Worship: December 1, 2019

ZION UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST

22 Gettysburg Street Box 538

Arendtsville, Pennsylvania

First Sunday in Advent

December 1, 2019

Welcome to Zion and a special welcome to our visitors. Please sign the guest book!  If you do not have a church home, we pray that you will find one with us.  We have large-print bulletins available, as well as hearing assistance devices.  Please ask an usher if you require either of these.  Restrooms are located in the church school building.  Go through the door next to the choir and straight ahead.  We also have restrooms downstairs in Fellowship Hall.  Again, exit through the door next to the choir, turn left down the hall, and go down the steps.

*Where noted, please stand if able.

Congregational response in bold print.

PRELUDE

TIME OF SHARING

CHIME INTERLUDE AND CANDLELIGHTING

LIGHTING OF THE ADVENT CANDLE OF HOPE

Today is the first Sunday of Advent.

Advent means “coming” and in this season we prepare for the coming of Christ.

One of the ways we prepare for his coming is by making an Advent wreath

and lighting its candles to remind us of the gifts Christ brings to the world.

The Advent wreath includes many symbols

 to help us think about Christ and his gifts. 

The wreath itself is in the shape of a circle.

 A circle has no beginning and no end. 

This reminds us that there is no beginning and no end to God

and that God’s love and caring are forever.

The light from the candles

– which grows stronger each Sunday in Advent –

reminds us that Jesus is the light of the world.

Today we light the candle of hope.

The people of Israel hoped in God’s promises and were not disappointed.

Again and again God delivered Israel from her enemies.

We too have the same experience of God’s saving grace.

That is why we believe in God’s promise to send Jesus to us once again

to judge the world and establish God’s reign on earth.

Hope is like a light shining in a dark place.

As we look at the light of this candle,

we celebrate the hope we have in Jesus Christ.

Let us pray:

Thank you, God, for the hope you give us.

We ask that as we wait for all your promises to come true,

and for Christ to come again,

that you would remain present with us.

Help us today, and every day, to worship you,

to hear your Word, and to do your will

by sharing your hope with each other.

We ask it in the name of the One who was born in Bethlehem, our Savior, Jesus.

*GATHERING HYMN # 88 “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” vv. 1-4

TIME OF CONFESSION

Before the light of God’s presence, we seek to cast off the works of the night.

The wrong we embrace and the evil we condone are revealed in the silence. God

knows our intentions and our inner thoughts. Let us turn to God for cleansing.

Holy God, we know that there are many ways we have failed to build a

healthy relationship with you and our fellow human beings. We have

ignored your call to be kind and compassionate, to reach out to others with

understanding. As we enter this Advent season, may it be our intention to

serve you with whole hearts and reflect your love by our words and deeds.

And now let us confess in silence those fears that keep us from loving as Christ has loved us.

ASSURANCE OF FORGIVENESS

In accordance with God’s promises, we are granted forgiveness when our confession

comes from the heart and is sincere.   This is Good News for those who believe.

Thanks be to God for this magnificent gift of love.

HYMN RESPONSE # 39 “Great Is Thy Faithfulness”

Great is thy faithfulness, O God my Father;

There is no shadow of turning with thee.

Thou changest not; thy compassions they fail not.

As thou hast been thou forever wilt be.

Great is thy faithfulness! Great is thy faithfulness!

Morning by morning, new mercies I see.

All I have needed thy hand hath provided.

Great is thy faithfulness, Lord unto me.

SACRAMENT OF HOLY BAPTISM

Sacrament of Holy Baptism

Welcome

Leader: They were bringing children to Jesus that Jesus might touch them; and the disciples rebuked them.  But when Jesus saw it, Jesus was indignant and said to them,

People: “Let the children come to me, do not hinder them; for to such belongs the realm of God.  Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the realm of God like a child shall not enter it.”

Leader: And Jesus took them in his arms and blessed them, laying his hands upon them.

Introduction

Leader: The Sacrament of Holy Baptism is an outward and visible sign of the grace of God.  Inasmuch as the promise of the gospel is not only to us but also to our children, baptism with water and the Holy Spirit is the mark of their acceptance into the care of Christ’s Church, the sign and seal of their participation in God’s forgiveness, and the beginning of their growth into full Christian faith and discipleship.

People: This is the water of baptism.  Out of this water we rise with new life, forgiven of sin and one with Christ, members of Christ’s body.

Questions for Family

Pastor: Do you desire to have Levi baptized into the faith and family of Jesus Christ?

Family: We do.

Pastor: Will you encourage Levi to renounce the power of evil and to receive the freedom of new life in Christ?

Family: We will, with the help of God.

Pastor: Will you teach him that he may be led to profess Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior?

Family: We will, with the help of God.

Pastor: Do you promise, according to the grace given you, to grow with Levi in the Christian faith, to help him be a faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ by celebrating Christ’s presence, by furthering Christ’s mission in all the world, and by offering the nurture of the Christian Church so that he may affirm his baptism?

Family: We do, with the help of God.

