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Students Reenact Christmas Story at 60th White Gift Service December 15 PDF Print Email

Dec. 24, 2013:   On Sunday, December 15, the 60th annual White Gift Christmas Service was celebrated at The Reformed Church of Bronxville. 

The service is a reenactment of the Christmas story, led entirely by the church's high school students, with high school seniors in the principal roles. From the pulpit, narrators Page Marshall and Katie Monaco guided the congregation through the nativity story as its scenes were enacted before a full house. Kim Walters played the part of Mary, singing "Joseph Tender, Joseph Mine." Parker Lapins served as Joseph.  Playing the role of the angel Gabriel was Gretchen Richter, who sang "The Angel Gabriel from Heaven Came," with accompaniment by the Reformed Church's youth choirs. 

After the birth of the baby Jesus, the angel Gabriel was joined by a "multitude of angels," played by Caroline Cory, Ellie Hanrahan, Lily O’Neill, and Jane Torell. Gabriel then spread the glad tidings to shepherds Ross Hoch, Andrew Lemberger, Graham Klimley, Preston Klimley, Zach Shively, Charlie Tarry, and Robby Westerfield, who hurried to see the baby in the manger. Villagers, who followed the shepherds to pay homage to the Christ child, were played by Sam Aherne, Cece Haims, Ryan Hanrahan, Andrew Harwood, Alex Londal, and Caroline Schetlick

The climax of the service was the awe-inspiring "March of the Kings," in which the three bearded and robed wise men carried their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh to the baby Jesus. The highly coveted roles of wise men were played by Liam Aherne, Liz Cory, and Tim DonohueTim Buttigieg was the page, leading them up the church's aisle as cymbals, tambourines, clavés, and drums resounded. 

After the wise men brought their gifts, all of the children at the service followed them up the center aisle, carrying gifts wrapped in white paper. The white-wrapped gifts were collected by ninth grade ushers for distribution to families in the Nodine Hill neighborhood of Yonkers, as part of the Reformed Church's "Opening Doors" project. Ushers this year were Lucy Hanrahan, Sabina Richter, Joe Shively, Emily Spitz, and Christina Weiler. Special thanks go to Francesca Guglielmo for coordinating the distribution of the gifts.

The high school seniors rehearsed and memorized for weeks in preparation for the White Gift Service. All five youth choirs performed alongside the thirty or more high school students in one of the most heavily attended events of the year. In many ways, the service is a culmination of over a decade of choir participation, and seniors regard it as a key celebration of their high school years. Parents and grandparents watched with mixed emotions, as their now grown-up "babies" recited and sang, just months before they will head off to college.

All the leads and choirs were prepared and conducted by Laura Green, the Reformed Church's youth choir director, with great support from the choir guild. Music directors were Laura Green and Dr. Sándor SzabóJames Ferguson, Ross Hoch, Quinn Pfeiffer, Teddy Wardell, and Andrew Wetty were musicians.  Robby Schetlick was the banner carrier, leading the opening choir processional. Overall direction and cast preparation was led by volunteer Nina Richter, with the assistance of church members Melinda Burge, Charlotte Haims, Fran Harris, Susan Moore, Jennifer Spitz, Tracy Tarry, and Mary Ann Weiler.

Pictured here:  Nativity scene in the White Gift Service at The Reformed Church of Bronxville.

Photo courtesy Tracy Tarry

 
Friends and Residents to Gather at St. Joseph's Church New Year's Eve to Welcome in New Year PDF Print Email



Dec. 24, 2013:  For the last several years, friends and residents have gathered at St. Joseph's Church on New Year's Eve to welcome in the new year with music and song. 

Continuing this tradition, hundreds of people are expected to attend the gathering and concert on Tuesday, December 31, providing a nice alternative to sitting at home or driving far away on a holiday night.

The parish choir, soloists, and orchestra will perform the Oratorio de Noël (the Christmas Oratorio) by Charles-Camille Saint-Saëns. The Wikipedia entry on the oratorio says that it "'is a delightful substitute for endless Messiah performances.' . . . While an organist at Madeleine, Saint-Saëns wrote the oratorio in less than a fortnight, completing it ten days before its premiere on Christmas 1858. The vocal score of this oratorio was prepared later by the composer and organist, Eugene Gigout, a colleague of Saint-Saëns." 

The parish choir, under the direction of John P. Styrbos, is about 40 voices strong and performs regularly throughout the year to great acclaim.

