The Second Sunday of Advent is the Sunday of Peace, and much about this service will be designed to help you feel peace within the beauty and comfort of Advent. Members of the Board of Mission and Social Action will light the Advent Candle with the children’s help. We will read reassuring words from the Prophet Micah (5:2-5a) about our security in God, a passage that ends “and he shall be the one of peace.” We will hear one of the most beautiful passages in all the Bible, the Benedictus of Zechariah, the Father of John the Baptist, that ends:
“By the tender mercy of our God,
the dawn from on high will break upon us,
to give light to those who sit in darkness
and in the shadow of death,
to guide our feet into the way of peace.”
We will sing one of the more contemplative Advent hymns, Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence, and two that are more upbeat while being equally beautiful and peace-inspiring, Comfort, Comfort Ye My People and Lift Up Your Heads, Ye Mighty Gates. You can listen to the video recordings of these hymns below if they are not familiar to you.
The sermon will look at how we are all seeking refuge. We crave a place where we can feel security and peace so that we can live our lives to the fullest. The church and our faith offer us the deepest form of refuge and deepest, most secure peace that the wisdom of the ages has ever found.
The choir will sing O for a World from the New Century Hymnal as the introit, which ends with the verse:
O for a world preparing for
God’s glorious reign of peace,
Where time and tears will be no more,
and all but love will cease.
The Anthem will be Advent Carol by Dale Wood. John Atwood will play organ pieces by J. G. Walther, J.-F. Dandrieu and J. S. Bach, including two chorale preludes based on the hymn God Alone on High Be Praised.