January 1, 2023 – First Sunday of Christmas

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

Lectionary Readings

Isaiah 63:7–9
The people were saved not by an angel, but the Lord’s presence.

Psalm 148
Let everything in the whole creation praise the name of the Lord.

Hebrews 2:10–18
Jesus calls us brothers and sisters; he became human to save us.

Matthew 2:13–23
Joseph and Mary flee to Egypt to escape persecution from Herod.

— Gathering —

Opening Sentences

Praise God!
With the angels and hosts, we praise!
With the sun and moon, we praise!
With the fire and hail, we praise!
With the frost and snow, we praise!
With the mountains and valleys, we praise!
With the skies and the seas, we praise!
Praise God!

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.
O Lord our God, we give you thanks
for the wonder and love you offer us
through the gift of our baptism—
your Word made flesh among us,
a child and Savior born to us,
good news of great joy for all.
By the power of your Holy Spirit,
poured out upon us in baptism,
let us be born anew from above
so that we may give glory to you
and live as your beloved children;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Confession and Pardon​

At the baptismal font:
Even in a season of celebration and joy,
there is grief and pain.
Even as we celebrate God’s goodness,
we know that we have not always lived it.
Even in all of this, Christ comes.

Ever-present God,
you became our Savior in all our distress.
In all the ways we hurt,
and all the ways we hurt others,
in all the ways we feel neglected
and all the ways we neglect others,
in all the ways we cry out
and all the ways we cause others to cry,
you are with us, comforting us and holding us to account.
In your love, redeem us once again.
Lift us up and grant us your mercy,
as you have throughout the generations.

Lifting water from the font:
Christ came into this world for us:
imperfect humans, perpetual sinners,
trying, learning, striving.
He came to be tested,
so that he might help us as we are tested,
to forgive us all our sins.
Praise be to our merciful and faithful high priest!

— Word —

Prayer for Illumination

At the lectern or pulpit:
Gracious God, by the gift of your Holy Spirit
show us the Word made flesh—
good news of great joy for all—
so that we may sing with the angels:
glory in the highest and peace on earth;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


Before the readings:
Treasure these words
and ponder them in your heart.
Luke 2:19

After the readings:
And the Word became flesh and lived among us.
Thanks be to God.
John 1:14


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

Remember God’s message: Do not be afraid!
Therefore we pray with hope and joy.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

With hope and joy, we pray for the church . . .
Help us to follow our gentle Savior and Lord,
who leads his children through suffering
to the peace and glory of your holy realm.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

With hope and joy, we pray for the earth . . .
Join our voices with the hymn of all creation,
so that we may sing with heaven and earth
the beauty and glory of your name.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

With hope and joy, we pray for all nations . . .
Listen to those who weep for their children,
victims of poverty, famine, and war.
Do not let their cries go unanswered.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

With hope and joy, we pray for this community . . .
Watch over those who are far from home,
and teach us to show hospitality and care
for refugees and strangers among us.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

With hope and joy, we pray for loved ones . . .
Strengthen those who are weak or suffering;
support and sustain them in times of trial.
Help them to put their trust in you.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We ask these things with joy, O God,
confident in the knowledge of your goodness;
and we ask these things with hope,
knowing that our redeemer is here—
for to us is born a Savior, the Messiah, the Lord,
Jesus Christ, in whose holy name we pray. Amen.
Luke 2:10–11

— Eucharist —

Invitation to Offering

At the communion table:
From the fullness of God
we have all received grace upon grace.
Let us offer our lives to the Lord.
John 1:16

Prayer of Dedication

At the communion table:
For gifts abundant and for grace abounding,
we give you thanks, generous God.
Bless the gifts we bring today.
Use these gifts and our lives
to be your gift of grace to others. Amen.

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 great, and gracious, and worthy of praise.
We remember your mighty acts and steadfast love,
how you have lifted us up and carried us through the ages.

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:
When Herod sought to take his life, he fled to Egypt.
Then, like Moses, Christ came forth from Egypt,
ready to lead his people to your promised land.
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.

