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Nativity Scene / Honthorst, Gerrit van, 1590-1656 / 1622 (Click the picture for more information)
Reproduced from Revised Common Lectionary Prayers copyright © 2002 Consultation on Common Texts admin. Augsburg Fortress. Used by permission. A complete edition of the prayers is available though Augsburg Fortress [link].
  • Thematic
  • O Holy One,
    heavenly angels spoke to earthly shepherds
    and eternity entered time in the child of Bethlehem.
    Through the telling of the Christmas story,
    let our temporal lives be caught up in the eternal
    in that same child,
    that we might join shepherds and all the heavenly host
    in praising the coming of Jesus Christ, our Savior. Amen.

    OR

    God of glory,
    your splendor shines from a manger in Bethlehem,
    where the Light of the world is humbly born
    into the darkness of human night.
    Open our eyes to Christ's presence in the shadows of our world,
    so that we, like him, may become beacons of your justice,
    and defenders of all for whom there is no room. Amen.

    OR

    Light of life, you came in flesh,
    born into human pain and joy,
    and gave us power to be your children.
    Grant us faith, O Christ, to see your presence among us,
    so that all of creation may sing new songs of gladness
    and walk in the way of peace. Amen.

    OR

    We bless you, Abba, Father,
    for you have visited your people
    in one like us in all things but sin,
    and in human fragility you have revealed
    the face of divinity.
    Gather into your arms
    all the peoples of the world,
    so that in your embrace
    we may find blessing, peace,
    and the fullness of our inheritance
    as your daughters and sons. Amen.
  • Intercessory
  • God of incarnation,
    your angel host announces
    that peace has been born among us,
    embodied in fragile flesh.
    With confidence in the power of that miracle,
    we bring before you our prayers for the church and the world.

    Prayers of the People, concluding with:

    By your grace, transform our prayers from words to deeds,
    that we may live as a holy people
    in the dawn of your peace,
    redeemed from all that divides us. Amen.
  • Scripture
  • Christ, our God,
    whom humble shepherds worshiped at a manger,
    you are holy and most high, merciful and mighty.
    Startle us to wakefulness,
    that we may rejoice in your new and glorious dawn,
    and, in your holy name,
    act to mend this suffering world. Amen.

    OR

    Tender and precious God,
    from ancient times
    the promise of your salvation
    has sustained your people. With Mary and Joseph,
    teach us to treasure in our hearts the birth of Jesus,
    and with shepherds and angels,
    lead us to praise his holy name. Amen.
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