Third Sunday of Advent, December 17, 2017, Worship Bulletin, Prayer Concerns, Announcements

Gathering in Worship Offered by the People of the Church of Christ, Union

Third Sunday of Advent    December 17, 2017   10:30 am 

Meditation   Spring Song

the green of Jesus

is breaking the ground

and the sweet

smell of delicious Jesus

is opening the house and

the dance of Jesus music

has hold of the air and

the world is turning

in the body of Jesus and

the future is possible       —Lucille Clifton

From there to Here

Hymn Sing Choose Your Favorites!

Welcome & Announcements

Welcome to this service of worship!  During the service, you are invited to rise in body or in spirit, standing or sitting, at points in the service marked “ ”.”

Please sign in using the pew folder, passing it back down the row so all can greet one another by name, and place the sheet in an offering plate. We’re glad you’re here!

Reading from the Prophets Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11

Handbell Introit

The incarnation of Christ is the mingling of the divine, with all that the world brings and bears. The single “singing” handbell, like the in-breaking light of Christ, shines with but also through the music that surrounds it, an auditory meditation for our Advent season.

¨  Advent Wreath Lighting

One: We have lit the light of the beginning, remembering the continuity and hope threaded through all creation. And the light of peace, which shines from those in the past to light the Christ-way in the present.

All:   Light shines in the darkness!

One: Today we light the candle of present Joy. And the joy is not in the result, but in the work of peace and hope and love.

All: The Spirit of the Lord is upon us…

One: To bring, bind up, proclaim and release. Joy comes to we who receive these gifts. And in taking our place in the work of God’s vision, we who offer such service are filled to brimming.

One: The Spirit of the Lord is upon us! Let us pray…

All: God of the captive, God of the broken, God of the refugee and refused, may your servants present be the light of Christ proclaiming your favor. In hope we wait, by peace we walk, in joy we offer joy, turning the ashes of long nights into the garlands of a new dawn. Amen.

¨  Opening Hymn #108 Black   Isaiah the Prophet Has Written of Old Judas and Mary

¨  Passing the Peace of Christ

All who come to this sanctuary are welcome companions on this day! You are invited to turn to those nearest you and greet them with words of peace and joy. 

The Living Word among us

Anthem O Come to Us, Emmanuel Joseph M. Martin

Union Church Choir

O come to us, Emmanuel, deliver us we pray. Lord, come to us, abide with us, restore our joy today. Lord, come walk beside us, lead, teach and guide us. Shine in our shadows and show us the way. Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to us and ransom Israel. O come to us, Emmanuel, and make us one in love. By your strong hand, Lord, heal our land with grace from above. Bring peace for our sorrows, hope for tomorrow. Shine in our shadows and bring a new day.

Gospel Lesson John 1:6-8

GIfts Given for Love to Flow

Our gifts help sustain this particular community of caring by sustaining the building, pastors and staff, and all the materials that make our ministry of healing, justice, and teaching available to all in need. In addition, a good portion of our contributions flows out to aid to those in need via many external agencies.

This can now be done online or by text to 859-448-3403 (Example: Text “$50.00 Offering” to contribute to the ongoing ministries, or add “youth,” or “missions” or designation of your choice to benefit one in particular.

Your contribution is love made visible. Thank you!

Offertory                    Advent Meditation Colin Curtis

¨   Doxology  To God all glorious heavenly light; Old Hundredth

To Christ revealed in earthly night;

To God the spirit now we raise

Our grateful hymn of thankful praise. Amen.  

Experiencing the Word

Mystery Box Pageant adapted by Rachel Small Stokes from a script by Micol Cottrell

Cast: All who volunteer! Narrator: Scripture Readers: Paul Jacobs, Sayer Kobersmith, MacGregor Lakes, Jennifer Melton, Maggie Park

Hymns to be Sung When Directed Please sing from the RED Hymnal

It Came Upon the Midnight Clear #104, v. 1-4

Once in Royal David’s City #109, v. 1

While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks by Night #119, v. 1

Away in a Manger #112, v.1

From Here to There

¨  Closing Hymn #115 Black The Baptist Shouts on Jordan’s Shore Winchester New

¨  Benediction & Sending Forth

¨  Benediction Response Hope Is a Candle Richard Leach

Postlude (please be seated) Douze Pieces pour Orgue, III. Toccata Theodore Dubois

Especially in our prayers

Each week we join millions of Christians who pray for one another through the ecumenical prayer cycle and, locally, the Berea Ministerial Association’s prayer cycle.  Let us hold the people of China, Hong Kong and Macau and our brothers and sisters at Berea United Methodist Church in our hearts, and pray for them.

