West End United Methodist Church

Service of the Longest Night

The Advent/Christmas season is often advertised as a time of celebration and cheer, yet it can also be a time of loneliness, grief, and struggle.  Those who have lost a loved one, experienced a divorce, financial difficulties, illness, infertility, or some other kind of emotional or physical trauma, may feel isolated if they don’t feel joyful in the midst of all of the holiday festivities.

Services of the Longest Night, traditionally held on December 21st, the longest night of the year, are meant to hold space for those who may need a quiet place for reflection, prayer, and tears.  In the midst of the darkest time of the year, a Service of the Longest Night draws people into a community of those who “get it,” where candles are lit as a reminder that even in the midst of darkness, the Light of Christ is coming into the world.  

On December 18, at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary, West End will hold a Service of the Longest Night.  We will gather together to hear words from Scripture, sing hymns, light candles, and there will be opportunities to receive prayer, Communion, and anointing with oil.  This service of healing and hope is open to anyone in the community.  Even if you are not experiencing a difficult season yourself, you are invited to come and pray for those who are.  

The word, “Immanuel,” means “God with us.”  Our Immanuel is indeed with us, even in the midst of difficult times.  During West End’s Service of the Longest Night, we will claim that promise for ourselves and our loved ones.  We hope that you’ll join us.

For more info, contact Rev. Erin Racine at 615.321.8500 or eracine@westendumc.org