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First Sunday of Advent: Believing in Hope
November 29, 2020
Before the service begins, make sure you have a candle and lighter. Please mute your microphone.
O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
Welcome and Announcements
Rev. Cynthia Good
Candle Lighting: We invite you to light a candle with us.
Song: Hope is Deeper Than Despair
David E. Poole; based on words from Celtic Treasures, John Philip Newell
(click the song to enlarge)
Advent Wreath Lighting
The Bode Family
Today we light our first candle. I invite you to light one with us wherever you are.
We light a candle for hope because hope is deeper than despair.
GOD, AS WE WAIT FOR YOUR PROMISE, GIVE LIGHT, GIVE HOPE.
Elizabeth and Zechariah believe in hope even in the darkness
We believe in hope even when we can’t see it.
May this candle awaken the best in us, connect us to each other and God, and give life to our hope.
The Bode Family
Gracious God, as the Advent season begins, we come to you looking for hope. Open our eyes to hope when we know despair, when we are uncertain, when things aren’t the way we want them to be. Some of us see only darkness this time of year. Some of us find life overwhelming. Some of us are filled with Advent joy. Wherever we find ourselves today, Loving God, remind us that our hope is in you. Be with us on this journey. Amen.
Song: Hope is a Light
Daniel Charles Damon
(click the song to enlarge)
Passing the Peace
We invite you to unmute your microphone so you can greet one another. After the chime sounds, we will wait five seconds and then mute everyone’s microphone.
The peace of Christ be with you. And also with you.
Hymn: People Look East
words by Eleanor Farjeon; music Trad. French carol, harm. by Martin Shaw
(click the hymn to enlarge)
Scripture: Luke 1:5-25
Chuck Willwerth, Worship Leader
In the days of the ruler Herod, there was a priest named Zechariah, of the priestly class of Abijah. His wife Elizabeth was a descendent of Aaron. Both were worthy in the sight of God and scrupulously observed all the commandments and observances of God. They were childless – unable to conceive – and they were both advanced in years.
Now it was the turn of Zechariah’s priestly class to serve. And he was fulfilling his priestly office before God, it fell to him by lot, according to the priestly usage, to enter the sanctuary of our God and offer incense. While the full assembly of people was praying outside at the time of day when the incense was offered, an angel of our God appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense. Zechariah was deeply disturbed upon seeing the angel, and was overcome with fear.
The angel said to him, “Don’t be frightened, Zechariah. Your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear a son, whom you’ll name John. He will be your joy and delight and many will rejoice at his birth, for he will be great in the sight of our God… he will be filled with the Holy Spirit from his mother’s womb. And he will bring many of the children of Israel back to their God most high. He will go before God as a forerunner, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of parents to their children, and the rebellious to the wisdom of the unjust – to make ready a people prepared for our God.”
Zechariah said to the angel, “How can I be sure of this? I am an old man, and my wife too is advanced in age.”
The angel replied, “I am Gabriel, who stands before God. I was sent to speak to you and bring you this good news. But because you have not trusted my words, you’ll be mute – unable to speak – until the day these things take place. They’ll come true in due season.”
Meanwhile, the people were waiting for Zechariah and wondered about his delay in the sanctuary. When he finally came out he was unable to speak to them, and they realized that he had seen a vision inside. But he could only make signs to them and remained mute. Then, when his time of priestly service was over, he went home.
Some time later, Elizabeth conceived. She went into seclusion for 5 months, saying, “our God has done this for me.”
The Word of God to us.
Children’s Time with Haley Hansen
Scripture: Luke 1:57-58,67-80
When the time came for Elizabeth to deliver, she gave birth to a son. When her neighbors and relatives heart that God had been merciful to her, they shared her joy.
Zechariah, John’s father, was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied:
Blessed are you, the Most High God of Israel –
for you have visited and redeemed your people.
You have raised up a mighty savior for us
of the house of David,
As your promised through the mouths of your holy ones,
the prophets of ancient times:
salvation from our enemies and from the hands of all our foes.
You have shown mercy to our ancestors
by remembering the holy Covenant you made with them,
the oath you swore to Sarah, and Abraham,
granting that we,
delivered from the hands of our enemies,
might serve you without fear,
in holiness and justice,
in your presence all our days.
And you, my child, will be called
the prophet of the Most High,
for you’ll go before our God
to prepare the way for the Promised One,
giving the people the knowledge of salvation
through forgiveness of their sins.
Such is the tender mercy of our God,
who from on high
will bring the Rising Sun to visit us,
to give light to those who live
in darkness and the shadow of death
and to guide our feet
into the way of peace.
In the meantime, the child grew up and became strong in spirit. He lived in the desert until the day he appeared openly in Israel.
The Word of God for us.
Bring Us Hope
Ruth Elaine Schram
Elsie Coleman, cello
Thoughts: Rev. Good
Hymn: Hail to the Lord’s Anointed
words by James Montgomery; music Gesangbuch der H.W.k. Hofkapelle, adapt. and harm. by W.H. Monk
(click the hymn to enlarge)
Sharing of Joys and Concerns
The shepherds will each read prayers from their flocks.
Abracadabra: Jane and Kent
Candle: Sara and Johan
Flo’s Flock: Flo and Luke
Lemonade: Sarah and Parke
Ponderers: Becky and Paul
Schmidts’ Creek: Susan and Steve
Whyzeflock: Jamie and Clara
Silent Prayer and Pastoral Prayer
The Lord’s Prayer
We invite you to use your chosen words for God: Father, Mother, or…
Our Creator, 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; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.
Offering: What is it you will offer to God and neighbor this week? Type on the screen.
O Come, Emmanuel (Veni Emmanuel)
Jason Krug; 12th century Latin
Prayer of Thanksgiving
God of hope, we thank you for your light that shines, leading us forward. We thank you for all who have caused us to hope even in the darkness. May we be dreamers, believing in hope, building a world of holiness and justice. Guide our feet into the way of peace. Amen.
Virtual Fellowship Time
We will invite everyone into breakout rooms where you can unmute yourself and chat with your Calvary friends.