The Christmas Oratorio will begin in the church at 8:00 pm on December 31, followed by a champagne toast. All are invited to this lovely evening of beautiful music to welcome in the new year.

While there is no admission fee, donations toward the music program are appreciated. 

Pictured here:  St. Joseph's Church.

Photo by N. Bower

 
Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Services for Area Churches PDF Print Email



Dec. 24, 2013: Editor's note: Advent schedules for Bronxville-area churches are posted as they arrive. Listed below in alphabetical order are those currently available.


Christ Church Bronxville

Tuesday, December 24: 3:30 pm -- Family Christmas Eve Crèche Mass, Organ Prelude of Traditional Christmas Carols; 4:00 pm -- Crèche Service

Tuesday, December 24: 10:30 pm -- Christmas Prelude; 11:00 pm -- Solemn Midnight Mass

Sunday, December 25: 10:00 am -- Christmas Day Mass


The Reformed Church of Bronxville

Tuesday, December 24: 4:30 pm -- Children and Family Service

Tuesday, December 24: 5:30 pm -- Village Christmas Pageant

Tuesday, December 24: 7:30 pm -- Candlelight Service

Tuesday, December 24: 11:00 pm -- Service of Lessons and Carols

Wednesday, December 25: 10:00 am -- Christmas Day Service


Village Lutheran Church

Tuesday, December 24: 5:00 pm -- Family Christmas Eve Service

Tuesday, December 24: 8:00 pm -- Candles and Carols with Choirs

Tuesday, December 24: 11:00 pm -- Christmas Eve Communion Service

Wednesday, December 25: 10:00 am -- Christmas Day Communion Service

Saturday, December 28: 5:30 pm -- Communion Service

Saturday, December 28: 6:30 pm -- Prayer Service

Sunday, December 29: 9:00 and 10:45 am -- Total Family Worship with Communion

Tuesday, December 31: 5:30 pm -- New Year's Eve Vespers

Saturday, January 4: 5:30 pm -- Epiphany Worship

Sunday, January 5: 9:00 and 10:45 am -- Epiphany Worship

Sunday, January 5: 5:00 pm -- Undecorating Pizza Party


West Center Congregational Church

Tuesday, December 24: 8:00 pm -- Christmas Eve Candlelight Service

Photo by A. Warner

 
Advent Schedules for Area Churches: December 18 to December 25, 2013 PDF Print Email

Dec. 18, 2013: Editor's note: Advent schedules for Bronxville-area churches will be posted as they arrive. Listed below in alphabetical order are those currently available.


Christ Church Bronxville

Sunday, December 22:  After 10:00 am Service -- Christmas Party

Tuesday, December 24:  3:30 pm -- Family Christmas Eve Crèche Mass, Organ Prelude of Traditional Christmas Carols; 4:00 pm -- Crèche Service

Tuesday, December 24:  10:30 pm -- Christmas Prelude; 11:00 pm -- Solemn Midnight Mass

Sunday, December 25:  10:00 am -- Christmas Day Mass
 

The Reformed Church of Bronxville

Tuesday, December 24:  4:30 pm -- Children and Family Service

Tuesday, December 24:  5:30 pm -- Village Christmas Pageant

Tuesday, December 24:  7:30 pm -- Candlelight Service

Tuesday, December 24: 11:00 pm -- Service of Lessons and Carols

Wednesday, December 25: 10:00 am -- Christmas Day Service
 

Village Lutheran Church

Wednesday, December 18:  7:00 pm -- Service of Lessons and Carols (Prep & Select Choirs)

Thursday, December 19:  6:00 pm -- Christmas Caroling in Bronxville

Saturday, December 21:  5:30 pm -- Pilgrimage to Bethlehem Communion Service

Sunday, December 22:  9:00 and 10:45 am -- Pilgrimage to Bethlehem Communion Service

Tuesday, December 24:  5:00 pm -- Family Christmas Eve Service

Tuesday, December 24:  8:00 pm -- Candles and Carols with Choirs

Tuesday, December 24:  11:00 pm -- Christmas Eve Communion Service

Wednesday, December 25:  10:00 am -- Christmas Day Communion Service

Saturday, December 28:  5:30 pm -- Communion Service

Saturday, December 28:  6:30 pm -- Prayer Service

Sunday, December 29:  9:00 and 10:45 am -- Total Family Worship with Communion

Tuesday, December 31:  5:30 pm -- New Year's Eve Vespers

Saturday, January 4:  5:30 pm -- Epiphany Worship

Sunday, January 5:  9:00 and 10:45 am -- Epiphany Worship

Sunday, January 5:  5:00 pm -- Undecorating Pizza Party


West Center Congregational Church

Sunday, December 22:  11:00 am -- Chancel Choir performs: "Behold a Star from Jacob Shining"

Tuesday, December 24:  8:00 pm -- Christmas Eve Candlelight Service

Pictured here:  Stained-glass window at The Reformed Church of Bronxville.

