Hanging Of The Greens / Advent Liturgy

Hi Friends!

I will get my sermon from Sunday posted ASAP, but in the meantime – if you are starting Advent on Sunday and are scrambling for liturgy, feel free to use mine from this past Sunday!  We started Advent a week early (we will be celebrating Christmas Eve the morning of 12/24 – not Advent 4), so we did our Hanging of the Greens service this past Sunday.  I hope they help!

Call To Worship
Hanging of the Greens / Advent

O come, o come, Emmanuel!
Advent is finally here!
Advent is a season of waiting;
but it is also a season of hope, peace, joy and love.
During Advent, we wait:
We wait for God to come into our midst,
     to burst forth into the world
         and transform our lives.
But today, we also transform our sanctuary
     so, as we wait this Advent season,
         we can find:
     hope in candles and lights
         that flicker in the darkness,
     peace in wreaths placed on our doors,
         that symbolize to all people
               that they are welcome here,
     joy in evergreens
        that remind us of God’s everlasting presence in our lives
     and love in ornaments
         that teach us about Christ.
As we wait this Advent season,
     the Christmas story will come alive!
Emmanuel means, God with us!
Let us worship God with us!
Come, Emmanuel, come!
Let us worship God!

***

Prayer of Confession
Hanging of the Greens / Advent

     Emmanuel, God with us: You burst forth into the world so many years ago so that we could be redeemed. Over and over again, you fulfilled the promises you made to us; a promise of hope, a promise of peace, a promise of joy and a promise of love.
     Yet there are times in our lives when we do not live up to the grace you have given us. We take for granted the depth of your love and the power of your light.
     Emmanuel, this Advent season, open our hearts so that on Christmas Day, we will be ready to receive you in our midst and be living testaments of the Christmas story. Amen.

***

Invitation to Offering
Advent

During the season of Advent we wait for God to come into our midst.
While we wait, we give back to those in need; practicing generosity so that others will experience the hope, peace, joy and love that God brings.
Our weekly offering will now be collected.

***

Offering Prayer of Dedication
Advent

Emmanuel, God with us, take these gifts and transform them into tangible signs of your work, so that as you break forth into the world and our lives this Christmas season, all might see and recognize you. Amen.

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