top of page
  • Writer's pictureFr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Sunday Worship for December 5, 2021

The Holy Eucharist

The Second Sunday of Advent (Year C)

December 5, 2021

Watch the Livestream at

Sunday, December 5, at 9:30 a.m. (or anytime afterward)

The Holy Eucharist: Rite II

The Word of God

Hymn #76: On Jordan's Bank The Baptist's Cry

[Verses 1-5]

1 On Jordan's bank the Baptist's cry

announces that the Lord is nigh;

awake and hearken, for he brings

glad tidings of the King of kings.

2 Then cleansed be every breast from sin;

make straight the way for God within,

and let each heart prepare a home

where such a mighty guest may come.

3 For thou art our salvation, Lord,

our refuge and our great reward;

without thy grace we waste away

like flowers that wither and decay.

4 To heal the sick stretch out thine hand,

and bid the fallen sinner stand;

shine forth, and let thy light restore

earth's own true loveliness once more.

5 All praise, eternal Son, to thee,

whose advent doth thy people free;

whom with the Father we adore

and Holy Spirit evermore.

Words: Charles Coffin, tr. Charles Windred Douglas, after John Chandler, Public Domain.

Music: Winchester New, melody from Musicalishes Hand-Buch, harm. William Henry Monk, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #84259. All rights reserved.

A Penitential Order

[BCP, p. 351]

Blessed be God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

And blessed be his kingdom, now and forever. Amen.

If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. But if we confess our sins, God, who is faithful and just, will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:8-9)

Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.

Silence may be kept.

Most merciful God,

we confess that we have sinned against you

in thought, word, and deed,

by what we have done,

and by what we have left undone.

We have not loved you with our whole heart;

we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves.

We are truly sorry and we humbly repent.

For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ,

have mercy on us and forgive us;

that we may delight in your will,

and walk in your ways,

to the glory of your Name. Amen.

Almighty God have mercy on you, forgive you all your sins through our Lord Jesus Christ, strengthen you in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep you in eternal life. Amen.

LEV #236: Lord Have Mercy

[BCP, p. 356]

Lord, have mercy,

Lord, have mercy,

Lord, have mercy on us.

Christ, have mercy,

Christ, have mercy,

Christ, have mercy on us.

Lord, have mercy,

Lord, have mercy,

Lord, have mercy, have mercy on us.

Words: Public Domain.

Music: Leon C. Roberts, Mass of St. Augustine © 1992 G.I.A. Publications, Inc.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #07254. All rights reserved.

The Collect of the Day

[BCP, p. 357, 211]

The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Let us pray:

Merciful God, who sent your messengers the prophets to preach repentance and prepare the way for our salvation: Give us grace to heed their warnings and forsake our sins, that we may greet with joy the coming of Jesus Christ our Redeemer; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

A Reading from the Book of Baruch (5:1-9)

Take off the garment of your sorrow and affliction, O Jerusalem, and put on forever the beauty of the glory from God.

Put on the robe of the righteousness that comes from God; put on your head the diadem of the glory of the Everlasting;

for God will show your splendor everywhere under heaven.

For God will give you evermore the name, "Righteous Peace, Godly Glory."

Arise, O Jerusalem, stand upon the height; look toward the east,

and see your children gathered from west and east at the word of the Holy One, rejoicing that God has remembered them.

For they went out from you on foot, led away by their enemies;

but God will bring them back to you, carried in glory, as on a royal throne.

For God has ordered that every high mountain and the everlasting hills be made low and the valleys filled up, to make level ground, so that Israel may walk safely in the glory of God.

The woods and every fragrant tree have shaded Israel at God's command.

For God will lead Israel with joy, in the light of his glory, with the mercy and righteousness that come from him.

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Canticle 16: The Song of Zechariah

[BCP, p. 92; Luke 1:68-79]

Read responsively by half-verse (at the asterisk).

Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; * he has come to his people and set them free.

He has raised up for us a mighty savior, * born of the house of his servant David.

Through his holy prophets he promised of old,

that he would save us from our enemies, * from the hands of all who hate us.

He promised to show mercy to our fathers * and to remember his holy covenant.

This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham, * to set us free from the hands of our enemies,

Free to worship him without fear, * holy and righteous in his sight all the days of our life.

You, my child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High, * for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,

To give his people knowledge of salvation * by the forgiveness of their sins.

