement of Morman Church).
 

 



Stories of God’s Grace: Meet Derrick

 

It’s always amazing to see the Lord at work redeeming and sanctifying a people for Himself.
Please see this short clip of the power of God’s grace in the life of Derrick.

“Nobody knows more than me that I have absolutely no right to be such a recipient of such grace.” —Derrick



Lighthouse ~ December

Monthly Newsletter of Horeb Mar Thoma Church

Lighthouse

Message from Rev. Larry Varghese, Vicar

Larry_Achen_sml

Dearly Beloved in Christ,

It’s Christmas time again. The string lights have come out and the debate between “to tree or not to tree” has begun. It’s quite easy to be caught up in the commercial aspect of Christmas; the endless sales and bargains. We Christians aren’t immune to it. The danger with this advertisement driven holiday season is we shift our focus to the next latest and greatest thing on the market. As I look back I can remember certain decorations which were hung from my home parish’s church ceiling. I can even remember some of the Christmas songs our choir sang years back. The decorations and songs of course varied over the years. The message however has stayed the same. It seems especially the case in today’s society that “new” is preferred over “tried and true”. New car, new phone, new spouse…

There was a time when the message of Christmas was radically new. Well, that shouldn’t have been the case because there were numerous prophecies foretelling Jesus’s birth, and so the people of Israel should have been ready. But nonetheless, it was a wonderful surprise to the world. God, here on earth – what a bizarre concept. The Jewish idea of God over the course of their history became a progressively elevated one. When God, at the appointed time, sent his son into the world he was basically announcing “Hey, I’m not some far off and aloof figure. I’m right there with you. For every tough situation you’ve gone through, look I’ve gone through it too. Loneliness, physical pain, mental anguish, hardship, persecution, betrayal – you name it, I’ve experienced it (Hebrews 4:15). I’ve shared in your life (or more accurately lack of life); now share in my life (real, eternal life)!” Even though that same message is repeated every year from different angles it’s truth is so profound and life-altering that we dare not exchange it for an iPhone.

This advent season set apart some time and recall the Christmas message of hope and joy. Our church practices a 25 day lent from December 1-25th. Set aside something that you crave and shift that passion over towards reconnecting with Jesus. May God bless you this Christmas season. Wishing you a meaningful Christmas and a blessed New Year in advance.

Rev. Larry Varghese.


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