December 29, 2024 – First Sunday of Christmas

Lectionary Readings   -   Gathering   -  Word  -   Eucharist   -   Sending   -   Music and Art

Lectionary Readings

1 Samuel 2:18–20, 26
Ministering before the Lord, Samuel grows in stature and favor.

Psalm 148
Praise the Lord, all creation! God is exalted in heaven and earth.

Colossians 3:12–17
As God’s chosen ones, clothe yourselves in love; be thankful.

Luke 2:41–52
Three days after Passover, young Jesus is found in his Father’s house.

— Gathering —

Opening Sentences

Praise the Lord, all of creation!
God is exalted in heaven and earth.
In sun and moon and shining stars,
God is exalted in heaven and earth.
In sea creatures, land beasts, and flying birds,
God is exalted in heaven and earth.
From young to old, from princes to peasants,
God is exalted in heaven and earth.
Raise up your horns, lift up your voice,
for God is exalted in heaven and earth! Hallelujah!

Prayer of the Day

God of growth and maturation,
we remember that in Jesus Christ
you modeled what it means to be fully human.
Thank you for the unwritten years of Jesus’ life—
the growth that happened in private,
the lessons learned in secret,
the burgeoning favor and hidden treasure.
Grant us your grace in this time of worship.
Help us welcome and receive the gift of slow growth,
that we might be formed in your likeness. Amen.

Hymn, Psalm, or Spiritual Song

Thanksgiving For Baptism

At the baptismal font:
The Lord be with you. And also with you.
Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
It is right to give our thanks and praise.
Everlasting God,
your mercy rains down on us in Jesus Christ.
We thank you for our new life through baptism.
We are renewed like watered gardens
and our lives bloom with your incarnate love.
Through Christ, we pray. Amen.

Confession and Pardon

At the baptismal font:
In faith and in hope,
we trust that God is merciful and just
and receives our prayers with grace.
In humility and with meekness,
let us confess our sin together.

Holy God,
though we are in awe of the dawn
of your light in Jesus Christ,
we remain self-centered
cling to the sin of the world.
We celebrate the birth of our savior,
yet we struggle in our commitment to follow him.
We are called to pursue justice,
love kindness, and walk humbly with you;
yet we are content to seek our own comfort
and conveniently ignore the cries
of those in need.
By the light of the Christ child,
lead us on a path of goodness and righteousness,
as we seek to love all of your bountiful creation.

Lifting water from the font:
We are God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved.
The mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting.
Know that you are forgiven and be at peace. Amen.

— Word —

Prayer for Illumination

At the lectern or pulpit:
O God,
through your mighty acts
we receive grace upon grace.
From your fullness,
feed us with your life-giving Word,
that our lives, like bread,
may feed a hungry world. Amen.


Before the readings:
Listen for the mystery of God’s grace. 
Ephesians 3:2–3

After the readings: 
The mystery of the ages 
revealed to the people of God. 
Thanks be to God.
Ephesians 3:9–10


Ascription of Praise

After the sermon:
Glory to God in the highest
and peace to God’s people on earth! Amen.
Luke 2:14

Hymn, Psalm, or Spiritual Song

Affirmation of Faith

The one sufficient revelation of God
is Jesus Christ,
the Word of God incarnate,
to whom the Holy Spirit
bears unique and authoritative witness
through the Holy Scriptures,
which are received and obeyed
as the word of God written.
Adapted from the Confession of 1967, 9.27

Prayers of Intercession

In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ,

let us pray for the life of the world,

saying: O Christ, our light, hear our prayer.  


We pray for the church . . .

Let your church be a safe place for the young,

a refuge for those who are lost,

and a shelter for all who are in trouble.

O Christ, our light, hear our prayer.    


We pray for the world . . .

Give us the wisdom to find answers

for the problems that plague our world:

war and hunger, poverty and disease.

O Christ, our light, hear our prayer.  


We pray for this community . . .

Help us to bear with one another.

Bind us together in perfect harmony

and let your peace rule among us.

O Christ, our light, hear our prayer.  


We pray for loved ones . . .

Protect children and parents;

be with those who are traveling;

calm all of our anxious fears.

O Christ, our light, hear our prayer.  


Lord Jesus Christ, hope of the world,

help us to bear witness to your light

so that all may believe and have life in you;

in your holy name we pray. Amen.

— Eucharist —

Invitation to Offering

At the communion table:
Rejoicing in the birth
of Christ our Savior,
we give to God
what we first received from God,
the gifts of our lives.

Prayer of Dedication

At the communion table:
God Most High, receive the gifts of our lives
as an offering of gratitude for your grace.
Overshadow us with your Holy Spirit
and let it be with us according to your word,
for nothing is impossible with you. Amen.
Luke 1:35–38; 1 Corinthians 1:4

Great Thanksgiving

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 our thanks and praise.

Blessed are you, O Lord our God:
You are the Maker of sun, moon, and stars,
exalted above heaven and earth,
the source of all and Savior of your people.

Therefore we praise you, joining the song
of the universal church and the heavenly choir:
A Sanctus (“Holy, holy, holy”) is sung.

Blessed is Jesus Christ, our Savior:
Even as a child, Jesus was at home in your house—
teaching and listening, unafraid of questions,
growing day by day in wisdom and in love.

The words of institution are included here.

