Let us go to Bethlehem and see . . .

      The shepherds are terrified and unsure. The literal army of heaven just showed up and started dancing and singing and shouting and rejoicing in their quiet evening sky. While words of comfort were announced and the usual injunction to not be afraid repeated, the group watching for sheep at night were likely ready to be anywhere but those open fields. The words they share among themselves are simple and understandable, “Let us go to Bethlehem and see.” 

     We have been watching with those shepherds for 20 centuries and are still unsure of what to make of this day. Theology and statements of faith make it clear: God is with us. Emmanuel! Yet we do not know what to make of universal power, complete knowledge, and unspeakable wisdom wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a food trough. Is this a scene of family bliss on the edges of empire? Is this a grand statement of God’s priorities for the least? Is this a quiet moment in a loud world? Why are angels cheering and choirs singing and drummers making an unholy racket? “Let us go to Bethlehem and see.” 

     We are not called to understand everything. A life of faith is actually living in mystery, walking into the unknown. Just like the shepherds, all we can do is hear the words and take time to see with our eyes and our hearts. What does this mean? Is God truly with us? What wondrous love is this before me in the body of an infant? Or can I rest and just be near this mystery? Can I ignore platitudes and certainties and try to experience the mystery of a loving God drawing near? I have no words for it. All I can do is echo those shepherds and share this love and mystery with you all, “Let us go to Bethlehem and see.”

       Merry Christmas,


The Rev. Dr. Bill Murray, Rector



ATTENTION... The Church received a stock donation through Morgan Stanley without the owner's information. Please contact Caroline Fleming if you are the donor. 

The Church office will be closed at noon on December 23 and all day on December 26 & 27. The office will close at noon December 30.

To receive a charitable tax benefit for 2022, checks must delivered to the church office by noon on December 39 or postmarked by December 31, 2022. Thank you so much for all of your generous gifts this year. 


This hand-carved creche from Oberammergau, Germany, was given to the Glory of God and in loving memory of Nellie Peters Black on November 4, 1980 by her granddaughter Nellie Peters Rucker Walter. Please come and see it in Bishop Commons.

SPECIAL THANKS... A big thank you to all at HIEC who participated in the CAC Adopt-a-Family program by purchasing gifts and/or giving their time to help organize and bundle gifts for local families in need. We also wanted to thank Bianca and the HIEC staff for their support. For the first time, family members came to Holy Innocents' to pick up their gifts. HIEC ended up distributing over 40 large bags full of gifts, 8 bicycles, and over $4,000 in gift cards to 28 families and 125 children this year. Thanks again for your tremendous support!

--Charles Crosby and Doug Peterson

Stewardship Update

So far you have generously pledged over $1,850,320 to pay off our capital debt. The interest rate on the loan for building renovations has increased greatly, so principal payments make a big difference. As for our 2023 operating budget, we have over $1,125,510 in pledges!
Thank you! 

Please consider pledging making a pledge here so that we can be Set Free to Serve!
Click to watch last Sunday's Lessons and Carols!
Children's Christmas Pageant | December 24 
We can't wait to celebrate the coming of our Lord with the sweet sounds of laughter and singing and the joy of the kids!  Come at 2:00 and enjoy coffee and Christmas cookies.  All children participating in the pageant should be dressed and in the chapel by 2:30 to rehearse. The pageant begins at 3:00 PM.
Men's Dinner and a Book | January 10
The next Men's Dinner and a Book is Tuesday, January 10 at 6:30 pm and the book is "Never” by Ken Follett.  Donley Klein is hosting.  If you would like to attend, please contact Jeremy Webber at for details.  All men at Holy Innocents are included and invited.
Lift Every Voice and Sing | January 20 
Postponed from the pandemic, this interfaith event will feature a new Spelman College arrangement on “Lift Every Voice and Sing” by Dr. Kevin Johnson, Director of the Spelman College Glee Club. We will be joined by multiple choral ensembles for this event, accompanied by gospel instrumentalists. Join us at 7:00 PM at Sisters Chapel, Spelman College. 
Women of HI: The Dignity Lens | January 26
Come join the Women of Holy Innocents for dinner and inspiration! Dr. Beth-Sarah Wright will be speaking on "The Dignity Lens: Bridging the Gap between your Hopes and Reality." Don't miss this special opportunity to learn effective strategies for living a more authentic life. The event is on Thursday, January 26th at 6:00 PM in the Bishop Commons. The cost is $25; it includes dinner and a presentation. Registration coming soon.
Annual Parish Retreat | February 10-12
We’ve reserved a spot for you at our Annual Holy Innocents’ Parish Retreat at Amicalola Falls State Park on February 10-12, 2023. This is simply a time of fun, fellowship, rest, worship and renewal together with your church family. There are activities for children and youth as well as the young at heart. What does it mean to have Open Minds and Full Hearts? Join us as we delve deeper into our church’s tag line. Our new Vicar Stewart will coordinate the retreat year with a fun planning team.
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This Week
Saturday, December 24, 2022
3:00 PM: Children's Christmas Pageant, Nave
6:00 PM: Christmas Eve Liturgy, Nave
9:00 PM: Christmas Eve Liturgy, Nave

Sunday, December 25, 2022
10:15 AM: Holy Eucharist, Christ Chapel
Worship with us on Christmas Eve at 3 pm for the Pageant and at 3 & 6 pm for a Festive Choral Eucharist. The prelude begins fifteen minutes before the late services. The nursery is open for the first two services, and incense will be used at 9 pm service. Christmas Day we'll worship in Christ Chapel at 10:15 am.

The Church office will be closed at noon on Christmas Eve and all day on December 26 & 27. The office will close at noon December 30. 
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