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OPENING TO GOD Denise Levertov And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the

Quote for Reflection: It's when we face for a moment heavenly host praising God and singing:
This is all I have known for certain: that God is love. the worst our kind can do, and shudder to know
“Glory to God in the highest,

Even if I have been mistaken about this or that point, the taint in our own selves, that awe
And on earth peace, goodwill toward all!”
God is nevertheless love. cracks the mind's shell and enters the heart:
God is love - not God was love, nor God will be love, not to a flower, not to a dolphin, So it was, when the angels had gone away from them into
oh no, even that future is too slow for me - God is love. to no innocent form heaven, that the shepherds said to one another, “Let us now go
Oh, how wonderful! Soren Kierkegaard but to this creature vainly sure to Bethlehem and see this thing that has come to pass, which
it and no other is god-like, God the Lord has made known to us.” And they came with haste
(out of compassion for our ugly and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger.
We Gather as God’s People failure to evolve) entrusts,
as guest, as brother,
Now when they had seen Him, they made widely known the
saying which was told them concerning this Child. And all
WELCOME the Word. those who heard it marveled at those things which were told
The scene is set.
 them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these things and
The angels are gathering. The animals are sheltering. pondered them in her heart.
The shepherds are hurrying. A story will be told
 We Listen for God’s Word
Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for
and God will be with us.
GOSPEL LESSON Luke 2 all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told them.
CAROL O Come, O Come, Emmanuel UMH 211 And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from
Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This
census first took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria. We Respond to God’s Word
Emmanuel, you approach,
 So all went to be registered, everyone to his own city.
and today we approach you. Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth,
You will bring hope,
 into Judea, to the city of David, which is called HYMN Hark! the Herald Angels Sing UMH 240
hope which we seek today. Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of
You will bring light,
 David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE & THE LORD’S PRAYER
as we live in dark times today. was with child.
You will bring peace,
So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed
as conflict surrounds us today.
for her to be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn PRAYER OF DEDICATION
Emmanuel, God with us today,
Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in God of light and love, we ask that you take

God with us tomorrow,
a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. all that we bring before you now

hear us, heal us,

of who we are and what we have.

help us. Amen.
CAROL Love Has Come W&S 3059 May you use these gifts and use us

to help and nurture those who need you most.
CAROL O Come, All Ye Faithful UMH 234 Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the For your love’s sake we pray. Amen.
fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold, an
PASSING THE PEACE angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord


shone round about them, and they were sore afraid. We Are Sent Into God’s World
Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I ANNOUNCEMENTS
LIGHTING THE FOURTH ADVENT CANDLE bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all
people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a BENEDICTION
TAIZÉ In God Alone W&S 3135 Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign unto RESPONSE Rejoice! Rejoice! UMH 211
you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel
in a manger.”
Announcements Essex Eats Out Schedule
We’ll be locking the doors to the fellowship hall when the children go Dec 28 - EUMC Jan 4 - 1st Cong. Jan 11 - Holy Family
to Sunday School. Please arrive by 10 am if you need the elevator. Jan 18 - St James Jan 25 - EUMC
Entry will be via the front doors after that time.
Ushers & Greeters. A Sign-up sheet is going around. Please pick a Birthdays

It Was Dark
week that works for you. If you have never greeted or ushered, now is December 25 - Art Bristol December 28 - Wendy Wright
the time. It’s very easy, no prior experience required.
Here are people, places, & concerns folk have recently lifted
up. Please keep them in your prayers at home.
Calendar Please call or email the church office to add to the prayer list.
All Tuesdays: Pastor Is In @ Nest Coffee Shop 10 am - noon
Church Office noon- 2 pm Ongoing Prayers Ongoing Prayers, cont
Mt Mansfield Bible Study 2 pm Arlitha Susan
All Thursdays: Church Office 10:00 am- noon Callie Tim

Anne Kennison Lenore
Gloria McKeen Michael Parker
Mon, 24 Dec: Family Christmas Eve Service, 4:30 pm Mary Willard Keenan
Traditional Lesson & Carols, 8:00 pm Norma Strickland
Judy & Diezela Lifted Up Last Sunday
Tue, 25 Dec: Merry Christmas! No Nest, office hours, or
Matthew C. Patty Mitchell - Diane Haskins, in ICU
Mansfield Bible Study.
Elissa & Leif Donna - healing prayers for Dawn
Fri, 28 Dec: Essex Eats Out at EUMC, 5:30 pm Greg Donna - traveling mercies for trip to
Paula DeMichele Maryland
Sun, 30 Dec: Celtic Prayer Service, 10 am Don Strickland Kathryn - prayers for Morse family,
Ellie Uckele upcoming surgery
Tue, 1 Jan: Happy New Year! No Nest, office hours, or
Mansfield Bible Study. Cole Kristine - family of Andrew Black, being
Harley there for them
Mon, 7 Jan: Living the Questions ReBoot in Parlor, 7 pm. Gordon Mitchinson Elissa - Leif’s grandma Pat Eubank

Tue, 8 Jan: Administrative Board, 7 pm

Mon, 14 Jan: Monday Companions at Eve’s home, 7 pm. z

Eric Gill, Adeste Fideles 1916
Tue, 15 Jan: Mt Mansfield- Concert, no Bible Study
Trustees Meeting, 7 pm. Essex Center United Methodist Church
essex_umc@comcast.net tel. 878-8304
Thu, 17 Jan: Food Shelf Set Up, 6:30 pm GSLC Ministers: the entire congregation Lay Leader: Joshua Knox
Equipping Pastor: Rev. V. Mitchell Hay
Sat, 19 Jan: Food Shelf Distribution, 9:00 am. January is EUMC’s
month to provide helpers for the food shelf. There are lots of different
cell tel. 881-3268 (feel free to call) mitchellhay@comcast.net
Office Manager: Heidi Evans/Elissa Johnsen
Essex Center
jobs assisting the clients as they choose their groceries, move around
the tables & carry things out to their vehicles. Good Shepherd
Organ: Kathryn Parker
Song Leader: Dana Thomas
Piano: June Packard
Projection: Sam Evans United Methodist Church
Lutheran Church, rte 15, Jericho. Park across the street at Clark’s Greeter - Gail Godfrey
Truck Center. Ushers - Jody Heffernan, Judy Hatin, Fred Hodgdon 23 December 2018 Fourth Sunday of Advent