In the tender compassion of our God * the dawn from on high shall break upon us,

To shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death, * and to guide our feet into the way of peace.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: * as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

A Reading from the Letter of Paul to the Philippians (1:3-11)

I thank my God every time I remember you, constantly praying with joy in every one of my prayers for all of you, because of your sharing in the gospel from the first day until now. I am confident of this, that the one who began a good work among you will bring it to completion by the day of Jesus Christ. It is right for me to think this way about all of you, because you hold me in your heart, for all of you share in God's grace with me, both in my imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel. For God is my witness, how I long for all of you with the compassion of Christ Jesus. And this is my prayer, that your love may overflow more and more with knowledge and full insight to help you to determine what is best, so that in the day of Christ you may be pure and blameless, having produced the harvest of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ for the glory and praise of God.

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God

The People stand for the reading of the Gospel.

The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ According to St. Luke (3:1-6)

Glory to you, Lord Christ.

In the fifteenth year of the reign of Emperor Tiberius, when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, and Herod was ruler of Galilee, and his brother Philip ruler of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias ruler of Abilene, during the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to Joh son of Zechariah in the wilderness. He went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins, as it is written in the book of the words of the prophet Isaiah,

"The voice of one crying out in the wilderness:

'Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.

Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be made low,

and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways made smooth;

and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.'"

The Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, Lord Christ.

The Sermon

“Repentance, Justice, and Safety” by The Rev. Guillermo A. Arboleda

The Prophet John, the Forerunner to our Lord Jesus, spoke the word of God, saying, “Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways made smooth; and all flesh shall see the salvation of God” (Luke 3:5-6). But notice that John the Baptizer doesn’t just talk about God leveling the earth. He also calls people to a “baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins” (Luke 3:3). Somehow, these two are connected. The world will be leveled and the people of God will repent.

What would our world look like if the valleys were filled and the mountains were made low? What would a great, godly leveling do to our world? And what will it mean for us to repent on the way there?

Repentance literally means turning around. John calls people to turn away from sin and toward godliness, away from selfishness and toward love of God and neighbor. The world being leveled means at least two things: justice and safety. It’s about justice because God will make things right and fair between all peoples. People who were forced to be at the bottom of the valleys will have a fair shot, and those at the top of mountains will have to share what they have hoarded.

But the prophet Baruch reminds us that justice is also about safety. “For God has ordered that every high mountain and the everlasting hills be made low and the valleys filled up, to make level ground, so that Israel may walk safely in the glory of God. … For God will lead Israel with joy, in the light of his glory, with the mercy and righteousness that come from him” (Baruch 5:7,9). When there is injustice and inequality, people are at danger. If one person robs, exploits, or harms another to get what she wants, then that other person is not safe. The offender needs to repent of their exploitative ways for the society to be fair and safe. Repentance leads to justice, which helps people become safe and feel safe. They walk together with God and one another, having mercy for themselves and for one another. Neither justice nor safety are possible without repentance. As Christ-Followers, we need to be able to acknowledge the sin and selfishness that lives within us in order for the world to be transformed as God desires it.

I’ve been thinking about these Bible passages in light of the recent results of the trial for the murder of Ahmaud Arbery. Last year, we learned about the shocking death of Ahmaud Arbery months after he was killed. Between February and May, the local authorities in Glynn County, GA, tried to sweep the incident under the rug and not press charges against Travis McMichael, Gregory McMichael, and Roddie Bryan, the men who chased down an unarmed jogger from their pickup truck and fired those fatal shots. If not for the disturbing video of the incident that leaked to the public, there may have been no trial and no hope for accountability, let alone a sense of justice and fair treatment.

Just before Thanksgiving Day, the jury announced its verdict in this fraught trial. All three men involved in Arbery’s death were found guilty of murder and other charges. This news was emotional for me in very complex ways. I felt a small bit of relief, gratitude that the Arbery family can at least know that the world and the legal system have acknowledged the harm committed against Ahmaud and their family. But mostly I felt sad. No amount of punishment of the criminals can undo the crime. We can’t bring Ahmaud Arbery back. And I’m really sad that the convicted men ever got to a point in their lives where attacking and killing someone in the street seemed like the right thing to do. When people are willing to behave in such a way, particularly across racial divides, justice and safety are not possible.

