Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve

Join us on Zoom at 3 p.m. on Christmas Eve service, with distribution of Communion from 3:45 to 6 p.m. in the sanctuary. Masks are required and Social distancing will be observed, with the number limited inside at any time. The service will be uploaded to the YouTube channel afterwards.

Christmas Eve, 3:00 P.M. Service
December 24th, 2020

Organ Prelude                Variations on “Lo, How a Rose”              Murray C. Bradshaw

Choral Prelude                                “O Holy Night”                                   Adolf Adams

                                                                                             Soloist: Susan MacLennan

Lighting of the Christ Candle

Christ Candle. (Reader One: J. Endress; Reader Two: M. Smith)

Reader One: Because injustice and despair threaten to overwhelm us, we pray for hope… 

(Light the first candle in your Advent wreath.)

Reader Two: Because so many swords have not yet been beaten into ploughshares, we pray for peace…

(Light the second candle in your Advent wreath.)

Reader One: Because grief and loss weigh so heavily, we pray for joy…

(Light the third candle in your Advent wreath.)

Reader Two: Because hatred is still so strong, and because people all over the world are suffering, we pray for love.

(Light the fourth candle in your Advent wreath.)

Reader One: God has come to us as a child.  Christ is present in our world. 

(Light the Christ Candle in your Advent wreath, often a candle in the center.)

Reader Two: May the light and the fire from these candles burn away everything that is preventing the God of hope and peace and joy and love from being born among us…

Reader One: Brothers and sisters, be not afraid, even now – even now – the light of Christ is overwhelming the world!

Opening Hymn                        “O Come, All Ye Faithful”                         Hymnal 83 v. 1

O come, all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant,

O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem;

come, and behold him, born the King of angels;

O come, let us adore him, O come, let us adore him,

O come, let us adore him, Christ, the Lord.

Blessing of the Christmas Crèche

“O Come, All Ye Faithful”                                                                          Hymnal 83 v. 2

God from God, Light from Light eternal,

lo! He abhors not the Virgin’s womb;

only begotten Son of the Father;

O come, let us adore him, O come, let us adore him,

O come, let us adore him, Christ, the Lord.

Celebrant: Blessed be God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

People: And blessed be his kingdom, now and for ever. Amen.

Gloria in Excelsis

(sung to the tune of Angels we have heard on high)

Glory be to God on high,

To all people, peace on earth. 

Angels, shepherds drawing nigh,

join to celebrate His Birth. 

Gloria in excelsis Deo!

Jesus Christ, we now declare Lamb of God and Lord of Love. 

Grant us mercy, hear our prayer,

Give us grace from heav’en above. 

Gloria in excelsis Deo!

Praises to the Holy One,

Praises sing in highest heav’n;

To the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit giv’n. 

Gloria in excelsis Deo!

Proclamation of the Word of God

The Collect of the Day                                                                                        

O God, you make us glad by the yearly festival of the birth of your only Son Jesus Christ: Grant that we, who joyfully receive him as our Redeemer, may with sure confidence behold him when he comes to be our Judge; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Old Testament Reading: Isaiah 9:2-7                                                           J. Endress           

The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in a land of deep darkness-on them light has shined. You have multiplied the nation, you have increased its joy; they rejoice before you as with joy at the harvest, as people exult when dividing plunder. For the yoke of their burden, and the bar across their shoulders, the rod of their oppressor, you have broken as on the day of Midian. For all the boots of the tramping warriors and all the garments rolled in blood shall be burned as fuel for the fire. For a child has been born for us, a son given to us; authority rests upon his shoulders; and he is named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. His authority shall grow continually, and there shall be endless peace for the throne of David and his kingdom. He will establish and uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time onward and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.

Reader : The Word of the Lord.                                            People: Thanks be to God.

Sequence Hymn        “While Shepherd’s watched their flocks”       Hymnal 94, verse 1

While shepherds watched their flocks by night, all seated on the ground,

the angel of the Lord came down and glory shone around.