Please hold these concerns in your prayers, today and throughout the week. Prayer requests to be printed may be sent to the office anytime before 10:00 am Fridays.

¨ Our church family members in nursing homes, or who are homebound:  Ruth Butwell, Edith Hansen, Nancy Hindman, Mary Miller, Alva Peloquin, Gloria VanWinkle.

¨ Jackie Perman, mother of Kelly Madden and grandmother to Colin and Cadence Perman, critically ill.

¨ Neighbors and friends in fear of ICE (Immigration & Customs Enforcement) raids in our area, and for DACA students and their families. May we all strive for a safe and respectful path forward to be good neighbors.

¨ Rev. Rachel’s cousin, Jeff Small, who is home and doing well!

¨ Dan Rohrer, who is suffering from a severe liver disorder.

¨ Teri VanPelt, recovering from knee replacement surgery at home.

¨ Loyal Jones, recovering from a fall and infections at UK Hospital.


Christmas Basket Project sign-ups today!!  Mission and Service Board is partnering again with St. Clare Catholic Church for their local Christmas Basket Project. There’s a clipboard in the vestibule to use to sign up to shop for groceries for families of 2, 4, 6 or 8 people. Take one of their prepared shopping lists for guidance. Toys & financial donations also welcome. Bring groceries and/or toys to St. Clare Church between 5 & 8 pm on Thursday, Dec. 21st. Thank you!

A Light in the Darkness through Music: For many of us, the holidays seem like a stressful time. We have the shopping, the gift wrapping, the baking, the visiting, etc. It all seems pretty chaotic, right?  The holidays feel like this endless journey that is tedious for us to get through, but the end result is a joyous time.

Throughout this Advent season, the music program will help guide you through this journey.  The Union Church Choir and Handbell Ensemble have carefully crafted music and sounds that will help create this journey.  Each Sunday in Advent, members of the Handbell Ensemble will begin the service with one singular singing bell surrounded by random ringing.  When the technique is done, the singing bell creates this continuous, gorgeous sound that sings out a singular note with the warm, rich overtones that the bell creates.  This sound represents the light.  Random ringing is a technique that is easily described as what it’s named; random ringing of bells.  This randomness is going to try and cover up the singing bell, but you will still hear the singing bell under the chaos. Each week, the number of random bells will decrease, and more of the light will shine through. Finally, ending on Christmas Eve, we will hear how the light shines through singing bells.  Listen as we go through this journey of music and light in the darkness.

 Classic Chorale Concert today at 2:30 pm. Carols and Lullabies, Carols of John Rutter, “Magnificat” by Ruth Watson Henderson, accompanied by harp, guitar and marimba. $5 adults.

Today, 3:00 pm, The Suzuki Violin  studio of Chloe Groth presents a winter recital in Cowan Chapel with light refreshments to follow. Please join us for an afternoon of beautiful music and celebration.

Children’s Church is taking a break and will resume January 7.

The 8:00 am morning meditation is taking a break from December 20—January 1. Please join us in the new year!

Psalm Study at 4 pm, Tuesday December 19. We will focus our study on Psalms 98 and 148. 

Christmas Eve at Union Church: Our regular 10:30 am service will focus on the fourth Sunday of Advent, then in the evening there will be two Christmas Eve services: 5:30 pm (Sounds of the season music starts at 5:00 pm) followed by a potluck finger-food reception for all (please bring generous portions—there are always many guests!), and a special 11:00 pm service in Cowan Chapel to welcome the Christ Child at midnight. Please join us for any and all of these special events as we Wait and Watch for the Advent of the Lord.

Did you know that our weekly bulletin is published on the website every Friday afternoon? Go to It’s the farthest blue button on the right (cleverly titled “Weekly Bulletin”). You can read the anthem lyrics & prayer responses while you watch the service online if you travel for Christmas!

Longnight Service

December 20, 7:00 pm

Cowan Chapel, Union Church

This service of prayers for healing is for anyone feeling hemmed in, bound by grief, sorrow, or hopelessness.

It is a quiet and welcoming safe service where prayers for the healing of hearts and the taking down of walls can be offered and received.







Categories News, Weekly Bulletin | Tags: | Posted on December 15, 2017

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Saturday Vigil: 4:30 pm

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