Subject: Coming Home to God

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"Comfort, Comfort, now my people... speak tenderly to Jerusalem." Isaiah 40:1
In a season like this, we need time and space for the Great Comforter to tend to our souls. In the person of John the Baptist, we experience a Holy mix of crazy, confrontation, and comfort that brings us back to God and prepares us to a more honest and healthy life.

Join us for the second Sunday of Advent in worship at 8 a.m. or 10:30 a.m.! And then join us for Caroling, Chili, and Hot Chocolate at 4 p.m.!

Sunday, December 17th Services
8:00 a.m. & 10:30 a.m. - Worship
4:00 p.m. - Blue Christmas Service

Wednesday, December 20th
9:00 a.m. - School Christmas Service Dress Rehearsal

Thursday, December 21st Service
7:00 p.m. - School Christmas Service,

Sunday, December 24th Services
NO 8:00 a.m. Service
10:30 a.m. - Fourth Sunday in Advent
4:30 p.m. - Christmas Eve Family Candlelight
7:30 p.m. & 11:00 p.m. - Christmas Candlelight

Monday, December 25th Service
9:30 a.m. - Christmas Morning

Sunday, December 31st Services
8:00 a.m. - Lessons and Carols
10:30 a.m. - Lessons and Carols and renewal of vows
for Jonathan Valencia & Collin Brown and all couples

Sunday School for the remainder of 2017 - Today and December 17th we will be on our normal schedule with Sunday School at 9:15 a.m. There will be no Sunday School on December 24th or 31rd. Winter term starts Sunday, January 7th!

Christmas Caroling, Hot Chocolate & Chili - Meet at Pilgrim Lutheran Church at 4:00 p.m. TODAY for fun caroling around the neighborhood. Then join us for a Chili dinner at 5:30 p.m. at Pastor Kristian and Anna-Kari’s home (4332 N. Winchester). All are invited!

Blue Christmas Service - We often miss loved ones who have died during the holidays. Join us for our Blue Christmas Service, as we receive peace as we mourn and remember those we hold dear this Christmas on Sunday, December 17th at 4:00 p.m.

Calling all Children! You are invited to participate in this year's 4:30 p.m. Family Christmas Eve Candlelight Service. Please let Pastor know at if your child(ren) is able to participate!

New Member Exploration Classes - What does ‘Lutheran’ mean? How can Pilgrim help me and my family grow in faith? What does it mean to become a member of Pilgrim? If you’re at all curious about any of these questions, please consider attending an exploration class on January 15 or 22nd. Child care is provided throughout each class.  Please contact our Church Office Administrator, Renee Stuedemann, at to RSVP.

Your 2018 Offering Envelopes - are in your mailboxes in the Narthex. We encourage you us use them, unless of course you have automatic withdrawals for your donations.

Walther Christian Academy will have an Open House TODAY 10th at 3:00 p.m. You can tour the campus, meet the teachers, speak with current students, and learn more about what makes Walther such a great place for students to learn. Come learn about scholarship and financial aid deadlines. Walther consistently has 100% college acceptance for our seniors. The class of 2017 (41 students) had a total of $6,800,000 in scholarships. Athletic and extracurricular options to fit every need abound inside of our Christ-centered family environment as well. Contact Alma L. Calleros, Director of Admissions with any questions:, 708.344.0404 ext. 245. Walther is located at 900 Chicago Avenue, Melrose Park.

Save the Date:
Sunday, December 17th - Baptism of Will & Henry Sexton
Sunday, January 14th - Epiphany Celebration
Sunday, January 28th - Vision and Leadership Congregational Meeting
Exploring the Bible - Join us on Sundays at 9:15 a.m. for "Explore the Bible" Class (except December 3rd due to the Dad’s Pancake Breakfast). It is open to people of all backgrounds and levels of familiarity. We will meet in Maring Hall and explore the basics of the Lutheran way of being Christian, in light of the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation. 

Women’s Bible Study - it’s not too late to join our next session on December 13th. It will be our final night studying The Best Yes by Lysa Terkerust. We gather at Renee Stuedemann’s home for light refreshments at 6:30 p.m. and begin at 7:00 p.m. To RSVP, or if you have questions, contact Beginning January 10th, we will study The Apostles’ Creed from the WELCA Gather magazine.

