Welcome to ICYMI Worship! ICYMI stands for In Case You Missed It; our ICYMI series gives a brief snapshot of worship each week so that you can worship in your home, on the road, or wherever life takes you.
At Cross of Christ, our basic worship order is based on worship patterns from Hebrew traditions and biblical accounts of the earliest Christians: We GATHER with songs and prayer, We HEAR God’s word, We SHARE a meal of bread and wine, We are SENT into the world to love and serve. Let us know how this format works for you.
TODAY IS THE SECOND SUNDAY OF ADVENT
“Comfort, Comfort Now My People”
LIGHTING OF THE ADVENT CANDLE
R1 The second candle is the light of peace.
R2 Martin Luther King Jr. said “Peace is not merely a distant goal, but the means by which we arrive at that goal.”
R1 Jesus said, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they are called children of God.”
R2 The peace God offers us and the peace God calls us to offer others include striving for peace among people and peace among nations. But it’s an even deeper peace.
R1 God’s peace can be experienced even in the midst of turmoil and trouble. God’s peace comes to us when we need it most.
R2 As we light the two Advent candles, may the peace of Christ fill out hearts and calm our fears.
C Our peace is in the Lord
THIS WEEK’S GOSPEL
PASTOR DAVE’S SERMON SNAPSHOT: “A Sign of Peace”
In our second lesson the Apostle Paul writes about the peace Jesus came to offer to all people. Echoing Isaiah, Paul reminds the Christians in Colossae that God has rescued them from the dominion of darkness, bringing them into the light of the kingdom of his Son. Through the Son, the very living image of the invisible God, believers are redeemed, forgiven, and restored. Christians are at peace with God through the sacrifice Jesus offered on the cross – no matter what other trials or turmoil they may be experiencing.
And the One who became the Lamb of God, offering his life as a sacrifice for the sin of all, rose again from the grave.
In our Gospel lesson, the Risen Christ appears to his disciples who are still uncertain about what to make of the reports of the empty tomb. As they are hiding behind barred doors, Jesus appears in their midst. And the first word he speaks to them is peace.
“Peace be with you,” he says to them, not once, but once again. Jesus speaks peace not merely as a greeting – Shalom – but as the fulfillment of the promise made through Isaiah and all the prophets. His rising again verifies that he is indeed the Messiah of God, who came to lead people from darkness to light, from sin to salvation, and from discord to peace.
As we continue our Advent journey to Bethlehem and the manger, may each of us experience the peace of God which surpasses our human understanding and transcends our earthly circumstances. And may the Lord send us to someone to whom we can speak and offer the peace of the Christ Child, who is the Prince of Peace. Amen.
SONG OF THE DAY
“Come Now, O Prince of Peace (Ososŏ, ososŏ)”
PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
In this season of peace, let us pray with confidence for the Church, the world, and for all in need. Today each petition will end “Lord in your mercy,” to which the congregational response is “Hear our prayer.”
Bring peace, O Lord, to places of war and violence. Where there is ethnic, tribal, racial, or religious division, may peacemakers arise and reconciliation occur. Settle the worried and wearied spirits of all who long for peace but experience conflict and upheaval instead. Lord in your mercy…
Hear our prayer.
Bring balance, O Lord, to our land and all lands. May weather be favourable for farmers, ranchers, orchard tenders and vineyard workers. Bring rest to the soil in this coming season, and rest to those who labor so that we are fed. Lord in your mercy…
Hear our prayer.
Bring refreshment, O Lord, to those who are caregivers. Be with nurses, doctors, technicians and aides. Bless those who attend to the needs of the elderly, those who advocate for the oppressed, and for all who strive to bring your healing and peace. Lord in your mercy…
Hear our prayer.
