Christmas Eve Holy Communion

Hymn – Once in Royal David’s City

  1. Once in royal David’s city
    Stood a lowly cattle shed,
    Where a mother laid her Baby
    In a manger for His bed:
    Mary was that mother mild,
    Jesus Christ her little Child.
     
  1. He came down to earth from heaven,
    Who is God and Lord of all,
    And His shelter was a stable,
    And His cradle was a stall;
    With the poor, and mean, and lowly,
    Lived on earth our Savior holy.
     
  1. And through all His wondrous childhood
    He would honor and obey,
    Love and watch the lowly maiden,
    In whose gentle arms He lay:
    Christian children all must be
    Mild, obedient, good as He.

 Jesus is our childhood’s pattern;

  1. Day by day, like us He grew;
    He was little, weak and helpless,
    Tears and smiles like us He knew;
    And He feeleth for our sadness,
    And He shareth in our gladness.
     
  1. And our eyes at last shall see Him,
    Through His own redeeming love;
    For that Child so dear and gentle
    Is our Lord in heaven above,
    And He leads His children on
    To the place where He is gone.
     
  1. Not in that poor lowly stable,
    With the oxen standing by,
    We shall see Him; but in heaven,
    Set at God’s right hand on high;
    Where like stars His children crowned
    All in white shall wait around.
     

Advent comes from the Latin word ‘advents’ meaning ‘Coming.’ Advent begins the church year starting four Sundays before Christmas. The season of Advent has been set aside as a time of preparation since the 6th century. Advent is a time for preparing for Christ’s second coming, even as we remember and celebrate his first coming at Christmas. This is why the colour of the season of Lent is used, purple or blue, the colours also of Lent, of forgiveness and repentance.

Traditions vary from church to church, but usually one week, either week three or four in Advent, is set aside as more celebratory than others. Rose is the colour of this week rather than purple, which is why a rose candle is used. In our churches we will celebrate this week on the fourth Sunday of Advent, when we remember Mary, the mother of Jesus to who is attributed that great song of joy, the Magnificent.

Fourth Candle – The Candle of Joy (Pink candle) – Mary the Mother of Jesus

Leader: Light and peace, in Jesus Christ our Lord

All: Thanks be to God

Last Sunday we lit the Candle of Love. We light it and the Candles of Hope and Peace again as we remember that Jesus, born in Bethlehem, will come again to fulfil all of God’s promises and bring us everlasting peace and joy.

(A person lights the Candles of Hope, Peace, and Love)

Today we light the Fourth Candle of Advent, the Candle of Joy. When the angel Gabriel told Mary that a special child would be born to her she was filled with joy. She sang a song that began with the words: “My soul magnifies the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour. Just as the birth of Jesus gave great joy to his mother, so his presence in the world gave joy to those who had none before. He healed them and gave them hope and peace when they believed in him.

From hope, peace, and love grows joy.

We light the Candle of Joy to remind us that when Jesus is born in us we have joy and that through him there will be everlasting joy on earth.

(A person lights the Fourth Candle the Candle of Joy)

Joy is like a light shining in a dark place. As we look at this candle we celebrate the joy we find in Jesus Christ.

Leader: Let us pray:

All: Thank you God for the joy you give us. We ask that as we wait for all your promises to come true, and for Christ to come again, that you would remain present with us. Help us today, and every day to worship you, to hear your word, and to do your will by sharing your joy with each other. We ask it in the name of the one who was born in Bethlehem.

All: Amen.

The Greeting

Grace, mercy and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

All:       And also with you

The Peace 

We are the body of Christ.

In the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body

Let us then pursue all that makes for peace

and builds up our common life.

The peace of the Lord be always with you.

All:       And also with you.

Let us offer one another a sign of peace.

(Please turn to those around you, offering your hand, and say

‘The peace of the Lord be with you’)

Prayer of Preparation

All:      Almighty God,

to whom all hearts are open,

all desires known,

and from whom no secrets are hidden:

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.

Prayer of Penitence

 

Our Lord Jesus Christ said: The first commandment is this: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our Cod is the only Lord. You shall love the Lord your Cod with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’

The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

All:       Amen. Lord, have mercy.

God so loved the world

that he gave his only Son Jesus Christ

to save us from our sins,

to be our advocate in heaven,

and to bring us to eternal life.

Let us confess our sins in penitence and faith,

firmly resolved to keep God’s commandments

and to live in love and peace with all.

All:       Father eternal, giver of light and grace,

we have sinned against you and against our neighbour,

in what we have thought,

in what we have said and done,

through ignorance, through weakness,

through our own deliberate fault.

We have wounded your love

and marred your image in us.

We are sorry and ashamed

and repent of all our sins.

For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ,

who died for us,

forgive us all that is past

and lead us out from darkness

to walk as children of light.

Amen.

Almighty God,

who forgives all who truly repent, have mercy upon you, pardon and deliver you from all your sins, confirm and strengthen you in all goodness, and keep you in life eternal; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

All:       Amen. 

