2nd Day Before Christmas: Thursday 23 Dec 2021: Luke 1:46b-55; Micah 4:6-8; 2 Peter 1:16-21 ~ “He is God’s beloved Son!”

2nd Day Before Christmas: Thursday 23 Dec 2021:
[Revised Common Lectionary Year C]

+ In the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Opening:

Stir up your power, O Lord, and with great might come among
us; and as we are sorely hindered by our sins from running the
race that is set before us, let your bountiful grace and mercy
speedily help and deliver us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to
whom, with you and the Holy Spirit, be honor and glory, now
and for ever. Amen.

We saw his majestic splendor with our own eyes
when he received honor and glory from God the Father.
The voice from the majestic glory of God said to him,
“This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.”
(2 Peter 1:16b-17)

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Psalms: Luke 1:46b-55 (NLT)

Magnificat – (Mary) Christy Nockels – Todd Agnew, Do You See What I See?

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OT Reading: Micah 4:6-8 (NLT)

Israel’s Return from Exile

4:6 “In that coming day,” says the Lord,
“I will gather together those who are lame,
those who have been exiles,
and those whom I have filled with grief.
7 Those who are weak will survive as a remnant;
those who were exiles will become a strong nation.
Then I, the Lord, will rule from Jerusalem
as their king forever.”
8 As for you, Jerusalem,
the citadel of God’s people,
your royal might and power
will come back to you again.
The kingship will be restored
to my precious Jerusalem.

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“Of The Father’s Love Begotten” from Out of Darkness

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NT Reading: 2 Peter 1:16-21 (NLT)

1:16 For we were not making up clever stories when we told you about the powerful coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. We saw his majestic splendor with our own eyes 17 when he received honor and glory from God the Father. The voice from the majestic glory of God said to him, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.” 18 We ourselves heard that voice from heaven when we were with him on the holy mountain.

19 Because of that experience, we have even greater confidence in the message proclaimed by the prophets. You must pay close attention to what they wrote, for their words are like a lamp shining in a dark place—until the Day dawns, and Christ the Morning Star shines in your hearts. 20 Above all, you must realize that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophet’s own understanding, 21 or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from God.

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This Is My Beloved Son – by Pepper Choplin – St Joseph the Worker Virtual Choir
[St Joseph the Worker, Pittsburgh]

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Prayer: [Universalis]

Though the Lord’s coming is at hand, we must have patience: for he will come in his own time, in his own way.
Lord Jesus, give us patience while we wait.

We live in a world weighed down by unbelief: Lord, increase our faith.
Lord Jesus, give us patience while we wait.

Upon the richness and complexity of man’s thoughts, among the theories and philosophies of our world today, let your coming shed its own glorious light.
Lord Jesus, give us patience while we wait.

Give us the strong faith of the apostles, and their fervor in preaching your Word.
Lord Jesus, give us patience while we wait.

Almighty God,
now that the birthday of your Son as man is drawing near, we pray that your eternal Word, who took flesh in the womb of the Virgin Mary and came to dwell among men, will show your unworthy people the greatness of his love and mercy. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, (one) God, for ever and ever.

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Benediction: 

The Lord bless us,
and keep us from all evil,
and bring us to everlasting life.

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+ In the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

3rd Day Before Christmas: Wednesday 22 Dec 2021: Luke 1:46b-55; Micah 4:1-5; Ephesians 2:11-22 ~ “He has brought us peace.”

3rd Day Before Christmas: Wednesday 22 Dec 2021:
[Revised Common Lectionary Year C]

+ In the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Opening:

Stir up your power, O Lord, and with great might come among
us; and as we are sorely hindered by our sins from running the
race that is set before us, let your bountiful grace and mercy
speedily help and deliver us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to
whom, with you and the Holy Spirit, be honor and glory, now
and for ever. Amen.

