Christmas Eve

Thursday, December 24, 2020, 8:00 pm



Opening Voluntaries: 

“Infant Holy,”                                                       arr. Michel Rondeau
“O Little Town of Bethlehem,”                          arr. Michel Rondeau
Variations on “From Heaven Above,”             arr. Michel Rondeau
“Angels We Have Heard on High,”                  arr. Benjamin Culli


Processional: “O Come, All Ye Faithful”

 Celebrant       Blessed be God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
People             And blessed be his kingdom, now and for ever. Amen.


CELEBRANT Almighty God, unto whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of thy Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love thee, and worthily magnify thy holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen.

The choir sings “Angels we have heard on high”


The Collect of the Day

CELEBRANT  The Lord be with you
PEOPLE           And with thy spirit.
CELEBRANT  Let us pray.

O God, who hast caused this holy night to shine with the illumination of the true Light: Grant us, we beseech thee, that as we have known the mystery of that Light upon earth, so may we also perfectly enjoy him in heaven; where with thee and the Holy Spirit he liveth and reigneth, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.


The Lesson Isaiah 9:2-4,6-7

The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shined.  Thou hast multiplied the nation, thou hast increased its joy; they rejoice before thee as with joy at the harvest, as men rejoice when they divide the spoil. For the yoke of his burden, and the staff for his shoulder, the rod of his oppressor, thou hast broken as on the day of Midian. For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government will be upon his shoulder, and his name will be called “Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David, and over his kingdom, to establish it, and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness, from this time forth and for evermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.

READER  The Word of the Lord.
PEOPLE   Thanks be to God.


Alleluia   “Let Our Gladness Have No End,”      Traditional Bohemian

Let our gladness have no end. Hallelujah! Unto earth did
Christ descend, Hallelujah! On this day God gave us Christ,
His Son, to save us. Christ His Son, to save us. Hallelujah!


The Gospel Luke 2:1-20       

CELEBRANT  The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke.
PEOPLE           Glory be to thee, O Lord.

In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be enrolled. This was the first enrollment, when Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all went to be enrolled, each to his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be enrolled with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child.  And while they were there, the time came for her to be delivered.  And she gave birth to her first‑born son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.  And in that region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear.  And the angel said to them, “Be not afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy which will come to all the people; for to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a babe wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among men with whom he is pleased!”  When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.”  And they went with haste, and found Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they saw it they made known the saying which had been told them concerning this child; and all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. But Mary kept all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.

CELEBRANT  The Gospel of the Lord.
PEOPLE           Praise be to thee, O Christ. 


The Sermon  Fr. David Houk


The Nicene Creed

I believe in one God,
the Father Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
and of all things visible and invisible;
And in one Lord Jesus Christ,
the only-begotten Son of God,
begotten of his Father before all worlds,
God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God,
begotten, not made,
being of one substance with the Father;
by whom all things were made;
who for us men and for our salvation
came down from heaven,
and was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary,
and was made man;
and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered and was buried;
and the third day he rose again according to the Scriptures,
and ascended into heaven,
and sitteth on the right hand of the Father;
and he shall come again, with glory,
to judge both the quick and the dead;
whose kingdom shall have no end.
And I believe in the Holy Ghost the Lord, and Giver of Life,
who proceedeth from the Father and the Son;
who with the Father and the Son together is worshiped and glorified;
who spake by the Prophets.
And I believe one holy Catholic and Apostolic Church;
I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins;
and I look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come. Amen.


Prayers of the People

LEADER In peace, let us pray to the Lord.

LEADER Heavenly Father, on this holy night your Son our Savior was born in human flesh. Renew your Church as the Body of Christ. Lord, in your mercy,
PEOPLE Hear our prayer.

LEADER On this holy night there was no room for your Son in the inn. Protect with your love those who have no home and all who live in poverty. Lord, in your mercy,
PEOPLE Hear our prayer.

LEADER On this holy night Mary, in the pain of labor, brought your Son to birth. Hold in your hand all who are in pain or distress. Lord, in your mercy,
PEOPLE  Hear our prayer.

LEADER On this holy night your Christ came as a light shining in the darkness. Bring comfort to all who suffer in the sadness of our world. Lord, in your mercy,
PEOPLE Hear our prayer.

LEADER On this holy night the angels sang, “Peace to God’s people on earth.” Strengthen those who work for peace and justice in all the world. Lord, in your mercy,
PEOPLE Hear our prayer.

LEADER On this holy night shepherds in the field heard good tidings of joy. Give us grace to share the gospel of Christ’s redemption. Lord, in your mercy,
PEOPLE Hear our prayer.

LEADER On this holy night strangers found the Holy Family, and saw the baby lying in the manger. Bless our homes and all whom we love. Lord, in your mercy,
PEOPLE Hear our prayer.

