Second Sunday of Advent
“Wachet Auf” by J.S. Bach
The premiere of our new organ!
Guest organist: Connor Scott
The congregation is invited to say the words together in bold. Please sing along with us! To prepare for worship, you may want to place your advent wreath, or two candles, to light during the opening prayer.
The ushers and the rector welcome the congregation. If you are new to us, consider filling out our “get connected” form, let us get to know you better.
Advent Bidding Prayer:
In this season of Advent, we bring our prayers to the very beginning of the service. We pray together for the church, the world, the poor, and those who mourn. You may add your prayer requests in the comments at any time. Know people will pray for you. The response to the prayer is the ancient Advent Hymn “O Come O Come Emmanuel”
Alleluia, our God and Savior now draws near:
O come, let us worship, alleluia.
Dear People of God: In the season of Advent, it is our responsibility and joy to prepare ourselves in heart and mind, for the coming of Christ Jesus, our savior and judge. This season we walk the way of shepherds and wise ones, seeking after the holy child of Bethlehem.
Let us hear and heed in Holy Scripture the story of God’s loving purposes, the proclamation of prophets, the hope of salvation. But first, let us pray for the needs of the whole world that Christ came to save.
For peace and good will over all the earth, for leaders of nations and communities, especially for those preparing to assume elected office. For our partners at Cristosal working on behalf of human rights in central America, and all those who work for justice and peace.
For the mission and unity of the church, for bishops, priests, deacons, and all who minister in Christ’s name. In this Missouri Diocese we pray this week for Trinity Church in St. Charles.
Because this of all things would rejoice Christ’s heart, let us remember
in his name the poor and the helpless, the hungry and the oppressed, the sick and those who mourn, the lonely and the unloved, the aged and little children. In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, we remember all those who are suffering with the disease, and all of the nurses, doctors, and first responders caring for them. We remember family members who are unable to visit, especially as infections increase. You are invited to add your own prayers, even to write your prayer request in the comments as you watch.
Finally, let us remember before God his strong and humble mother, and those who rejoice with us but upon another shore and in a greater light, that whole multitude which no one can number whose hope was in the Word made flesh, and with whom, in Christ Jesus, we are one for evermore.
In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord, make straight
in the desert a highway for our God. –Isaiah 40:3
O God, open thou our lips.
And our mouths shall show forth thy praise.
Glory to God, Source of all being, Incarnate Word, and Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now and will be forever. Amen.
The Collect of the Day
The Presider reads ancient prayers that signify our longing for Christ’s
coming, and the coming of God’s reign as we light an additional candle each week during Advent. You are invited to light your wreath with us (or any candle).
Merciful God, who sent your messengers the prophets to preach repentance and prepare the way for our salvation: Give us grace to heed their warnings and forsake our sins, that we may greet with joy the coming of Jesus Christ our Redeemer; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
“People Look East” Wonder Love and Praise Hymnal #724
We hear the stories of the experience of God from our spiritual ancestors. Following an ancient pattern originally from Jewish synagogue worship, readings follow a set calendar for what will be read when.
THE FIRST READING:
A Reading from the book of Isaiah (Isaiah 40:1-11)
Comfort, comfort my people!
says your God.
Speak compassionately to Jerusalem,
and proclaim to her that her compulsory service has ended,
that her penalty has been paid,
that she has received from the Lord’s hand double for all her sins!
A voice is crying out:
“Clear the Lord’s way in the desert!
Make a level highway in the wilderness for our God!
Every valley will be raised up,
and every mountain and hill will be flattened.
Uneven ground will become level,
and rough terrain a valley plain.
The Lord’s glory will appear,
and all humanity will see it together;
the Lord’s mouth has commanded it.”
A voice was saying:
And another said,
“What should I call out?”
All flesh is grass;
all its loyalty is like the flowers of the field.
The grass dries up
and the flower withers
when the Lord’s breath blows on it.
Surely the people are grass.
The grass dries up;
the flower withers,
but our God’s word will exist forever.
Go up on a high mountain,
Raise your voice and shout,
Raise it; don’t be afraid;
say to the cities of Judah,
“Here is your God!”
Here is the Lord God,
coming with strength,
with a triumphant arm,
bringing his reward with him
and his payment before him.
Like a shepherd, God will tend the flock;
he will gather lambs in his arms
and lift them onto his lap.
He will gently guide the nursing ewes.
