December 12, 2020

Dear Friends,

Peace to you this evening. I hope your Advent journey has been meaningful. Thanks to all who have submitted video devotionals! I’ve been blessed by each one.

Tomorrow is the third Sunday of Advent, Gaudete Sunday, or “Rejoice Sunday.” We read from Mary’s song, known as the “Magnificat,” in which she rejoices in the God who saved her, gave her hope, and would begin the “reversal of all things.” What does it mean to keep choosing a day in this season of Advent?

Below are video links to our virtual worship offerings, along with an order of service - both the main worship service and the family service. Also, here's a link to the Common Life posted on our church website.

Two additional plugs for tomorrow morning:

(1) Our Advent Sunday morning study, “Christmas in the Four Gospel Homes,” continues tomorrow, focusing on the Gospel of Luke. Send me an email (jlehn@fpcw.org) if you’d like to receive the reading ahead of time. We’ll gather from 8:30 - 9:30 am over Zoom (Zoom link; Meeting ID: 832 3379 4440 Passcode: 389051).
(2) The third of three “Meet Pastor Laura” calls over Zoom will be held tomorrow morning at 11 am. Join her for 30-45 minutes of conversation! She would love to meet you and hear more of your story. Sorry, it’s still BYOCAP (Bring Your Own Coffee and Pastry). Zoom link; Meeting ID: 803 430 6675; Call In: 312-626-6799.

Also, in case you missed it, check out the interview I did with Sue Sklanksy this week. We celebrate her graduation last month from the two-year Spiritual Director program at Siena Retreat Center. Congratulations, Sue!

Thank you for being the body of Christ, friends. A blessed Advent to you. You are loved and never alone.
 
With Advent hope, peace, joy, and love,
Pastor Jeff
Worship Video, Sunday, December 13, 2020
Family Worship Video Sunday, December 13, 2020

Prelude
O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

Welcome and Call to Worship
We gather this day, together while apart.
Our smiles may show our joy; our eyes may speak of pain.
We come to worship, seeking signs of the living God.
We may sense something holy here; we may reach out to mystery.
Will we see God today? Will our living make God’s love visible?
Let us worship God, Ray of Hope, Prince of Peace, Beacon of Joy, Eternal Love.

*Opening Hymn No. 92
While We Are Waiting, Come

Lighting of the Third Advent Candle

Call to Confession
Advent is a season of waiting, of longing, of watching, of hoping. Yet, even as we wait, God is ready to forgive us and set us back on solid ground. Let us confess our sins to our gracious and loving God, first in silent prayer.

Prayer of Confession
Almighty and vulnerable God, always with us, always coming. We confess that we do not know how to prepare for your Advent. We have forgotten how to hope in miracles; we have ignored the promise of your kingdom; we get distracted by the busyness of this season and discouraged by the pandemic. Forgive us, God. Grant us the simple wonder of the shepherds, the intelligent courage of the Magi, and the patient faith of Mary and Joseph, that we may journey with them to Bethlehem and find the good news of a child born for us. Now, in the quiet of our hearts, we ask you to make us ready for his coming. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon
The good news of this Advent season is forgiveness of sin and new life. Let us commit our lives to Christ’s way of hope and peace. Thanks be to the Advent God who sets us free to love and serve!

Our Common Life

Scripture Reading -
Luke 1:46-55
This is the Word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God!

Sermon Rev. Jeff Lehn

Responsive Hymn No. 646
Sing Out, My Soul

Invitation to the Table

Prayer of Great Thanksgiving (sung to “Good Christian Friends, Rejoice”)
Leaders: O may the good Lord be with you.
All: And may the Lord be with you too.
L: Lift your hearts to Him in praise.
A: To the Lord our hearts we raise.
L: Let us offer praises true.
A: It is fitting so to do. Gratefully we sing to the Lord our King!

Blessing of the Bread and Cup (sung to “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing”) -
Holy, holy, holy Lord! God of hosts, by all adored!
Heav’n and earth cannot contain all the glory of your name.
Hail, hosanna, God most high, blest is he who now draws nigh.
In the name of God the King, hallelujahs glad we sing;
Hail, hosanna, praises due be forever, Lord, to you! 

The Lord’s Prayer

Communion of the People 

Prayer After Communion (sung to “God Rest, You Merry Gentlemen”)
Oh, thank the Lord and sing his praise, what he has done proclaim!
Let all who seek the Lord rejoice and proudly bear his name.
Who leads his thankful people forth, his promises to claim.
Oh, tidings of comfort and joy, comfort and joy;
Oh tidings of comfort and joy.

Oh, praise to God the Father, and praise to God the Son.
And praise to God the Spirit, most blessed Three in One.
As ‘twas is now and e’er shall be while endless ages run.
Oh, tidings of comfort and joy, comfort and joy;
Oh tidings of comfort and joy.

Call for Offering
On this day, we are invited to participate in the kingdom emerging all around us. May we offer ourselves to God this Advent with glad and generous hearts, freely giving our tithes and offerings to the ministry of our congregation. In lieu of passing the plate, we invite you to give through our church website, our smartphone app, by texting the word “Wilmette” to the number 77977, or by sending a check to the church office. As we gather our gifts together and offer them to God, may we do so in gratitude and praise.

Congregational Response - The Doxology (OLD HUNDREDTH - Hymn 606) 
Praise God, from whom all blessings flow; 
Praise God all creatures here below;
Praise God above, ye heavenly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Amen.

Prayer of Dedication 

Sending Hymn No. 134
Joy to the World

Charge and Benediction

Postlude
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing arr. Michael Burkhart

Worship Leaders
Rev. Jeff Lehn, Preaching
Laura Sherwood, Pastoral Liturgist 
Jennifer Christiansen, liturgist 
Chancel Choir, Doxology 
Linnea Jacobs, Carol Moss, Claire DiVizio, Jordan Roulo, vocalists 
Bob and Ellen Brown, Advent Candle Lighters




First Presbyterian Church of Wilmette
600 Ninth Street
Wilmette, IL 60091-2779
847-256-3010
Experience God. Grow Disciples. Transform Lives.