December 21


(c) 2010, Linda Witte Henke ( All rights reserved.

Posted here with permission of the artist.

O Oriens, Splendor lucis aeternae, et sol justitiae;

veni et illumina sedentes in tenebris et umbra mortis.



 We light three Candles on the Advent Wreath, and say or sing: 

Light and Peace in Jesus Christ our Lord!

~Thanks be to God!


Let your face shine on us, O God;

~And we shall be saved.




We sing the appropriate verse from this well-known and beloved Advent Carol

O come, O Dawning Day shining bright! Pour on our lives your healing light;

Dispel the long night’s lingering gloom, And pierce the shadow of the tomb.


O come, O Key of David, come, and open wide our heav’nly home;

Make safe the way that leads on high, and close the path to misery.


O come O Flow’r of Jesse’s stem, From every foe deliver them

That trust your mighty pow’r to save, And give them vict’ry o’er the grave.


O come, O come, great Lord of might, who to your tribes on Sinai’s height

In ancient times once gave the law, in cloud, and majesty, and awe.


O come, O Wisdom from on high, Who orders all things mightily;

To us the path of knowledge show, And teach us in her ways to go.


Rejoice! Rejoice!  Emmanuel Shall come to you, O Israel.






On that promised day

all the peaks will drip with newest wine

and the hills will flow with milk and honey, Alleluia!

Psalm 114/115

I love Adonai who has heard

the cry of my appeal;

and turns an ear to me

whenever I call!


Death had me in its grip,

the grave’s trap was set;

grief and anguish held me fast.

I called on the Holy Name:

“Adonai, my God,

rescue me and set me free!”


Kind and gracious is Adonai;

gentle and full of compassion:

God shelters those who are needy,

and raises me from the dust.


Rest once more, my heart

For you know how Adonai loves.

God rescued me from death,

wiped my tears and steadied my feet.

I will walk with Adonai, my God,

in the land of the living.


Glory to the ONE and to the WORD

And to the BREATH of Love;

as always before,

so now and evermore. Amen. 

On that promised day

all the peaks will drip with newest wine

and the hills will flow with milk and honey, Alleluia!

READING —  Zephania 3:14-15

Shout for joy, O daughter Zion!
Sing joyfully, O Israel!
Be glad and exult with all your heart,
O daughter Jerusalem!
Adonai has removed the judgment against you,
he has turned away your enemies;
The King of Israel, the LORD, is in your midst,
you have no further misfortune to fear.


Silent Reflection

R. When Israel was yet young I loved them, * and out of Egypt, I called my own.

V. I led them with cords of compassion, with leading strings of love.

     *and out of Egypt, I called my own.


Canticle of Mary


O Dawning Day, Splendor of eternal light and Sun of Justice;

Come and illumine those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.

It is customary to make the sign of the cross at the beginning of the Gospel Canticle.

My heart + is radiant with the Lord,

My whole being delights in God my Savior.


All people now will call me blessed

For God has loved this humble handmaid. 

The Almighty has shown me great favor 

Holy is the NAME,


Whose mercy embraces the faithful,

From one generation to the next.

The mighty arm of God,

Scatters the proud in their own conceit,


Pulls tyrants from their thrones 

While lifting up the lowly: 

Fills the famished with bounty, 

And reveals the emptiness of riches.


Rescues lowly Israel,

Sharing such loving kindness,

As promised to our ancestors

To Abraham and Sarah, and their descendants forever.


Glory to the ONE through the WORD 

In the BREATH of Love! 

As always before, 

so now and evermore.  Amen

O Dawning Day, Splendor of eternal light and Sun of Justice;

Come and illumine those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.



We  pray to the one who rescues us from darkness

and in hope we cry out:  ~ Come Lord Jesus


Heal those who suffer from illness or injury.  ~Come Lord Jesus. 


Comfort those who grieve the loss of loved ones. ~Come Lord Jesus.


Gather into one family all the peoples of the Earth.  ~Come Lord Jesus.


Find those who have lost their way. ~Come Lord Jesus.


Renew again your covenant with all creation. ~Come Lord Jesus.


Teach us to pray…

Our Father …



Final Prayer and Blessing

Creator and Redeemer of humankind, be with us on this shortest day of the year as our Earth reaches the winter solstice and the Sun begins its journey to the North once again.  May Earth’s journey through  cold and darkness prepare us to welcome the Dawning Day and Sun of Justice, and share his light and life with a world that dwells in the shadow of death, for he lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever.  Amen.


All may make the sign of the Cross as we say:

May the One who makes peace rain down from the heights,

+ shower us and all on Earth with freedom and new life.  Amen.


Let us bless the world with peace.   ~And give thanks to God.



Those who wish may end evening prayer with the Marian Antiphon for Advent.
Marian Antiphon 

Loving Mother of our Savior, holding open heaven’s only hope, Star for steerage in this vastness, rise to help us, save the sinking.  Nature’s greatest  Wonder: you have borne your own true Maker, giving human life to him. Virgin ever, before and after, that Good News from Gabriel, Word of Life for living, tell it now: mercy to all people!


The angel of the Lord brought the message to Mary.

~ And she conceived of the Holy Spirit.


Let us pray.  We ask, O God, that we who have been privileged to receive the Good News of the Incarnation of Christ, you Word, may be prepared through his passion and cross to approach also the glory of his resurrection, through the same Christ Our Lord.  Amen.