Wednesday, December 8, 2010

For December 19, 2010 -- 4th Sunday of Advent

Less than a week till Christmas. Are you ready?
Maybe. Maybe not.
In the midst of the hustle and bustle of the season we have gathered here,
for a time of peace, for a break in the rush.
In the midst of the noise of the season we come together
for some quiet time, for a reminder of what it's all about.
We come to hear stories passed down through the centuries.
God, invite us into the story this day. Amid the hustle and bustle, help us to remember what the season is about.
God open our hearts,
and fill them with the true gifts of Christmas: peace, hope, joy and love.
May this time of worship refresh and energize us,
so that we can be beacons of Christmas light a world that so sorely needs it.
We pray in the name of the baby whose birth is just around the corner, and who would later teach his friends to pray saying...

We have heard the story again, maybe from a different perspective
but it remains the same story.
And now we go back into the busy world,
where we do the most of our service and ministry.
In this Christmas week, go out to share the gifts of God with the world around you.
And may God bless us, everyone.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

For the Later Service on Dec 24

From St. John's Newfoundland to Tofino BC, from Point Pelee Ontario to Alert Nunavut,
All across the nation people of faith gather to hear the story told again.
And so God of Christmas we gather together,
seeking to hear the old story and sing the old songs.
In this time of worship,
Open our ears to hear the angel song, open our eyes to see the child who has been born, open our hearts to the promises of love, hope, joy and peace that are Christmas gifts to the world.
May we be changed by our encounter at the manger.
May we be filled with the Spirit of Christmas not just tonight but throughout the year to come. Amen.

The story has been told, the Baby is born
We join the angel song “Glory to God in the highest!”
Having heard the story and sung the songs,
we go out to share the “good news, which shall be for all people”
May the Peace, Joy, Love and Hope of Christmas shine in your lives
And through us shine on all we meet. Amen.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

For January 2, 2011 -- Sunday Before Epiphany

Have you heard the great news?
What news?
A baby has been born!
Really? That's wonderful!
Come along as we go visit the family
We'd love too!
Do you know how special a baby this is?
All babies are special.
You're right. All babies remind us that God is creating new life and hope.
But this baby?
They say he is hope for the whole world. They say he will change the world.
Then we should give thanks to God!
Thanks and praise indeed.
And may we who visit the baby be moved to work for the changes he brings. Amen.

We have come to see the one born to be King
we have brought our gifts and praises.
Now we go out to change the world.
We go to share the love, hope, peace and joy he brings.
Go with God. Amen.

For the Early Service on Christmas Eve

Lighting the Advent Candles
We light this candle to remind us of Hope. Hope for the world, hope that lightens the darkness of despair.
Light of Christmas, shine in our hearts and in our world
We light this candle to remind us of Peace. Peace in a world that is rocked by violence, peace based on a world where all can live in comfort and safety.
Light of Christmas, shine in our hearts and in our world
We light this candle to remind us of Joy. Not just being happy and merry but a deep Joyfulness that fills our hearts and souls with a sense of well-being and contentment.
Light of Christmas, shine in our hearts and in our world
We light this candle to remind us of Love. Love is the way we live together, love as the cure for the dis-ease that rocks the world.
Light of Christmas, shine in our hearts and in our world
And now the night has come. The baby is going to be born. And so we light our center candle to remind us that the Light of the World lives among us all.
Light of Christmas, shine in our hearts and in our world

Echo Prayer
Thank you God,
Thank you for Christmas.
Thank you for coming as a baby.
Help us to remember
what Christmas is about.
Help us to share gifts
of love, hope, peace and joy
with everyone around us.

The night is still, and yet...
The air rings with angel song
A child is born
And so we rejoice
Go out to share the Christmas Joy. Go to proclaim the Christmas Peace and Hope. Go assured that we live in the Christmas Love. Amen.