We are your children; lead us through suffering to glory,
so that we may speak your name and sing your praise
with our sisters and brothers in the company of the faithful.

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

God of shepherds and sheep,
we give you thanks
that you have gathered us here,
revealed to us your glory,
and fed us with your mercy.
Now send us out
with good news for all—
for us a child is born:
Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.

— Sending —

Hymn, Psalm, or Spiritual Song


Blessing and Charge

At the doors of the church:
The loving kindness of the Lord our God,
the grace of Jesus Christ our Savior,
and the renewing power of the Holy Spirit
be with you all. Alleluia!
Titus 3:4–7

Go and tell this good news of great joy:
to us a Savior is born. Amen.
Luke 2:10–11

“Refugees: Holy Family”

Kelly Latimore, 2018

Additional Materials

Congregational Song


  • For the Beauty of the Earth (E) DIX GTG 14, PH 473
  • Jesus Entered Egypt (G) KING’S WESTON GTG 154
  • What Star Is This, with Beams So Bright (OEG) PUER NOBIS NASCITUR GTG 152, PH 68
  • Love Lifted Me (EG) SAFETY AAHH 504


  • Glorious Things of Thee Are Spoken (OE) AUSTRIAN HYMN GTG 81, PH 446
  • Comfort, Comfort Now My People (OE) GENEVAN 42 GTG 87, PH 3
  • I Love to Tell the Story (O) HANKEY GTG 462
  • Surely the Presence of the Lord (O) THE PRESENCE OF THE LORD SON 398


  • God of the Sparrow (O) ROEDER GTG 22, PH 272
  • There’s a Sweet, Sweet Spirit (O) SWEET, SWEET SPIRIT GTG 408, PH 398
  • Lord, We Thank You for This Food (E) MOTOMASE GTG 660
  • Blest Are the Innocents (G) BETA LUYH 108


  • Light Dawns on a Weary World (OE) TEMPLE OF PEACE GTG 79
  • Blest Be the Tie That Binds (OE) DENNIS GTG 306, PH 438
  • Standing on the Promises (OE) PROMISES GTG 838
  • Let Us Even Now Go (Cebuanao: Manglakat na kita) (G) MANGLAKAT STB 146

Psalms and Canticles


  • 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, SSS 22, LUYH 6, PAS 148C
  • 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

  • “In Dulci Jubilo,” Christmas Carol Hymn Settings for Organ, Jean Langlais, HAL (MA)
  • “In Dulci Jubilo,” Orgelbuchlein, J. S. Bach, public domain (M)
  • “Carillon,” John Behnke, CON (ME)
  • “Postlude on ‘Unto Us Is Born a Son,’” PUER NOBIS NASCITUR, Christmas Presents, John S. Dixon, LOR (E)

Anthems for Adult Choirs

  • “Here Is the Little Door,” Herbert Howells, ECS, SATB, acap (A)
  • “Noél Ayisyen,” Emile Desamours, MF, SATB, acap (A)
  • “Louez le Seigneur (Praise the Lord),” arr. Ralph Johnson, Earthsongs, SATB, perc (E)
  • “Let All the World in Every Corner Sing,” Calvin Hampton, GIA, 2 pt, org (ME)
  • “Walk in the Light,” arr. André Thomas, CGA, SATB, pno (ME)
  • “Praise Be to the Lord,” Odd Johan Overøye, WAL, SATB/SATB (A)

Handbell Music

  • “For the Beauty of the Earth,” Brenda Austin, 3–5 oct, opt 2 oct hc, GIA, G-9123, Level 2+
  • “Comfort, Comfort Ye My People,” Kevin McChesney, 3–5 oct, JHS, JHS9401, Level 3
  • “Blest Be the Tie That Binds,” Beth Elston, 3–5 oct hb or hc, LOR, 20/1977L, Level 2


  • In Hiding, Jan Richardson (JR)
  • Flight to Egypt, P. Solomon Raj (EYE)
  • Rest on Flight to Egypt, Wayne Forte (EYE)