Christmas Eve '23

GATHERING HYMN                  “Joy to the World”                              #267


Amid the troubles and fears of this world,

   let us confess our sin and welcome God’s forgiveness, grace, and love.

    Silence is kept for reflection

Mary accepted your call to be the mother of Jesus.

 Forgive our lack of faith and trust.

Your Son was born in the poverty of a stable.

 Forgive our neglect of the poor.

The shepherds left their flocks and went to Bethlehem.

 Forgive our selfishness and complacency.

With great joy the angels proclaimed,

“Do not fear. For I bring you good news of great joy.

To you is born this day, a savior who is Christ the Lord.”

In Jesus, who is Savior, Christ, and Lord, your sins are forgiven.

May you know the peace which the angels sang from the heavens.

Indeed, God’s forgiveness is good news of great joy!



The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God sent from heaven above, be with you all.

  And also with you.

Let us pray. Incarnate God, on this Christmas Eve we give you thanks for sending your Son to bring light to our darkness. Grant that we, like the angels over Bethlehem, may sing your praises in our hearts and in our lives.


HYMN OF PRAISE           “Oh Come, All Ye Faithful”                           #283


And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree 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 into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David.) To be enrolled with Mary his espoused wife, who was great with child. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, “Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto 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 shall find a babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, 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, good will toward men.

HYMN                  “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing”                        #270

Luke 2:15-20

When the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, "Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord has made known unto us." And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known the saying which had been told them concerning this child; And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

SERMON        “Peace, Goodwill Toward All”         Pastor Phil Wold

HYMN OF THE DAY        “Angels We Have Heard on High”                 #289

NICENE CREED                                                                    

We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty,

  maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God,

  eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light,

  true God from true God, begotten, not made,

  of one Being with the Father; through him all things were made.

For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven,

was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the virgin Mary

   and became truly human.

For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;

he suffered death and was buried.

  On the third day he rose again in accordance with the scriptures;

he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,

   and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,

  who proceeds from the Father and the Son,

  who with the Father and the Son is worshiped and glorified,

  who has spoken through the prophets.

  We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic church.

  We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.

  We look for the resurrection of the dead,

  and the life of the world to come. Amen.

OFFERING AND OFFERTORY                                                           


OFFERING HYMN          “O Little Town of Bethlehem”     #279


Let us pray. God of time and eternity, you have given your only Son, born of Mary,

to save and redeem us. Bless us with all good things, that the works of our hands

through all the years of our lives may proclaim the news of your redeeming

love in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen


The angels sing Glory to God in the highest and peace to God’s people on earth. The peace of the Lord be with you always.  And also with you.

(Please share the peace of the Christ child with all whom you can!)


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, forever and ever. Amen.


CLOSING HYMN                         “Silent Night”                             #281     


Go in Peace, Christ is with you. Thanks be to God.

From Sundays and Copyright 2022 Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved. Reprinted by permission under Augsburg Fortress Liturgies Annual License #26385.

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

POSTLUDE "When the Song of the Angels is Stilled"