It has been a tradition for many years to celebrate the Advent and Christmas season in a very special way at the International Evangelical Church of the Algarve in Vale Judeu, near Loulé.
This year the Church celebrated its 23rd anniversary. The church family and many visitors from all over Europe came to worship at the chapel on the hill, as they have done every year, since the year of its foundation.
During this year’s Advent, an English-Portuguese Carol Service was held with the reading and enactment of the Christmas story around the life size, hand-built stable, where Mary and Joseph lovingly guard the child in the manger and shepherds and wise men in traditional costumes come visiting the Christ child.
At the opening of the Christmas Eve Service, Pastor Peter Sluimer and his wife Marianne lit the candles on the Christmas tree next to the life size stable as music and the chiming of bells filled the chapel. The worship service commenced with a welcome message by pastor Mark Loney followed by scripture readings and traditional carol singing by the congregation, enhanced by two duets sung by Ruth and Pastor Mark’s wife Judith.
The chapel, candle lit and adorned, was occupied to the last seat as all received the Christmas blessing.
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