December 12, 2021 | 8:00 a.m. | The Third Sunday of Advent
St. Martin’s Episcopal Church | Williamsburg VA
The Lighting of the Advent Wreath
Three candles are lit.
Celebrant: O God, rejoicing, we remember the promise of your Son. As we light these candles, may the blessing of Christ come upon us, brightening our way and guiding us by His truth. May Christ our Savior bring life into the darkness of our world and to us, as we await his coming!
People: Desire of the nations, Jesus Christ, joy of every heart, come and save your people!
The Word of God
Blessed are you, holy and living One. You come to your people and set them free.
The Collect for Purity (together)
Almighty God, unto whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of thy Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love thee, and worthily magnify thy holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Trisagion (said three times)
Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One, Have mercy upon us.
The Collect of the Day
The Lord be with you. And with thy spirit. Let us pray.
Stir up thy power, O Lord, and with great might come among us; and, because we are sorely hindered by our sins, let thy bountiful grace and mercy speedily help and deliver us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be honor and glory, world without end. Amen.
The First Reading Zephaniah 3:14-20
Sing aloud, O daughter Zion; shout, O Israel! Rejoice and exult with all your heart, O daughter Jerusalem! The Lord has taken away the judgments against you, he has turned away your enemies. The king of Israel, the Lord, is in your midst; you shall fear disaster no more. On that day it shall be said to Jerusalem: Do not fear, O Zion; do not let your hands grow weak. The Lord, your God, is in your midst, a warrior who gives victory; he will rejoice over you with gladness, he will renew you in his love; he will exult over you with loud singing as on a day of festival. I will remove disaster from you, so that you will not bear reproach for it. I will deal with all your oppressors at that time. And I will save the lame and gather the outcast, and I will change their shame into praise and renown in all the earth. At that time I will bring you home, at the time when gather you; for I will make you renowned and praised among all the peoples of the earth, when I restore your fortunes before your eyes, says the Lord. The Word of the Lord. Thanks be to God.
Canticle 9 (responsively by half verse)
Surely, it is God who saves me; * I will trust in him and not be afraid.
For the Lord is my stronghold and my sure defense, * and he will be my Savior.
Therefore you shall draw water with rejoicing * from the springs of salvation.
And on that day you shall say, * Give thanks to the Lord and call upon his Name;
Make his deeds known among the peoples; * see that they remember that his Name is exalted.
Sing the praises of the Lord, for he has done great things, * and this is known in all the world.
Cry aloud, inhabitants of Zion, ring out your joy, *
for the great one in the midst of you is the Holy One of Israel.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.
The Second Reading Philippians 4:4-7
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. The Word of the Lord. Thanks be to God.
The Gospel Luke 3:7-18
The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke. Glory be to thee, O Lord.
John said to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear fruits worthy of repentance. Do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our ancestor’; for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. Even now the ax is lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.” And the crowds asked him, “What then should we do?” In reply he said to them, “Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; and whoever has food must do likewise.” Even tax collectors came to be baptized, and they asked him, “Teacher, what should we do?” He said to them, “Collect no more than the amount prescribed for you.” Soldiers also asked him, “And we, what should we do?” He said to them, “Do not extort money from anyone by threats or false accusation, and be satisfied with your wages.” As the people were filled with expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, whether he might be the Messiah, John answered all of them by saying, “I baptize you with water; but one who is more powerful than I is coming; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”
So, with many other exhortations, he proclaimed the good news to the people.
The Gospel of the Lord. Praise be to thee, O Christ.
The Sermon The Rev. Lisa Green
A period of silence follows the sermon.
The Nicene Creed
We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen. We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end. We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son. With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified. He has spoken through the Prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.
The Prayers of the People
As we wait for Christ to come in victory, let us make our requests known to God who saves the lame and gathers the outcast. For the peace of the world, and for our unity in Christ. Come, O Lord, and save us.
For Susan, our bishop, and all bishops; for Cathy and Lisa, our priests, and all priests; for deacons and all who minister in Christ; and for all the holy people of God. Come, O Lord, and save us.
For the church throughout the world and the faithful in every place. Come, O Lord, and save us.
For the leaders of the nations and all in authority. Come, O Lord, and save us.
For justice, peace, and freedom among peoples of the earth. Come, O Lord, and save us.
For travelers, for the sick and the suffering, for the hungry and the oppressed, and for those in prison. Come, O Lord, and save us.
For our deliverance from all affliction, strife, and need. Come, O Lord, and save us.