Photo by A. Warner

 
Advent Schedules for Area Churches: December 11 to December 25, 2013 PDF Print Email


Dec. 11, 2013:  Editor's note: Advent schedules for Bronxville area churches will be posted as they arrive. Listed below in alphabetical order are those currently available.

Christ Church Bronxville

Sunday, December 22: After 10:00 am Service -- Christmas Party

Tuesday, December 24: 3:30 pm -- Family Christmas Eve Crèche Mass, Organ Prelude of Traditional Christmas Carols; 4:00 pm -- Crèche Service

Tuesday, December 24: 10:30 pm -- Christmas Prelude; 11:00 pm -- Solemn Midnight Mass

Sunday, December 25: 10:00 am -- Christmas Day Mass


GoldenSword International

Saturday, December 14: Christmas Fun & Fellowship Event


The Reformed Church of Bronxville

Saturday, December 14: 4:00 pm -- Messiah Sing-in (admission free)

Sunday, December 15: 4:00 pm -- White Gift Service

Tuesday, December 24: 4:30 pm -- Children and Family Service

Tuesday, December 24: 5:30 pm -- Village Christmas Pageant

Tuesday, December 24: 7:30 pm -- Candlelight Service

Tuesday, December 24: 11:00 pm -- Service of Lessons and Carols

Wednesday, December 25: 10:00 am -- Christmas Day Service


Village Lutheran Church

Wednesday, December 12: 7:00 pm -- Spoken Advent Vespers (Friendship Room)

Wednesday, December 12: 7:30 pm -- Grade 6-8 Christmas Concert (Concordia--Schoenfeld)

Saturday, December 14: 5:30 pm -- Advent III Communion Service

Sunday, December 15: 9:00 am -- Advent III Family Service (MPR)

Sunday, December 15: 10:45 am -- Round-the-Table Carol Sing (Brass, Strings, Handbells, and Choirs)

Sunday, December 15: 12:15 pm -- VLC Christmas Feast (Siwanoy Country Club--reservations required)

Sunday, December 15: 4:00 pm -- German Christmas Service (with dessert reception)

Monday, December 16: 7:00 pm -- Grade 1-2 Christmas Concert (Concordia--Schoenfeld)

Wednesday, December 18: 7:00 pm -- Service of Lessons and Carols (Prep & Select Choirs)

Thursday, December 19: 6:00 pm -- Christmas Caroling in Bronxville

Saturday, December 21: 5:30 pm -- Pilgrimage to Bethlehem Communion Service

Sunday, December 22: 9:00 and 10:45 am -- Pilgrimage to Bethlehem Communion Service

Tuesday, December 24: 5:00 pm -- Family Christmas Eve Service

Tuesday, December 24: 8:00 pm -- Candles and Carols with Choirs

Tuesday, December 24: 11:00 pm -- Christmas Eve Communion Service

Wednesday, December 25: 10:00 am -- Christmas Day Communion Service

Saturday, December 28: 5:30 pm -- Communion Service

Saturday, December 28: 6:30 pm -- Prayer Service

Sunday, December 29: 9:00 and 10:45 am -- Total Family Worship with Communion

Tuesday, December 31: 5:30 pm -- New Year's Eve Vespers

Saturday, January 4: 5:30 pm -- Epiphany Worship

Sunday, January 5: 9:00 and 10:45 am -- Epiphany Worship

Sunday, January 5: 5:00 pm -- Undecorating Pizza Party


West Center Congregational Church

Saturday, December 14: 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm -- Neighborhood Holiday Songfest (Bodge Lounge)

Sunday, December 15: 12:30 pm -- Reprise of Neighborhood Holiday Songfest from December 14

Sunday, December 22: 11:00 am -- Chancel Choir performs: "Behold a Star from Jacob Shining"

Tuesday, December 24: 8:00 pm -- Christmas Eve Candlelight Service

Pictured here: Stained-glass window at The Reformed Church of Bronxville.

Photo by A. Warner

 
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