Affirmation of Congregation (please stand)

Leader: Jesus Christ calls us to make disciples of all nations and to offer them the gift of grace in baptism.  Do you, who witness and celebrate this sacrament, promise your love, support, and care to the one about to be baptized as he lives and grows in Christ?

People: We promise our love, support, and care.   (be seated)

Blessing of Water and Act of Baptism

Pastor: Bless by your Holy Spirit, gracious God, this water.  By your Holy Spirit save those who confess the name of Jesus Christ so that sin may have no power over them.  Create new life in the one baptized this day that he may rise with Christ.  Glory to you, eternal God, the One who was, and is, and shall always be, world without end. Amen.

Prayer for the Baptized

Pastor: We give you thanks, O Holy One, mother and father of all the faithful, for this your child and for the grace acknowledged here today in water and the Holy Spirit.  Embrace us all as sons and daughters in the one household of your love.  Grant us grace to receive, nurture, and befriend this new member of the body of Christ.

All: Give to Levi strength for life’s journey, courage in the time of suffering, the joy of faith, the freedom of love, and the hope of new life; through Jesus Christ, who makes us one.  Amen. 

*BAPTISMAL HYMN # 488 “I Was There to Hear Your Borning Cry”

THE GIVING OF OURSELVES AND OUR OFFERINGS

“Woe to you scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!” said Jesus, “for you tithe mint and

dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matter of the law, justice and

mercy and faith; these you ought to have practiced without neglecting the others.”

OFFERTORY

*OFFERTORY RESPONSE # 708

We give thee but thine own, whate’er the gift may be;

All that we have is thine alone, a trust, O Lord, from thee.

*PRAYER OF DEDICATION

We pray for those who benefit from our tithes and offerings. Enable them to hear the Good News; help them to grow in faith; and sustain them in body, mind, and spirit.

OLD TESTAMENT LESSON

Isaiah 2: 1-5, p. 594 (OT)

FAITH LESSON FOR ALL AGES

CHOIR ANTHEM: “Could This Be the Day?” . . .Joseph Martin

GOSPEL READING FOR THE MORNING

St. Matthew 24: 36-44, p. 26 (NT)

SILENT PRAYER AND PREPARATION

THE MESSAGE FOR THE MORNING

THE LITURGY OF THE SACRAMENT OF HOLY COMMUNION

The peace of God be with you.

And also with you.

Lift up your hearts.

We lift them up to the Holy One, our God.

Let us give thanks.

It is right to give God thanks and praise.

Eternal God, we trust in you.

We thank you for raising Jesus from the dead,

the first fruit of all who have died.

His ascension into heaven to sit at your right hand we confess,

and His coming again in triumph we await.

Come, Lord Jesus, come.

We remember, O Holy and Mighty God,

how Jesus on the night He was betrayed,

took bread and blessed it, and broke it,

and gave it to His disciples, saying,

“Take, eat, this is my body, broken for you”.

We remember too how in the same manner

He took the cup and gave it to His disciples saying,

“This cup is my blood, the blood of the new covenant,

poured out for you.

As often as you do it, do so in remembrance of me.

  Worthy is the Lamb, the Lamb that was slain,      

  to receive all power and wealth,

  wisdom and might, honor and glory and praise.

Worthy indeed is your Son Jesus Christ, who died so that we

might live and who rose from the dead so that we might be one with

Him in your sight. We pray that our lives may always proclaim the

mystery of faith:

Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again.

Loving God, send your Holy Spirit upon these gifts, that the bread we

break may be for us communion in the body of Christ, and the cup of

blessing which we bless may be for us communion in the blood of

Christ; that being built up in love we may be strengthened in the

unity of the faith and come to the fullness of the stature of Christ

our Redeemer. Amen.

BREAKING OF BREAD AND POURING OF WINE

The gifts of God for the people of God.

Take them remembering Christ died and was raised for you.

Give Christ thanks and praise.

   In humble and joyous thanksgiving we will receive the

   body and blood of our Savior.

SHARING OF THE BREAD AND WINE

*THE SACRAMENTAL BLESSING

*PRAYER OF THANKSGIVING

We give you thanks, O merciful God, for this bread and wine,

the body and blood of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

May it strengthen us always to be your willing and obedient servants

until that time when life’s journey ends

and we share in the eternal feast of your heavenly realm. Amen.

*CLOSING HYMN # 83 “Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus”

*COMMISSION AND BENEDICTION

At the dawn of the new age, whenever it may come, may God

find you anticipating, rejoicing, welcoming, serving and loving.

*CHORAL BENEDICTION # 93  “Lift Up Your Heads, Ye Mighty Gates”  v. 1

Lift up your heads, ye mighty gates; behold the King of glory waits;

The King of kings is drawing near; the Savior of the world is here.