Prayer Time - We invite you to join us Saturday mornings at 8:30 a.m. at the Parsonage for a time of prayer… it is so renewing! 
Christmas Boxes – Can You Help? Continuing our tradition, we will be delivering Christmas “Prayer and Care” Boxes to seniors, people in hospitals or recovering at home, people who are not in their homes, and simply people who could use a little extra cheer at Christmas time. You are invited to take a box after church TODAY to give to someone you think would appreciate the box and the visit. For more information, please contact Renee at

Pilgrim's 13th Annual Toy Drive! On Friday, December 15th Miss Stone’s 1/2 grade class and the 7/8 grade elves are scheduled to hop on a bus to deliver the toys collected at this year’s Toy Drive. Every year for the past 12 years the Pilgrim community has helped bring Christmas joy to children at Pablo Casals Elementary School in Humboldt Park. We need 185 toys to gift every PK - 2nd grader! That's a big goal but I know we can do it! The donation boxes are set up in the narthax. Thank You Pilgrim.

Hot Meals Coats—Our guests could use warm coats, hats, and gloves. Gently used or new items for adults can be dropped off at the Pastor’s office. Also, socks, underwear, and toiletries of all kinds are so appreciated. Not only are these items appreciated, they love the fact that we care enough to collect these items.

Thank You Everyone from Bob Hamilton for all your prayers for his recovery from 6 surgeries in 4 years. He continues to do better and better.

Thank You to Second City Quilt Shop for their cookie drive for our Hot Meals guests. The homemade, delicious cookies were most appreciated.
HELP WANTED: Cinco de Pilgrim Volunteers! Help us plan an incredible spring party for the Pilgrim community this May - join the fiesta crew! We can’t pull off an evening like this without a LOT of help - there are jobs big and small, but this is definitely a TEAM effort. Questions or Ideas? email

Gift Cards - "Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat! Buy the perfect gift card for Aunt or Uncle Pat!" Gift cards for gifting or shopping will be sold on Sundays after church and Monday and Friday in the school office from 8:30 to 10 a.m., plus Thursday, 12/21. Order forms can be found in the school office, on the table in the church narthex, on SIS and at the following link: Please drop off orders in the school office or with the Sunday Seller. They will be filled the same day, if available, or ordered on Monday for pickup on Thursday. Please contact Anne Barsano at or 773-472-6037 or 312-972-9040 with questions or orders. Merry Christmas from all of us at Operation CIP!

A Big Thank You from Coat Angels - We raised enough money to purchase 115 coats to keep school children in Chicago warm this winter!

General Worship Offerings:
Needed weekly to meet budget: $2,981
Actual received week of Nov 27-Dec 3: $1,259 
Church Calendar  to go to the complete online calendar, click HERE


December 10 Sunday
 8:00 a.m. Worship Service
9:15 a.m. Sunday School
9:15 a.m. Explore the Bible Class
10:30 a.m. Worship Service
10:30 a.m. Nursery
11:45 a.m. Coffee Hour
4:00 p.m. Caroling and Chili Party

December 13 Wednesday
 7:00 p.m. Alcoholics Anonymous
7:30 p.m. Harmony Choir

December 14 Thursday
 6:15 p.m. T.O.P.S.

December 15 Friday
 6:30 p.m. Girl Scouts

December 16 Saturday
 8:30 a.m. Prayer Time
11:30 a.m. Hot Meals Team #8


December 17 Sunday
 8:00 a.m. Worship Service
9:15 a.m. Sunday School
9:15 a.m. Explore the Bible Class
10:30 a.m. Worship Service
10:30 a.m. Nursery
11:45 a.m. Coffee Hour
4:00 p.m. Blue Christmas Service

December 20 Wednesday
 9:00 a.m. School Christmas Service Dress Rehearsal
7:00 p.m. Alcoholics Anonymous
7:30 p.m. Harmony Choir

December 21 Thursday
 6:15 p.m. T.O.P.S.
7:00 p.m. School Christmas Service

December 22 Friday
 6:30 p.m. Girl Scouts

December 23 Saturday
 8:30 a.m. Prayer Time
11:30 a.m. Hot Meals Team #9
Pilgrim Lutheran Church and School

Our Mission:
In Christ's Love, We Gather, Prepare, and Send 
all as leaders for God's mission in the world. (GPS)


Pastor: Kristian Johnson
Principal: Chris Comella
Business Manager:  Zenzile Larry-Muhammad
Communications Administrator: Halley Williams
Office Administrator: Renee Stuedemann

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