LEADER On this holy night heaven came down to earth, and earth was raised to heaven. Hold in your hand all those who have passed through death in the hope of your coming kingdom. Lord, in your mercy,
PEOPLE Hear our prayer.

LEADER On this holy night Christians the world over celebrate Christ’s birth. Open our hearts that he may be born in us today. Lord, in your mercy
PEOPLE Hear our prayer.

LEADER On this holy night angels and shepherds worshipped at the manger throne. Receive the worship we offer in fellowship with Mary and Joseph and all the saints, through him who is your Word made flesh, our Savior Jesus Christ.


CELEBRANT Almighty God, who hast given us thy only-begotten Son to take our nature upon him and as at this time to be born of a pure virgin: Grant that we, being regenerate and made thy children by adoption and grace, may daily be renewed by thy Holy Spirit; through the same our Lord Jesus Christ, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the same Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.


Confession of Sin

CELEBRANT Let us humbly confess our sins unto Almighty God.

Celebrant and people
Most merciful God,
we confess that we have sinned against thee
in thought, word, and deed,
by what we have done,
and by what we have left undone.
We have not loved thee with our whole heart;
we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves.
We are truly sorry and we humbly repent.
For the sake of thy Son Jesus Christ,
have mercy on us and forgive us;
that we may delight in thy will,
and walk in thy ways,
to the glory of thy Name. Amen.


The Peace

CELEBRANT  The peace of the Lord be always with you.
PEOPLE           And with thy spirit.



Offertory Anthem: “In dulci jubilo,” BuxWV 52                               Dietrich Buxtehude

Good Christian friends, rejoice
with heart and soul and voice;
give ye heed to what we say:
Jesus Christ was born today.
Ox and ass before him bow,
and he is in the manger now.
Christ is born today!
Christ is born today!


The Great Thanksgiving

CELEBRANT  The Lord be with you.
PEOPLE           And with thy spirit.
CELEBRANT  Lift up your hearts.
PEOPLE           We lift them up unto the Lord.
CELEBRANT  Let us give thanks unto our Lord God.
PEOPLE           It is meet and right so to do.

CELEBRANT  It is very meet, right, and our bounden duty, that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks unto thee, O Lord, holy Father, almighty, everlasting God.

Therefore with Angels and Archangels, and with all the company of heaven, we laud and magnify thy glorious Name; evermore praising thee, and saying,

Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of Hosts:
Heaven and earth are full of thy glory.
Glory be to thee, O Lord Most High.

Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.
Hosanna in the highest.


All glory be to thee, O Lord our God, for that thou didst create heaven and earth, and didst make us in thine own image; and, of thy tender mercy, didst give thine only Son Jesus Christ to take our nature upon him, and to suffer death upon the cross for our redemption. He made there a full and perfect sacrifice for the whole world; and did institute, and in his holy Gospel command us to continue, a perpetual memory of that his precious death and sacrifice, until his coming again.

For in the night in which he was betrayed, he took bread; and when he had given thanks to thee, he broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take, eat, this is my Body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”

Likewise, after supper, he took the cup; and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink this, all of you; for this is my Blood of the New Covenant, which is shed for you, and for many, for the remission of sins. Do this, as oft as ye shall drink it, in remembrance of me.”

Wherefore, O Lord and heavenly Father, we thy people do celebrate and make, with these thy holy gifts which we now offer unto thee, the memorial thy Son hath commanded us to make; having in remembrance his blessed passion and precious death, his mighty resurrection and glorious ascension; and looking for his coming again with power and great glory.

And we most humbly beseech thee, O merciful Father, to hear us, and, with thy Word and Holy Spirit, to bless and sanctify these gifts of bread and wine, that they may be unto us the Body and Blood of thy dearly-beloved Son Jesus Christ.

And we earnestly desire thy fatherly goodness to accept this our sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving, whereby we offer and present unto thee, O Lord, our selves, our souls and bodies. Grant, we beseech thee, that all who partake of this Holy Communion may worthily receive the most precious Body and Blood of thy Son Jesus Christ, and be filled with thy grace and heavenly benediction; and also that we and all thy whole Church may be made one body with him, that he may dwell in us, and we in him; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord;

By whom, and with whom, and in whom, in the unity of the Holy Ghost all honor and glory be unto thee, O Father Almighty, world without end.


CELEBRANT  And now, as our Savior Christ hath taught us, we are bold to say,

Our Father, who art in heaven,
     hallowed be thy Name,
     thy kingdom come,
     thy will be done,
          on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
     as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
     but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory,
     for ever and ever. Amen.


The Breaking of the Bread

The Celebrant breaks the consecrated Bread.

PEOPLE  Alleluia. Christ our passover is sacrificed for us; Therefore let us keep the feast. Alleluia.

CELEBRANT  The gifts of God for the people of God. Take them in remembrance that Christ died for you, and feed on him in your hearts by faith, with thanksgiving.

