Advent 1A

Dec. 1, 2013


See prior postings for Year A Advent (2010)  (Advent posts begin on second page of this item)

Also, the 2012 material for Advent Wreath and other Preparation for Advent may be helpful: offers a great list of links to Advent worship resources here.


This Week’s Scripture  (from the Revised Common Lectionary, with links provided by – a source for thoughtful worship and preaching throughout the year):


Click on Scripture Lessons below for study links and resources for each individual pericope:

Isaiah 2:1-5

Psalm 122
Romans 13:11-14

Matthew 24:36-44
Roman Catholic reading: Matthew 24:37-44


Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

The Oremus Hymnal offers many good choices for the lectionary (although this 2010 version will have incorrect calendar dates).  Not all are available in Chalice Hymnal, but some may be helpful in congregations where there is not a Chalice Hymnal available.  Visit the Oremus Hymnal.

Hymn of Praise:   119-O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

Hymn of Invitation:  125-Come, O long-expected Jesus

Communion Hymn:   124-Let all mortal flesh keep silence

Dismissal/Missional Hymn:  142-People, look east

More hymn suggestions, as well as helpful references for use of the arts in worship, are available from the United Church of Christ website.   



Dealing with the Psalm of the Day:

Since Chalice Hymnal does not provide a complete Psalter, there will be occasions when suggestions may be made for alternate Psalm use (or hymn equivalent).  A metrical version of the Psalter, for those Psalms not provided in Chalice Hymnal, is being prepared by Rev. David Chafin.  Where practical, these may be offered here as well.  You may also want to visit or   

This week:  Psalm 122 is on p. 761.


Hymn of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2013, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)


On Isaiah 2:1-50


Strong, inviting is the promise

seen from God in open awe.

For the house of God begins now

to allure the nations’ want.


In the day of our salvation,

at the crest of wonder, love,

comes the call to all the peoples

to attend the Savior’s call.


Judge of nations will decide then

at the breaking of the sword,

when the beating into ploughshares

makes the life of peace endure.


In the wholeness of redemption

as the Lord our God provides

let us walk together always

in God’s everlasting light.           Suggested tune: Merton


Call to Worship 

It is suggested that the “O Antiphons” (#120) be used in combination with “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” as the opening hymn/act of worship.


Prayer of Approach (created or adapted by the editor)

L: The Lord be with you.

P:  And also with you.

L: Let us pray.  Prepare your way within us, O God, as the new year of life in your Church unfolds.  Make of us a people ready to receive you, to learn from you, to receive your gifts, and to live out your calling in mission.  Prepare your way within us, we pray, through the name of the Coming One, Jesus Christ our Lord  (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)


Intercessions (created or adapted by the editor)

How strong your voice, O God.  How it thunders across the lands, calling forth blossoms from parched earth and turning back waters from flooded ground.  You stand at the world’s door and knock; who can withstand the sound of your voice?

How soft your voice, O God.  How it murmers in the morning, calling life forth from its bed and hastening the night to its own.  You come to us, walking in the garden in the cool of the day; who can hide from the sound of your voice?

Tarry with us, O God.  Let your word love our eyes into seeing all those around us.  Let it love our ears into hearing the voices calling to us.  Let it love our hands into healing with the gifts you have granted your children.  Let our words be words of love as we pray for those who are in greatest need…

In these days of Advent, may our voices ring with joy, with peace and with hope.  Wherever you send us, may we be diligent in following.  For we are ever in search of your salvation, even as we continue to search for the child, the Christ, our Savior in whose name we sing for joy and offer our prayers.


Collect of the Day (by the editor)

As we prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus, we would be open to your presence, O God.  Free us from the seasonal sentimentality that turns our attention from the sometimes painful decision to pursue peace and justice.  Through this worship, nudge us toward seeking reconciliation rather than revenge, the well-being of all rather than the victory of the few.  Speak to us of peace, O God, and hear us as we pray.


Collect of the Day (Book of Common Prayer, 1979)

Almighty God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life, in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious Majesty, to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, now and ever.



Collect of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2013, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Matthew 24:36-44


Awaiting in anticipation unknown days and hours,

we linger expectantly

with readiness of heart

and brightness of eye

for the coming of our Lord Jesus,

watching joyously

for the fulfillment of all hope.


