Little Falls United Methodist Church

December 24, 2021 +++  Christmas Eve Worship  +++  7 p.m. 

 

Welcome to Little Falls UMC Online Christmas Eve Service! 

 

Please prepare 5 Candles for Online Christmas Eve Service, if able. 

Light the candle after each lesson during worship service.

 

 Gathering and Praise 

 

Prelude Music                               

 

Welcome  

                                                                                   

⇞Opening Scripture           Isaiah 60:1-2

 

Arise, shine; for your light has come,

    and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you.

For darkness shall cover the earth,

    and thick darkness the peoples;

but the Lord will arise upon you,

    and his glory will appear over you.

 

⇞Call To Worship

Leader: He’s coming! He’s coming! The Savior of the World is coming!
All: Let us prepare our hearts to greet him!
Leader: He comes to each one of us, healing and restoring our lives!
All: Praise be to God for God’s mighty gift to us.
Leader: O Come, Prince of Peace, bring your light to us!
All: We are ready to receive you in our lives! AMEN.

 

⇞Opening Songs        Emmanuel (Hallowed Manger Ground)

 

Verse 1

What hope we hold this starlit night

A King is born in Bethlehem

Our journey long we seek the light

That leads to the hallowed manger ground

 

Verse 2

What fear we felt in the silent age

Four-hundred years can He be found

But broken by a baby's cry

Rejoice in the hallowed manger ground

 

Chorus

Emmanuel Emmanuel

God incarnate here to dwell

Emmanuel Emmanuel

Praise His name Emmanuel

(Praise His name Emmanuel)

 

Verse 3

The Son of God here born to bleed

A crown of thorns would pierce His brow

And we beheld this offering

Exalted now the King of kings

Praise God for the hallowed manger ground

 

O Come, All Ye Faithful                           UMH 234 v 1-3

 

O come, all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant,

O come ye, O come ye, to Bethlehem.

Come and behold Him, born the King of angels;

 

Refrain

 

O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.

 

True God of true God, Light from Light Eternal,

Lo, he shuns not the Virgin's womb;

Son of the Father, begotten, not created;

 

Refrain

 

Sing, choirs of angels, sing in exultation;

Sing, all ye citizens of heaven above!

Glory to God, all glory in the highest;

 

Refrain

 

 

Children’s Message       

 

Lessons and Carols

 

Lesson                                  Isaiah 9:2-7

 

2 The people who walked in darkness
   have seen a great light;
those who lived in a land of deep darkness—
   on them light has shined.
3 You have multiplied the nation,
   you have increased its joy;
they rejoice before you
   as with joy at the harvest,
   as people exult when dividing plunder.
4 For the yoke of their burden,
   and the bar across their shoulders,
   the rod of their oppressor,
   you have broken as on the day of Midian.
5 For all the boots of the tramping warriors
   and all the garments rolled in blood
   shall be burned as fuel for the fire.
6 For a child has been born for us,
   a son given to us;
authority rests upon his shoulders;
   and he is named
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
   Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
7 His authority shall grow continually,
   and there shall be endless peace
for the throne of David and his kingdom.
   He will establish and uphold it
with justice and with righteousness
   from this time onward and forevermore.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.

 

<Lighting the Candle of Peace>

 

Carol                          Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus                UMH 196

 

Come, thou long expected Jesus,

born to set thy people free;

from our fears and sins release us,

let us find our rest in thee.

Israel's strength and consolation,

hope of all the earth thou art;

dear desire of every nation,

joy of every longing heart.

 

Born thy people to deliver,

born a child and yet a King,

born to reign in us forever,

now thy gracious kingdom bring.

By Thine own eternal Spirit

rule in all our hearts alone;

by thine all sufficient merit,

raise us to Thy glorious throne.

 

Lesson                                  Luke 2:1-7 

 

2 In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 All went to their own towns to be registered. 4 Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David. 5 He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and who was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.

 

<Lighting the Candle of Hope>

 

Carol                         O Little Town of Bethlehem, verses. 1, 2, & 3           UMH 230             

 

O little town of Bethlehem, how still we see thee lie;

above thy deep and dreamless sleep the silent stars go by.

Yet in thy dark streets shineth the everlasting light;

the hopes and fears of all the years are met in thee tonight.

 

For Christ is born of Mary, and gathered all above,

while mortals sleep, the angels keep their watch of wondering love.

O morning stars together proclaim the holy birth,

and praises sing to God the King, and peace to all on earth!

 

How silently, how silently the wondrous gift is given;

so God imparts to human hearts the blessings of His heaven.

No ear may hear his coming, but in this world of sin,

where meek souls will receive Him, still the dear Christ enters in.          