Remembering your goodness and grace,
we offer ourselves to you with gratitude
as we share this joyful feast.
A Memorial Acclamation
(e.g., “Christ has died”) is sung.

Pour out your Holy Spirit upon us
and upon this bread and cup;
make us one in the body and blood
of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Clothe us with compassion,
humility, patience, and love;
let your word fill our lives
and your peace rule our hearts;
and let all that we do be done in Jesus’ name.

Through the Lord Jesus Christ,
in the unity of the Spirit,
we bless you, God of glory,
now and forever.
An Amen is sung.

Lord’s Prayer


Breaking the Bread


Communion of the People


Hymn, Psalm, or Spiritual Song


Prayer after Communion

At the communion table:
We sing a new song to you, Lord.
Through this bread and wine
we receive your joy.
All of creation praises you,
joining with glad voices
to share the good news
of Christ’s saving birth.
We give thanks
for the Word you first sang,
Jesus, our Lord. Amen.

— Sending —

Hymn, Psalm, or Spiritual Song


Blessing and Charge

At the doors of the church:
May the God of glory, 
the Word of life, 
and the Spirit of truth 
bless you all, 
now and forever. Alleluia!
John 1:14

Whatever you do, in word or deed, 
do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, 
giving thanks to God. Amen.
Colossians 3:17

Jesus among the Teachers


Additional Materials

Congregational Song


  • Lord Jesus, You Shall Be My Song (E) LES PETITES SOEURS GTG 737
  • Once in Royal David’s City (OG) IRBY GTG 140, PH 39
  • Jesus, Jesus, O What a Wonderful Child (G) WONDERFUL CHILD GTG 126


  • These Treasured Children (OG) PUER NOBIS NASCITUR GTG 487
  • Help Us Accept Each Other (E) BARONITA GTG 754, PH 358
  • Born in the Night, Mary’s Child (G) MARY’S CHILD GTG 158, PH 30
  • Ten Thousand Reasons (O) Matt Redman LUYH 559
  • Todos los que han sido bautizados / All Who Have Been Baptized TODOS LOS QUE HAN SIDO BAUTIZADOS LUYH 798


  • Come and Fill Our Hearts (E) CONFITEMINI DOMINO GTG 466, STF 2157
  • That Boy-Child of Mary (G) BLANTYRE GTG 139, PH 55
  • God the Sculptor of the Mountains (G) JENNINGS-HOUSTON GTG 5, STF 2060
  • When Morning Gilds the Skies (O) LAUDES DOMINI GTG 667


  • Child of Blessing, Child of Promise (OG) KINGDOM GTG 486, PH 498
  • Lord of All Hopefulness (OG) COURTNEY GTG 683, STF 2197
  • Lord, When I Came Into This Life (OG) LAND OF REST GTG 691, PH 522
  • In the Midst of New Dimension (E) NEW DIMENSIONS GTG 315

Psalms and Canticles

Psalm 148

  • Let the Whole Creation Cry [ORIENTIS PARTIBUS, SALZBURG]; PP 294 (with refrain), GTG 679, PH 256, PAS 148 I
  • Hallelujah! Sing Praise to Your Creator / Nyanyikanlah [NYANYIKANLAH]; GTG 18, LUYH 550, PAS 148E
  • Praise the Lord, Sing Hallelujah [ D]; SGP 217 Let All Creation’s Wonders [THAXTED]; PAS 148A, LUYH 555


  • Alleluia! Alleluia!; PSA 155
  • Glory to God in the Highest; PAS 148G
  • O Bless the Lord; PAS 148B

Organ Music

  • “Vom Himmel hoch, da komm’ ich her,” P. 52 (Pastorale and Allo Modto), Johann Pachelbel, (M)
  • “UNE JEUNE PUCELLE,” Augsburg Organ Library: Christmas, Marilyn Biery, AF (ME)
  • “Willie, Take Your Little Drum,” PATAPAN, The Holly and the Ivy, James Biery, AF (ME)
  • “Noel Suisse; Grand Jeu et Duo,” Livre de Noëls, Louis-Claude Daquin, (M)

Piano Music

  • “Once in Royal David’s City,” IRBY, Hope, Wonder, and Glory, Michael Mazzatenta, SFP (M)
  • “Fairest Lord Jesus,” CRUSADERS’ HYMN, Refreshing, Tom Fettke, LOR (M)

Anthems for Adult Choirs

  • “Tell the News!” Mary McDonald, LOR, SATB, keybd, opt inst (E)
  • “See amid the Winter’s Snow,” Jon Washburn, Cypress Choral Music, SATB, acap (M)
  • “El Cielo Canta,” Ed Henderson, Cypress Choral Music, SATB, pno (MA)
  • “This Is My Father’s House,” Pepper Choplin, LOR, SATB, pno (ME)
  • “Poinsettia Carol (Flores de Pascua),” Frederick Frahm, AF, uni/2 pt, pno (E)


  • Jesus among the Teachers, JESUS MAFA, 1973 (VDL)
  • The Twelve-Year-Old Jesus in the Temple, from the series The Life of Christ, Carl Bloch, 1865–79 (VCS)
  • Jesus among the Doctors, Max Liebermann, 1879 (VDL)
  • Colossians 3:15, Timothy R. Botts, 2016 (EYE)
  • Hannah Giving Her Son Samuel to the Priest, Jan Victors, 1645 (VDL)