Collect for Christmas Eve 

Almighty God,

you make us glad with the yearly remembrance

of the birth of your Son Jesus Christ:

grant that, as we joyfully receive him as our redeemer,

so we may with sure confidence behold him

when he shall come to be our judge;

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever. 

All: Amen

Our First Reading is – Psalm 89

1 O Lord, I will always sing of your constant love; I will proclaim your faithfulness forever.

2 I know that your love will last for all time, that your faithfulness is as permanent as the sky.

3 You said, “I have made a covenant with the man I chose; I have promised my servant David,

4 “A descendant of yours will always be king; I will preserve your dynasty forever.’ ”

5 The heavens sing of the wonderful things you do; the holy ones sing of your faithfulness, Lord.

6 No one in heaven is like you, Lord; none of the heavenly beings is your equal.

7 You are feared in the council of the holy ones; they all stand in awe of you.

8 Lord God Almighty, none is as mighty as you; in all things you are faithful, O Lord.

This is the word of the Lord

All:      Thanks be to God. 

Hymn – Silent Night, Holy 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.
     
  1. Silent night, holy night!
    Shepherds quake at the sight.
    Glories stream from heaven afar
    Heavenly hosts sing Alleluia,
    Christ the Saviour is born!
    Christ the Saviour is born.
     
  1. Silent night, holy night!
    Son of God love’s pure light.
    Radiant beams from Thy holy face
    With dawn of redeeming grace,
    Jesus Lord, at Thy birth.
    Jesus Lord, at Thy birth
    . 

Here the Gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ According to Luke Chap: 1

26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy God sent the angel Gabriel to a town in Galilee named Nazareth.

27 He had a message for a young woman promised in marriage to a man named Joseph, who was a descendant of King David. Her name was Mary.

28 The angel came to her and said, “Peace be with you! The Lord is with you and has greatly blessed you!”

29 Mary was deeply troubled by the angel’s message, and she wondered what his words meant.

30 The angel said to her, “Don’t be afraid, Mary; God has been gracious to you.

31 You will become pregnant and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus.

32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High God. The Lord God will make him a king, as his ancestor David was,

33 and he will be the king of the descendants of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end!”

34 Mary said to the angel, “I am a virgin. How, then, can this be?”

35 The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and God’s power will rest upon you. For this reason the holy child will be called the Son of God.

36 Remember your relative Elizabeth. It is said that she cannot have children, but she herself is now six months pregnant, even though she is very old.

37 For there is nothing that God cannot do.”

38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” said Mary; “may it happen to me as you have said.” And the angel left her.

This is the Gospel of the Lord. 

All:       Praise to you, O Christ. 

Sermon Notes

 “Tonight Light came into this dark world.”

The four ‘C’

Christ from the Crib to the Cross and then the Crown

Amen

Let us declare our faith in God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit

All:      I believe in God, the Father almighty,

creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,

who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,

born of the Virgin Mary,

suffered under Pontius Pilate,

was crucified, died, and was buried;

he descended to the dead.

On the third day he rose again;

he ascended into heaven,

he is seated at the right hand of the Father,

and he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,

the holy catholic Church,

the communion of saints,

the forgiveness of sins,

the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.

Amen.

Prayers of Intercession 

During the intercession this response is used:

Lord, m your mercy

All:       Hear our prayer.

Prayers for King Charles

Through this tritium of prayer we ask God’s continuing blessing on our new King Charles

Prayer

O God, to whom every human power is subject,
grant to your servant our sovereign Charles
success in the exercise of his high office,
so that, always revering you and striving to please you,
he may constantly secure and preserve
for the people entrusted to his care
the freedom that comes from civil peace.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever.

All: Amen

Prayer for the Royal

Almighty God, the fountain of all goodness,

we humbly beseech thee to bless

Queen Camilla, William Prince of Wales, the Princess of Wales, and all the

Royal Family:

Endue them with thy Holy Spirit; enrich them with thy heavenly

grace; prosper them with all happiness;

and bring them to thine everlasting

kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

All: Amen.

In the power of the Spirit and in union with Christ, let us pray to the Father.

Almighty God, our heavenly Father,

you promised through your Son Jesus Christ to hear us when we pray in faith

Strengthen all your Church in the service of Christ, that those who confess your name may be united in your truth, live together in your love, and reveal your glory in the world.

Bless and guide Charles our King; give wisdom to all in authority; and direct this and every nation in the ways of justice and of peace; that we may honour one another, and seek the common good.

Give grace to us, our families and friends, and to all our neighbours, that we may serve Christ in one another, and love as he loves us.

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.

Hear us as we remember those who have died in the faith of

Christ……; according to your promises,

grant us with them a share in your eternal kingdom.

Rejoicing in the fellowship of St. Laurence, St. John, St. Wilfred, St. Michel and all your saints, we commend ourselves and the whole creation to your unfailing love.