The temptation when faced with such a tragic and evil event is to demonize the other: Those men are awful and they should be condemned. Maybe now that they are put away, justice has been served and we can be safe. But Christians believe that there is no such thing as “bad people” or people who cannot change and be forgiven. There are evil acts and evil things but not evil people. We’re all children of God, made in God’s image and likeness, created and called good. The hard truth is that all of us have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory. We are all a beautiful and complex blend of godly goodness and self-centered sin. All of us are capable of evil acts, even if they aren’t the same kind of evil acts we discussed in that trial.

The point here is that too many people grow up in church without ever learning how to love (to put it positively), or how to repent of the hate that they feel (to put it negatively). The Church is supposed to be a community of self-reflection, humility, and repentance. We are supposed to be able to acknowledge that we’re wrong and turn back toward love of God and (critically) love of neighbor. But too often, churches become places where we are told that we’re right, where our assumptions are reinforced, where the us-them divides deepen. McMichael, McMichael, and Bryan are all practicing Christians. Some of them have ties to our sister Episcopal parishes in Brunswick, GA. Somehow, the church failed to teach them not to make racist and hateful assumptions or to lash out with murderous violence. That should scare us.

We crave and long for God’s justice and safety, for God to intervene in history once again and make all things new. But we can’t get there without repentance. We need to be critical of ourselves and our communities and the ways that we either make straight the way of the Lord or keep the paths crooked. Obviously we as a church are not responsible for the bad choices and actions of every individual member. But we have influence. We have the ability and responsibility to make it 1000% clear where God and the Church stand when it comes to racism, hatred, and violence. And we can be a place where self-examination and repentance are encouraged. We’re doing that as best as we can in this church. But it’s always easier to have that conversation among people who live and feel the effects of racism every day, than among those who deny it.

My fear is that we as the Episcopal Diocese of Georgia and we as the Body of Christ will continue to ignore these wake up calls. The greatest evils of American life have grown and festered unaddressed in most churches in this nation. And if we all don’t face that reality head on, we cannot all be safe; we cannot all experience justice. Whatever part you and I have to play in fighting the evils of racism, it starts with being grounded and humble enough to repent where we need to. That gives us both the right sense of self and the right sense of compassion for how others have gone astray. Our dream of God’s justice and safety, of the earth being made level begins as we repent and invite Jesus to forgive our sins. And it continues when we build loving, truth-telling communities where others can repent too.

Join me in this prayer written by our Bishop Frank Logue, and the other Episcopal and Lutheran Bishops in Georgia: “Eternal God, we give thanks for the judge and jurors charged with bringing earthly justice in the death of Ahmaud Arbery. Be with the Arbery family and all in the Brunswick and Glynn County Community as they seek further healing. Be with Gregory, Travis, and Roddie and their families as they serve their sentences and work toward their own repentance. Be with all of us as we seek repentance and healing for ourselves, one another, and our communities. Give us all the grace to hunger and thirst for your righteousness that we may work together to become the beloved community to which you call us. This we ask for the sake of your Son our Savior, Jesus Christ, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns now and forever. Amen.”


  • Logue, Frank S., Rob C. Wright, and Kevin L. Strickland. “Episcopal and Lutheran bishops in Georgia respond to the verdict in the McMichaels-Bryan trial.” Episcopal Diocese of Georgia. Published 24 November 2021. Accessed 2 December 2021.

LEV #6: Christ is Coming

[Repeat as desired]

Christ is coming: Prepare the way!

Christ is coming: Prepare the way!

Christ is coming. Christ is coming.

Words: From Advent Jazz Vespers II, adapt. Edward V. Bonnemere © 1986 Amity Music Corporation.

Music: From Advent Jazz Vespers II, adapt. Edward V. Bonnemere © 1986 Amity Music Corporation.

All rights reserved.

The Nicene Creed

[BCP, p. 358]

We believe in one God,

the Father, the Almighty,

maker of heaven and earth,

of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,

the only Son of God,

eternally begotten of the Father,

God from God, Light from Light,

true God from true God,

begotten, not made,

of one Being with the Father.

Through him all things were made.

For us and for our salvation

he came down from heaven:

by the power of the Holy Spirit

he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary,

and was made man.

For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;

he suffered death and was buried.

On the third day he rose again

in accordance with the Scriptures;

he ascended into heaven

and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,

and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,

who proceeds from the Father and the Son.

With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified.

He has spoken through the Prophets.

We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.

We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.

We look for the resurrection of the dead,

and the life of the world to come. Amen.

