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  • Writer's pictureRev Claire

19th December 2021 - Give More



Welcome to our online service on the fourth Sunday in Advent. This service is a replica of our in person service at 11am. If you are planning on joining in person, please note masks must be worn whilst in the building unless you are exempt. Sunday Zone is running and they will be completing our nativity display.....


Today in our in person service we will be welcoming David into membership and hearing his story and Sarah is affirming and renewing her baptismal vows. Please pray for them both as they do so. We'll also be sharing in communion - if you want to join in at home, the words we will be using are at the end of this service.


There are advent resources available as we journey through this season - you can find them on the members section of the website. Please contact Claire or another leader if you do not know how to access and would like to. There are paper copies available in the church building.


This afternoon at 4pm we also have our carol service. Meeting in person if you can, but this will also be released as a playlist on YouTube. Check out our YouTube channel, facebook or twitter. Thank you to everyone who has recorded readings for this and look out for a visit from Archangel Alan!


Christmas Day we meet for a family celebration at 10.30am


There will be no service on Boxing Day.


Our New Years Eve Watchnight Service is at 11.30pm.


Christmas Hampers


This week we will be packing and distributing our Christmas Hampers. If you can help with driving or packing please talk to Vic or Sandra.


Mid Week Activities


Our mid week groups have closed for the holiday (food parcel distribution continues) and we will await a decision on reopening depending on the situation with Covid in the New Year.


Worship


Call to Worship


1 John 1:1-4 (The MSG)


From the very first day, we were there, taking it all in—we heard it with our own ears, saw it with our own eyes, verified it with our own hands. The Word of Life appeared right before our eyes; we saw it happen! And now we’re telling you in most sober prose that what we witnessed was, incredibly, this: The infinite Life of God himself took shape before us.

We saw it, we heard it, and now we’re telling you so you can experience it along with us, this experience of communion with the Father and his Son, Jesus Christ. Our motive for writing is simply this: We want you to enjoy this, too. Your joy will double our joy!



Songs for today


You might want to save the last two for before and after communion




Advent Candles


Watch the video as the third advent candle is lit. You might want to light a candle at home too. Continue with prayers of love. If you are feeling artistic you might want to make a heart shape and fill it with prayers of love, or the people you love and remember to pray for them.




Word


Here is Claire with the sermon based on the Matthew 1:18-25 which you can read here


In the sermon Claire refers to this picture by Matt Chinworth - you may want to have it open as you watch



Sermon link here





Communion


Join us for communion using the words below - adapted from https://www.united-church.ca/sites/default/files/advent-communion-lturgy.docx


Living in Expectation – Advent Communion


The table is set, the banquet is laid out. The time we await is nearly here….


We are invited to a banquet where the rich and powerful will sit with the weak and poverty stricken. This is a table where young and old learn from each other. This a time when all will sit together in peace.


Here at this table we get a foretaste of the heavenly banquet. This is God’s table and all who seek to follow the way of Jesus are welcome to eat and drink from it.


Come and taste the grace eternal. Come and see that God is good.


God is with us. We are not alone. Christ is with us. The Spirit moves within us. Let us give thanks to God.


Pray


Creator God, in the beginning you brought light and life to the world and you continue to bring light and love everlasting. Your song of wisdom echoes through the ages. Your ancient promises bring us hope.


You sent prophets and messengers many years ago, reminding your people of the promised time of peace and justice that would surround the world.

They came in the midst of despair and filled us with hope.

You then came to a young woman name Mary and laid out your promise in a new way.

You promised her a son, who would be called Jesus

Promised her a son in whom the world would be changed.


And now as we prepare for that child to be born, we say ‘O come, o come Emmanuel’.

We thank you for this bread and wine that speaks of the child that was born, grew, and died, broken for us.

Amen


As we prepare for Christmas, we remember the life that Jesus lived. We remember how he broke the bonds of human tradition and ate with the broken and the outcast. And we remember one special meal – the last supper – a foretaste of the heavenly banquet, where Jesus gathered with his friends in the upper room.


At that meal he took bread, broke it and gave thanks and said ‘take and eat, this is my body broken for you.


And then after supper he took the cup, gave thanks and passed it to them saying ‘this cup is the sign of the new covenant. Whenever you drink it remember me’.


Remembering the birth of the child in the stable, we remember also his life, his death and his resurrection. We remember how he poured his love out on all he met and on each one of us and look forward to his return and the coming reign of peace, love and justice.


The bread we break is the bread of life


Break bread and share


The cup we share is the cup of promise.

These are the gifts of God for the people of God.

Come and eat, the banquet awaits.


Share wine


Prayer


God of pregnant expectations, God of Christmas promises, God of child-like hope, we have eaten and drunk from your table. May the eating and the drinking fill us with hope in a world of despair. May we be beacons of hope as we wait for the day when the world will be changed. Grant that this taste of your banquet which is to come would give us the hunger for peace and justice in this community and around the world.

Amen



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