I’ve been to the same local church here three times now. And I like it. I’ve been encouraged by some friends and family to “look around” and find a church that will provide good teaching and opportunities to meet other people.

Fortunately, the first and only church I’ve been to has:
1) An excellent pastor — the sermons have been focused on scripture and teach the word of God. If there’s any higher qualification for a pastor (without excluding the direction of 1 Timothy 3), I know it not.
2) Good people — In the three weeks I’ve been at this church, I’ve had more people introduce themselves to me than at my entire stay of several months at some previous churches. This is a huge issue for me. I don’t want to attend a church where I’m a nameless face or a faceless name.
3) Bluegrass — though the service consists mostly of hymns, they work in some worship songs. In addition to this, several members of the church form a bluegrass group. They’ll be playing a show at the church tonight and I have every intention of attending. I won’t say I’ve ever delved deeply into bluegrass music or culture, but the subtle brushes I’ve had with bluegrass have been pleasant.

In other musically-related news, Sufjan Stevens’ (Wiki) “Songs for Christmas” compilation is pretty dang sweet. It’s a 5-disc, 42 song behemoth filled with indie/folk versions of Christmas classics and traditional Christian favorites including We Three Kings, Joy To the World, Away in a Manger, and many others. He also works in a few songs with original content that fits quite well. My favorite song, thus far, is his rendition of “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.” I encourage you to give it a listen by clicking play immediately below. If you like it, I would encourage you to buy the album and bolster your collection of Christmas music. There’s only so much Mannheim Steamroller you can listen to.

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