We praise you, O God, for this circle of light that marks our days of preparation for Christ's advent.
As we light the candles on this wreath, kindle within us the fire of your Spirit, that we may be light shining in the darkness.
Enlighten us with your grace, that we may welcome others as you have welcomed us.
Grant this through Christ our Lord, whose coming is certain and whose day draws near.
Prayer of the Day
Stir up your power, Lord Christ, and come.
By your merciful protection awaken us to the threatening dangers of our sins,
and keep us blameless until the coming of your new day,
for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
First Lesson: A Reading from the Book of Isaiah
1O that you would tear open the heavens and come down,
so that the mountains would quake at your presence—
2as when fire kindles brushwood
and the fire causes water to boil—
to make your name known to your adversaries,
so that the nations might tremble at your presence!
3When you did awesome deeds that we did not expect,
you came down, the mountains quaked at your presence.
4From ages past no one has heard,
no ear has perceived,
no eye has seen any God besides you,
who works for those who wait for him.
5You meet those who gladly do right,
those who remember you in your ways.
But you were angry, and we sinned;
because you hid yourself we transgressed.
6We have all become like one who is unclean,
and all our righteous deeds are like a filthy cloth.
We all fade like a leaf,
and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.
7There is no one who calls on your name,
or attempts to take hold of you;
for you have hidden your face from us,
and have delivered us into the hand of our iniquity.
8Yet, O Lord, you are our Father;
we are the clay, and you are our potter;
we are all the work of your hand.
9Do not be exceedingly angry, O Lord,
and do not remember iniquity forever.
Now consider, we are all your people.
10Your holy cities have become a wilderness,
Zion has become a wilderness,
Jerusalem a desolation.
Gospel: A Reading from the Gospel of St. Mark
9In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan.
10And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him.
11And a voice came from heaven, You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.
12And the Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness.
13He was in the wilderness for forty days, tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels waited on him.
P: The Gospel of the Lord. C: Praise to you, O Christ.
This year you can buy a poinsettia not to decorate the church, but to brighten the home of one of our own community shut-ins.
You can also designate your gift to recognize someone important in your own life.
Those gifts and commemorations will be listed in the church bulletin posted online for our Christmas Eve services.
Poinsettias are $11 each.
Simply include that amount with your offering mailed to the church with a notation "Poinsettia" and the name(s) of any you want to recognize with your gift.
Poinsettia requests must be received by December 17.
2021 Offering Envelopes
Offering envelopes for 2021 are here.
Suzanne Kaehlert will be distributing these in the parking lot today,
but if you miss this opportunity, stop by the church to pick them up from the administrative alcove bench.
Envelopes that have not been picked up by December 21 will be mailed.
Christmas Cards & Recipes
Remember to get your Christmas card greetings to the church office by December 13.
You can email a document, including pictures if you like, to email@example.com.
If you only have a paper letter, send it to the church for inclusion,
and we can scan any photos to include in the collective greeting.
Also, get your cookie recipes (one per person, plus an explanation of why it is a favorite)
to Suzanne Kaehlert via email or through the church office.
Charitable Trust Donations
Did you know that memorials do not automatically go to the Charitable Trust?
Only by designating the "Charitable Trust" as the recipient is the donation added to the fund for future OSLC needs.
The Mission committee is continuing to collect food that will be shared between Safe Harbor and the Midwest Food Bank.
We are collecting the following items: