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Weekend planner: Dec. 7-9
Katie Collins | Editorial Assistant

Happy Friday and second Sunday of Advent, Catholic Herald readers!

The newsroom was bustling with Advent and Christmas stories — and surprises — this week. Staff writers are covering brunch with Santa, a Festival of Trees, Lessons and Carols at the cathedral, and many other events around the diocese (read about them in the Dec. 13 issue). Yesterday (Dec. 6), we had a little visit from St. Nick. Gifts appeared on staff members’ seats, and a poem and cookies were made and shared in the generous, jolly saint’s honor.

Many of you may be busy shopping for special gifts for loved ones this weekend. Amid the present-hunting, here are a few events to help you stay grounded in faith and service to others — and better able to absorb the fruits of this sacred season.

Pray, witness for life
Tonight (Friday) there will be a pro-life outreach at the King Street Metro from 5 to 7 p.m. Call Susan at 571/228-3571 for more information.

Saturday, Arlington Bishop Paul S. Loverde will celebrate a Respect Life Mass at Cathedral of St. Thomas More in Arlington at 9 a.m., followed by a recitation of the rosary at a local abortion clinic. Tomorrow evening, in honor of the National Night of Prayer for Life, there will be exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, recitation of the rosary and the sacrament of penance at the cathedral starting at 9 p.m.

Celebrate
Enjoy Advent and prepare for Christmas by attending a Festival of Trees at St. Theresa School in Ashburn, held after all weekend Masses. The event, which includes 40 3-foot trees decorated for Christmas, holiday wreaths and refreshments, will raise funds for local charities.

Sunday, bring your little ones to brunch with Santa (aka Fr. Stefan Starzynski) at P.J. Skidoos in Fairfax from noon to 2 p.m., or attend a live Nativity at Paul VI Catholic High School in Fairfax from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

For the older crowd, fill your ears with the sounds of the season at a Service of Lessons and Carols Sunday at the Cathedral of St. Thomas More at 7:30 p.m.

Give
And if you live in the Purcellville or Arlington area, consider donating blood. The St. Francis Council Knights of Columbus will hold a blood drive at St. Francis de Sales Church in Purcellville Sunday from 7 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.; the Edward Douglass White Knights will sponsor of blood drive Sunday at their council home in Arlington from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Wishing you a safe, joyful and blessed weekend!

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