The Prayers of the People

Sisters and Brothers, as we joyfully await the full manifestation of God’s Reign in Christ, let us pray for the needs of the church and the world, saying, “Come, Lord Jesus.”

O Wisdom, you come forth from the mouth of the Most High and reach from beginning to end, mightily and sweetly ordering all things. Behold and bless your church, remembering especially Michael our presiding bishop, Frank our Bishop, Guillermo our priest, Toni and Margaret our wardens, our vestry and delegates, and all leaders in this parish. Be present in ordering the life of this and every congregation.

Come, Lord Jesus!

O Adonai, God of the Covenant, ruler of the house of Israel, you appeared to Moses in the fire of the burning bush and on Mount Sinai gave your law. Forgive us when we stray from your guidance and will.

Come, Lord Jesus!

O Root of Jesse, you stand as an emblem to humankind; before you, rulers will shut their mouths, and nations bow in worship: We pray for your peace and justice in every nation and throughout the world; be present to all whose lives are ravaged by war and strife; especially we hold before you those from among us who serve their country abroad. Guide the leaders of this and every land into the paths of peace and goodwill.

Come, Lord Jesus!

O Key of David, and scepter of the house of Israel, you open and no one can shut, you shut and no one can open: Guide us in opening the doors of opportunity for the unemployed, for the homeless, for prisoners, and for all who are oppressed; and lead us in closing the doors that lead to poverty, bigotry, and injustice.

Come, Lord Jesus!

O King and Desire of the Nations, you are the cornerstone that makes us one: We lift up all who are suffering and in need, especially Guillermo G. Arboleda, Martha Avery, Christine Brown, Jacqueline Bryant, Lazola Cope, Annie Bell Greer, Loretta Harmond, Marva Harris, Genelle Joseph and her children, Whitney Kennedy, Sada Maxwell, Craig Maxwell, Jameel Newton, Mackenzie Orth, Helen Scroggins, and the Townsend family: Tend the sick, give rest to the weary, bless the dying, soothe the suffering, pity the afflicted, shield the joyous and help us minister to them in your love.

Come, Lord Jesus!

O Dayspring, radiance of the Light Eternal and Sun of Righteousness: Shine your light on those who have died; remember especially Ronald Baynes, Louis H. Martin (brother of Martha Avery), and those we name now..., and bring comfort to all those who mourn.

Come, Lord Jesus!

O Emmanuel, God with us, Expected One and Savior, We give thanks for all the blessings of this life; for all those celebrating birthdays: Rashaad Jones (12/6), Jade Carrington (12/6), Monica Gray Williams (12/9), LaShon Washington (12/9), and Noel Wheeler (12/10); those celebrating wedding anniversaries; and for the other blessings we now name silently or aloud… Make each of us ready to receive you into our hearts, to serve you in all whom we meet, and to greet you in the fullness of your glory in the day of your appearing.

Come, Lord Jesus!

The Celebrant concludes with a suitable Collect.

Hasten, O Father, the coming of your kingdom; and grant that we, your servants who now live by faith, may with joy behold your Son at his coming in glorious majesty; even Jesus Christ, our only Mediator and Advocate. Amen.

The Peace

[BCP, p. 360]

The peace of the Lord be always with you.

And also with you.

The Offertory

[BCP, p. 377]

Giving to St. Matthew's: We know that many people are feeling the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis. The church is feeling it too. We still need your support to pay our staff, pay our bills, and provide for these online live streams. There are several ways to give, but the simplest are these:

  1. Mail us a check or money order at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church, 1401 Martin Luther King, Jr., Blvd, Savannah, GA 31415; OR

  2. Make a secure online gift to St. Matthew’s and/or automate future gifts at:; OR

  3. Text “stmattsav” to 73256 to make a secure online donation through your phone.

NOTE: Donations made online (#2 or #3) through Realm incur a processing fee of about 2.5%. Please consider adding an additional 2.5% to your online gift to cover these costs.

2022 Giving Campaign: The 2022 Giving Campaign has just ended, but we have fallen short of our giving goals for 2022 General Operations. We need to raise at least $150,000 toward operations to have a balanced budget, and we are less than 50% of the way there. There are two main ways you can help:

  1. If you forgot to submit your giving estimate, you can still do so using the online form below. You can also request a paper form from our office. Only about half of our regular pledgers submitted a giving estimate this year, so we would love to hear from the rest of you!

