What’s In A Name

November 24, 2013

Season’s Meanings:   New Years:  What’s In A Name      We conclude our Season’s Meanings Series this week by exploring together the end-of-the-year celebration of New Year’s Day.  The party actually begins the night before.  For Christians who follow a liturgical calendar, today is the last Sunday in the year.  Dec. 1 is the First Sunday of Advent – the first Sunday in the liturgical year.  In recent years the last Sunday before Advent was called the Feast of Christ the King.  (Some refer to it as the “Reign of Christ”, which begs the question: What’s in a name?)  Janus

The Babylonians are the earliest people known to celebrate “new years”.  Other cultures and civilizations soon followed suit, albeit not on the same day.  January 1 was set in the West for the celebration of the new year around 46 years before the birth of Christ.  The month is named for the Roman god Janus – a deity with two faces.  One face is traditionally depicted as an older person – he is the one looking back across time.  The other face is younger, and is looking hopefully into the future.

In the Christian liturgical year, January 1 became know as the “Feast of the Circumcision”.  Jewish tradition held that parents were to bring their sons to the temple eight days after their birth.  Two things would happen: the child would be circumcised, and he would be named.

How important is your name to you?  How do you feel when people call you by the wrong name … or when you refer to others by an incorrect name?  New Years—we’ll explore today “What’s in a name?”

Morning Prayer:  Canticle of Zechariah

Scriptures for Today:   Exodus 3:13-5

 Acts 22:6-11

 Luke 1:56-67

Message:  What’s In A Name?

Some of the music from today’s service:  Tears in Heaven

I Will Remember You

I Am Malala   (Words to the rap.)November 24 - Malala

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Other related media:

Spelman’s Women’s Chorus – What You Gonna Call Your Pretty Little Baby

How does the chorus from Handel’s Messiah leave you feeling as you hear the list names for the Messiah?  For Unto Us A Child Is Born

Dropping the Ball in 2012

Malala speaks at the Clinton Global Initiative

Malala at the UN

Rachmaninov – Praise the Name of the Lord

——————-  Re-post of Mark’s Sermon for Thanksgiving – “Our National Eucharist

Mark Demers

Want to talk about sex, politics, spirituality? So do I. I grew up in a religious home in the 1950’s and 1960’s. Our country was reeling from assassinations and the devastation of the Viet Nam War. Looking for something beautiful, I got a degree in music, married the love of my life and had children. Looking for God, I then went to seminary. Looking for something that might transform the world, I became a local church pastor. Now, I’m always looking for people who want to talk about important things. I cherish conversations with emerging leaders, people who are antsy to try an idea they believe would change the world for the better. I’d would love to hear from you.