Church hosts 'Silent Night' service

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Catherine W. Idzerda
December 12, 2013

JANESVILLE—Instead of rushing to the mall, Rock Prairie Presbyterian Church would like you to take a quiet drive into the country.

For the sixth year, the church is hosting, “I Need a Silent Night,” a service designed to give people a respite from the busy-ness of the commercial and secular part of the holiday season.

The Rev. Jamie Swenson of Rock Prairie Presbyterian said this year's service would be a “service of pauses” for all people to ponder the different parts of the Christmas story.

That “pausing” or waiting is reminiscent of the quiet preparation seen in the biblical story, he said.

Those quiet pauses are designed to “allow the spirit of God to be heard in the pauses,” Swenson said.

Linda Graf helped get the “Silent Night” service started and helps organize it every year. The idea for the service came to her after seeing how distracted and harassed people feel during the holiday.

Instead of being yet another addition to an already busy overloaded to-do list, the service can help people relax.

“People can come and be still, and center themselves on what Christmas is all about,” Graf said.

At the end of the quiet service, people leave the darkened chapel with a candle. It's a reminder of the peaceful evening and a light that they can carry out into the world to spread that calm.

“This service allows people to get to a quiet place, and that really can make all the difference,” Graf said.

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