  2. If you already submitted a giving estimate, it's not too late to adjust your estimate to reduce your gifts toward restricted funds and increase your gifts to general operations. Please contact to make any desired changes.

Ascribe to the Lord the honor due his Name; bring offering and come into his courts. [Psalm 96:8; see BCP, p. 376]

AAHH #123: We'll Praise the Lord

[Verses 1-5]

1 We'll praise the Lord for He is great,

And in His presence angels wait;

All heav'n is swelling with His praise--

Shall we not, too, our anthems raise?


Oh, we will praise Him,

Oh, we will praise Him,

Oh, we will praise His holy name.

Oh, we will praise Him,

Oh, we will praise Him,

Oh, we will praise His holy name.

2 We'll praise the Lord for He is wise;

His wisdom shines through all the skies;

The earth He measures with a span,

And crowns us with His image: man. [REFRAIN]

3 We'll praise the Lord for He is just,

And in Him we may ever trust;

Princes and kings may turn aside,

But God by right will e'er abide. [REFRAIN]

4 We'll praise the Lord for He is true;

His word the same all ages through;

Earth, sea and sky may pass away,

But firm, God's truth will ever stay. [REFRAIN]

5 Oh, praise Him for His name is Love,

And from His glorious throne above,

He bends to welcome our weak praise,

Shall we not, then, our anthem raise? [REFRAIN]

Words: T. G. Steward, Public Domain.

Music: Nazrey, J. T. Layton, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #OLOFOB020. All rights reserved.

AAHH #651: Doxology

[See also Hymn # 380, v. 3]

Praise God, from whom all blessings flow;

Praise Him, all creatures here below;

Praise Him above, ye heav'nly host;

Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.


Words: Thomas Ken, Public Domain.

Music: Old 100th, attributed to Louis Bourgeois, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #84260. All rights reserved.

Eucharistic Prayer B

[BCP, p. 367]

The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Lift up your hearts.

We lift them to the Lord.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

It is right to give him thanks and praise.

It is right, and a good and joyful thing, always and everywhere to give thanks to you, Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth. …

Preface of Advent [BCP, p. 378]:

Because you sent your beloved Son to redeem us from sin and death, and to make us heirs in him of everlasting life; that when he shall come again in power and great triumph to judge the world, we may without shame or fear rejoice to behold his appearing.

Therefore we praise you, joining our voices with Angels and Archangels and with all the company of heaven, who forever sing this hymn to proclaim the glory of your Name:

LEV #254:

Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might,

Heaven and earth are full of your glory

Hosanna in the highest.

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.

Hosanna in the highest.

[Word: Public Domain. Music: Carl Maultsby, The Saint Mary Mass, © 1989 Malted Milk Music. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #00004C1989. All rights reserved.]

The people stand or kneel.

We give thanks to you, O God, for the goodness and love which you have made known to us in creation; in the calling of Israel to be your people; in your Word spoken through the prophets; and above all in the Word made flesh, Jesus, your Son. For in these last days you sent him to be incarnate from the Virgin Mary, to be the Savior and Redeemer of the world. In him, you have delivered us from evil, and made us worthy to stand before you. In him, you have brought us out of error into truth, out of sin into righteousness, out of death into life.

On the night before he died for us, our Lord Jesus Christ took bread; and when he had given thanks to you, he broke it, and gave it to his disciples, and said, "Take, eat: This is my Body, which is given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me."

After supper he took the cup of wine; and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and said, "Drink this, all of you: This is my Blood of the new Covenant, which is shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Whenever you drink it, do this for the remembrance of me."

Therefore, according to his command, O Father,

We remember his death,

We proclaim his resurrection,

We await his coming in glory;

And we offer our sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving to you, O Lord of all; presenting to you, from your creation, this bread and this wine.

We pray you, gracious God, to send your Holy Spirit upon these gifts that they may be the Sacrament of the Body of Christ and his Blood of the new Covenant. Unite us to your Son in his sacrifice, that we may be acceptable through him, being sanctified by the Holy Spirit. In the fullness of time, put all things in subjection under your Christ, and bring us to that heavenly country where, with Blessed Matthew our Patron, Blessed Mary the Mother of Jesus, and all your saints, we may enter the everlasting heritage of your sons and daughters; through Jesus Christ our Lord, the firstborn of all creation, the head of the Church, and the author of our salvation.

By him, and with him, and in him, in the unity of the Holy Spirit all honor and glory is yours, Almighty Father, now and for ever. AMEN.

