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Epiphany | Darkness in the Company of Light (January 3, 2021)

Please participate in the following liturgy, reading aloud all the parts in bold italics.

Welcome & Invitation

Call to Worship

Yes, the pandemic was the top news story of 2020,
and… Come let us adore him! 

Yes, we have lived with disturbing politics,
and… Glory to the newborn King!

Yes, many groan under economic distress,
and… He rules the world with truth and grace!

Yes, there is much division and hostility…
and… Hail the heaven-born Prince of peace!

Yes, friends and family are sick,
and… Death’s dark shadows will be put to flight!

Yes, all is not yet right race and immigrant relations, and one day…
and… In his name all oppression shall cease!

so Joy to the World, the Lord is come – let the whole earth receive her King!

What a Beautiful Name

You were the Word at the beginning
One with God the Lord Most High
Your hidden glory in creation
Now revealed in You our Christ

What a beautiful name it is
What a beautiful name it is
The name of Jesus Christ my King
What a beautiful name it is
Nothing compares to this
What a beautiful name it is
The name of Jesus

You chose to walk the world among us
Jesus, You brought heaven down
My sin was great, Your love was greater
What could separate us now

What a wonderful name it is
What a wonderful name it is
The name of Jesus Christ my King
What a wonderful name it is
Nothing compares to this
What a wonderful name it is
The name of Jesus

Death could not hold You
The veil tore before You
You silenced the boast of sin and grave
The heavens are roaring
The praise of Your glory
For You are raised to life again

You have no rival
You have no equal
Now and forever, God You reign
Yours is the kingdom
Yours is the glory
Yours is the name above all names

What a powerful name it is
What a powerful name it is
The name of Jesus Christ my King
What a powerful name it is
Nothing can stand against
What a powerful name it is
The name of Jesus

Prayers of the People

We bless you, Abba, Father,
for you have visited your people as one like us in all things but sin, and in human fragility you have revealed the face of God. Gather into your arms all the peoples of the world, so that in your embrace we may find life and light to live by as your daughters and sons. Amen.

Reflect on these words and pray out of them as you are led

Son of God,
your splendor shines from a manger in Bethlehem, where the Light of the world is humbly born into the darkness of human night. You came in flesh, born into human pain and joy. Open our eyes to Your incarnate presence in the shadows of our world, so that we, like you, may become beacons of your justice, and defenders of all for whom there is no room. Amen.

Reflect on these words and pray out of them as you are led

Spirit of God,
grant that these prayers may be enspirited by your empowering grace,
then enfleshed by our commitment not only to pray them but to live them as your temple on this earth. Amen.

Scripture Reading: John 1:1-5, 9-18

“In the beginning was the Word, the Word present to God, God present to the Word. He was in the beginning with God. Everything was created through him; nothing—not one thing!— came into being without him.

What came into existence was Life, and the Life was Light to live by. The Life-Light blazed out of the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it… The Life-Light was the real thing: Every person entering Life he brings into Light. He was in the world, and the world was there through him – and yet the world didn’t even notice.

But whoever did want him, who believed he was who he claimed and would do what he said, He made to be their true selves, their child-of-God selves. These are the God-begotten, not blood-begotten, not flesh-begotten, not sex-begotten.

The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood. We saw the glory with our own eyes, the one-of-a-kind glory, like Father, like Son, full of grace and truth. We all live off his generous bounty, gift after gift after gift. The law indeed was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God, not so much as a glimpse. This one-of-a-kind God-Expression, who is close to the Father’s heart, has made him plain as day.”

The Gospel of the Lord
Praise to You, Lord Christ

Darkness in the Company of Light

Confession & Assurance

Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you
in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done,
and by what we have left undone.
We have not loved you with our whole heart;
we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves.
We are truly sorry and we humbly repent.
For the sake of Your Son Jesus Christ,
have mercy on us and forgive us;
that we may delight in Your will,
and walk in Your ways, to the glory of Your Name.

Silent confession (space to confess our sins and wait in God’s presence).

The Lord has already shown you mercy.
The Lord has already had compassion on you.
The cross of Jesus has turned mourning into dancing,
And washed clean the ashes of repentance.
Jesus strengthens our weak knees
When we still have a long way to go.
Be free! We are forgiven.
Laugh out loud! We are forgiven.
Love God with everything! We are loved.

The Great Thanksgiving

Now let’s draw near in the presence of our Savior.

The Lord be with you!
And also with you.

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

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

And so this day, we join with Saints and Angels
in the chorus of praise that rings through eternity,
lifting our voices to bless you we say:

Holy, Holy, Holy
Lord God Almighty
heaven and earth are full of Your glory,
Glory to you, O Lord most high.

Eucharist & Sacrament of Desire

On the night he was betrayed, took bread,
and when he had given thanks he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying,
“This is my body given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”

In the same way he took the cup saying,
“This cup is the new covenant sealed in my blood, poured out for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Do this as often as you drink it in remembrance of me.”

Now, Lord, we pray that in your mercy and goodness, in the power of your Holy Spirit, you would sanctify this bread and wine to be for us the sacrament of the body and blood of Your Son.

Is the Father with us?
He is.
Is Christ among us?
He is.
Is the Spirit here?
He is.

This is our God.
Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

We are his people.
We are redeemed.

Therefore by taking this bread & drinking this cup,
we proclaim the mystery of our faith:

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

These are the gifts of God for the People of God. Take them in remembrance that Christ died for you, And feed on him in your hearts by faith, with thanksgiving.

Alternatively, for those who are not receiving communion, the Sacrament of Desire may be prayed.

Sacrament of Desire

Now, in union, O Lord with the faithful at every altar of Your Church,
I present to You my soul and body
with the earnest prayer that I will remain united to you.
And since I cannot now receive You sacramentally,
I pray that you would come to me spiritually.
I unite myself to you, and embrace you with my soul’s affection.
Let nothing separate me from you,
that I may live and die in Your love.

Holy is the Lord

Just a crumb from Your table
just a drop from Your well
Is all desire
enough to fulfill

But You welcome the hungry
the weary and the least
To the river of life
to a heavenly feast

Holy, Holy is the Lord
Holy, Holy is the Lord
The one who has saved us
Who is with us and made a way
Holy is the Lord
Holy is the Lord

Just a glimpse of Your glory
just the sound of Your voice
Can shatter the darkness
and silence the noise

But I’ll soon shine in brilliance
of an overwhelming light
And I’ll join the sound of angels
in the presence of Christ

You are the one who was
And is to come
And is forevermore
We are the grateful ones
Daughters and sons
We’re Yours forevermore

Community Life

The Home Stretch (Host a Parish Sunday Broadcast From Your Home)

  • If you’d like to host the broadcast of the Sunday morning zoom gatherings in your home in 2021, we’d love to hear from you.
  • The only specific needs are reliable wifi and an open space for 3-5 people. Jordan and David take care of the rest with their audio/video equipment.
  • Sign up now at

Chalking the Door – A Parish Epiphany Tradition

  • Each year as Epiphany season kicks off, we invite our Parish family to join in on a fun and meaningful tradition called “Chalking the Door.” This is a way to celebrate the occasion of the Epiphany and to ask God’s blessing on our lives, our homes, and those who visit our homes throughout the new year.
  • We’ve put together a guide on Chalking the Door that also includes a few other family activities. Download it here.

The Cross of Christ

All our problems,
We send to the cross of Christ!
All our difficulties,
We send to the cross of Christ!
All the devil’s works,
We send to the cross of Christ!
And all our hopes,
We set on the Risen Christ!

Blessing & Sending

Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Parish Text Updates