January 6, 2024 – Epiphany of the Lord

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

Lectionary Readings

Isaiah 60:1–6
Arise, shine; your light has come; the glory of the Lord appears.

Psalm 72:1–7, 10–14
May the king reign forever and deliver the needy.

Ephesians 3:1–12
An ancient mystery is revealed; Gentiles are fellow heirs in Christ.

Matthew 2:1–12
Following a star, wise men visit Jesus and bring him gifts.

— Gathering —

Opening Sentences

This little light of mine
I’m going to let it shine.
This little light of ours
we’re going to let it shine.
This little light of the world
has overcome the darkness.
We have followed the light to this place,
and the glory of the God’s presence is among us!
Let us worship God!

Prayer of the Day

Great God,
Magi from the east were looking for Jesus.
Herod was looking for Jesus.
We are looking for Jesus,
and we are overcome with amazement
that you became one of us in the Christ-child.
Teach us what it means to surrender what we have,
to fall on our knees,
and to worship you.
As we move from this place to our diverse homes,
help us to carry our adoration with us,
that we might not be tempted
to reject the love that brought us here.
In Jesus’ name, we pray. 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.

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:
Like a great light in a land of deep darkness,
the mercy of the Lord shines upon us.
Isaiah 9:2

Trusting in God’s grace, let us confess our sin.

God of wonder, God of night,
you are holy light in dark places;
you are holy darkness when all is too bright.
Forgive us, O God, when we turn away from your light:
when we follow our own ambitions instead of your call,
when we respond to your presence with fear rather than joy.
Forgive us, O God,
when we do not comprehend the depth of your Christmas love,
the meaning of your powerful story,
or the call you place on each of our lives.
Forgive us, O God, and by your forgiveness,
empower us to follow the star once more.

Lifting water from the font:
Hear the promise of the Lord:
See, your salvation has come!
You are a holy people, redeemed by God,
sought out, not forsaken.
Isaiah 62:11–12

In the name of Jesus Christ, we are forgiven!
Thanks be to God.

— Word —

Prayer for Illumination

At the lectern or pulpit:
Holy One, giver of all light,
lift up our hearts and minds to Christ,
the morning star that never fades.
By the light of your Holy Spirit
reveal to us your saving Word
and lead us to offer our lives to you
in service and in love;
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

Season of Advent (and Christmas)
God expressed love for all humankind
through Israel, whom God chose
to be a covenant people
to serve him in love and faithfulness.
When Israel was unfaithful,
God disciplined the nation with judgment
and maintained the covenant
through prophets, priests, teachers, and true believers.
These witnesses called all Israelites to a destiny
in which they would serve God faithfully
and become a light to the nations.
The same witnesses proclaimed
the coming of a new age,
and a true servant of God
in whom God’s purpose would be realized.
Adapted from the Confession of 1967, 9.18

Prayers of the People

Rejoicing in the gift of Jesus Christ our Savior,
we pray for this world that God so loves,
saying: Emmanuel, God-with-us, hear our prayer.

With gratitude for your love, we pray for the church . . .
We pray that you would open our hearts to your glory
and transform us by your compassion,
so that we may offer ourselves to those in need.
Emmanuel, God-with-us, hear our prayer.

With gratitude for your love, we pray for the world . . .
We pray that righteousness will flourish
in your broken and beautiful world,
and that peace will prosper in all times and places.
Emmanuel, God-with-us, hear our prayer.

With gratitude for your love, we pray for this community . . .
We pray especially for the children in our community.
Give us the voice and courage to be their advocates,
so that they will have what they need to grow and develop.
Emmanuel, God-with-us, hear our prayer.

With gratitude for your love, we pray for loved ones . . .
Help us all to welcome your grace in our lives,
giving thanks for the immeasurable riches of Christ
and the goodness you shower down upon us.
Emmanuel, God-with-us, hear our prayer.

Holy One, as you have come to dwell among us,
show us how to live as your faithful people,
sharing the good news of your grace with all;
through Christ, your Word made flesh. Amen.