Bring healing, O Lord, to the afflicted, the distressed, the sick and the dying. Grant peace to our members and their loved ones who have asked for public prayers: members Kay Anderson, Anna Bero; Dennis Bero; Alma Constable; Fred Corwin; Linda Ernst; Ed Hahn; Phyllis Hahn; Audrey Harris; Ruth Huehnerhoff; Eileen Johnson; Priscilla Kanestrom; LaNita Landru; Jeanne Lawson; Doris Lundquist, Jim Lyon; Bill McConnell, Betty McConnell, Mary Moen, Marlys Paulson; Dick Rehmke; and Marilyn Van Brero; former member John Boyd; family members Spike, son of Wanda Nelson; Jeff, son of Jerry and Joyce Johnson; Marlene, mother of Jerry and Joyce Johnson’s daughter-in-law; and Thomas, young friend of Jerry and Joyce Johnson. Bless those who join Pastor Judy in caroling with our homebound members, brightening their hearts in this season. Lord in your mercy…
Hear our prayer.
Hear our prayers, spoken and silent, that we commend to you this day, trusting in your abundant mercy, through Jesus Christ, our healer and our hope.
“Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming”
On the night in which he was betrayed, our Lord Jesus took bread, and gave thanks; broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying: Take and eat; this is my body, given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me. Again, after supper, he took the cup, gave thanks, and gave it for all to drink, saying: This cup is the new covenant in my blood, shed for you and for all people for the forgiveness of sin. Do this for the remembrance of me.
All are welcome to receive Christ’s Body and Blood in the Bread and Wine of the Eucharist.
ANNUAL ADVENT SMORGASBORD – Please join us downstairs in the Fellowship Hall following worship. Smorgasbord is a fun and festive Cross of Christ tradition featuring food, fellowship, and hospitality with traditional Scandinavian flair. Lunch will begin at approximately 11:30 am. Valkommen!
INVITATION TO COMMUNION – At Cross of Christ and throughout the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, we practice Open Communion. You will hear the Assisting Minster make this open invitation with the words, “All are welcome at the Lord’s Table. Christ is the host; we extend his invitation to all.” Please be invited to join us. Please also feel comfortable if you decide to not receive Holy Communion today. Most Sundays we come forward to receive the bread and the wine. If you would like to receive Communion where you are seated, please let the ushers who are assisting know your preference. We would be happy and honored to bring the Communion elements to you.
YOUNG CHILDREN AND FAMILIES ARE INVITED TO THE “PRAY-GROUND” – which is back in its familiar location at the back of the transept! This special space in the Sanctuary is designed for our youngest worshippers and their families. Children age 8 and under are welcome to color, play games, enjoy age-appropriate books, and just have their own space in the back of the transept – the southeast corner of the Sanctuary. We LOVE having children in worship! We hope this special place helps make them and their families feel both welcome and comfortable.
ROOF TRUSS UPDATE – We are so pleased and grateful that the construction phase of the project was completed on Monday. Remaining tasks include painting the steel supports, re-installation of track lighting and sound system components, and some cleanup. We’re making progress. Thank you for your patience, prayers, and “flexitivity”!
ADULT FAITH FORMATION – is on break today due to the Advent Smorgasbord. Next week and the following we’ll continue our original series for Advent, “Genealogy and Grace: Women of Jesus’ Family Tree.” Adult Faith Formation takes place between services, from 10:15 to 10:55 am, in the Library, led by Pastor Dave.
CHILDREN’S SUNDAY SCHOOL – is also taking today off, returning next Sunday. This fun learning time is for children age 4 to 10. Join Miss Kristie in the Youth Room between services.
SEASON OF GIVING – As you make your Christmas gift shopping list and consider year-end charitable donations, please considering giving a financial gift to your church. We remain behind in giving at this point in the fiscal year compared to the same time last year. While our expenses remain virtually flat, our giving deficit means we began the second half of the fiscal year with about a $25,000 deficit. Thanks to your generosity, we’ve narrowed the gap some, but we still have a way to go before the end of year to make sure difficult decisions do not have to be made. Thank you for supporting the mission and ministries of Cross of Christ, especially in this “Season of Giving!”
