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Merry Christmas

The Feast of The Nativity
of our Lord Jesus Christ

Thursday, December 24, 2020
3:00, 5:00, & 7:00 PM

The Rev. Thomas C. Pumphrey, Rector
The Rev. Elisa P. Harres, Associate Rector
George Chesnut, Director of Music
Matt Martin, Youth Minister
Camie Schade, Director of Children’s Ministry

 

We welcome to worship God with us, and we pray that you will find the presence of God in this service and in this Christian Community. Despite the limitations of COVID-19 this year, we are still thriving as the body of Christ, and we have a place for you with us. To learn more about St. Peter and St. Paul, contact us through our website, www. peterandpaul.org, and please join us in our mission of growing disciples of Jesus Christ.

May God bless you and your loved ones this Christmas and always!

THE LITURGY OF THE WORD

Opening Voluntaries
Pastorale on “It Came Upon the Midnight Clear”
David Lasky

Trumpet Tune on “Angels from the Realms of Glory”
Janet Linker

Prelude on “Silent Night”
Noel Rawsthorne

Hymn 83                               
O Come, All Ye Faithful

Acclamation
Priest Blessed be God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

People And blessed be his kingdom, now and for ever. Amen.

Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Hymn 96           
Angels We Have Heard On High

Priest The Lord be with you.
People And also with you.
Priest Let us pray.

O God, you have caused this holy night to shine with the brightness of the true Light: Grant that we, who have known the mystery of that Light on earth, may also enjoy him perfectly in heaven; where with you and the Holy Spirit he lives and reigns, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.

The Old Testament Lesson – Isaiah 9:2-7

The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in a land of deep darkness– on them light has shined. You have multiplied the nation, you have increased its joy; they rejoice before you as with joy at the harvest, as people exult when dividing plunder. For the yoke of their burden, and the bar across their shoulders, the rod of their oppressor, you have broken as on the day of Midian. For all the boots of the tramping warriors and all the garments rolled in blood shall be burned as fuel for the fire. For a child has been born for us, a son given to us; authority rests upon his shoulders; and he is named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. His authority shall grow continually, and there shall be endless peace for the throne of David and his kingdom. He will establish and uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time onward and forevermore. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this.

Reader The Word of the Lord.
People Thanks be to God.

Psalm 96
(said responsively by half verse)

1 Sing to the LORD a new song; *
     sing to the LORD, all the whole earth.
2 Sing to the LORD and
bless his Name; *
     proclaim the good news of his
        salvation from day to day.
3 Declare his glory among the nations *
     and his wonders among all peoples.
4 For great is the LORD and
greatly to be praised; *
     he is more to be feared than all gods.
5 As for all the gods of the nations,
they are but idols;*
     but it is the LORD who made
        the heavens.
6 Oh, the majesty and magnificence
of his presence! *
     Oh, the power and the splendor
        of his sanctuary!
7 Ascribe to the LORD,
you families of the peoples; *
     ascribe to the LORD honor
         and power.
8 Ascribe to the LORD
the honor due his Name; *
     bring offerings and come
          into his courts.
9 Worship the LORD
in the beauty of holiness; *
     let the whole earth tremble before him.
10 Tell it out among the nations:
“The LORD is King! *
     he has made the world so firm
           that it cannot be moved;
                he will judge the peoples
                    with equity.”
11 Let the heavens rejoice,
and let the earth be glad;
let the sea thunder and
all that is in it; *
     let the field be joyful
             and all that is therein.
12 Then shall all the trees of the wood
shout for joy before the LORD
when he comes, *
         when he comes to judge the earth.
13 He will judge the world
with righteousness *
         and the peoples with his truth

The New Testament Lesson –
Titus 2:11-14
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all, training us to renounce impiety and worldly passions, and in the present age to live lives that are self-controlled, upright, and godly, while we wait for the blessed hope and the manifestation of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ. He it is who gave himself for us that he might redeem us from all iniquity and purify for himself a people of his own who are zealous for good deeds.

Reader The Word of the Lord.
People Thanks be to God.

Sequence Hymn 87
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing




Gospel – Luke 2:1-20

Priest The Holy Gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke.
People Glory to you, Lord Christ.

In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. All went to their own towns to be registered. Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David. He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and who was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn. In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see– I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favors!”

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.” So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about this child; and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.

Priest The Gospel of the Lord.
People Praise to you, Lord Christ.

 

The Sermon, The Rev. Tom Pumphrey

 

The Nicene Creed (also on page 358 in the Book of Common Prayer)

We believe in one God,
     the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen.
We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
     the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end.
We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of Life,
     who proceeds from the Father and the Son. With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified. He has spoken through the Prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.

The Prayers of the People

Let us pray for the Church and for the world.

Grant, Almighty God, that all who confess your Name may be united in your truth, live together in your love, and reveal your glory in the world.

Lord, in your mercy.
Hear our prayer.