The Word of the Lord
Thanks be to God
THE PSALM (Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13)
Saint Helena Psalter
You have been gracious to your land, O God;
you have restored the good fortune of Jacob.
You have forgiven the iniquity of your people
and blotted out all their sins.
I will listen to what you are saying,
for you are speaking peace to your faithful people
and to those who turn their hearts to you.
Truly, your salvation is very near to those who fear you,
that your glory may dwell in our land.
Mercy and truth have met together;
righteousness and peace have kissed each other.
Truth shall spring up from the earth,
and righteousness shall look down from heaven.
You, O God, will indeed grant prosperity,
and our land will yield its increase.
Righteousness shall go before you,
and peace shall be a pathway for your feet.
Glory to God, Source of all being, Incarnate Word, and Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning, is now and will be forever. Amen.
THE GOSPEL READING
The Holy Gospel of our Savior Jesus Christ according to Mark (Mark 1:1-8)
Glory to You, Lord Christ.
The beginning of the good news about Jesus Christ, God’s Son, happened just as it was written about in the prophecy of Isaiah:
Look, I am sending my messenger before you.
He will prepare your way,
a voice shouting in the wilderness:
“Prepare the way for the Lord;
make his paths straight.”
John the Baptist was in the wilderness calling for people to be baptized to show that they were changing their hearts and lives and wanted God to forgive their sins. Everyone in Judea and all the people of Jerusalem went out to the Jordan River and were being baptized by John as they confessed their sins. John wore clothes made of camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist. He ate locusts and wild honey. He announced, “One stronger than I am is coming after me. I’m not even worthy to bend over and loosen the strap of his sandals. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”
The Gospel of the Lord
Praise to you, Lord Christ.
The Sermon: The Rev. Marc Smith
Come thou Long Expected Jesus
Guest musicians: TJ Muller and Maggie Linck
Prayer for Stewardship
Holy Communion’s annual campaign for giving is ongoing. You can read more about the campaign “Making a Needed Difference” at holycommunion.net/pledge
Gracious and everlasting God, the giver of all good gifts, you have blessed us and our parish abundantly. Grant us the hope to dream and the courage to live into our possibilities. Make us faithful stewards, both for the provision of our necessities and for the relief of those who are in need. Bless the efforts of our Annual Giving this year to extend the work of spiritual renewal in our church and community of faith. Through Jesus Christ, who gave all of himself, we offer this prayer. Amen.
Announcements are shared
The Lord’s Prayer
Let us pray in the way Christ taught us, and in the language of our hearts.
Our Father 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, the power and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.
A prayer specific to each Sunday of Advent is followed by the ancient prayer of Saint Chrysostom.
Almighty God, who sent your servant John the Baptist to prepare your people to welcome the Messiah, inspire us, the ministers and stewards of your truth, to turn our disobedient hearts to you, that when the Christ shall come again to be our judge, we may stand with confidence before his glory; who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Almighty God, you have given us grace at this time with one accord to make our common supplication to you; and you have promised through your well-beloved Son that when two or three are gathered together in his Name you will be in the midst of them: Fulfill now, O Lord, our desires and petitions as may be best for us; granting us in this world knowledge of your truth, and in the age to come life everlasting. Amen.
The Peace is then exchanged.
The peace of Christ be always with you.
And also with you.
The Peace is then exchanged. Consider sending a text, a message on Facebook, or even writing a letter or email to someone who could use some peace.
“Joyful Joyful We Adore Thee” Hymnal 1982 #376
The Deacon dismisses the congregation:
Let us Bless the Lord
Thanks be to God.
Preacher: The Rev. Marc Smith
Presider: The Rev. Mike Angell
Deacon: The Rev. Chester Hines
Seminarian: Emilee Walker-Cornetta
The Prayers: Rudy Nickens, Shirley Mensah, Peter Tchoukaleff
Lectors: Fran Caradonna, Andrew Carpentier
The Lord’s Prayer: Sondra Ellis
Guest Musicians: TJ Muller and Maggie Linck
Greeters: The Mensah Family
Guest Organist: Connor Scott
Director of Music: Mary Chapman
Streaming Producer: John Kelly
Music reprinted and broadcast with permission by OneLicense # A-704988
The Psalms and Collect of the Day are copyright of the Order of Saint Helena. The Scripture Translation is the Common English Bible. All are used by permission.
The Advent Bidding Prayer was adapted by our rector from the service of Lessons and Carols from King’s college.
The first closing prayer is adapted from the Book of Alternative Services of the Anglican Church of Canada.