Sunday, December 24, 2017

Fourth Sunday of Advent and Christmas Eve

Morning Worship at 11:00 a.m.

*Please Stand, As You Are Able

Prelude – Hodie Christus Natus Est (Sequence)

Words of Welcome and Announcements

Choral Introit – Once He Came in Blessing (John Frederick Wolle)                                Choir

Once he came in blessing, all our ills redressing;
Came in likeness lowly, Son of God most holy;
Bore the cross to save us, hope and freedom gave us.

Time of Morning Prayer

Prayer Song – Infant Holy, Infant Lowly (verse 1) Hymnal 229

1. Infant holy, infant lowly, for his bed a cattle stall; oxen lowing, little knowing, Christ the babe is Lord of all. Swift are winging angels singing, noels ringing, tidings bringing: Christ the babe is Lord of all.

Pastoral Prayer

Lord’s Prayer: You may pray any version you know or refer to: Hymnal 894, 895, or 896

Prayer Song – Infant Holy, Infant Lowly (verse 2) Hymnal 229

2. Flocks were sleeping, shepherds keeping vigil till the morning new saw the glory, heard the story, tidings of a gospel true. Thus rejoicing, free from sorrow, praises voicing, greet the morrow: Christ the babe was born for you.

Lighting of the Advent WreathFourth Week of Advent (Love)

Pastor:       We light the candles of hope, peace, and joy as we sing:

SONG – Emmanuel, Emmanuel Hymnal 204

Emmanuel, Emmanuel, his name is called Emmanuel. God with us, revealed in us, his name is called Emmanuel.

Reader:      Isaiah wrote: “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign.
Look, the young woman is with child and shall bear a son,
and shall name him Immanuel.”

ALL:         The Spirit of love shall fill those who know the Christ.

Reader:      We are in awe of the love of a God who is larger than the universe
and yet joined us in human form and walked our journey.

ALL:         As we light the fourth candle of Advent, the candle of love,
let us reflect on the immense love of our God
as we await the arrival of a very special baby
.

SONG – Emmanuel, Emmanuel Hymnal 204

Emmanuel, Emmanuel, his name is called Emmanuel. God with us, revealed in us, his name is called Emmanuel.

Reader:      Let us pray

People:      Lord of Love, we await your coming with great expectation.
Our lives are marked by love
even when our circumstance might prove to the contrary.
May we bring love to every heart this Advent season. Amen.

Pastor’s Time with Young Disciples Rev. Dr. Patricia L. Sebring

Special Music Anthem: Fairest Jesu (Benjamin Harlan) Choir

Fairest Lord Jesus, Ruler of all nature,
O Thou of God and man the Song;
Thee will I cherish,
Thee will I honor;
Thou, my soul’s glory, joy and crown/
Jesu, joy of man’s desiring,
Holy wisdom, Love most bright.
Drawn by Thee our souls aspiring,
Soar to uncreated light.
Word of God our flesh that fashioned
With the fire of life impassioned.
Striving sill to Truth unknown,
Soaring, dying, round Thy throne.
Beautiful Savior,
Lord of all nations,
Blessed Son of God and Son of man!]
Glory and honor,
Praise, adoration,
Now and forever more be Thine!.

 

Scripture Reading –                                                                                             Luke 1:26-38

In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you.” But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. The angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his ancestor David. He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” The angel said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God. And now, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month for her who was said to be barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.” Then Mary said, “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her.

SongHark! The Herald Angels Sing Hymnal 240

1. Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King; peace on earth, and mercy mild, God and sinners reconciled!” Joyful, all ye nations rise, join the triumph of the skies; with th’angelic host proclaim, “Christ is born in Bethlehem!” Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King!”

2. Christ, by highest heaven adored; Christ, the everlasting Lord; late in time behold him come, offspring of a virgin’s womb. Veiled in flesh the Godhead see; hail th’incarnate Deity, pleased with us in flesh to dwell, Jesus, our Emmanuel. Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King!”

3. Hail the heaven-born Prince of Peace! Hail the Sun of Righteousness! Light and life to all he brings, risen with healing in his wings. Mild he lays his glory by, born that we no more may die, born to raise us from the earth, born to give us second birth. Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King!”

Sermon– “Love—The four-letter word of Christmas”                    Rev. Dr. Patricia L. Sebring

* Song – Love Came Down at Christmas Hymnal 242

1. Love came down at Christmas, Love all lovely, Love divine; Love was born at Christmas; star and angels gave the sign.

2. Worship we the Godhead, Love incarnate, Love divine; worship we our Jesus, but wherewith for sacred sign?

3. Love shall be our token; love be yours and love be mine; love to God and neighbor, love for plea and gift and sign.

Glorifying God with our Gifts and Offerings

Invitation to Share in God’s Kingdom Work

Offertory – Joseph Dearest, Joseph Mine (Trad. German, arr. RVW)

Joseph dearest, Joseph mine,
Help me cradle the child divine;
God reward thee and All that’s thine
In paradise,”
So prays the mother Mary. 

He came among us at Christmastide,
At Christmastide, in Bethlehem;
Men shall bring Him from far and wide
Love’s diadem: Jesus, Jesus,
Lo, He comes, and loves, and saves, and frees us!

“Gladly, dear one, lady mine,
Help I cradle this child of thine;
God’s own light on us both shall shine
In paradise,
As prays the mother Mary.” 

All shall come and bow the knee,
Wise and happy their souls shall be.
Loving such a divinity
As all may see
In Jesus, Son of Mary.

Prayer of Dedication –

God of Love,
in the midst of a season so focused on shopping and finding the right gift,
we give our gifts now to you. We remember that all our giving
has its foundation in the amazing gift you gave to us:
putting on flesh and coming in the form of a child, Emmanuel, God with us! May what we give today, and in the days to come,
be bathed in the knowledge that yours is the most perfect gift
and the one we need the most.
We pray in the holy name of the Christ child, the agent of God’s love. Amen.

*   Song to Present the Offering – In the Bleak Midwinter Hymnal 221

1. In the bleak midwinter, frosty wind made moan, earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone; snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow, in the bleak mid-winter, long ago.

2. Our God, heaven cannot hold him, nor earth sustain; heaven and earth shall flee away when he comes to reign. In the bleak midwinter a stable place sufficed the Lord God Almighty, Jesus Christ.

3. Angels and archangels may have gathered there, cherubim and seraphim thronged the air; but his mother only, in her maiden bliss, worshiped the beloved with a kiss.

4. What can I give him, poor as I am? If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb; if I were a Wise Man, I would do my part; yet what I can I give him: give my heart.

Going Out to Prepare the Way of Christ’s Coming

Leader: As we prepare for Christmas, may we go and wait in love.

People:      Joseph’s faithfulness will be our model as we watch and wait.

Leader:      The songs of Christmas are the songs of God’s love.

People:      Like the angels we will sing with our hearts to let the world know:

ALL:         LOVE DIVINE CAME DOWN AT CHRISTMAS!
THE CHRIST WHO CAME LONG AGO IS COMING AGAIN!!

* Choral Response – For unto Us A Child Is Born (John Purifoy)                                       Choir

For unto us a Child is born,
For unto us a Son is given,
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
For unto us a Child is born,
And His name shall ever be “Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father.”

* Ringing of the Bicentennial Bell

* Postlude – Allegro Spiritoso (Barnes)

Categories Uncategorized | Tags: | Posted on December 22, 2017

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