December 3, 2021 Message from Pastor Alessandri

 December 3, 2021

December 3, 2021 Message from Pastor Alessandri (pdf)

at 10:45 am this Sunday (December 5.) Preschoolers to fifth graders are invited! If you are able, bring some new socks for children in need. Fun, music, craft, prayer and some more fun.

A request: We ask that a parent or grandparent attend with our preschoolers to help us make the most of our diverse-aged group of explorers. Thank you.


CHRISTMAS FOOD BASKET COLLECTION IS GOING WELL There are no more tags on the Giving tree.  Each tag has items needed for the 10 families from Fountaindale Elementary School for whom we are providing Christmas food baskets. Many items have already arrived at church. Food and money collection will continue through Sunday, December 19th . Blessed to be a blessing – Thanks be to God!

LUNCH FOR RESIDENTS AT POTOMAC TOWERS – Among Haven’s various outreach ministries for December, we are providing bag lunches for the residents of Potomac Towers on Thursday, December 30. Can you help?
Items needed are listed on a sign-up sheet in the narthex (lobby). Because of the Christmas holiday and there being no in-person worship service on December 26, items need to be placed in the church kitchen by Sunday, December 19.
Please label your items “Potomac Towers” along with your name. If you have questions or difficulties bringing your items to the church by the 19th, contact Prue Yelinek (717) 643-1593. Thank you for helping share the joy of Christmas in this way!

                                                          CHRISTMAS PROJECT:

I know Haven has always responded generously when we collected toys and clothing for local children. I know that collecting practical winter items — coats, scarfs, gloves, hats and socks — for men, women, boys and girls doesn’t seem as “festive” of fun. So why did I say “yes” to collecting these items for Afghan refugees who are being assisted in their settlement by Catholic Charities Immigration Refugees Services of Harrisburg?

First, I thought of all the U.S. veterans who had been assisted by these Afghan refugees. I thought of the many, many report I read and heard of U.S. servicemen/women and veterans who were working tirelessly and desperately to get Afghan allies out of harm’s way by August 30. These servicemen/women and vets knew these Afghan allies would most likely be hunted down and killed by the incoming government, who would consider them “traitors” since they had assisted the U.S. forces who had opposed them. Each winter item I give is in honor of one of those U.S. military personnel who was aided by an Afghan ally.

Second, I saw “dire need” and I imagined being relocated into an area that had much colder temperatures than previously experienced. Brrrrr.

Last but not least, I think of who I am and whose I am. “When you did it for the least of these, you did it for me,” Jesus said.

In this year where, again, nothing seems normal, I ask you to consider this unusual Christmas requests. NEW or LIKE-NEW coats, hats, gloves, scarves for boys, girls, men and women of all ages and sizes AND NEW socks. There are boxes and designated area in each of the church’s coatrooms for donated items. Collection ends December 19th. Thank you for opening your heart and Christmas to these neighbors in need.


We have learned of a need for jigsaw puzzles at Dorsey Run Correctional Facility in Jessup where Haven member Harold Rice is currently incarcerated. After speaking with one of the DRCF officers, I learned they would greatly appreciate used (all the pieces please) or new jigsaw puzzles.
Many of us like to do jigsaw puzzles in the winter, on vacation and especially the pandemic. If you have complete puzzles you are willing to donate, please bring them to church and we will mail them together. Thanks.

ARE YOU ONE OF THE FOUR ADVENT LOG WINNERS WE’RE LOOKING FOR? When we drew the raffle winning tickets, there were several chosen that did not have names on the back. If that may be you, can you please check your tickets and let us know as soon as possible by contacting the church (301-733-5056; havenoffice@havenlc.or)   The numbers are:
4313196        4313192         4313191          4313201


  Winter Market at Evangelical Lutheran Church (Frederick)
December 4, 11 am – 5 pm  December 5   9 am – 4 pm

If you are in downtown Frederick this weekend, please stop by our Winter Market to find some wonderful holiday gifts crafted by our own ELC artists! Silent Auction bids will be taken until noon on Dec 5th – items on display during the market. Bring kids of all ages to the This & That Shop where they can find gently used treasures at Secret Santa prices.