Merciful Father,

All:      Accept these prayers

for the sake of your Son,

our Saviour Jesus Christ.

Amen.

Heavenly Father,

you have promised through your Son Jesus Christ, that when we meet in his name, and pray according to his mind, he will be among us and hear our prayer: m your love and mercy fulfil our desires, and give us your greatest gift, which is to know you, the only true God, and your Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

All:      Amen.

Hymn – It Came Upon a 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 And ye, beneath life’s crushing load,
whose forms are bending low,
who toil along the climbing way
with painful steps and slow,
look now! for glad and golden hours
come swiftly on the wing.
O rest beside the weary road,
and hear the angels sing!

4 For lo! the days are hastening on,
by prophet seen of old,
when with the ever-circling years
shall come the time foretold
when peace shall over all the earth
its ancient splendours fling,
and the whole world send back the song
which now the angels sing. (by
Edmund H. Sears – 1849) 

The Eucharistic Prayer 

The Lord is here.

All:      His Spirit is with us.

Lift up your hearts,

All:       We lift them to the Lord.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

All:      It is right to give thanks and praise.

It is indeed right,

it is our duty and our joy,

at all times and in all places

to give you thanks and praise,

holy Father, heavenly King,

almighty and eternal God,

through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord.

For he is your living Word;

through him you have created all things from the beginning, and formed us in your own image.

All:       To you be glory and praise for ever.

Through him you have freed us from the slavery of sin, giving him to be born of a woman and to die upon the cross;

You raised him from the dead and exalted him to your right hand on high.

All:       To you be glory and praise for ever.

Through him you nave sent upon us your holy and life-giving Spirit, and made us a people for your own possession.

All:       To you be glory and praise for ever.

Therefore with angels and archangels, and with all the company of heaven, we proclaim your great and glorious name, for ever praising you and saying:

All:       Holy, holy, holy Lord,

God of power and might,

heaven and earth are full of your glory.

Hosanna in the highest.

Accept our praises, heavenly Father,

through your Son our Saviour Jesus Christ,

and as we follow his example and obey his command,

grant that by the power of your Holy Spirit

these gifts of bread and wine

may be to us his body and his blood;

who, in the same night that he was betrayed,

took bread and gave you thanks;

he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying:

Take, eat; this is my body which is given for you;

do this in remembrance of me.

In the same way, after supper he took the cup and gave you thanks; he gave it to them, saying: 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.

Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.

All:      To you be glory and praise for ever.

Therefore, heavenly Father, we remember his offering of himself made once for all upon the cross; we proclaim his mighty resurrection and glorious ascension; we look for the coming of your kingdom, and with this bread and this cup

we make the memorial of Christ your Son our Lord.

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

Accept through him, our great high priest, this our sacrifice of thanks and praise, and as we eat and drink these holy gifts in the presence of your divine majesty, renew us by your Spirit, inspire us with your love and unite us in the body of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

All:      To you be glory and praise for ever.

Through him, and with him, and in him, m the unity of the Holy Spirit,

with all who stand before you in earth and heaven, we worship you, Father almighty, in songs of everlasting praise;

All:      Blessing and honour and glory and power be yours for ever and ever.

Amen.

Let us pray with confidence as our Saviour has taught us 

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, the power and the glory, for ever and ever.

Amen.

Breaking of the Bread 

We break this bread to share in the body of Christ.

All:       Though we are many, we are one body, because we all share in one bread.

All:      Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world.

Have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world,

Have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world,

Grant us peace.

Giving of Communion

Draw near with faith

Receive the body of our Lord Jesus Christ

which he gave for you,

and his blood which he shed for you-

Eat and drink

in remembrance that he died for you,

and feed on him in your hearts

by faith with thanksgiving.

Amen

Post Communion Prayer 

All: Eternal God, for whom we wait,

you have fed us with the bread of eternal life:

keep us ever watchful,

that we may be ready to stand before the Son of man,

Jesus Christ our Lord. 

Amen. 

The Blessing

Christ the Sun of Righteousness shine upon you,

scatter the darkness from before your path,

and make you ready to meet him when he comes in glory;

and the blessing of God almighty,

the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,

be among you and remain with you always.

All:      Amen.

Hymn O Come, All Ye Faithful

  1. O come, all ye faithful,
    Joyful and triumphant,
    O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem;
    Come and behold Him,
    Born the King of Angels;

Chorus:

O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
Christ, the Lord.

  1. Sing, choirs of angels,
    Sing in exultation,
    O sing all ye bright host of heaven above;
    Glory to God,
    All glory in the highest;

Chorus:

O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
Christ, the Lord.

  1. Yea, Lord we greet thee,
    Born this happy morning,
    Jesus, to thee be all glory given;
    Word of the Father,
    Now in flesh appearing;

Chorus:

O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
Christ, the Lord.

Final Prayers and the Dismissal

Go in faith to love the Lord.

HAPPY CHRISTMAS

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