 

Lesson          Luke 2:8-14                                                            

 

8 In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: 11 to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying,

14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favors!”

 

<Lighting the Candle of Joy>

 

Carol                           Angels We Have Heard on High, verses 1-2             UMH 238

 

Angels we have heard on high

sweetly singing o'er the plains,

and the mountains in reply

echoing their joyous strains.

 

Refrain

 

Gloria, in excelsis Deo!

Gloria, in excelsis Deo!

 

Shepherds, why this jubilee?

Why your joyous strains prolong?

What the gladsome tidings be

which inspire your heavenly song?

 

Refrain

 

Matthew 2:1-11

 

2 In the time of King Herod, after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, 2 asking, “Where is the child who has been born king of the Jews? For we observed his star at its rising, and have come to pay him homage.” 3 When King Herod heard this, he was frightened, and all Jerusalem with him; 4 and calling together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah was to be born. 5 They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea; for so it has been written by the prophet:

6 ‘And you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who is to shepherd my people Israel.’”

7 Then Herod secretly called for the wise men and learned from them the exact time when the star had appeared. 8 Then he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child; and when you have found him, bring me word so that I may also go and pay him homage.” 9 When they had heard the king, they set out; and there, ahead of them, went the star that they had seen at its rising, until it stopped over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy. 11 On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother; and they knelt down and paid him homage. Then, opening their treasure chests, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

 

<Lighting the Candle of Love>

 

Carol                                     The First Noel, verses 2, 3, & 5                          UMH 245

 

They looked up and saw a star

shining in the east, beyond them far;

and to the earth it gave great light,

and so it continued both day and night.

 

Refrain

 

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel,

born is the King of Israel.

 

And by the light of that same star

three Wise Men came from country far;

to seek for a king was their intent,

and to follow the star wherever it went.

 

Refrain

 

Then entered in those Wise Men three,

full reverently upon the knee,

and offered there, in His presence,

their gold and myrrh and frankincense.

 

Refrain

 

⇞Lighting the Christ Candle         John 1:1-5, 9-13                Rev. Jin Kook Kim 

                                                

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being 4 in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.

 

9 The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. 

10 He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. 12 But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.

 

⇞Prayer of the Community

 

Pastor: Holy God, you have appeared in the flesh, bringing redemption to all.  Your glory is made known in this newborn child, this living blessed hope.

All: Tonight we sing a new song – a song of justice, righteousness, and endless peace.

 

Pastor: Gift of God, beautiful Christ-child, we welcome you! Let love be born anew in our hearts on this joyous night.  O Light of the World, we pause now before you in silence and adoration:

 

⇞Silent Prayer 

 

⇞The Lord’s Prayer

 

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. Lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.
 

Called by the Word

 

Message                               The Wonder of Christmas                       Rev. Jin Kook Kim

 

Good evening, Church Family! We have been waiting for Christmas day, and it is almost coming. We considered the meaning of Christmas through the sermon series, The wonder of Christmas, during this Advent Season.

 

Through the story of the Magi and the star, we found that God puts God’s signs of direction on our paths in our life journey. That is the wonder of a star. Through the story of Joseph, we learned that God gave the baby, God’s only son, the name Jesus with God’s power, plan, and wish. God gave us the name Christian with God’s power, wish, and plan. That is the wonder of a name. Through the story of the birth of Jesus, we found that God opens his arms to hold us in his arms. All are welcome to God, God’s love and grace, God’s care and support, and God’s provision. That is the wonder of a manger. Through the word of Emmanuel, we learned that God is with us and has gotten through everything with us, walking with us and being with us as a family together got through everything. That is the wonder of a promise. All of these are the wonder of Christmas. There is more of the wonder of Christmas.

 

Tonight, I would like to share another wonder of Christmas. It is the wonder of an angel. All people of Israel were waiting for Jesus for a long time, but not all people found Jesus’ birth when Jesus was born. Through an angle, God told Mary and Joseph that the baby Jesus would be born to them, so they knew that the baby Jesus was coming when Mary felt it was the time. Through an angle, the shepherds noticed that Jesus was born because angels appeared to them and let them know and praised God for the birth of Jesus. God sent an angel to them so that they could see the savior was born. The angel was a clear message from God for the shepherds. It was not like a sign such as a star that the Magi found. It was not a dream but a real situation. It was not for others but for them, the shepherds. God notified them through an angel, and they got the clear message, so they went to Bethlehem to see Jesus and told Mary and Joseph that they saw and what they heard.

 

The shepherds would not know about Jesus’ birth if God didn’t notify them through the angel. Mary and Joseph would not know their baby was the savior if God didn’t notify them through the angel. Because of the angel’s message, the notification of God, they could know who Jesus was and his birth.