Believers who can not physically receive communion at this time are encouraged to offer the following prayer.

In union, O Lord, with your faithful people at every altar of your Church, where the Holy Eucharist is now being celebrated, I desire to offer to you praise and thanksgiving. I remember your death, Lord Christ; I proclaim your resurrection; I await your coming in glory. Since I cannot receive you today in the Sacrament of your Body and Blood, I beseech you to come spiritually into my heart. Cleanse and strengthen me with your grace, Lord Jesus, and let me never be separated from you. May I live in you, and you in me, in this life and in the life to come. Amen.

Communion Anthem: “For Unto Us a Child is Born,” from The Messiah G. F. Handel

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the
government shall be upon His shoulder; and His name shall
be called, Wonderful, Counsellor, the mighty God, the
Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.


The choir sings “Silent Night”


CELEBRANT AND PEOPLE  Almighty and everliving God, we most heartily thank thee for that thou dost feed us, in these holy mysteries, with the spiritual food of the most precious Body and Blood of thy Son our Savior Jesus Christ; and dost assure us thereby of thy favor and goodness towards us; and that we are very members incorporate in the mystical body of thy Son, the blessed company of all faithful people; and are also heirs, through hope, of thy everlasting kingdom. And we humbly beseech thee, O heavenly Father, so to assist us with thy grace, that we may continue in that holy fellowship, and do all such good works as thou hast prepared for us to walk in; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be all honor and glory, world without end. Amen.

CELEBRANT  May Christ, who by his Incarnation gathered into one things earthly and heavenly, fill you with his joy and peace; and the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, be amongst you, and remain with you always. Amen.

CELEBRANT  Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.
PEOPLE           Thanks be to God.


Closing Voluntary: “Hark the Herald Angels Sing”         arr. John Ferguson


Christmas flowers and decorations are offered to the Glory of God by the following:
The Towell Family in loving memory of Shyrlee Towell
Mike and Toni Garrett in celebration of their 48th wedding anniversary
Tom and Kris Allsion in celebration of our wedding anniversary on September 8
The Hodge Family in celebration of Libby Hodge’s 100th birthday on April 21, 2020
Melinda Baxter Manaugh in loving memory of Jimmy and Norma Jean Baxter
Nabil and Pat Cronin Hadawi in loving memory of Nora Hadawi and Merigo Cronin, in thanksgiving for our family and friends and the continued recovery of Pat. We are so blessed for all our St. John’s Family
Patrick and Debbie Euziere in celebration of our 30th wedding anniversary (4/21) and Natalie’s 25th birthday (4/24)
Bill and Susie Kiraly in celebration of their 40th wedding anniversary on June 21
Jay and Ellen Patterson in thanksgiving to God for the gift of His Son, the many blessings from Him this year such as the birth of our first great-grandchild, Evie, and the wedding of grandson Chris and his wife Alaina
Donald and Susie Jones in loving remembrance of our parents, sister and brothers
Garry and Susan Brown in thanksgiving for our many blessings
Nancy Patterson
Barbara Cowart and Family in loving memory of Michael Cowart
Bruce and Betsy Blais in thanksgiving for Fr. Houk and team for keeping us all connected
Vernon and Suzie Walker in grateful thanksgiving for the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ
Claire Black in thanksgiving for her brother Ross Crawford
Mike and Vicki Lewis in thanksgiving for our family and friends
Mike and Julia Harrell in loving memory of Paul Harrell and Kathleen Harrell, and in thanksgiving for our St. John’s family
Kyle and Keri Hissim in thanksgiving for family and our health
Fergal and Ann Purcell to the glory of God and in thanksgiving for the birth of our Savior
Lon and Judy Williams in loving memory of our parents – Rayburn and Virginia Williams and Joanne Abrahamson Noe

Instrumentalists: Tyler Sarver, trumpet. Gabrielle Bronzich, horn and Celtic harp; Justin Roth, trombone; Charles Cudney, trombone; David Hobbs, timpani.

Choristers: Gabrielle Gilliam, Carrie Kolodziej, Cynthia Smiley, Ethan Pittson, David Hobbs.

Marriage, Harold & Ree Slone 

Intercessory Prayer List
If you would like to be placed on the prayer list, or have a prayer request for someone else, please contact the parish office: or go online:

Holy Communion
If you are homebound and have a desire for communion being brought to you, please email the parish office at or Jim Stacy.

Baptism Opportunity
The next opportunity for Holy Baptism is on January 10, 2021, The Baptism of Our Lord, at the 11:00
am service. The deadline for signing up is December 30. Please contact the parish office to register for preparation,



Altar Flowers
Altar flowers are given to the glory of God by Jerry and Jane Kramer in thanksgiving for their 59th wedding anniversary on August 4 and


New Here?

Welcome to St. John's. We invite you to worship and connect with our community.