December 5, 2021 | 9:15 a.m. | The Second Sunday of Advent

St. Martin’s Episcopal Church | Williamsburg VA

The Lighting of the Advent Wreath

Two candles are lit.

People:  Jesus said, “I am the light of the world; he who follows me will not walk in darkness,

but will have the light of life.”

First Person:  Why do we light two candles?

Second Person:  The first candle reminds us of the hope God’s people always had.  The second candle reminds us of the dark night when Mary and Joseph found light, warmth, and peace in a stable where Jesus was born. 

People: The Lord will give you a sign.  Behold, a young woman is with child and shall bear a son,

and shall call his name Emmanuel, which means ‘God is with us.’

Celebrant:  Emmanuel, you entered our world on Christmas as the Prince of Peace.  This Advent, as we strive to become the best version of ourselves, fill us with a deep and abiding peace.  Help us share that peace with everyone we encounter, especially those who need it most.  Amen.

The Word of God

Opening Hymn     Come, thou long-expected Jesus

     1      Come, thou long-expected Jesus, born to set thy people free;

             from our fears and sins release us, let us find our rest in thee.

     2      Israel’s strength and consolation, hope of all the earth thou art;

             dear desire of every nation, joy of every longing heart.

     3      Born thy people to deliver, born a child, and yet a king,

             born to reign in us forever, now thy gracious kingdom bring.

     4      By thine own eternal Spirit rule in all our hearts alone;

             by thine all sufficient merit raise us to thy glorious throne.

Opening Acclamation

Blessed are you, holy and living One.  You come to your people and set them free.

The Collect for Purity (together)

Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid:  Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy Name; through Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Trisagion  (sung 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 also with you.  Let us pray.

Merciful God, who sent your messengers the prophets to preach repentance and prepare the way for our salvation: Give us grace to heed their warnings and forsake our sins, that we may greet with joy the coming of Jesus Christ our Redeemer; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

The First Reading     Malachi 3:1-4

See, I am sending my messenger to prepare the way before me, and the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple. The messenger of the covenant in whom you delight– indeed, he is coming, says the Lord of hosts. But who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears?  For he is like a refiner’s fire and like fullers’ soap; he will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and he will purify the descendants of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, until they present offerings to the LORD in righteousness. Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the Lord as in the days of old and as in former years.   The Word of the Lord. Thanks be to God.

Canticle 16  (responsively by half-verse; please come in on the bold lines) 

Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; * he has come to his people and set them free. He has raised up for us a mighty savior, * born of the house of his servant David. Through his holy prophets he promised of old, that he would save us from our enemies, * from the hands of all who hate us. He promised to show mercy to our fathers * and to remember his holy covenant. This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham, * to set us free from the hands of our enemies, Free to worship him without fear, * holy and righteous in his sight all the days of our life. You, my child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High, * for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way, To give his people knowledge of salvation * by the forgiveness of their sins. In the tender compassion of our God * the dawn from on high shall break upon us, To shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death, * and to guide our feet into the way of peace. 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 Gospel Acclamation     Come and fill

      Come and fill our lives with your peace.  You alone, O Lord, are holy. 

     Come and fill our lives with your peace.  Alleluia.

The Gospel     Luke 3:1-6  

The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke.  Glory to you, Lord Christ. 

 In the fifteenth year of the reign of Emperor Tiberius, when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, and Herod was ruler of Galilee, and his brother Philip ruler of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias ruler of Abilene, during the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness. He went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins, as it is written in the book of the words of the prophet Isaiah, “The voice of one crying out in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.  Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways made smooth; and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.'”

The Gospel of the Lord.  Praise to you, Lord Christ. 

Children’s homily                                                                                      George Roesch 

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 prepare the way of the Lord, let us offer prayers to God who will lead us with joy in the light of his glory.

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 Gapcynski and Hogge families, Kathi, Ruth, Carson, John, Cindy, David, 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 Paul Gapcynski 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 Rising Sun, brightness of light eternal, sun of justice, come and shine on those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death. Glory to you for ever.  Amen.

