Bless Friday: Invitation to Begin Advent Season Focused on Christ
Historically, the Friday after Thanksgiving became known as “Black Friday” because it was the day that retailers began to see black instead of red in their profit ledgers. Recently, it has become known as the day that officially launches the holiday shopping season as consumers frantically grab every bargain possible, even trampling out others to get the first of limited supplies.
Many of us have been a part of that shopping frenzy and the ongoing frenzy of “Christmas” consumerism that plagues the Advent season even within the church.
We invite you to consider beginning Advent with a more intentional focus on honoring Christ through the Christmas season by participating in Bless Friday on the Friday after Thanksgiving. Bless Friday was founded last year in Houston as a day of service by churches in their local communities.
Chuck Fox, founder of Bless Friday, states, “I believe we can find a critical mass of Christians to alter the way society observes the season, many people are appalled at how consumerism is consuming Christmas, but don’t know how to change our culture’s direction. They are ready for a thoughtful call to action.”
Bless Friday is such a thoughtful call. On the Friday after Thanksgiving, congregations are invited to engage in any kind of service, great or small, intended to bless those in need in their communities. Last year, St. Luke’s UMC Houston decided to spend Bless Friday blessing others in the community through service rather than fighting crowds in the bargain-hunting frenzy.
Members of St. Luke’s UMC gathered on the Friday after Thanksgiving to pack over 500 “blessing bags” to distribute to the homeless and to share a fellowship meal with the community. St. Luke’s will engage in a similar ministry this year as well. Won’t you consider joining them? Let’s help turn Black Friday into Bless Friday and start the Advent season serving the least of these in service to Christ who is the reason for the season. For more information about Bless Friday visit www.blessfriday.org.