There will be fresh baked cookies and hot cider for sale and our youth will be caroling in the courtyard on Saturday afternoon. Proceeds from the 2021 Winter Market will benefit SHIP of Frederick County. To learn more, click here

AMERICAN GUILD OF ORGANIST ADVENT CONCERT DECEMBER 5th  4 P.M at Christ Reformed UCC (130 West Franklin Street, Hagerstown, MD.) Come hear seasonal music presented by local organists. Haven’s own Stephen Pastena will be the narrator for the concert. Masks are encouraged, and light refreshments will be provided afterward.

MAR-LU RIDGE ADVENT FAMILY GATHERING DECEMBER 5, 2021 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.  You are invited to join us Sunday, December 5 for crafts, wreath making, fellowship and campfire. Fun for all ages! 1:00pm – 4:00pm in Agape Hall. Adults $10, ages 3-12 $7, under 3 free Light meal and craft supplies included, bring your own wreath form. Please register at


DON’T FORGET NEXT SATURDAY, DECEMBER 11, 5 PM Haven’s Annual Christmas Concert is back!  St. James Brass and the Haven Lutheran Church Senior Choir. Come enjoy beautiful music and some Christmas peace. Tell and invite other!

ADD DECEMBER 19, 4:30 PM DRIVE-UP CAROLING PARTY on Haven’s parking lot. Safe, COVID-defying fun. We’ll provide a songbook and a votive light. YOU bring your favorite warm beverage and Christmas hope. Pass the word.



Washington County Interfaith Coalition

November 30, 2021

Anima Christi, Catholic Prayer

Lord put courage into my heart and take away all that may hinder me serving you.

Free my tongue to proclaim your goodness, that all may understand me.

Give me friends to advise and help me, that by working together our efforts may bear abundant fruit.

And above all, let me constantly remember that my actions are in vain unless guided by your hand.

Islam: Mohammed

O God, give me I pray Thee,

Light on my right hand

And on my left hand

and light above me

and light beneath me,

o Lord, increase light within me

and give me light

and illuminate me.

Holiness, may your gifts of discernment enable us to see the opportunities you offer: opportunities to share energy, to share love and to share hope with each other.

May we have the strength, the discernment and will to offer our own unique holiness to all who live and cross our path.

Hold us…as we hold each other, we pray  Amen

Reverend Valerie T. Wills, Coordinator
Hagerstown Interfaith Coalition


Be Still My Soul”

Be still, my soul, The Lord is on thy side
Bear patiently, the cross of grief or pain
Leave to thy God, to order and provide
In every change, He faithful will remain
Be still, my soul, thy best thy heavenly friend
Through thorny ways, leads to a joyful end
Be still, my soul, thy God doth undertake
To guide the future as He has the past
Thy hope, thy confidence, let nothing shake
All now mysterious shall be bright at last
Be still, my soul, the waves and wind still know
His voice who ruled them while He dwelt below
In You I rest, in You I found my hope
In You I trust, You never let me go
I place my life within Your hands alone
Be still, my soul
Be still, my soul, the hour is hastening on
When we shall be forever with the Lord
When disappointment, grief and fear are gone
Sorrow forgot, love’s purest joys restored
Be still, my soul, when change and tears are past
All safe and blessed, we shall meet at last
In You I rest, in You I found my hope
In You I trust, You never let me go
I place my life within Your hands alone
Be still, my soul
In You I rest, in You I found my hope
In You I trust, You never let me go
I place my life within Your hands alone
Be still, my soul Be still, my soul Be still, my soul

by C. Rand Matheson, a setting of Sibelius’ Finlandia

All is Well”  children’s choir,  from Michael W. Smith’s first Christmas album

The Promise” Michael W. Smith
(“Emmanuel. God is with us, God is for us, God is in us. We will sing” gets me every time.)

Oh What a Glorious Night” Sidewalk Prophets