 

Sometimes, we don’t know what happens to us or for us until we receive a notification. When we apply to a college, a position for a job, or a grant, we don’t know they choose us until they give us the notice, although they have already made a decision to have us. You receive a lot of notifications from your smartphone if you use a smartphone. We don’t know we have received a new email, or a missed call or someone talked to us through Social Media until we see notifications. The email has been delivered already. There was a missed call already. Someone talked to us on social media already. However, we don’t know about that until we are notified.

 

Likewise, we don’t know what God has done for us and what God is working on something for us until God notifies us. God loves us and cares for us and supports us, and helps us, but we often don’t notice God’s love and grace in our lives. However, it is not because God does not give us notice. Rather, God has always notified us that God is with us and loves us all the time. God notified us that Jesus came to the world for our lives as God notified the shepherd that the baby Jesus came to the world for them. God let us know God is with us through Jesus’ birth. God notifies us of God’s love and grace, God’s care and provision through the Advent and Christmas season. God notifies us of God’s love and grace through God’s words, God’s people, and God’s work in our lives every day. God keeps notifying us that we have hope, peace, joy, and love in God through God’s messengers.

 

Little Falls Church Family,

God keeps notifying us that God loves us; God cares for us; God is working for us; God is helping us; God is supporting us; God’s love, hope, peace, and joy are in us through God’s messengers. God notified us of God’s love, hope, peace, and joy toward us through the birth of Jesus when Jesus was born. God keeps reminding us of the same message in our daily lives every day, especially the Christmas Season. Church family, the baby Jesus is born. God’s love, hope, peace, and joy are with us through the baby Jesus. Let us have the assurance that God gives us through God’s notification, Jesus Christ, and his birth. Beyond that, let us be angels, the messengers for others so that they are notified of God’s love and grace. Let us notify them of God’s love and grace as many times as we can and as much as we can. Let us notify them of the message of Christmas as God has notified us. Let us notify them of the message of Jesus’s birth as a smartphone notifies us until we check the notifications. We are in God’s love, hope, peace, and joy. May the wonder of Christmas be with you in this Christmas season and forever. Amen.

 

Called to Share and Witness

 

Response to Our Generous God      

    

⇞Doxology                    Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow         UMH 95

 

Praise God, from whom all blessings flow; 

praise him, all creatures here below; 

praise him above, ye heavenly host; 

praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. 

Amen.

  

⇞ Dedication of Offerings

 

All: There are so many things to be thankful for tonight, God. Receive these tokens of our gratitude for your love incarnate in the babe of Bethlehem. May they become God-with-us for all the world. May they breathe magic back into a world that needs a sense of wonder and joy. In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.

 

⇞Service of Candlelight

 

Silent Night                                      UMH 239

 

  1. Silent Night, holy night, all is calm, all is bright

Round yon virgin mother and child.

Holy infant so tender and mild,

Sleep in heavenly peace.  Sleep in heavenly peace.

 

  2. Silent Night, holy night, shepherds quake at the sight;

Glories stream from heaven afar.

Heavenly hosts sing: “Alleluia!”

Christ the Savior is born!  Christ the Savior is born!

 

  3. Silent Night, holy night, Son of God, love’s pure light;

Radiant beams from thy holy face

With the dawn of redeeming grace,

Jesus, Lord, at thy birth.  Jesus, Lord, at thy birth.

 

  4. Silent night, holy night, wondrous star, lend thy light,

With the angels let us sing,

Alleluia to our King;

Christ the Savior is born!  Christ the Savior is born!

 

⇞Prayer                                                                                             Rev. Jin Kook Kim

 

Called to the World

 

⇞Closing Hymn                               Joy to the World                          UMH 246

 

Joy to the world, the Lord is come!

Let earth receive her King;

Let every heart prepare Him room,

And heaven and nature sing,

And heaven and nature sing,

And heaven, and heaven, and nature sing.

  

Joy to the world, the Savior reigns!

Let men their songs employ;

While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains

Repeat the sounding joy,

Repeat the sounding joy,

Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy.

 

No more let sins and sorrows grow,

Nor thorns infest the ground;

He comes to make His blessings flow

Far as the curse is found,

Far as the curse is found,

Far as, far as, the curse is found.

 

He rules the world with truth and grace,

And makes the nations prove

The glories of His righteousness,

And wonders of His love,

And wonders of His love,

And wonders, wonders, of His love.

 

⇞Benediction                                                                                   Rev. Jin Kook Kim

 

“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace.” “The grace of the Lord, Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you!”

 

⇞Postlude      

 

⇞All who are able, please stand.