The Light on the Hill

Order of Service – Quieter Christmas – 20th December 2020

The Order of Service follows below.

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Quieter Christmas

December 20, 2020

We acknowledge the Kaurna people as the traditional carers of the land on which our church is built.



Introit: Carol of the Children

John Rutter

Call to Worship

There might have been angels,
but I’m sure the birth included
pain and uncertainty
and maybe even a swear word or two.
That’s what birth is like.

We come to worship
and to remember
that Christ is born
in the messiness of our world;
in the ordinariness of our living.

Let us worship together
as we hold on to the promises
of the one who comes,

Opening Prayer

We Sing: It Came Upon the Midnight Clear

  1. It came upon the midnight clear,
    That glorious song of old,
    From angels bending near the earth
    To touch their harps of gold:
    “Peace on the earth, good will to all
    From heav’n’s all gracious King;”
    The world in solemn stillness lay,
    To hear the angels sing.

  2. Still through the cloven skies they come,
    With peaceful wings unfurled,
    And still their heav’nly music floats
    O’er all the weary world:
    Above its sad and lowly plains
    They bend on hov’ring wing,
    And ever o’er its Babel sounds
    The blessed angels sing.

  3. And ye, beneath life’s crushing load,
    Whose forms are bending low,
    Who toil along the climbing way
    With painful steps and slow,
    Look now! for glad and golden hours
    Come swiftly on the wing:
    O rest beside the weary road
    And hear the angels sing.

  4. For, lo, the days are hastening on,
    By prophet bards foretold,
    When with the ever-circling years
    Comes ’round the age of gold;
    When peace shall over all the earth
    Its ancient splendours fling,
    And all the world give back the song
    Which now the angels sing.

Words: Edmund H. Sears, 1849. Tune: Richard Storrs Willis, 1850. Public Domain.

Scripture Reading: from Psalm 147

Musical Reflection: Sing of a Promise

Scripture Reading: Luke 2:1-7

Reflection: The Paradox of Christmas

Musical Reflection: God’s Love Here Dwells

The Lighting of Candles

We Sing: O Little Town of Bethlehem

  1. O little town of Bethlehem,
    how still we see you lie!
    Above your deep and dreamless sleep
    the silent stars go by:
    yet, in your dark streets shining
    the everlasting light,
    the hopes and fears of all the years
    are met in you tonight.

  2. For Christ is born of Mary;
    and, gathered all above,
    while mortals sleep the angels keep
    their watch of wondering love.
    O morning stars, together
    proclaim the holy birth,
    and praises sing to God the King
    and peace to all on earth.

  3. How silently, how silently
    the wondrous gift is given!
    So God imparts to human hearts
    the blessings of his heaven.
    No ear may hear his coming;
    but in this world of sin,
    where meek souls will receive him, still
    the dear Christ enters in.

Phillip Brooks 1835-93. Public Domain.

Prayers of the People

The Lord’s Prayer

And now with the confidence of the children of God, let us pray the prayer Jesus taught us saying…

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be Your name,
your Kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in Heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins,
as we forgive those who sin
against us.
Save us in the time of trial
and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power
and the glory are yours
now and forever. Amen.

We Sing: Silent Night, Holy Night

  1. Silent night, holy night:
    all is calm, all is bright
    round the virgin mother and child,
    holy infant so tender and mild,
    sleep in heavenly peace,
    sleep in heavenly peace.

  2. Silent night, holy night:
    shepherds quake at the sight;
    glories stream from heaven afar,
    heavenly hosts sing, ‘Alleluia!
    Christ the Saviour is born,
    Christ the Saviour is born.’

  3. Silent night, holy night:
    wondrous star, lend your light;
    with the angels let us sing
    Alleluia to our King;
    Christ our Saviour is born,
    Christ our Saviour is born.

Franz Gruber 1787 – 1863. Joseph Mohr 1792-1848, tr John Freeman Young 1820-85 alt. Public Domain.

Sending Forth and Benediction