Resources for Worship on Advent III 2020

These are resources for the Third Sunday of Advent on December 13, 2020. The resources are gathered from a variety of sources and, while assembled mainly for The Anglican Church of St Thomas the Apostle, Kefalas, on the island of Crete in Greece, others may find them useful.

The Freedom Sculpture by the American sculptor Zenos Frudakis (yes, his parents are Greek, probably from Crete).

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The government of Greece released new directions yesterday (Friday, December 11). We will remain in lockdown until and including January 6, 2021, at least. We are not allowed to meet in person, except on Christmas Day, Friday December 25, and Epiphany, Wednesday January 6, 2021. We are limited to nine person in church on those days. So . . .

We will have two services of Holy Communion on Christmas Day, at 9:15 am and 11:00 am. If you wish to attend you must register in advance. To register please contact Pat Worsley by phone at +30 28257 71001 or by email at peter.worsley@btinternet.com; registration will be on a first come, first served basis.

If there is greater demand than can be accommodated by these two services, I am open to having more celebration of Holy Communion on that day.

The 11:00 am service will be on Zoom for those who do not wish to attend in person. We will definitely be singing hymns at that service! The 9:15 service will be a traditional Book of Common Prayer service of Holy Communion, with the 16th century Tudor English that many of you grew up with.

This Sunday, The Third Sunday of Advent, we will be on Zoom for a Service of the Word at 11:00 am EET (9:00 am GMT). You can join us by clicking this link or by entering the following into your Zoom application: Meeting ID: 850 4483 9927 Passcode: 010209.

Read

The readings we will be using this Sunday are Isaiah 61:1-4, 8-11, Psalm 126, and John 1:6-8, 19-28; many congregations will also use as a second reading 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24.

Reflect

I suspect that I will be preaching on the passage from Isaiah 61:

The spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
    because the Lord has anointed me;
he has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed,
    to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
    and release to the prisoners . . .

Pray

Collect

O Lord Jesus Christ,
who at your first coming sent your messenger
to prepare your way before you:
grant that the ministers and stewards of your mysteries
may likewise so prepare and make ready your way
by turning the hearts of the disobedient to the wisdom of the just,
that at your second coming to judge the world
we may be found an acceptable people in your sight;
for you are alive and reign with the Father
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.

(or)

God for whom we watch and wait,
you sent John the Baptist to prepare the way of your Son:
give us courage to speak the truth,
to hunger for justice,
and to suffer for the cause of right,
with Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Biddings
I bid your prayers for the leaders and people of the nations; especially

  • Katerini Sakellaropoulou, President of Greece, and
  • Elizabeth, Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and her other realms, and also in her role as Governor of the Church of England;
  • In the European Union,
    • Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission;
    • Charles Michel, President of the European Council; and
    • Josep Borrell, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs & Security Policy;
  • for the closing negotiations around Brexit;
  • for the peoples of the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland facing uncertainty over the fate of the Good Friday Accord;
  • the peoples of Belarus, Hong Kong, Nigeria, Peru, and Thailand as they continue to demonstrate for democracy and justice;
  • for the maintaining of peace between Azerbaijan and Armenia, and between Russia and Ukraine, Palestinians and Israelis, North and South Korea, and for a final, just resolution to their conflicts;
  • for the President-elect and peoples of the United States;
  • for advocates of Indigenous rights and the adoption and implementation of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples;
  • prisoners and captives, especially the over one million Uygers being held in detention in China;
  • the over 79.5 million refugees and nearly 4 million stateless person, remembering especially the crucial situation of Greece, and the work of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (“UNHCR”);
  • for a lessening of tensions between Turkey and Greece; and
  • for peace in Yemen, Libya, Afghanistan, Syria, and Ethiopia.

I bid your prayers for the sick and suffering and all who minister to their needs;

  • remembering the 20 million active cases of the novel coronavirus, and mourning with the families of the 1.6 million who have died in the pandemic;
  • for the 1.8 million people in the UK who have had covid-19 or are recovering from it, the over 63,000 who have died of it there, and the over 121,000 active cases here in Greece, and the families of the over 3370 dead here;
  • remembering those ill with other diseases, and those whose operations have been postponed;
  • all those having issues with mental health;
  • those suffering from addiction, and those in recovery;
  • those who have been affected severely by the economic effects of the pandemic, especially in food services and tourism;
  • and giving thanks for the efforts of researchers in finding vaccines, and the rollout of vaccines across the world.

I bid your prayers for the Church:

Intercessions
In joyful expectation of his coming to our aid we pray to Jesus.

Come to your Church as Lord and judge.
Help us to live in the light of your coming
and give us a longing for your kingdom.
Maranatha: Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

Come to your world as King of the nations.
Before you rulers will stand in silence.
Maranatha: Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

Come to the suffering as Saviour and comforter.
Break into our lives,
where we struggle with sickness and distress,
and set us free to serve you for ever.
Maranatha: Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

Come to us as shepherd and guardian of our souls.
Give us with all the faithful departed
a share in your victory over evil and death.
Maranatha: Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

Come from heaven, Lord Jesus, with power and great glory.
Lift us up to meet you,
that with Isaiah, John the Baptist, Thomas our patron and the rest of the Twelve, Paul, Mary of Magdala, Mary your mother, and all your saints and angels,
we may live and reign with you in your new creation.
Maranatha: Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

Silence is kept.

Come, Lord Jesus, do not delay;
give new courage to your people,
who trust in your love.
By your coming, raise us to share in the joy of your kingdom
on earth as in heaven,
where you live and reign with the Father and the Spirit,
one God for ever and ever. Amen.

Sing

About Bruce Bryant-Scott

Canadian. Husband. Father. Christian. Recovering Settler. A priest of the Church of England, Diocese in Europe, on the island of Crete in Greece. More about me at https://www.linkedin.com/in/bruce-bryant-scott-4205501a/
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