Service of Table (by the editor)

Preparation (Invitation)

The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light.  Upon those who have lived in the shadow of death the light has shined.  With the prophet’s words, let us joyfully participate in sharing the life-giving work of God in our world today through the giving of our tithes and offerings.

An Offertory Thanksgiving

May these gifts indeed give light to those in darkness, hope to those in despair, and justice to the oppressed, as we bring them to you as an act of sharing your love with the world.  Here the proud are brought low, and the poor and broken lifted up.  May it be so in all your kingdom, we pray, as we dedicate ourselves to you.  Amen.


An Advent Preface (to the Words of Institution)

L: Maranatha: Come, Lord Jesus!

P: Maranatha: Come, Lord Jesus!

L: The Lord be with you.

P: And also with you.

L: Maranatha!

P: Come, Lord Jesus!

L: Let us lift up our hearts and give thanks to the Lord, who is, and who was, and who is coming.

P:  Maranatha: Come, Lord Jesus!

L: As God’s people of faith, we celebrate the gift of Christ to us, and look forward to his coming again in glory, as we remember that night on which our Lord was betrayed…(continue with the Words of Institution)


Prayer(s) of Thanksgiving

(The following may be offered as one prayer, or broken between two Elders, if that is the tradition to be followed)

1. Come to us now, O Lord, with hope and life eternal.  As we give thanks to you for this loaf, and for the gift of your Son in fulfillment of your promised coming, nourish us with grace to live as your hopeful people in the world.  Send down the power of your Holy Spirit upon these gifts, and upon our lives which we lay before you.  May our hearts be strengthened as we yield our wills to your own.

2. Our spirits thirst for you, O God, and long for the blessing which you alone can give.  Thank you for the gift of this wine, the life of Christ given through his blood shed for us and for the world.  May it bring to us true repentance and refreshment of spirit, that as we await your coming once more, we will not grow weary, but will cling to your promises of life everlasting in Christ your Son.

Conclusion:  Through him, with him, and in him, in the power of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor be to you, O God, now and forever. Amen.

[if not previously offered: “And now with the confidence of your children, we offer the prayer our Savior taught us, ‘Our Father…’”]


Prayer After Communion

Pour out upon us the Spirit of your love, O God, and unite the wills of those whom you have fed with one heavenly food; through Christ our Lord.  Amen.





Almighty God,

give us grace to cast away the works of darkness

and to put on the armour of light,

now in the time of this mortal life,

in which your Son Jesus Christ came to us in great humility;

that on the last day,

when he shall come again in his glorious majesty

to judge the living and the dead,

we may rise to the life immortal;

through him who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.


Post Communion


O Lord our God,

make us watchful and keep us faithful

as we await the coming of your Son our Lord;

that, when he shall appear,

he may not find us sleeping in sin

but active in his service

and joyful in his praise;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Alternative Collect


Almighty God,

as your kingdom dawns,

turn us from the darkness of sin

to the light of holiness,

that we may be ready to meet you

in our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.


Book of Common Prayer (1979), Public domain.


Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2012.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw October 2012 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2012; Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010.   The Revised Common Lectionary is copyright © the Consultation on Common Texts 1992.  The Daily Eucharistic Lectionary is adapted from the Ordo Lectionum Missae of the Roman Catholic Church reproduced by permission of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy.  Adaptations and additions to the RCL and the DEL, together with Second and Third Service lectionaries and the Weekday Lectionary for Morning and Evening Prayer are copyright © the Archbishops’ Council 1997-2010.


Resources from the Jubilee Fund: This stewardship ministry serving the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) offers weekly emails, archived here at the Disciples Center for Faith and Giving Site, for each Sunday’s service.

You may also want to visit Worship Connection at, which offers numerous helps, including electronic versions of print resources for worship and preaching planning.

Intercessions and other helpful planning materials geared to the Lectionary (using Roman Catholic version, but normally quite useful for all traditions) for preaching and worship are supplied for several weeks in advance at The Sunday Website of St. Louis University. 

Liturgies created by Moira Laidlaw (Uniting Church in Australia) as a part of her doctoral dissertation are often helpful.  Read more here.


NOTE:  We hope you return to this posting often (and are subscribed to the feed by email, on Facebook or your favorite reader), since the content of each week’s posting may change several times before Sunday.  We’d also like to include your content, even after the fact, since everything will roll around again in 3 years, and your contributions may find new life in the great cycle of the lectionary. 

Send your comments or content here.


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