“For Christ himself has brought peace to us.
He united Jews and Gentiles into one people when,
in his own body on the cross,
he broke down the wall of hostility that separated us.”
(Ephesians 2:14)

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Psalms: Luke 1:46b-55 

Mary’s Song of Praise: The Magnificat
[Kapambwe Chikontwe]

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OT Reading: Micah 4:1-5 (NLT)

The Lord’s Future Reign

4:1 In the last days, the mountain of the Lord’s house
will be the highest of all—
the most important place on earth.
It will be raised above the other hills,
and people from all over the world will stream there to worship.
2 People from many nations will come and say,
“Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
to the house of Jacob’s God.
There he will teach us his ways,
and we will walk in his paths.”
For the Lord’s teaching will go out from Zion;
his word will go out from Jerusalem.
3 The Lord will mediate between peoples
and will settle disputes between strong nations far away.
They will hammer their swords into plowshares
and their spears into pruning hooks.
Nation will no longer fight against nation,
nor train for war anymore.
4 Everyone will live in peace and prosperity,
enjoying their own grapevines and fig trees,
for there will be nothing to fear.
The Lord of Heaven’s Armies
has made this promise!
5 Though the nations around us follow their idols,
we will follow the Lord our God forever and ever.

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Prince of Peace – Children’s Christmas song #LighttheWorld
[Monica Scott Music]

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NT Reading: Ephesians 2:11-22 (NLT)

Oneness and Peace in Christ

2:11 Don’t forget that you Gentiles used to be outsiders. You were called “uncircumcised heathens” by the Jews, who were proud of their circumcision, even though it affected only their bodies and not their hearts. 12 In those days you were living apart from Christ. You were excluded from citizenship among the people of Israel, and you did not know the covenant promises God had made to them. You lived in this world without God and without hope. 13 But now you have been united with Christ Jesus. Once you were far away from God, but now you have been brought near to him through the blood of Christ.

14 For Christ himself has brought peace to us. He united Jews and Gentiles into one people when, in his own body on the cross, he broke down the wall of hostility that separated us. 15 He did this by ending the system of law with its commandments and regulations. He made peace between Jews and Gentiles by creating in himself one new people from the two groups. 16 Together as one body, Christ reconciled both groups to God by means of his death on the cross, and our hostility toward each other was put to death.

17 He brought this Good News of peace to you Gentiles who were far away from him, and peace to the Jews who were near. 18 Now all of us can come to the Father through the same Holy Spirit because of what Christ has done for us.

19 So now you Gentiles are no longer strangers and foreigners. You are citizens along with all of God’s holy people. You are members of God’s family. 20 Together, we are his house, built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets. And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus himself. 21 We are carefully joined together in him, becoming a holy temple for the Lord. 22 Through him you Gentiles are also being made part of this dwelling where God lives by his Spirit.

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He Is Our Peace – Maranatha Music

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Prayer: 

Book of Common Prayer (2019)
Anglican Church in North America

For the Unity of All Christian People

+ O God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, our only Savior, the Prince of Peace: Give us grace to take to heart the grave dangers we are in through our many divisions. Deliver your Church from all enmity and prejudice, and everything that hinders us from godly union. As there is one Body and one Spirit, one hope of our calling, one Lord, one Faith, one Baptism, one God and Father of us all, so make us all to be of one heart and of one mind, united in one holy bond of truth and peace, of faith and love, that with one voice we may give you praise; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God in everlasting glory. Amen.

For the Peace of the World

+ Almighty God, from whom all thoughts of truth and peace proceed: Kindle, we pray, in the hearts of all people the true love of peace, and guide with your pure and peaceable wisdom those who take counsel for the nations of the earth; that in tranquility your kingdom may go forward, till the earth is filled with the knowledge of your love; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

For Quiet Confidence

+ O God of peace, who has taught us that in returning and rest we shall be saved, in quietness and in confidence shall be our strength: By the might of your Spirit lift us, we pray, into your presence, where we may be still and know that you are God; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

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Benediction: 

May the love of the Lord Jesus draw you to himself,
May the power of the Lord Jesus strengthen you in his service,
May the joy of the Lord Jesus fill your soul,
May the blessing of God almighty the father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit
be with you and remain with you and those you love this day and evermore. Amen

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+ In the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.