Confession of Sin

God of all mercy, we confess that we have sinned against you, opposing your will in our lives.  We have denied your goodness in each other, in ourselves, and in the world you have created.  We repent of the evil that enslaves us, the evil we have done, and the evil done on our behalf.  Forgive, restore, and strengthen us through our Savior Jesus Christ, that we may abide in your love and serve only your will. Amen. 


The Peace & Announcements

     The peace of the Lord be always with you.  And also with you.

The Holy Communion

The Offertory     Heal My Heart                                                                       Jean Grunwald, soloist     

The Offering of Gifts     Take, O take

Take, O take me as I am; summon out what I shall be; set your seal upon my heart and live in me. 

The Great Thanksgiving     Prayers for an Inclusive Church, Prayer 1

      The Lord be with you.  And also with you.

     Lift up your hearts.  We lift them to the Lord.

     Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.  It is right to give God thanks and praise.

Mystery of winter skies, we thank you in the darkening hour for opening our eyes to see your starlit beauty; for parting the wide heavens to send your gentle light; for offering your Word to take our mortal flesh. He was promised by those who shared your dream of peace; John the Baptist cleared his way with words of desert fire; Mary and Joseph accepted his coming with tenderness and faith; we know that he draws near again, to show us who we really are with honesty and love. Now we take up the song of hope that we might awaken to his coming among us and the world be touched by the footfall of his glory:

            Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power, God of might, heaven and earth are full of your glory. 

            Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.

            Hosanna in the highest.  Hosanna in the highest.

We ask that your Holy Spirit will fall upon us and upon these gifts that these fragile, earthly things may be to us the Body and Blood of our Lord and brother, Jesus Christ; who, on the night that he was betrayed, gathered with his faltering friends for a meal that tasted of freedom.  Calling them to his table, he took the bread, gave thanks, broke it and said: ‘This is my body, which is given for you. Do this to remember me.’  In the same way after supper, he took the cup, saying: ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, whenever you drink it, to remember me.’ As on that night, so here and now he offers himself in touch and taste beyond all words can hold.  Great is the mystery of faith:

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

Therefore we come in memory and hope, responding to your call and the promise that echoes from the dawn of all time. May mind and heart be held by your self-giving love as we stand before the cross, approach the empty tomb and praise the One whose name is lifted high above all earthly power.  Receive our broken offering through his all-powerful grace and bind us in communion with all who share your gifts; through Jesus Christ, in whom all ages and all the worlds are drawn into the ceaseless love of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer   (contemporary words)

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your Name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven.  Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours, now and for ever. Amen.

The Breaking of the Bread

     Alleluia.  Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us.  Therefore let us keep the feast.  Alleluia.

Communion Hymns    

     Let all mortal flesh keep silence

     1      Let all mortal flesh keep silence, and with fear and trembling stand;

            ponder nothing earthly minded, for with blessing in his hand

            Christ our God to earth descendeth, our full homage to demand.

     2      King of kings, yet born of Mary, as of old on earth he stood,

            Lord of lords, in human vesture, in the Body and the Blood

            he will give to all the faithful his own self for heavenly food.

     3      Rank on rank the host of heaven spreads its vanguard on the way,

            as the Light of Light descendeth from the realms of endless day,

            that the powers of hell may vanish as the darkness clears away.

     Wait for the Lord

            Wait for the Lord, whose day is near.  Wait for the Lord; be strong; take heart!   Repeat

The Post-Communion Prayer

God of abundance, you have fed us with the bread of life and cup of salvation; you have united us with Christ and one another; and you have made us one with all your people in heaven and on earth. Now send us forth in the power of your Spirit, that we may proclaim your redeeming love to the world and continue for ever in the risen life of Christ our Savior. Amen.

The Blessing

The Closing Hymn     Soon and very soon

     1    Soon and very soon, we are going to see the King,   (three times)

           Hallelujah, hallelujah, we are going to see the King.

     2    No more dyin’ there, we are goin’ to see the King,   (three times)

           Hallelujah, Hallelujah, we are goin’ to see the King!

The Dismissal

     Let us go forth into the world, rejoicing in the power of the Spirit.  Thanks be to God.

                                    “Alleluia, alleluia” is only said during Easter season.

  The flowers on the altar are given to the glory of God.

     1333 Jamestown Rd | Williamsburg VA 23185 757.229.1111 |

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