Bulletin: December 12, 2010

GRACE UNITED CHURCH December 12, 2010 Third Sunday in Advent

Welcome
Life and Work of the Church
At this sign * please stand, if able
Lighting of the Christ Candle
Advent Candle Lighting
- Margo Hines with Jessica & Taylor

All: God, you know that we do not always feel happy. Sometimes we feel sad. Sometimes we are worried. Sometimes we feel lonely. Touch us with your strong and joyful Spirit, we pray, so that laughter, warmth, and delight may fill our hearts and souls. Help you joy run deeper than all our sorrow as we know your gifts of new life today and always. In the name of Jesus, joy to the world. Amen.
“A Candle is Burning” #6 VU (vs. 1,2 & 3 only)

GUESS WHO’S COMING TO BETHLEHEM?

A Manger Mystery Musical
*by Michael & Jill Gallina

- KIDZ CHOIR under the direction of Margo Hines
- Narrator: Lawrence Davidson

Cast: Tory Baker, Avery Gilby, Hannah Gilby, Liam Gilby, Hannah Hennifent, Jessica Hines/Schille, Andrew Mitio, Sam Noyce, Colin Rogers, Kaitlin Rogers, William Rogers, Kennedy Toppott, Greg Weaver, Alexa Mannen, Victoria Mannen

*Call to Worship (Psalm 146:5-10 from ‘Everyday Psalms’, by James Taylor)

LDR: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, amen. Put your trust in God.
PPL: For eternal confidence, turn to the one who made eternity.
LDR: What human agency can claim to have created Earth?
PPL: God will never let you down.
LDR; Do not put your trust only in governments; they come and go.
PPL: Look and see those whom God chooses to help: to free the hungry; to set prisoners free.
LDR: to give sight to the blind; to let the lame walk; to grant liberty to the oppressed.
PPL: Those who take care of themselves first are left to the last.
LDR: God cares for the strangers, the widows, the orphans –
PPL: God watches over those who cannot care for themselves.
LDR: Can any human authority make that claim?
PPL: That is why God rules over all creation. Trust God forever!

* “All Earth is Waiting” #5 VU
* Opening Advent Prayer
(adapted from p. 11, VU, praying together, please)
God of all wisdom,
my heart yearns to know the fullness of your love,
and the brightness of your Word.
I long for Christ my Saviour,
and the dawn of his coming
that I may rejoice in the light of holy presence,
and welcome the emancipation of truth.
This is my prayer as I wait with hope, peace, joy and love in Advent Season. Amen.

For those Young in Heart
Story “Sparky Finds Out How to Rejoice”
Song “I Am Walking the Path of Joy ” MV #221

I am walking a path of joy,
I am walking a path of joy,
I am walking a path of joy,
lead me home, lead me home.

Prayer Circle and …off to your classes.
Scripture for Today and M&S Spotlight

Isaiah 35:1-10:
The dryness of the parched land exposes my own parched places. I’m waiting for the holy touch of Messiah when dehydration will splash with profuse joy.
Matthew 11:2-11:
In prison I paced back and forth in the heat, doubting my life, which I gave freely to prepare the way for my cousin, Jesus. I thought he was the Messiah and would change things. It didn’t work out like I expected it to. I’m offended and just not sure anymore…

Sermon
“The Incredible, Indescribable Joy of Christmas”

Congregational Prayer
Worshiping with our Offerings
Choir: “An Advent Gospel”

*words Michael Barrett; music by Lloyd Larson

Sung Response “Oh, What a Wonderful Gift”
*words and music by Linnea Good

Chorus: Oh, what a wonderful gift!
Oh, what a wonderful gift!
God gives lives of hope and love,
Oh, what a wonderful gift.

So, as we bring our gifts,
And offer them with pray’r,
May we be people seeking peace
And justice ev’rywhere…
…chorus

Prayer of Thanks and Dedication (in unison)
In the spirit of Jesus we bring our gifts to you, O God.
We would give them with a ready mind, a willing spirit,
and a joyful heart. Amen.
* “Oh, How Joyfully” #57 VU
* Commission and Benediction

And now, may the Lord bless you and keep you; may the Lord cause his face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you, and may you find joy in Holy Presence. Amen.
* Choral Blessing
“Go Now in Peace” 2X
Go now in peace, go now in peace.
May the love of God surround you everywhere,
everywhere you may go.