Bless all whose lives are closely linked with ours, and grant that we may serve Christ in them, and love one another as Christ loves us. We pray for the Wheatley, Unaitas, and Pease families, Thomas and Ginny, Kathi, Ruth, Cindy, for the children of St. Vincent’s School, Haiti, and for an end to the pandemic. We pray for the dying and those who have died, especially Beth Unaitas and John Wheatley, and we pray that we may share with all your saints in your eternal kingdom. Come, O Lord, and save us.
Please add your own intentions, silently or aloud.
Lifting our voices with all creation, with the Blessed Virgin Mary, John the Baptist, Blessed Martin, and all the saints, let us offer ourselves and one another to the living God through Christ. To you, O Lord.
O King of all the nations, only joy of every heart, keystone of the mighty arch who makes us one, come and save the creature you fashioned from clay. Glory to you for ever. Amen.
Confession of Sin
Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against thee in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved thee with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of thy Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in thy will, and walk in thy ways, to the glory of thy Name. Amen.
The Peace & Announcements
The peace of the Lord be always with you. And with thy spirit.
The Holy Communion
The Offering of Gifts
All things come of thee, O Lord. And of thine own have we given thee.
The Great Thanksgiving Eucharistic Prayer II
The Lord be with you. And with thy spirit.
Lift up your hearts. We lift them up unto the Lord.
Let us give thanks unto our Lord God. It is meet and right so to do.
It is very meet, right, and our bounden duty, that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks unto thee, O Lord, holy Father, almighty, everlasting God, because thou didst send thy beloved Son to redeem us from sin and death, and to make us heirs in him of everlasting life; that when he shall come again in power and great triumph to judge the world, we may without shame or fear rejoice to behold his appearing. Therefore with Angels and Archangels, and with all the company of heaven, we laud and magnify thy glorious Name; evermore praising thee, and saying,
Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of Hosts: Heaven and earth are full of thy Glory. Glory be to thee, O Lord Most High. Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.
All glory be to thee, O Lord our God, for that thou didst create heaven and earth, and didst make us in thine own image; and, of thy tender mercy, didst give thine only Son Jesus Christ to take our nature upon him, and to suffer death upon the cross for our redemption. He made there a full and perfect sacrifice for the whole world; and did institute, and in his holy Gospel command us to continue, a perpetual memory of that his precious death and sacrifice, until his coming again.
For in the night in which he was betrayed, he took bread; and when he had given thanks to thee, he broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take, eat, this is my Body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” Likewise, after supper, he took the cup; and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink this, all of you; for this is my Blood of the New Covenant, which is shed for you, and for many, for the remission of sins. Do this, as oft as ye shall drink it, in remembrance of me.”
Wherefore, O Lord and heavenly Father, we thy people do celebrate and make, with these thy holy gifts which we now offer unto thee, the memorial thy Son hath commanded us to make; having in remembrance his blessed passion and precious death, his mighty resurrection and glorious ascension; and looking for his coming again with power and great glory. And we most humbly beseech thee, O merciful Father, to hear us, and, with thy Word and Holy Spirit, to bless and sanctify these gifts of bread and wine, that they may be unto us the Body and Blood of thy dearly-beloved Son Jesus Christ.
And we earnestly desire thy fatherly goodness to accept this our sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving, whereby we offer and present unto thee, O Lord, our selves, our souls and bodies. Grant, we beseech thee, that all who partake of this Holy Communion may worthily receive the most precious Body and Blood of thy Son Jesus Christ, and be filled with thy grace and heavenly benediction; and also that we and all thy whole Church may be made one body with him, that he may dwell in us, and we in him; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord; By whom, and with whom, and in whom, in the unity of the Holy Ghost all honor and glory be unto thee, O Father Almighty, world without end. AMEN.
The Lord’s Prayer
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory for ever and ever. Amen.
The Breaking of Bread
Alleluia. Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us. Therefore let us keep the feast. Alleluia.
The Gifts of God for the People of God.
The Post-Communion Prayer
Almighty and everliving God, we most heartily thank thee for that thou dost feed us, in these holy mysteries, with the spiritual food of the most precious Body and Blood of thy Son our Savior Jesus Christ; and dost assure us thereby of thy favor and goodness towards us; and that we are very members incorporate in the mystical body of thy Son, the blessed company of all faithful people; and are also heirs, through hope, of thy everlasting kingdom. And we humbly beseech thee, O heavenly Father, so to assist us with thy grace, that we may continue in that holy fellowship, and do all such good works as thou hast prepared for us to walk in; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom with thee and the Holy Ghost, be all honor and glory, world without end. Amen.
The Recession & Dismissal
Go in peace to love and serve the Lord. Thanks be to God.
“Alleluia, alleluia” is only said during the Easter season.
The flowers on the altar are given to the glory of God in thanksgiving for St. Martin’s,
Hospice House & Support Care, and in loving memory of Bob Cope.