— 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:
To you, O God of all glory,
we offer the gifts of our lives
as a way of bearing witness
to the gift of your Word made flesh.
Use the humble things we offer
as signs of your grace and truth
so that all may know your glory;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
John 1:7, 14

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:
We look to you and we are radiant; we thrill and rejoice
as nations come to your light and leaders welcome your dawning.
You call us to arise, and shine, for your glory has risen upon us.
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:
With the ancient Magi, we come to pay him homage;
we give him the treasures of our hearts, our lives.
As his star shines down upon us, we are overwhelmed with joy.
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.
By your Spirit, make us bold and confident in our faith,
as you reveal to us the mystery of ages, your plan for the world—
to bring all peoples to the knowledge of your grace in Jesus Christ.
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 give you thanks, O God,
for the gifts of this table—
precious, prayerful, and poignant—
like gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
Lead us forth by your light
to share the gifts of your grace
with all people everywhere,
giving glory, honor, and praise
to 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

Star of Bethlehem Quilt

Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1835

Additional Materials

Congregational Song


  • Awake! Awake, and Greet the New Morn (O) REJOICE, REJOICE GTG 107
  • Arise, Your Light Is Come! (O) FESTAL SONG GTG 744
  • O Morning Star, How Fair and Bright (E) WIE SCHÖN LEUCHTET GTG 827
  • What Star Is This, with Beams So Bright (G) PUER NOBIS NASCITUR GTG 152


  • Blessed Jesus, at Your Word (E) LIEBSTER JESU GTG 395
  • Now the Heavens Start to Whisper (O) JEFFERSON GTG 94
  • The People Who Walked in Darkness (O) ISAIAH 9 GTG 86
  • We Three Kings of Orient Are (G) KINGS OF ORIENT GTG 151


  • Great Is the Mystery of Faith! (E) GONFALON ROYAL David Gambrell Breathing Spirit into Dust GIA
  • In Bethlehem a Newborn Boy (G) IN BETHLEHEM GTG 153
  • Sing Out, My Soul (OE) MAGNIFICAT (Taizé) GTG 646
  • What Child Is This (G) GREENSLEEVES GTG 145


  • As with Gladness Men of Old (G) DIX GTG 150
  • Jesus Shall Reign Where’er the Sun (OE) DUKE STREET GTG 265
  • O Love, How Deep, How Broad, How High (E) DEO GRACIAS GTG 618
  • We Are Marching in the Light of God (G) SIYAHAMBA GTG 853

Psalms and Canticles


  • All Hail to God’s Anointed / Hail to the Lord’s Anointed [ROCKPORT, ES FLOG EIN KLEINS WALDVÖGELEIN, KELVINGROVE]; GTG 149, PH 205, PAS 72A, LUYH 109, SSS 112 (with Spanish translation), PP 134 (with refrain)
  • Jesus Shall Reign [DUKE STREET]; GTG 265, PAS 72B, LUYH 219, PH 423, SSS 209 (with Spanish translation)
  • Give Justice to Your King, O Lord [CMD]; SGP 104


  • Lord, Every Nation on Earth Will Adore You; PAS 72C (alt. refrain) (pointed vv.), PFTS1 20 (through-composed vv.)
  • All Nations Shall Behold [ES FLOG EIN KLEINS WALDVÖGELEIN]; HTP1 104
  • All Kings Will Bow; PSA 64B

    Organ Music

    • “For All Your Saints, O Lord,” FESTAL SONG, Hymns for the Saints, Michael Burkhardt, MSM (ME)
    • “Dearest Jesus, at Your Word,” God of Grace, Paul Manz, MSM (M)
    • “We Three Kings,” Three Christmas Fantasies, John David Peterson, MSM (M)
    • “Give to Our God Immortal Praise!” Six General Hymn Improvisations, Set 1, Michael Burkhardt, MSM (M)
    • “Oh, Wondrous Type! Oh, Vision Fair,” Three for Christmas, Kristina Langlois, MSM (M)

    Anthems for Adult Choirs

    • “I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light,” arr. Mark Hayes, HOPE, SATB, pno, tpt (M)
    • “Rise Up, Shepherd, and Follow,” Roland Carter, WAL, SATB div, acap (A)
    • “Rise Up and Shine,” Richard Clemmit, AF, SATB, org, tpt (E)
    • “Epiphany,” Bob Chilcott, OUP, SATB, org (A)
    • “The Third Song of Isaiah (Arise, Shine; for Your Light Has Come),” Jack Noble White, JM, SATB, org, brass (M)
    • “Arise, Shine, for Your Light Has Come,” Allen Pote, Coronet Press, SATB, pno (M)
    • “Carol of the Magi,” John Rutter, OUP, SATB, org, vc (A)

    Handbell Music

    • “Awake! Awake, and Greet the New Morn,” Carolyn Sternowski, 3 oct, GIA, G7085, Level 3+
    • “Prelude on DIX,” Douglas Wagner, 2‑5 oct, opt org, LOR, 20/1631L or 20/1632L, Level 2
    • “Siyahamba,” Sondra Tucker, 3‑5 oct, ALF, 44246, Level 3+


    • Christmas Magi, Nicholas Markell (EYE)
    • Epiphany, Jan Richardson (JR)
    • Journey of the Magi, James Tissot (VDL)
    • Star of Bethlehem Quilt, Metropolitan Museum of Art (VDL)