4th Sunday of Advent – 12/18/2022

Call to Worship
L: To a man seeking to do the honorable and correct thing, God revealed to Joseph God’s plan to bring salvation to the world.
All: God incarnate, God in the flesh, Jesus.
L: Do not be afraid to choose the faithful path.
All: God is with us, Emmanuel

Song – O Come, All Ye Faithful – UMH 234 (v. 1,2,3)
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;
O come, let us adore him, O come let us adore him, 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;
Sing, choirs of angels, sing in exultation; O sing, all ye citizens of heaven above!
Glory to God, all glory in the highest.

Advent Candle Lighting
L: The prophet Isaiah declares, “A young woman is with child, and shall bear a son, and shall name him Emmanuel, which means God-with-us.” The risen Christ declares, “I am with you always, to the end of the age.” We light this candle as a sign of God’s presence in Christ, now and always that we may trust that God is with us and live in the light of Christ’s coming. (light 4th candle)
All: Risen Christ, Light of the world, shine in our lives and shine among us now.

Our Offering – Service, prayers, witness, time and resources
Doxology – Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow – UMH 95
Offering Prayer

(all) God of promise, you made a commitment to Joseph that you would make Jesus a savior to all. Renew your commitment with us, so that all may know the saving grace of your son, Jesus. We pray these things in the name of Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.

Scripture Reading – Matthew 1:18-25
Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly. But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet: “Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel,” which means, “God is with us.” When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife, 2but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son; and he named him Jesus.
L: For the Word of God in scripture; for the Word of God within us and for the Word of God among us we say:
All: Thanks be to God.

Song – Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming – UMH 216
Lo, how a Rose e’er blooming from tender stem hath sprung!
Of Jesse’s lineage coming, as those of old have sung.
It came a floweret bright, amid the cold of winter, when half spent was the night.
Isaiah ‘twas foretold it, the Rose I have in mind;
with Mary we behold it, the Virgin Mother kind.
To show God’s love aright, she bore to us a Savior, when half spent was the night.
O Flower, whose fragrance tender with sweetness fills the air,
dispel in glorious splendor the darkness everywhere.
True man yet very God, from sin and death now save us, and share our every load.

Message – Pastor Gayle

Pastoral Prayer


Song – Jesus, the Light of the World – WAS 3056
Ken Bible and George D. Elderkin CCLI#6367378
See the bright and Morning Star, Jesus, the Light of the World!
He has risen in our hearts, Jesus, the Light of the World!
Walk in the light, beautiful light; come where his love and his mercy are bright.
Shine all around us by day and by night, Jesus, the Light of the World.

He’s the lamp that lights our way, Jesus, the Light of the World!
Step by step and day by day—Jesus, the Light of the World!
No more darkness, no more night—Jesus the Light of the World!
He will shine forever bright, Jesus, the Light of the World!


The Way of Discipleship
Growing in Grace through study:

Sundays following worship. The Deeply Formed Life by Rich Villodas.

Growing in Grace through fellowship and more:
Welcome Table every Second Sunday 11:30 am. Come and share a meal and conversation.
Friday with Friends every Third Friday 11am in Narthex. Bring bag lunch. December 16th.

Growing in Grace through intercessory prayer:
Prayer group meets Mondays at 6pm on Zoom. All are welcome to join in prayer. Please send or share prayer concerns with Pastor Gayle.
Prayer Shawls: You may have noticed the throws on the chairs in the narthex. These were made by our own Prayer Shawl ministry. These “shawls” represent prayer and hugs for people in need. If this describes you or yours, please take one.

Growing in Grace through service:
A.C.T.S Food Pantry: Canned vegetables 15 oz size, low sodium canned vegetables, snack items, individually packed, Pop-top canned prepared meals suitable for our homeless clients, single serve prepared food suitable for our homeless clients, laundry detergent, dish detergent, cleaning supplies in general, toiletries and personal hygiene items, size 4T pull-ups, size 6 diapers, dog food.
Clothing for Featherstone School: small and medium size sweatpants in blue, gray or black.

You shop, AmazonSmile donates. Shop at smile.amazon.com to generate donations for Cokesbury UMC at no extra cost.

Please keep in prayer: Charles Crist, Kyle Keen and family, Drabcyzk family, Caesar, Barbie, Kaye, Charline, Valerie Hoyt, Millie, Mary Baker, Donna and Roshier Bailey, Mary Jane Fizer, Deirdre and John, Louise and Mark Young, Jane Foster, Claire Such-Hutton, Marian Ivy, Ellen and Carlos Kuvaszko, Al Firth, Margaret Franklin, Hallman family, Debbie, Lilli, Ollie, Linda, Chrissie, Toye, Wenona, people living with cancer, battling addictions, struggling with life changes, seeking the Lord. The ministry of Cokesbury. Featherstone School students, teachers, staff, parents.

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Christmas Eve Candlelight Service at 4pm.

February 25th Discovering the Possibilities workshop 8:30am-3pm.