Sunday, December 20, 2020

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

December 20, 2020
Fourth Sunday of Advent
11:00A.M.
Advent is a season of waiting. During Advent,

we are waiting for something to come into the world,
something to be born for us and in us.

It is an expectant waiting, and it requires not will, but willingness
– a willingness to receive the new, the unexpected.
It requires a decision to be open to the ways God will be at work in our lives.

 

 

Organ Prelude

 

Welcome and Announcements                                   John Strawbridge

 

Choral Introit Come. Thou Long-Expected Jesus (Gregor)

Come, Thou long expected Jesus
Born to set Thy people free;
From our fears and sins release us,
Let us find our rest in Thee.
Israel’s strength and consolation,
Hope of all the earth Thou art;
Dear desire of every nation,
Joy of every longing heart.

 

Prayer of Invocation (All)

What surprising ways God has of opening our lives! When we least expect it, God is doing something wonderful with us. We are witnesses to God’s incarnation through the young girl Mary, who said yes and offered herself as God’s servant. May our willingness to be servants of God be as profound as the witness of Mary. AMEN.

 

Opening Hymn To a Maid Engaged to Joseph           UMH 215 Vs. 1,2, & 6

1. To a maid engaged to Joseph, The angel Gabriel came.
Fear not, the angel told her, “I come to bring good news,
Good news I come to tell you, Good news, I say, good news.

2. “For you are highly favored By God the Lord of all,
Who even now is with you. You are on earth most blest,
You are most blest, most blessèd, God chose you, you are blest!

6. As Mary heard the angel, She wondered at his words.
Behold, I am your handmaid, She said unto her God.
So be it; I am ready According to your word.

 

Lighting the Advent Wreath

Last Sunday we lit the candle of Hope, remembering the hope which comes in Christ, the candle of Peace, remembering God’s dream of a peaceful world, and the candle of Joy, remembering the Spirit within us who brings joy. (Light Candles).
Today we light the fourth candle of Advent, the candle of Love.
Scripture tells us “There is no fear in love, for perfect love casts out fear.” (1 John 4:18). God created this world in love and this world will end in the love of God. God’s love pervades all aspects of this life. From birth to death, pain to delight, strangers to lovers, God’s love is there.
On this day, we remember God is Love.

 

Congregational Response “Emmanuel, Emmanuel”   UMH 204

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

 

Gospel Lesson Luke 1:46-55 NIV Mary’s Song

46 And Mary said: “My soul glorifies the Lord 47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant.
From now on all generations will call me blessed, 49 for the Mighty One has done great things for me—
holy is his name. 50 His mercy extends to those who fear him, from generation to generation.
51 He has performed mighty deeds with his arm; he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.
52 He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble. 53 He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty. 54 He has helped his servant Israel, remembering to be merciful
55 to Abraham and his descendants forever, just as he promised our ancestors.”
The word of God. . . Thanks be to God.

 

Sharing Joys and Concerns

Pastoral Prayer

Lord’s Prayer

 

Choral Response Cares Chorus                                   TFWS 2215

I cast all my cares upon You
I lay all of my burdens down at Your feet
And any time I don’t know just what to do,
I will cast all my cares upon You.

 

Alternate Gospel Lesson                                             Luke 1:26-38

26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”
29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”
34 “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?”
35 The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called[a] the Son of God. 36 Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. 37 For no word from God will ever fail.”
38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” Then the angel left her.
The Word of God for the people of God….Thanks Be To God

 

Sermon “Mary, A Willing Servant”                            Rev. Debbie Scott

 

Invitation to Offering

On-Line giving

 

Offertory Come to Us, O God of Hope (Martin)

We’ve waited long for You to come,
Warrior, Savior, Promised One;
Long the years of blessings lost,
So dark the days, so high the cost.

Come to us, O God of hope,
Lead us to the end of night;
Give us signs of days foretold,
When our darkness shall turn to light.

We long for promised days of peace
And from this evil seek release.
Gather us in Your embrace;
Protect us in eternal grace.

Give us strenght to stand;
We await Your guiding hand.
Grant us patience, Lord, we pray,
Lead us in Your holy Way.

Prepare us, Lord, for days ahead
And by Your Spirit we’ll be led.
Come, Messiah, be our Guide;
We know the Lord is by our side.

 

Offering Prayer (All)

Source of Strength and Salvation, may we recognize you in all things and may we be ready to receive you, whether you come in a kingly fashion or as a crying baby. Lord, we offer these gifts as symbols of that readiness and pray for the guidance of your Great Spirit in the ways they are used. In the name of Christ Jesus we pray. Amen.

 

Closing Hymn People Look East                                UMH 202 Vs. 1 & 4

1. People, look east. The time is near
Of the crowning of the year.
Make your house fair as you are able,
Trim the hearth and set the table.
People, look east and sing today:
Love, the guest, is on the way.

4. Angels, announce with shouts of mirth
Christ who brings new life to earth.
Set every peak and valley humming
With the word, the Lord is coming.
People, look east and sing today:
Love, the Lord, is on the way.

 

Benediction

L: Inspired by God’s presence, spread Advent good news.
Strengthened by the gospel, go out to serve.
P: Our spirits rejoice in the Savior’s coming.
Our lives are blessed by a merciful God.
L: God has granted a beautiful earth for our home.
God appoints us as care-givers of the land and its people.
P: We are a covenant people, shaped by love.
Wherever God sends us, we will go.
L: God’s steadfast love will go with you every day.
You will know the strength of God’s mighty hand.
P: We will work with God to lift up the lowly.
We will share good things with those who are hungry. Amen.

 

Choral Benediction Christ Is Coming (Neander)

Christ is coming! Come, O blessed Prince of Peace.

 

Ringing the Bicentennial Bell

 

Organ Postlude

 

Tower Lighting

Linda Webb is lighting the tower for the season of Advent to bring a beacon of light and hope at this dark time of year.

 

Christmas Eve Service

The service will begin at 7:00 P.M. and will be broadcast live online.

 

Handel’s “Messiah”

Below is the link for the Camerata Baltimore performance that will begin at 7:30 PM. This link will take you directly to Brandon’s YouTube channel, where you can also view sneak peek videos of the performance before 7:30 PM.

https://youtube.com/channel/UCb3o5jB2o568ZaOygS4Drmg

 

Poinsettia & Hymnal Donation List

Our Christmas Altar & Hymnals for the Sanctuary

Categories Uncategorized | Tags: | Posted on December 16, 2020

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