It’s the song nearly everybody knows, although few know what it means: “Auld Lang Syne.” A poem written by Robert Burns in the Scots dialect, “Auld Lang Syne” is a little hard to translate into English. Literally it means “Old Long Since.” It celebrates the “days of old long since,” or the days that have passed by. Because of its meaning – and also because the Scots have a multitude of colorful New Year’s (or Hogmanay) traditions – it’s become associated with the turning of the year.
At New Year’s, we like to look back, recapping memorable things that have happened. News reporters make lists of significant milestones of the past year: athletic triumphs, celebrity deaths, scientific discoveries, political and diplomatic achievements.
This Sunday in worship, we’re going to celebrate “New Year’s in November.” It’s the last Sunday of the Christian Year (a new year begins the following Sunday, the First Sunday of Advent). We won’t be looking back. Instead, we’re going to look forward into 2015, as we write down and submit “prayerful resolutions.”
Think of it as making a New Year’s resolution a month or so in advance. These resolutions have to do with God’s call to discipleship, and how we intend to respond.
Specifically, we’ll be committing ourselves to support the church in two ways. The first is the familiar “estimate of giving,” or financial pledge. The second is a resolution to give of our time: deploying our God-given talents to serve Christ in some specific way, either through the church or in service to some other worthy cause.
You can download a copy of the Prayerful Resolution Card, if you’d like. Copies have been sent out by postal mail. We’ll also hand them out this Sunday and next, as a bulletin insert.
As always, we keep the amount of individual giving commitments confidential, limiting that information to our financial secretary, the pastors and the Stewardship committee.
Once all the prayerful resolutions have come in, we’ll share the overall results with the congregation. We’re sure we’ll have something to celebrate!
Please consider carefully and faithfully how you will respond – and do join us in worship this Sunday for a New Year’s party, as together we dedicate ourselves anew to serve Jesus Christ in 2015.
We’ll even sing a special version of Auld Lang Syne.