Light’s Wisdom: Festival of Epiphany – Year B, January 6, 2021

Light’s Wisdom
Service Prayers for the Festival of Epiphany
January 6, 2021

Since Congregations are returning to “in-person” services at different paces, Worship Ways for will be edited for online use.  “Rubrics” for virtual services will be noted in red;  take and adapt as you need!

Call to Worship

Leader should speak the lines of the people, along with the Leader’s lines
Leader:          We gather in the Light
that was before, is now, and ever will be.
People:         Out loud, but muted
                     We seek the Light’s ancient wisdom.

We gather in the Light
that is God’s continuing gift.
People:         Out loud, but muted
                      We live into the Light’s new wisdom.

We gather in the Light
that is our own, emerging anew each day.
People:         Out loud, but muted
                      We seek to share this wisdom,
                      nurtured in the Light from Bethlehem’s cradle.

Invocation

God of Light and Love,
in this very moment the star still beckons.
Gather us and let the star call us to new ways
of healing and hope,
restoration and renewal,
as we discover again Christ’s call to discipleship.             Amen.

Prayer of Confession

(The leader stands in front of an un-lit candle)

Sometimes we feel lost and even consumed by darkness.
We wonder if we are loveable.
Our actions dim the value and worth of others, and ourselves.
People:         Out loud, but muted
Lord have mercy. Christ have mercy. Lord have mercy. 

Sometimes we feel lost in shadows of unclear choices.
Which way will lead to justice? To transformation? To peace?
We are afraid to risk a step out, unsure of the path.
People:         Out loud, but muted
Lord have mercy. Christ have mercy. Lord have mercy.

(The leader lights the candle)

But in Christ, God has given us a new Light,
kindling unconditional love for us,
and showing us a well-lit path
to wholeness and forgiveness;
to courage and clarity.
People:         Out loud, but muted
Thanks be to God.

Scripture, Sermon, Prayers of the People
Notes for the worship planners in 2021:
Consider a simple message or even an  interactive Bible Study that engages people with the Scriptures for today.

 For the Prayers of the People, you might use a bidding prayer (“God, we pray today for those who are sick, including ….”) and encourage folk to type in their prayers using Zoom chat or Facebook Live; allow for more time in silence for those prayers to be typed and read. Consider a collective response at the end of each bidding prayer.

  • A caution regarding prayers of the People online: Folks gathered in-person often recount a lot of detail in their prayers concerning other members or family (“Elderly Name, living alone, experiencing isolation…”  In  a private, in-person gathering, this information may be safe, but online, it can expose vulnerable people to harm, since we can’t control who will join the gathering or access it later online.  Invite people to be prudent in offering prayers:  “For First name only, in need of healing”; “For First name only, comfort in grief”  etc. 

Encourage people to contact the pastor directly with news of those needed extra pastoral care

Offertory Prayer

Loving God,
may these gifts reveal to us and to others
the Light that is Jesus.
And may this Light lead us on
into new and challenging ways of living and serving.

Benediction

Now go surrounded by Christ’s light,
and the blessing of God
Creator, Christ and Holy Spirit –
be with you now,
all those you pray for,
and all those you remember. Amen.

Prayers for the Festival of Epiphany was written by the Rev.  Susan A. Blain, Minister for Worship and Gospel Arts, UCC.

Copyright 2021 Faith INFO Ministry Team, United Church of Christ, 700 Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, OH  44115-1100.  Permission granted to reproduce or adapt this material for use in services of worship or church education.  All publishing rights reserved.


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