Guide the people of this land, and of all the nations, in the ways of justice and peace; that we may honor one another and serve the common good.

Lord, in your mercy.
Hear our prayer.

Give us all a reverence for the earth as your own creation, that we may use its resources rightly in the service of others and to your honor and glory.

Lord, in your mercy.
Hear our prayer.

Bless all whose lives are closely linked with ours, and grant that we may serve Christ in them, and love one another as he loves us. We also pray for our military personnel who are deployed in harm’s way; especially for our parish family members.

Lord, in your mercy.
Hear our prayer.

Comfort and heal all those who suffer in body, mind, or spirit. Give them courage and hope in their troubles, and bring them the joy of your salvation.

Lord, in your mercy.
Hear our prayer.

We commend to your mercy all who have died, that your will for them may be fulfilled; and we pray that we may share with all your saints in your eternal kingdom.

Lord, in your mercy.
Hear our prayer.
We thank you, Lord, for the blessings of this life.

Confession
Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry, and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen.

The Absolution

The Exchange of the Peace of Jesus Christ

Celebrant:
The peace of the Lord be always with you
People: And also with you.

 

THE LITURGY OF THE TABLE

Offertory    The congregation offers to God gifts of bread and wine, and music.

Offertory Anthem Carol of the Birds traditional French carol

Presentation Hymn Doxology (Tune: Lasst uns erfreuen)

Praise God, from whom all blessings flow; Praise him, all creatures here below. Alleluia! Allelulia!
Praise him above, ye heavenly host: Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Allelulia! Alleluia!

The Great Thanksgiving, Eucharistic Prayer A

Celebrant The Lord be with you.
People And also with you.
Celebrant Lift up your hearts.
People We lift them to the Lord.
Celebrant Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
People It is right to give him thanks and praise.

 It is right, and a good and joyful thing, always and everywhere to give thanks to you, Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth. Because you gave Jesus Christ, your only Son, to be born for us; who, by the mighty power of the Holy Spirit, was made perfect Man of the flesh of the Virgin Mary his mother; so that we might be delivered from the bondage of sin, and receive power to become your children. Therefore, we praise you, joining our voices with Angels and Archangels and with all the company of heaven, who for ever sing this hymn to proclaim the glory of your Name:

Sanctus, Hymn S-130

Holy and gracious Father: In your infinite love you made us for yourself; and, when we had fallen into sin and become subject to evil and death, you, in your mercy, sent Jesus Christ, your only and eternal Son, to share our human nature, to live and die as one of us, to reconcile us to you, the God and Father of all. He stretched out his arms upon the cross, and offered himself, in obedience to your will, a perfect sacrifice for the whole world.

On the night he was handed over to suffering and death, our Lord Jesus Christ took bread; and when he had given thanks to you, he broke it, and gave it to his disciples, and said “Take, eat: This is my Body, which is given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me.”

After supper he took the cup of wine; and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and said, “Drink this, all of you: This is my Blood of the new Covenant, which is shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Whenever you drink it, do this for the remembrance of me.”

Therefore we proclaim the mystery of faith:

Priest and People     

Christ has died.
Christ is risen.
Christ will come again.

We celebrate the memorial of our redemption, O Father, in this sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving. Recalling his death, resurrection, and ascension, we offer you these gifts. Sanctify them by your Holy Spirit to be for your people the Body and Blood of your Son, the holy food and drink of new and unending life in him. Sanctify us also that we may faithfully receive this holy Sacrament, and serve you in unity, constancy, and peace; and at the last day bring us with all your saints into the joy of your eternal kingdom.

All this we ask through your Son Jesus Christ. By him, and with him, and in him, in the unity of the Holy Spirit all honor and glory is yours, Almighty Father, now and for ever.

The Lord’s Prayer
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, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.

Fraction Anthem           Hymnal S-155


©Reprint permission secured through Ritesong.

At this time, we know that many cannot share the sacrament together with us in person. Please pray for the end to the pandemic and a return to in-person fellowship, and give thanks to God for knitting us together in Christ, even though we may be apart.

For those who cannot receive communion in person today, we offer this prayer that you may spiritually participate in the presence of Christ. This was first prayed by an 18th century saint who also experienced a time without communion.

Jesus, I believe that you are truly present in the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar. I love you above all things, and long for you in my soul. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. As though you have already come, I embrace you and unite myself entirely to you; never permit me to be separated from you. Amen.

Communion Hymns

Hymnal 79 O Little Town of Bethlehem

1. O little town of Bethlehem,
how still we see thee lie!
Above thy deep and dreamless sleep
the silent stars go by;
yet in thy dark streets shineth
the everlasting Light;
the hopes and fears of all the years
are met in thee tonight.

2. For Christ is born of Mary;
and gathered all above,
while mortals sleep, the angels keep
their watch of wondering love.
O morning stars, together
proclaim the holy birth!
and praises sing to God the King,
and peace to men on earth.

