Event – Christmas

Season of Giving Offering Prayer

God of great wonders,
we join with you in the joy of this season of giving,
You gave us a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord.
You give us life and breath,
you fill the world with beauty,
our hands with bounty,
and our hearts with the desire to give.
Accept these gifts,
and ourselves in service always,

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A Manger Scene

A manger scene,
our manger scene,
a tiny little manger scene.
Everywhere we go, we see them.
Mary kneeling, Joseph standing
shepherds with their trailing sheep watching,
wise men with their robes and gifts adoring.
Everyone’s eyes pointing to the baby Jesus,
lying on a bed of hay in a manger.
The wooden beams of the stable sheltering,
the golden angel heralding
and a star shining…..

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Mary’s Lullaby

Oh! hush thee my Jesus,
the work is behind us,
at last you are lying here
safe in my arms.
The night with its quiet
has fallen upon us
and God and your parents
will keep you from harms.
Now sleeping, now dreaming,
don’t worry my darling,
Ah, sweet little saviourchild
be at your ease.
A star shining brightly
looks downward to find you,
a baby, our baby,
my baby, at peace.

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An Everlasting Light: Prayer for Bethlehem

God of grace, today we pray for peace for the city of Bethlehem.
It has had more than its share of conflict,
as it changed from a little town

to a bustling city visited by millions each year.
You know the walls that separate people in Bethlehem;
walls of concrete, walls of prejudice, walls of hatred,
walls between Israeli and Palestinian,

walls between Jew and Christian and Muslim,
walls between cultures and languages.
We can hardly think of another place on earth
with such high walls and such deep hostility.
Yet this is where you were born:

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Born into Darkness

Jesus is born into darkness,
a darkness that’s over the deep:
the deep sorrowing of our world,
the mourning over murdered children,
the soft sobbing of the hungry,
the wailing over bombed cities,
the despairing over a polluted earth,
the crying over our own sad stories.
On our darkest Christmas eve,
when we’ve forgotten what light looks like,
a baby is born. …

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This Christmas Call to Worship

We give thanks to you God,
for the body of a tiny baby,
life and breath in a tiny ribcage.
Immanuel, God with us,
a promise of salvation.
We give thanks
for loving parents,
for the light of a star,
for the radiance of angels,
for the running feet of shepherds,…

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Jesus, arrived at last

he baby emerges
like every baby:
wet, naked and wrinkled,
mouth opening for breath,
lungs expanding like a wet butterfly,
fingers stretching, eyes blinking.
The first wailing cry. 

Arms cradle,
hands touch each limb,
smoothing, cleaning, swaddling.
Two adults weak with relief,

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Joyful Song Call to Worship

ing a joyful song to the Lord,
sing carols for the birth of a saviour!
Raise your voices in praise to the Lord of hosts,
and give thanks with all your hearts!
Welcome to worship this morning,
it’s a delight to be in the house of God with you this morning! 

Let’s pray together;
Thank you, God, for melodies and harmonies,
for voices of every pitch.
Thank you for composers and poets,
for instruments and musicians.
Thank you for ears to hear
and minds to comprehend

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Newborn Saviour Call to Worship

God of darkness, God of light,
God of stars and angels,
God of weary travellers and stables,
God of hard labour and new birth,
we come today to worship you.
Open our eyes to your glory,
open our ears to your wisdom
open our hearts to your love
as we come to worship
Jesus, our newborn Saviour.

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About Carol Penner

I am a Mennonite pastor currently teaching theology at Conrad Grebel University College in Waterloo, Ontario. I’ve served congregations in Ontario and most recently, Alberta.

I love to write and to lead worship! If you are finding my writing helpful, I would love to hear from you! Feel free to use or adapt the material here, it is all written by me. If printing material, please credit “Copyright Carol Penner www.leadinginworship.com” (and say whether you modified it). If publishing, please contact me for permission. Contact me at carol@leadinginworship.com

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