Dec 18

Christmas Eve/Christmas Day (Year C)

There is a multitude of readings that you can use for Christmas Eve and/or Christmas Day.  I have posted about each of these before, so you will want to check out those posts (I have links below).  Meanwhile, here are a few new ideas:

Nativity of the Lord – Proper I

Previously posted ideas for these readings can be found here.

Isaiah 9:2-7
  • With so many disasters and tragedies in our world, it truly feels as though we are “people who walked in darkness” this Advent.  The good news of Christmas is that the light of the world has come — Christ is born!  There is a light shining in the darkness.
  • Perhaps you will be lighting candles as part of your worship service.  Of course, that isn’t the only way that you can incorporate lightin your worship service and worship space.
    • Small flashlights could be used as props or as giveaway gifts for the congregation.
    • Glow sticks could be used to bring some light into your worship space.  Kids may find these to be particularly fun.
    • Glow-in-the-dark items (stars, stickers, ornaments, etc) could be given away to children or all those in the congregation.
    • Light up the night with luminaries outside of your church building.  If you are afraid to use real candles, there are LED votive candles that can be used outside that work well.
  • Sometimes people ask that we remove our shoes before we enter their homes, as not to bring in dirt and grime that may be stuck to our soles.  In this text, we are told that the boots of “tramping warriors” (as well as all of their bloody clothing) will be burned.  Do we need to give up our boots or check our clothes for blood?
Psalm 96
  • There is only one God, but we are all guilty of following/creating/worshiping other gods(idols).  What are the idols that we need to turn away from (so that we can fully and faithfully worship the Lord)?
  • What do we ascribe to the Lord?  Is it glory and strength?  How can we do that more or better?
  • All of creation is described as worshiping the Lord.  Use pictures of hills, valleys, fields, stars, clouds (etc) to illustrate this passage.
Titus 2:11-14
  • We are invited to “renounce impiety and worldly passions” and live lives of self-control.  In the light of the newborn Christ, what do we need to renounce?
Luke 2:1-14, (15-20)
  • Feeling daring?  Ask for volunteers to create a living nativity scene in the front of your worship space while you read the scripture.  You could use costumes if you have them.
  • You could sing your way through this scripture – highlighting particular carols as you read through the story.  For example, you could sing O Little Town of Bethlehem after reading verses 1-5.  Then, you could sing Away in a Manger after reading verses 6-7…

Nativity of the Lord – Proper II

Previously posted ideas for these readings can be found here.

Isaiah 62:6-12
  • We are told to clear the highway of stones.  Create large “stones” out of paper or plaster (or, use actual large stones), and label them with all of the many things that get between us and God: things like sin, hate, violence, guilt, judgement, selfishness, worry, etc.  During the time for your Prayer of Confession, invite the congregation to remove the stones from in front of the Table.
Psalm 97
  • Use images of clouds, lightning, mountains, oceans, etc to illustrate this psalm.
  • The Lord loves those who hate evil — but that doesn’t mean that God hates those who do evil.  Like it or not, we have to admit that we all do evil things (if we didn’t, we would have nothing to confess, and there would be no need for God’s forgiveness).  God hates sin, yes — not the sinner.  We are called to do likewise…
Titus 3:4-7
  • If you are going to feature this scripture passage, you may want to feature your baptismal font in your worship space, too.  You may want to use water-safe lights and decorative stones to make the water in the font truly sparkle (which is especially effective when you have a glass bowl as part of the font).
Luke 2:(1-7), 8-20
  • See the comments that are listed above…

Nativity of the Lord – Proper III

Previously posted ideas for these readings can be found here.

Isaiah 52:7-10
  • How beautiful are the feet…  Collect lotions and soaps (which could be used to pamper people’s feet) to be given to a local shelter.
  • Is your congregation having a candlelighting service?  Why not take the candlelight outside and go carolling in your neighborhood?  It could be a fun way to “break forth together into singing”.
Psalm 98
  • Invite a variety of instrumentalists to participate in your worship service.
  • Distribute instruments to the congregation (rhythm sticks, cymbals, bells, kazoos, etc), and encourage them to play along during the hymns and carols.
Hebrews 1:1-4, (5-12)
  • God spoke to our ancestors (both spiritual and otherwise), and God speaks to us yet today.  In particular, God speaks to us in the person of Jesus the Christ.
  • You could decorate your worship space with a large “family tree”, featuring our spiritual ancestors (our Biblical heritage).  Then, welcome the congregation to add leaves with their names on them to the tree (demonstrating that we are all part of God’s family).
John 1:1-14
  • “A light shines in the darkness…”  Use small, battery-operated lights to illuminate the nativity display in your worship space.  If possible, arrange the lights in such a way that the light seems to radiate from the manger.

1 ping

  1. Christmas Eve/Christmas Day (Year A) - The Worship Closet

    […] posted about the various Nativity of the Lord readings in previous posts. The one that I posted last year has a plethora of ideas, as well as links to other posts that could be helpful.  You can also find […]

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