December 3, 2017
First Sunday of Advent
Prelude: Sleepers Awake, A Voice Is Calling J.S. Bach
Chiming of the Hour
*Hymn: #644 Give Thanks O Christian People
Joys and Concerns
Choral Introit: Rejoice! Rejoice!
Lighting of the First Advent Candle – Hope
One: Some have said that the walls that divide us are impenetrable and that the mountains of injustice are unmovable. Yet we hear another voice –
All: A mighty voice from heaven, breaking the silence against the wicked forces of this world.
One: Behold, One is coming to whom all love, power, and glory belong. No wall or mountain will be able to stand in his presence!
All: We have gathered as testimony of Christ coming.
One: Behold, God will answer you who are working and waiting for justice!
All: We have gathered to remain vigilant in the work against wickedness and injustice, as we participate Christ coming.
One: Christ is near! With new hope we do light this candle, singing new songs of Christ’s revealed and revealing kingdom.
All: We have gathered to share our song of hope with one another.
One: Today our Advent wreath begins to shine as we light the first candle, the candle of Hope. Because God knows us and loves us and sends a savior to lead us, we have confident hope for the future God is creating, and can reflect the light of the good news to all we meet.
Choral Response: Light One Candle to Watch for Messiah
Call to Worship
One: Awake, people of God, and stay alert for Christ’s coming. Grace to you and peace from God who sent Jesus to us.
All: Make your ways known to us, O God. Show us once more your awesome presence.
One: We are all God’s people; no one is excluded. Come together as God’s family for worship and prayer.
All: Let the mountains quake before you, mighty God. Let the nations tremble in awe and reverence.
One: Praise the One who grants us the gift of life. Give thanks for God’s continuing faithfulness.
All: Heaven and earth will pass away, but the Word of God is true for all times and places.
One: Come, let us worship God together!
Opening Prayer (in unison)
Amid threatening clouds of anger and selfish strife, come, O God, to bring light. Into our days of worry and anxiety, send a confident hope. Enrich us with spiritual gifts that transcend disappointments and spill out in generous compassion for all your suffering children. Meet us today where we are so we may be equipped for trials yet to come and for the joys yet to be revealed. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Call to Confession
Prayer of Confession (in unison)
Awesome God, we confess the sin of our separation from you. We have blamed you for hiding from us, rather than admitting we have failed to see you in the thousand ways you are revealing yourself every day. We have not called on you, and we have not listened for your call to us. Without you, we have become tiny islands of self-concern. Our links with the rest of your children are stretched and broken. O God, we long for that loving community in which your reign is acknowledged and the purposes are served. Move us to that place. Hear us now as we turn to you with our silent confessions, seeking your mercy, forgiveness and grace.
Moment of Silent Prayer
Assurance of God’s Love
*Gloria Patri: #583 Glory to God, glory to God, glory to God in the highest! Glory to God, glory to God, alleluia, alleluia!
Responsive Reading – Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19
(Page 665 HS in pew bible)
Reading from the Hebrew Scriptures – Isaiah 64:1-9
(Page 849 HS in the pew bible)
*Hymn: #83 Come Thou Long-Expected Jesus (v.1&2)
Sacrament of Communion
The cut bread on the communion plate is gluten free.
The communion wine is non-alcoholic.
Communion Prayer (in unison)
Dear Jesus of Advent, you remain a sacred mystery to us.
You have brought Good News for all the people and we will not be afraid, for you are here. We are hungry for your love which surpasses all our understanding; we are thirsty for your spirit that never runs dry. In this meal nourish our souls, feed our minds, quench our deepest longings and forgive our transgressions, that we may glorify you every day of our lives. Amen.
*Hymn: Come Thou Long-Expected Jesus (v.3&4)
(Children will leave for Sunday School and Youth Discussion Group)
Offering of our Gifts
Anthem: Masters in this Hall David Willcocks
*Doxology: #607 Praise God from whom all blessings flow; praise Christ, all people here below; praise Holy Spirit ever more; praise Triune God whom we adore. Amen.
*Prayer of Dedication
Gospel Reading – Mark 13:24-37
(Page 61 NT in the pew bible)
Sermon: “What Are You Waiting For?”
Reverend Dr. Diane Monti-Catania
Pastoral Prayer, Silent Prayer & Lord’s Prayer
Choral Response: #595 Holy, Holy, Holy
* Hymn: #88 O Come, O Come Emmanuel
Response: Rejoice! Rejoice Emmanuel Shall Come
Postlude: Joy to the World Wilbur Held
(* Please stand if able.)
We, the Salisbury Congregational Church, seek to love God with all our hearts, souls and minds and love our neighbors as ourselves.
This Church declares itself to be Open and Affirming to all for participation, membership, leadership and employment regardless of race, ancestry, class, gender identity, physical/mental ability or sexual orientation.
We further declare ourselves to be Affirming of each individual as a child of God, celebrating the total identity of each person.
As a declared Open and Affirming Congregation, we commit ourselves to work toward ending ignorance, fear, hatred, prejudice and discrimination against any person.
No matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here!
If you are visiting us today, Welcome!
Please sign our guest book and introduce yourself to our Pastor or to one of the Deacons. Fill out a welcome card in the pew to be put on our email list!
Please join us in the Parish Hall for refreshments and fellowship following worship. All are welcome.
Today’s host is Nancy Rossi.
Please see an usher:
If you would like to use a hearing device
If you would like to bring your child to the Nursery
Many thanks to:
Mary O’Neill for serving as lay reader
Sarah Zarbock & John Hoffman for lighting the
Ward Belcher for serving as Youth Discussion Leader
Sharon Tingley & Joe Catania for ushering
Ellie Owens, Allen Blagden, Jack Ritchie, Marian Ferguson, Jane Fitting, Libby Bishop, Miles Bishop, Chuck Carroll, Andrew Gunderson, Dick Taber, Gail Weigel, Paula Blumberg, Harriet, Emily, Anne, Bill, Carolyn and Peter, family and friends of Evan Rashkoff, and those among us who struggle with anxiety, depression and addiction
CALENDAR FOR THE WEEK
Today: 11:30 am Trustees Meeting
2 pm Worship at Noble Horizons
3:30 pm Bell Choir performs in Copake
Monday: 5-8 pm Christmas Concert Rehearsal
Tuesday: 7 pm Bell Choir performs at Geer Village
Wednesday: 7:15 pm Choir Rehearsal
Thursday: 4:30 pm Women’s Bible Study
6:30 pm Bell Choir participates in the mass at the Immaculate Conception Church in Norfolk
7 pm HousaTonics
Friday: 7:45 am Men’s Bible Study
6-9 pm Christmas Concert Rehearsal
Next Sunday: 11:15 am Children’s Christmas Pageant
3-4:30 pm Christmas Concert
SIGN UP FOR CHRISTMAS POINTSETTIAS
You are invited to contribute a plant in the name of a loved one and take the plant home with you after Christmas Eve service. Donations are $15 for each plant. Please send a check, along with a form to the office, or to pay by credit card, please use the Give Online button on the website by December 18th.
THE FESTIVAL OF THE INN
Come join us on Sunday, December 10th at 3 pm for our Annual Christmas Concert. The Bell Choir and the Adult Choir will be performing. Admission is free.