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The Story of Christmas

An introduction

The season of Advent marks the start of the Christian year. It is a season of expectation and preparation as the Church looks forward to celebrating the birth of Christ.

Although it is a season of preparation, the characteristic note of Advent is expectation rather than penitence.

Commercial pressure has made it harder to keep a sense of alert watchfulness in our anticipation of Christmas but, for many Christians, our preparation for the coming of Christ is a powerful reminder of the real meaning of the coming season.

Suggestion: If you are worshiping on your own, please read the normal black print in your mind, then read aloud the bold black print.

If you are with someone else why not take turns in ‘leading’ saying the normal black print, then saying together the bold print

The people walking in darkness have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned.
Isaiah 9:2

Welcome

As a country we’ve dreamt of freedom, we’ve cried at loss, and we’ve longed for hope. This Christmas time, you’re invited to join us for the true story of Jesus. The Son of God who came to win our freedom, bring us comfort, and give us everlasting hope.

Lighting of the Advent Wreath & Prayers

Jesus, you are light even in the darkest places. Help us to trust in you when we are lost or lonely. Shine hope into our hearts we pray. Lord,
Hear our prayer

Jesus, you are peace even when there is hatred. Help us to forgive like you when we are hurt or wounded. Bring peace into our hearts we pray. Lord,
Hear our prayer

Jesus, you are joy even in the saddest times. Help us to praise you when we are upset or grieving. Shine joy into our hearts we pray. Lord,
Hear our prayer

Jesus, you are love even if we are afraid. Help us to pray to you when we are scared or fearful. Bring love into our hearts we pray. Lord,
Hear our prayer

First Reading

First Carol

Second Reading

Mary Did You Know

Reflection

Third Reading

Second Carol

Reflection

Fourth Reading

Talk

Reflection

If you’ve never asked Jesus into your life, you can do so during the next song by silently saying a simple prayer that goes like this.

Dear Jesus, thank you for creating me and for loving me even when I’ve ignored you and gone my own way. I realize I need you in my life, and I’m sorry for my sins. I ask you to forgive me. Thank you for dying on the cross for me. As much as I know how, I want to follow you from now on. Please come into my life and make me a new person inside. I accept your free gift of salvation. Please help me to grow now as a Christian.

You can pray that at any time during the next song. If you’re not sure about it yet, think about it as we listen.

When I Think Upon Christmas

Hark the Herald Angels Sing

Blessing

We hope you have found yourself drawn to the true heart of Christmas, God’s heart, and to His Son, Jesus.

May the joy of the angels,
the eagerness of the shepherds,
the perseverance of the wise men,
the obedience of Joseph and Mary,
and the peace of the Christ-child
be ours this Christmas;
and may the blessing of God Almighty,
the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit,
be upon us and remain with us always.
Amen