3. How silently, how silently,
the wondrous gift is given!
So God imparts to human hearts
the blessings of his heaven.
No ear may hear his coming,
but in this world of sin,
where meek souls will receive him, still
the dear Christ enters in.

4. O holy Child of Bethlehem,
descend to us, we pray;
cast out our sin and enter in,
be born in us today.
We hear the Christmas angels
the great glad tidings tell;
O come to us, abide with us,
our Lord Emmanuel!

Words: Phillips Brooks (1835-1893)
Music: St. Louis, Lewis H. Redner (1831-1908)

Hymnal 101 Away in a Manger

1. Away in a manger, no crib for his bed, the little Lord Jesus laid down his sweet head. The stars in the bright sky looked down where he lay, the little Lord Jesus asleep on the hay.

2. The cattle are lowing, the baby awakes, but little Lord Jesus no crying he makes. I love thee, Lord Jesus! Look down from the sky, and stay by my side until morning is nigh.

3. Be near me, Lord Jesus; I ask thee to stay close by me for ever, and love me I pray. Bless all the dear children in thy tender care, and fit us for heaven to live with thee there.

Words: Traditional carol
Music: Cradle Song, melody William James Kirkpatrick (1838-1921); harm. Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958)

Hymnal 89
It Came Upon the Midnight Clear

1. It came upon the midnight clear, that glorious song of old, from angels bending near the earth to touch their harps of gold: “Peace on the earth, good will to men, from heaven’s all-gracious King.” The world in solemn stillness lay to hear the angels sing.

2. Still through the cloven skies they come with peaceful wings unfurled, and still their heavenly music floats o’er all the weary world above its sad and lowly plains they bend on hovering wing, and ever o’er its Babel-sounds the blessed angels sing.

3. Yet with the woes of sin and strife the world has suffered long; beneath the heavenly hymn have rolled two thousand years of wrong; and warring humankind hears not the tidings which they bring; O hush the noise and cease your strife and hear the angels sing!

4. For lo! the days are hastening on, by prophets seen of old, when with the ever-circling years shall come the time foretold, when peace shall over all the earth its ancient splendors fling, and all the world give back the song which now the angels sing

Words: Edmund H. Sears (1810-1876), alt.
Music: Carol, Richard Storrs Willis (1819-1900)

Hymnal 115 What Child Is This?

1. What child is this, who, laid to rest,
on Mary’s lap is sleeping?
Whom angels greet with anthems sweet
while shepherds watch are keeping?
Refrain

Refrain
This, this is Christ the King,
whom shepherds guard and angels sing.
haste, haste to bring him laud,
the babe, the son of Mary.

2. Why lies he in such mean estate
where ox and ass are feeding?
Good Christian, fear: for sinners here
the silent Word is pleading.
Refrain

3. So bring him incense, gold, and myrrh
come, peasant, king, to own him;
the King of kings salvation brings,
let loving hearts enthrone him
Refrain

Post Communion Prayer (also in the Book of Common Prayer, page 366)

Almighty and everliving God, we thank you for feeding us with the spiritual food of the most precious Body and Blood of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ; and for assuring us in these holy mysteries that we are living members of the Body of your Son, and heirs of your eternal kingdom. And now, Father, send us out to do the work you have given us to do, to love and serve you as faithful witnesses of Christ our Lord. To him, to you, and to the Holy Spirit, be honor and glory, now and for ever. Amen.

Hymnal 111 Silent Night

1. Silent night, holy night, all is calm, all is bright. Round yon virgin mother and child. Holy infant, so tender and mild, Sleep in heavenly peace. Sleep in heavenly peace.

2. Silent night, holy night, shepherds quake at the sight, Glories stream from heaven afar, Heavenly hosts sing alleluia; Christ the Savior is born! Christ the Savior is born

3. Silent night, holy night, Son of God, love’s pure light Radiant beams from thy holy face, With the dawn of redeeming grace, Jesus, Lord, at thy birth. Jesus, Lord, at thy birth.

Blessing

Closing Hymn 100 Joy to the World!

1. Joy to the world! the Lord is come: Let earth receive her King; Let every heart prepare him room, And heaven and nature sing, And heaven and nature sing, And heaven, and heaven and nature sing.

2. Joy to the world! the Savior reigns; Let us our songs employ, While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains, Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat the sounding joy, Repeat, repeat the sounding joy.

3. No more let sins and sorrows grow, Nor thorns infest the ground; He comes to make his blessings flow Far as the curse is found, Far as the curse is found, Far as, far as the curse is found.

4. He rules the world with truth and grace, And makes the nations prove The glories of his righteousness,
And wonders of his love, And wonders of his love, And wonders, wonders of his love.

Priest: Allelulia! Allelulia! Let us go forth in the name of Christ.
People: Thanks be to God! Allelulia! Allelulia!

Closing Voluntary
In Dulci Jubilo/In Sweet Rejoicing, BWV 729
J. S. Bach

Merry Christmas! Thank you for worshiping with us today!