Magi and the gift of faith

Sunday 13th December 2020 is the third Sunday of Advent: Rev Mike leads us deeper into the Christmas season with this weeks service.

This Advent Season we’re going to take the time to actively wait in preparation for the Christ-event.  Our focus for these four Sundays is going to be on the gifts of Advent, as we await the greatest gift of all…the gift of Jesus.  The Apostle Paul expressed this perfectly when, in 2 Corinthians 9: 15, he says,Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift.’

We are live: In Church, In Person. On Demand:  On your phone, your tablet, and your computer.

Throughout these uncertain times, we continue to operate in accordance with Scottish Government requirements and guidelines.  In order to accommodate as many members and friends as possible, we are holding two services, at 10:00am and at 11:00am.  Attending numbers have to be restricted, and it is essential to book in advance (see our section below titled Sundays re-started).

We are also presenting this weeks sermon and a home worship order of service, here for you to use if you are not able to make it to Wilson Memorial Church in person, or if you just want to listen to Rev Mike again.

This weeks order of worship that you can use:

  • Light a candle – to remember that Christ is the light of the world, and overcomes every darkness.
  • Opening praise – read or sing “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” – here is a you-tube video with music, that you can sing along to.

  • Opening prayer -“Lord of impending Light, we rejoice in Your compassion for us.  You send us Your light and Your healing love so that we may become better representatives of You in this world, a world that cries of for Your justice, love and peace.  Be with us today as we gather together to hear Your Word for us.  God of mercy, light and love, we confess that we have not always been people who are quick to pray.  When an emergency or crisis comes upon we turn to pleas and prayers, which usually begin with the heart-wrenching cry ‘Why?’.  Help us to remember that You are always ready to hear and respond to all our prayers.  Remind us that even though we have often failed to witness to Your love and live as people of compassion and faith, You love us unconditionally.  Forgive our stubbornness and wilful disobedience.  Cleanse our souls and spirits and make us truly ready to receive the greatest gift of our faith…the gift of Jesus, in whose name we pray.   Amen.
  • Scripture reading – Matthew 2:1-12
  • Video Sermon Magi and the gift of faith – This weeks video sermon was presented live at Wilson Memorial Church on Sunday 13th December 2020.

  • Praise – Read or sing “We three kings” – here is a you-tube video with music, that you can sing along to.

  • Prayer of the people – 

    “Come, Christ Jesus, be our guest and enter our lives today with Your blessing.  We are longing for the presence and peace You bring.  Draw near to us in friendship and faithfulness so that in this season which combines celebration in the face of uncertainty, we know Your presence and sing with all Your people:

    Rejoice, rejoice, Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.

    Come, Christ Jesus, be our guide and show us the way to wisdom and gratitude.  We are thankful for the kindness we know in friends and good neighbours, in warm homes and warm smiles, which hold back the darkness and fear for the future.  Encourage us to reach out to those who need Your embrace and ours, so that together we may sing of Your presence:

    Rejoice, rejoice, Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.

    Come, Christ Jesus, be our hope and touch us with Your healing grace.  We remember before You all those we know and those known to You alone who are living with loss or illness this season, those who face depression or discouragement, and all who will find it hard to be merry this year…

    Shine the light of Your comfort into their lives, as we sing of the hope that dawns in Your love:

    Rejoice, rejoice, Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.

    Come, Christ Jesus, be our king and claim Your rightful place in our hearts.  Our world is struggling for the justice and mercy You alone can bring.  Draw alongside our leaders and all working for peace and justice, and those striving to contain and heal the effects of the pandemic.  Give hope to people facing oppression and to those who live with fear or hunger day by day.  Lord, bring forward the day when the world’s people will live as neighbours reconciled in Your truth and freedom.  For the coming of that Day we pray in the strong name of Jesus.  Amen.”

  • Closing praise – Read or sing “As with gladness, men of old” – here is a you-tube video,, that you can sing along to.

  • Benediction “Go and continue your journey of faith, following the same Star that lead the Magi to Christ.  When you have found the child for yourselves, then go and tell that good news to all you meet…and may the blessing of God Almighty, Father, Son and Holy Spirit be upon you, now and always.   Amen.
  • Extinguish the candle

What else is happening at Wilson Memorial this week?

basics bank imageWe have created a program of on-line events that you can join in from the comfort of your favourite armchair. Details of these events can be found on our “What’s on – Lockdown special” web page.  Go and check it out, NOW!

In addition to video sermons, we also now have podcast sermons available to download and listen to on your mobile device wherever you are.  We also have a “dial a sermon” service available, where you can listen to sermons by telephone.  To phone a service, simply call us on 0131 297 6174, you will hear an automated greeting, and then after a short pause the latest sermon will play.

Private prayerSundays re-started– As permitted by the Scottish Government, we are now open for Sunday worship services.  Unfortunately, we do have to introduce some restrictions in order that we can manage the required social distancing rules, and keep everyone as safe as possible.  This means we have had to significantly reduce our seating capacity, and introduce a booking system to ensure we do not exceed the allowed number of worshipers in our church building.  In order that as many people as possible can join us, we will be holding two Sunday worship services: At 10:00am and 11:00am.  Details of the  booking process can be found in the August Issue 5 Newsletter. Social distancing measures and hygiene precautions are in place.

Our Basics Bank, Food Bank, continues to operate as normal every Tuesday providing a critical service to individuals and families suffering hardship in our local community.  Follow the link to find out how we are preparing for Christmas at the Basics Bank.

Read more about the United Free Church of Scotland

 

The October/November 2020 edition of STEDFAST, our denominations magazine, is now available from Wilson Memorial Church.

We have hard copy coffee-table editions and soft copy tablet/PC editions available.

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