As long as we've been a church, we haven't hosted Gatherings on the weeks around Christmas and New Years. Since this is different than what many churches do, we thought it might be helpful to explain why.
1. Church is more than what happens on Sundays.
The bible is clear that church is a group of people, not a service on Sunday. While meeting together is important, it is not the main way church is practiced. So when we don't have Gatherings for two weeks, it doesn't mean we're not "having church." It simply means that during those two weeks, our church will not all be meeting together in a building.
2. Rest and family time is important for our staff.
Not having Gatherings for two weeks helps enable our church staff and pastors to take time off to rest and be with family. This helps our staff and pastors be good leaders to their family, in addition to good leaders of our church. In addition, the bible tells us that resting is a good way of reminding ourselves that it is ultimately God who holds things together, not us. For our staff, resting is important so that we remember that God is ultimately the one who leads his Church.
3. Christmas is a great time for mission.
Christmas is arguably the time of year that boasts the most parties and get-togethers. Take the time you would have spent at a Gathering and/or serving with Midtown, and attend/throw a party instead. Show the love and hospitality of Jesus by enjoying time, company, and food with your family, friends, co-workers, neighbors.
None of our three churches will have Gatherings on December 25 and January 1. Gatherings will resume on January 8.