Watchword for the Week

But when the fullness of time had come, God sent his

Son, born of a woman, born under the law, in order to

redeem those who were under the law, so that we

might receive adoption as children. (Galatians 4:4-5)

(Moravian Daily Texts 2014)



(from Psalm 90)

Lord God, you have been

our dwelling place in all generations.

Before the mountains were brought forth,

or ever you had formed the earth and the

world, from everlasting to everlasting

you are God.

A thousand years are like one day to you.

They are like yesterday when it is past,

or as a watch in the night.

For all our days pass away under your wrath;

Our years come to an end like a sigh.

Seventy years are all we have, or eighty years if

we are strong. Yet their span is but toil and

trouble. Life is soon over, and we are gone.

So teach us to number our days

that we may get a heart of wisdom.

Hymn 161 * O God, our help in ages past

People’s Choice Hymns are marked with an asterisk (*)


Eternal God, you formed the world and the

universe, and you have amazed us down

through the ages. Open us to be amazed by

the visible beauty all around us.

Your beloved child, Jesus, born of old, has been

born again in the midst of this Christmas

season. May we feel his love working in us

and through us.

Holy God, forgive our weary dreaming that gives

up on the hope of seeing justice roll down like

waters, a peaceable kingdom, and truth to set

us free. Forgive our tired singing that sets no

rafters ringing.

Help us to remember, with hearts that dare to

believe, that your Spirit reigns within, around,

and among us.

Give us grace, O God, that all these days of

our lives be filled with the vision of your

reign, through Jesus. Amen.


How we love to hang on to our pasts –

remembering, keeping count, bearing grudges.

God doesn’t. Our pasts are accepted.

Let them go! Live in the new freedom God gives

to us to live each new day afresh.

Thanks be to God. Amen.

Hymn O morning star, how fair and bright

(Pilgrim Hymnal 145)

O Morning star, how fair and bright

Thou beamest forth in truth and light!

O Sovereign meek and lowly!

Thou root of Jesse, David’s Son,

My Lord and Master, thou hast won

My heart to serve thee solely!

Thou art holy, fair and glorious,

All victorious, rich in blessing,

Rule and might o’er all possessing.

Thou heavenly brightness! Light divine!

O deep within my heart now shine,

And make thee there an altar!

Fill me with joy and strength to be

Thy member, ever joined to thee

In love that cannot falter;

Toward thee longing doth possess me;

Turn and bless me; here in sadness

Eye and heart long for thy gladness!




Isaiah 61:10 – 62:3 OT p. 725 (726)

St. Matthew 24:3-13 NT p. 35

People may stand for the Gospel reading.

The word of God – Thanks be to God!

Hymn 303 It came upon the midnight clear

(Tune: “Carol”, Pilgrim Hymnal 129)

SERMON “What Price Peace!”

Rev. Dr. Robert Haworth

Hymn 266 God the Omnipotent

(Offerings are gathered and brought forward)


Generous Creator God, giver of every good

gift, let our offerings keep those gifts

circulating. Accept, we pray, these tokens of

our gratitude for all we have received. May

they and we be used to extend the work of

our community to the world beyond our

doors. Amen.

ANNOUNCEMENTS (see Notices overleaf)


Lord, in your mercy: hear our 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,

forever and ever. Amen.

Hymn 530 * One more step along the world

BLESSING and Threefold Amen (No. 819)

Hymn 804 * You shall go out with joy (2x)