*CHIME MEDITATION

POSTLUDE

Greeter And Bulletin Sponsorship Sign-Up Sheets for 2019 are on the credenza. v(Bulletin Sponsorship is $15 per Sunday. Please place your remittance designated for Bulletins in the offering plate.)v

Coming Up Next Week:

Dec. 1, Worship with Baptism, Communion, 9:00 am; Sunday School , 10:15 am; Confirm. & Sr. High Grp, Trinity Lutheran, 6 – 7:30 pm

Dec. 3, Upper Adams Prayer Brkfst, Apple Bin, 7:45 am

Dec. 4, Knitting Group, Mustard Sd Rm, 6:30 pm; Choir Practice, Church, 7:30 pm

Looking Forward:

Dec. 8, Worship & Annual Mtg, Church, 9:00 am; Sunday School, 10:15 am

Dec. 9, Ladies Breakfast, Apple Bin, 9:00 am; Hoss’s Fundraiser, Hoss’s, Gettysburg, 12- 8:00 pm

Dec. 11, Choir Practice, Church, 7:30 pm

Dec. 12, Book Club, Mustard Sd Rm, 7:00 pm

Thank you to all who participated in the Congregational Chat last Sunday.  We appreciate your input into the process of preparing Zion’s profile.  This process will continue with another Congregational Chat in January, followed by a survey prepared by Samaritan Counseling shortly afterward.  We will continue to gather needed information so that the profile can reflect the needs of Zion and its vision for the future.

Upper Adams Prayer Breakfast – Join us on Tuesday, Dec. 3, at 7:45 a.m. for the Upper Adams Prayer Breakfast to be held at The Apple Bin. Rev. Susan McCarthy will be guest speaker.

REACH Cookie Tray Fundraiser –Tired of baking Christmas cookies? Let REACH do it for you!  Order forms are on the credenza in the back of church.  Just fill one out and return it with payment to Chris P.  Cookies may be picked up December 22nd.  Thanks for your support

Homewood Annual Garden of Life – Homewood at Plum Creek will hold its annual Garden of Life on Friday, December 6, 2019 at 6:00 pm. There will be two simultaneous services, one in the Town Hall Chapel in the Sandra L. Fair Healthcare Center and the other in the Windows Dining Room in the Community Center.  The Garden of Life signifies the lighting of Christmas lights over the entire campus.  Donations of $5.00 are being accepted to sponsor a light in memory or honor of a loved one.  More information and the donation form are on the credenza in the back of church.

Living Alone Luncheon –A free luncheon will be held at Centenary United Methodist Church, 99 N. Main Street, Biglerville, on Saturday, Dec. 7, 2019, at 12 noon, rain or shine for Upper Adams area residents who live alone! Please call Judy (717-778-2242) or Sandy (717-677-7350) by Nov. 30 to make the required reservation.

Christmas Cantata at Trinity Lutheran – The Chancel Choir of Trinity Lutheran Church in Biglerville will present a cantata of inspirational Christmas music on December 8th at 7:00 p.m. under the direction of Amanda H. and accompanied by Ellie V.  The cantata is free and open to all.

Holiday Toy Drive: Next Sunday, Dec. 8, is the last day to bring in LEGO sets for the Holiday Toy Drive. Look for sets in the 6-9 and 9-12 age groups, LEGOS only, NOT DUPLOS.  Thanks for supporting our wider community’s kiddos.

Christmas at Homewood– Gift wrapped and gift bagged boxes of tissues and UNSCENTED body lotion for Homewood’s residents’ Christmas gifts are due December 8th..  Please place in boxes in back of church.  Thanks for brightening the residents’ holiday.

Ladies Breakfast Group –We will meet on December 9th at the Apple Bin for breakfast.  Come and bring a friend!

Hoss’s Fundraiser – Our next Hoss’s fundraiser will be held December 9th from 12 noon to 8:00 pm at Hoss’s in Gettysburg.  Please give a bulletin insert to the wait staff.  Thanks for your support.

Book Club – We meet December 12th to discuss A Woman of No Importance: The Untold Story of the American Spy Who Helped Win World War II.  A synopsis:

In this fast-paced biography, Sonia Purnell tells the story of Virginia Hall, an American spy who worked undercover in France during World War II for Britain’s Special Operations Executive. Hall began life in the U.S. with a mother who wished for the perfect debutante.  Hall was more comfortable studying languages and found herself living abroad and working for the State Department.  She lost half her leg in a hunting accident which didn’t slow her down.  She named her wooden prosthetic, drove ambulances in France, and was recruited as a spy.  Posing as a newspaper reporter, enlisting civilians for the French Resistance, and establishing an underground network of allies, Hall became one of the most important spies during World War II.

Homewood Auxiliary Dues are being accepted now until December 15. The sign-up clipboard is located on the credenza at the back of church along with envelope for dues, $3 individual and $5 couple. New members please complete info on blank pages. Calendars are a thank you for your continued membership and support. 

Tender Care Pregnancy Center Job Opportunity – There is a part-time opening for a Nurse Manager/Sonographer providing limited ultrasound scans and supervising the medical services provided at both the Hanover and Gettysburg locations. If interested, the required qualifications and application process are detailed in the flyers on the credenza in the back of church.

Altar Guild – Anyone interested in being part of Altar Guild, please contact Donna M.