The Holy Gospel: Luke 2:1-14                                           proclaimed by Deacon Kay

Homily                                                                               The Rev. Elizabeth A. Ewing

The Creed

We believe in God above,

We believe in Jesus’ love.

We believe His Spirit too,

comes to tell us what to do.

We believe that we can be

kind and good, and share

God’s love in the world.

The Peace

Celebration of the Holy Communion

The Offertory                               “In the Bleak Midwinter”                         Gustav Holst

                                                                                         Arranged by Craig Courtney                                                                                  S.MacLennan, S Bowlby, B. Snyder

Children’s Eucharistic Prayer

Celebrant:  The Lord be with you.

People: And also with you.

Celebrant: Lift up your hearts.

People: We lift them up to the Lord.

Celebrant: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

People: It is right to give you thanks and praise.

We give you thanks, living and loving God, for calling our world into being – for making earth and water, plants and animals, and then for making each and every one of us in your image – every woman, and man, every girl and boy, of every race and place, rich and poor. We thank you for the gift of children, for the way in which each one is wonderfully made, a gift from you. 

On this Day, we thank you because you gave Jesus Christ, your only Son, to be born for us; who, by the power of the Holy Spirit, was born to Mary so that we might be free to serve God, be forgiven for our sins and live in love toward all. 

And so we join Angels and Archangels in singing your glory, to God. 

Sanctus & Benedictus                                  

(Sung to the tune of Friendly Beasts – The St. James Christmas Service) 

Holy, Holy, Holy Lord, God of power and might

Heaven and earth are full of your glory.

Hosanna in the highest.

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.

Hosanna in the highest, Hosanna in the highest

The celebrant continues.

We praise you, O God. You sent your beloved child Jesus to enter our world as a baby, to grow as a child in mind and body, to tell all people that it is only being like a child that we may enter God’s Kingdom, to heal children and adults, to be a friend to the poor and anyone left out by others. 

Jesus out of love for us died for us on the cross and was raised from  the dead so that we might know new life in him.

One night before he died, Jesus was at supper with friends. He took bread, gave thanks, broke it, and gave it to them, and said: “Take, eat: This is my body which is given for you. Do this and remember me.”

As supper was ending, Jesus took the cup of wine. Again he gave thanks, gave it to them, and said: “Drink this, all of you; this is my blood of the new Covenant, which is poured out for you and for all, for the forgiveness of sins. Whenever you drink, remember me.

Around your table here, as your children, O God, we remember Jesus Christ, who came in love, lived in love, and died in love, rose from the dead and is to come. We offer to you these gifts of bread and wine, and we offer to you our lives.

Pour out your Spirit upon these gifts that they may be for us the Body and Blood of Christ, that they strengthen us to welcome all people, to show your love, to work for our justice, May we be made holy. Through Christ and with Christ and in Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, to you be honor, glory, and praise for ever and ever. Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer      

Our Father who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy Name,
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.
Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory for ever and ever. Amen

The Breaking of the Bread

“Agnus Dei” (sung to the tune of What Child is This/Greensleeves)  

O Lamb of God, O Holy Child, who takes the sin of the world away; Have mercy on us, lamb so mild, the babe, the son of Mary. This, this is your body giv’n, Your precious blood, the gift of heav’n. Take, eat, for we are one in the babe, the son of Mary.

(Pause for distribution of communion)

Post Communion Thanksgiving

I cannot tell you how the light comes, but that it does. That it will. That it works its way into the deepest dark that enfolds you, though it may seem long ages in coming or arrive in a shape you did not foresee.

And so we pray we may turn ourselves toward the light giving thanks for Christ’s birth and this communion. May we lift our faces to let the light find us. May we bend our bodies to follow the arc it makes. May we open and open more and open still to the blessed light that comes. *

with thanks to Jan Richardson*

Post Communion Hymn“Silent Night, Holy Night”                  Hymnal 111 v. 1

Silent night, holy night,

all is calm, all is bright

round yon virgin mother and child.

Holy infant, so tender and mild,

sleep in heavenly peace.

Sleep in heavenly peace.

The Blessing

The Dismissal

The event is finished.

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