LECTORS STILL NEEDED – Thanks to those who have signed up recently to be a reader of one of the lessons during worship. It’s a joy to hear God’s word shared in many voices. There are still some open slots this month. To participate in this meaningful way, go to the Cross of Christ webpage – www.crossofchristbellevue.org – and click on the “volunteer” link. You can also call Office Administrator Judy Giseburt during regular office hours and she will get you signed up. Readings are sent to lectors ahead of time.
THE HOPELINK GIVING TREE – is in the Narthex, with gift tags representing the hopes of some of our neighborhoods who are counting on us to brighten their Christmas. By taking a tag and bringing back a new unwrapped gift to place under the tree, you are helping to create a special Christmas for a young person in our community. The Giving Tree will be in the Narthex through next Sunday, when gifts need to be received in order to be taken to Hopelink for distribution. Thank you in advance for supporting this important outreach.
BLUE CHRISTMAS NEXT SUNDAY – Each December, Cross of Christ offers this meaningful service for those who might be experiencing a challenging holiday season. The loss of a loved one, a serious medical challenge, a change in work status, or just the holiday blues can make us feel like we’re the only ones not having a “holy, jolly” Christmas. We can feel alone, even among other people. We can feel like God is distant. Our Blue Christmas service is a safe, sacred space to be honest with these feelings, and to hear words of hope, that Immanuel – God with Us – is the promise that the Lord will not abandon us even and especially in our down and dark days. We welcome all who might feel a bit blue this year, and those willing to stand with them, to this quiet, peaceful 30-minute service next Sunday at 1 pm.
OFFERING COUNTER HELP WANTED – Our bookkeeper, Denise Fuentes, is looking for additional help with offering counting. The counters typically meet Monday mornings to count the weekly offerings. If you are interested, please contact Denise at firstname.lastname@example.org.
CHRISTMAS FLOWER DEDICATIONS – If you would like to make a donation for Christmas poinsettias and other flowers, the forms are available at the Information Desk in the Narthex. Donations and forms need to be received by Monday, December 23. Dedications will be listed in the Christmas Eve worship bulletins. Thank you for helping beautify the Sanctuary for Christmas.
THANK YOU TO THE CONGREGATION – Many thanks to the Cross of Christ Congregation for supporting our supply drive for the Congregations for the Homeless. The men appreciated the warm socks, the needed razors toothpaste and toothbrushes, foot care products, shampoo and body care products, deodorant and pillows. The supplies were delivered to the CFH Day Center and to the rotating shelter for this month. The rotating shelters consists of twelve churches each providing housing and meals for one month. Cross of Christ house and provide meals for the men for the month of May. Thanks again for all of your help and generosity. Thanks for sharing your gifts.
NAME TAGS ARE SIGNS OF WELCOME – You’re encouraged to wear your Cross of Christ name tag to worship each Sunday. This simple act helps people get to know one another, is welcoming for guests, and is greatly appreciated by the pastor (who, try as he might, occasionally temporarily forgets names!). If you have misplaced your name tag, or haven’t received one but would like to, Office Administrator Judy Giseburt would happily make you one. Contact Judy in the office at 425-746-7300 or at email@example.com.
PRAYERS FOR HOMEBOUND MEMBERS – Kay Anderson, Ed and Phyllis Hahn, Doris Lundquist, Ruth Huehnerhoff, Bill and Betty McConnell, Mary Moen, Marlys Paulson, and Marilyn Van Brero.
May the Word of God find a home in our hearts.
May the Son of God be our guide and our path.
May the Spirit of God stir us with holy anticipation
As we wait and watch and work for the Coming King.
“Hark! A Thrilling Voice is Sounding”
By God’s grace, through faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, we are called to
Grow in Faith
Share the Gospel
Serve others, and
Thanks be to God!