Sunday, January 3, 2021 !!

Second Sunday after Christmas

Mary:  What will the flesh that I gave do for you, or my mother love,
but tempt you from His will?  Why was I chosen to teach His Son to weep?
W.H. Auden

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Good morning FCCG family! Our Joys, Concerns and Announcements this week include:

  • Birthdays or anniversaries coming up this week: Emilie Gibney’s Birthday (January 8), and Marilyn Cuscaden’s Birthday (January 8). Let us know if we missed yours!
  • We’re actually already three days into 2021?

Introit ………………… What Child is this
performed by the FCCG Choir

CALL TO WORSHIP       
I will sing of your steadfast love, O Lord, forever;
With my mouth I will proclaim your faithfulness to all generations.
I declare that your steadfast love is established forever;
Your faithfulness is as firm as the heavens.
My soul magnifies the Lord,
And my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.
You said, “I have made a covenant with my chosen one,
I have sworn to my servant David,
‘I will establish your descendants forever,
and build your throne for all generations.’”
My soul magnifies the Lord,
And my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.
Once and for all I have sworn by my holiness;
I will not lie to David.
His line shall continue forever,
And his throne endure before me like the sun,
It shall be established forever like the moon,
An enduring witness to the skies.
My soul magnifies the Lord, And my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.

OPENING HYMN …………………….. #153 It Came Upon A Midnight Clear

PRAYER OF INVOCATION
Come, Holy Spirit, and abide in our hearts so that we learn again the things that make for true hope, peace, and joy.  Bless us with the sense to feel your compassion moving through all human sorrow and loneliness. In the midst of music and celebration, turn us towards the anguish of others. In the anxious dark, keep us open to neighbor and stranger, to angels and kings. Make us ready for Christmas morning over Herod’s earth.  Amen.

PRAYER OF CONFESSION
Let us be fully open to God’s forgiving spirit, as we confess our sin before God and one another, and may God have mercy.
May Christ have mercy.
May God have mercy.
Gracious God, in whom all things are possible, we confess that we have doubted what we cannot explain. We have sought strength and enjoyment apart from you. We have taken pride in ownership more than giving praise through stewardship.  We have neglected to thank you, either in good times or when you have supported us during days of uncertainty. We have resisted the newness you offer. Forgive us, we pray, for installing ourselves as reigning deities. Lead us, rather, in paths of trust and obedience.  Amen.

WORDS OF ASSURANCE
Hear now these words of assurance:
God does not withhold steadfast love, even when we are unfaithful. God’s mercy is for all who humbly seek it. God fills the hungry with good things. Receive God’s pardon and live joyously within it.

GLORY PATRI ………………………………………. #35

THE SACRAMENT OF HOLY COMMUNION
Litany Invitation Prayer
Gracious Lord Jesus Christ, our host at every celebration of your birth among us:
Preside with us now over our sacrament of remembrance this holy day of Christmastide.
Purify our every desire;
make all our giving an act of love and not just duty.
Be present at our table to teach us to love;
restrain us with the remembrance of those in the world whose need is as boundless as our abundance; and give us a holy joy in keeping this feast.
Help us to celebrate your coming in Bethlehem by being ready to receive your coming in glory.  Amen.

Words of Institution
(This church practices open communion.  All who declare Christ as Lord are welcome.)
On the night that he was betrayed, Jesus took bread. After giving thanks he broke the bread and passed it to his disciples saying, “Take this all of you and eat of it. This is my body that will be broken for you.” Ministering in his name, I serve you now the Body of Christ.
In like manner, Jesus took a cup. After giving thanks he passed it to his disciples saying, “Take this all of you and drink. This is the cup of the New Covenant in my blood, spilled for the forgiveness of sins.” Ministering in his name, I serve you now the Cup of Salvation.

Prayer of Thanksgiving
We give you great thanks for your presence at this table and in this season.  Send us forth a people of renewed hope, peace, joy, and love.  Amen.


All readings are from the English Standard Version bible.

OLD TESTAMENT LESSON ………………………………… Isaiah 52:7-10

Tom Carter reads the Old Testament Lesson

How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace, who brings good news of happiness, who publishes salvation, who says to Zion, “Your God reigns.” The voice of your watchmen —  they lift up their voice; together they sing for joy; for eye to eye they see the return of the LORD to Zion. Break forth together into singing, you waste places of Jerusalem, for the LORD has comforted his people; he has redeemed Jerusalem. The LORD has bared his holy arm before the eyes of all the nations, and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God.

NEW TESTAMENT RESPONSE …………………………………………. Song of Simeon

Greg Pauly reads the New Testament Response

Now let us sing our Savior’s praise, and tell God’s goodness all our days.

Lord, now let your servant go in peace;
  your word has been fulfilled:
  my own eyes have seen the salvation
  which you have prepared in the presence of all people,
  a light to reveal you to the nations
  and the glory of your people Israel.


EPISTLE LESSON ………………………………………………….. Romans 8:22-30

Brenda Valentino reads the Epistle Lesson

For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.

Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?

HYMN …………………………………………… #147 Away In A Manger

GOSPEL LESSON ………………………………………………… Luke 1:26-38

Pastor Clancy reads the Gospel Lesson

In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?” And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy —  the Son of God. And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.” And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.

SERMON ………………….. Mary’s Leap of Faith ………………….. Rev. Rebecca Clancy

The Lord’s Prayer

SPECIAL MUSIC ………….Joy Unto the World
written by the Afters
performed by Jared Ortega

TITHES AND OFFERINGS
God gives us responsibilities in the church and the world to carry good news, to build and not destroy, to feed the hungry and house the homeless, to be faithful in all things.  Our offerings are one sign of faithfulness and obedience.
Our best we give to you, loving God, for you have given your best to us in the mystery of the incarnation. May our offerings proclaim Jesus in ways that will be received with joy. Send your word to the world in this season through our caring service may we share it with one another in ways that help us all to grow. We are your servants. The gifts we dedicate are already yours.  Thank you for all the ways you have provided for us.  Amen.

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DOXOLOGY

CLOSING HYMN ……………………………………………….. #158 Her Baby, Newly Breathing

Benediction
May the Lord watch between me and thee, while we are apart one from the other, Amen.

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Please keep the following individuals in your prayers this week:

  • The family of Marilyn Cuscaden (death of Marilyn);
  • Jodi Holleran’s mom (illness);
  • Mercedes Nuss (illness);
  • Jess Reddy’s friend, Keeley (illness);
  • Sue Cechner’s friend, John (Illness);
  • Barb and Dick Sharp’s friend, Alice (illness);
  • Barb and Dick Sharp’s nephew, Jeff (illness);
  • Barb and Dick Sharp’s niece, Amy (illness);
  • Carolyn and Gail’s son, Collin (unit deployed to Afganistan);
  • Lisa Peterson (illness);
  • Lisa Peterson’s niece-in-law, Wendy (illness);
  • Linda Moran (illness);
  • Faith DiMaria’s brother, Steve, and family (illness);
  • The Connolly Family (lots of prayers);
  • Lynnly & Dave’s friend Mark (illness);
  • Wayne’s brother John and his family (death of his sister-in-law Teresa);
  • Karen’s Cousin, Dwight, (Illness);
  • Those affected by violence as well as those serving in the military;

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