The Lord’s Prayer

[BCP, p. 364]

And now, as our Savior Christ has taught us, we are bold to say,

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. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Fraction Anthem

[BCP, p. 364, 407]

Alleluia! Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us;

Therefore let us keep the feast. Alleluia!

This Far By Faith (1999) #36:

O Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world;

have mercy and grant us peace,

we pray, O Lamb of God.

[Words: Public Domain. Music: Grayson Warren Brown, arr. Larry Adams © 1979 Grayson Warren Brown, admin. by OCP Publications. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #81590. All rights reserved.]

Here is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.

The Gifts of God for the people of God.

Hymn #334: Praise the Lord, Rise Up Rejoicing

[Verses 1-3]

1 Praise the Lord, rise up rejoicing,

worship, thanks, devotion voicing;

glory be to God on high!

Christ, your cross and passion sharing,

by this Eucharist declaring

yours the final victory.

2 Scattered flock, one shepherd sharing,

lost and lonely, one voice hearing,

ears attentive to your word;

by your Blood new life receiving,

in your Body, firm believing,

we are yours, and you the Lord.

3 Sins forgiven, wrong forgiving,

we go forth alert and living

in your Spirit, strong and free.

Partners in your new creation,

seeking peace in every nations,

may we faithful follow'rs be

Words: Howard Charles Adie Gaunt, alt., used by permission of H. C. A. Gaunt and Oxford University Press.

Music: Alles ist an Gottes Segen, melody att. Johann Balthasar König, alt., harm. Johann Löhner, after chorale ver. Johann Sebastian Bach, Public Domain.

Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #4078. All rights reserved.

The Post-Communion Prayer

[Enriching our Worship 2 [2000], pp. 56-57]

Let us pray.

For In-Person Worshippers:

Faithful God,

in the wonder of your wisdom and love

you fed your people in the wilderness with the bread of angels,

and you sent Jesus to be the bread of life.

We thank you for feeding us with this bread.

May it strengthen us

that by the power of the Holy Spirit

we may embody your desire

and be renewed for your service

through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.

For Online Worshippers and Those Receiving Spiritual Communion:

Faithful God,

in the wonder of your wisdom and love

you fed your people in the wilderness with the bread of angels,

and you sent Jesus to be the bread of life.

Though we cannot consume now these gifts of bread [and wine],

we thank you that we have received the sacrament of Christ’s presence,

the forgiveness of sins, and all other benefits of Christ’s passion.

By the power of the Holy Spirit,

may we embody your desire

and be renewed for your service

through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.

The Blessing

[The Book of Occasional Services 2018, p. 9]

May the Sun of Righteousness shine upon you and scatter the darkness from before your path; and the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, be among you, and remain with you always. Amen.

Parish Announcements

A. Ronald Baynes' Funeral Video on Facebook: We are sad to share that Ronald Baynes passed away on Sunday, November 21, in Atlanta, GA. His funeral service was held on Saturday, December 4, at 11:00 AM at Sylvania Funeral Home of Savannah, 102 Owens Industrial Dr, Savannah, GA 31405. A video of the service was live streamed and may be viewed on our Facebook page: For more information, please read his obituary at:

May Ronald's soul, and the souls of all the departed, by the mercies of God, rest in peace. And may light perpetual shine upon them. Amen.

B. Advent & Christmas 2021-2022 Worship Schedule: Please see our full worship schedule for the seasons of Advent and Christmas below. All Services (except New Year's Eve) are both in-person and live-streamed to our Facebook page:

Please note the correction to the service on 12/31, which will be a Facebook video only (not in-person).

  • 11/28, 12/5, 12/12, 12/19: Sundays in Advent - Holy Eucharist at 9:30 AM

  • Friday, 12/24: Christmas Eve - Holy Eucharist with Pop-up Pageant at 7:00 PM

  • Saturday, 12/25: Christmas Day - Rest and rejoice with your family!

  • Sunday, 12/26: 1st Sunday in Christmas - Lessons & Carols at 9:30 AM

  • Friday, 12/31: Eve of the Holy Name of Jesus / New Year's Eve / Watch Night - Evening Prayer ONLINE ONLY at 7:00 PM (Facebook Video)

  • Sunday, 1/2: 2nd Sunday in Christmas - Holy Eucharist at 9:30 AM

  • Thursday, 1/6: Epiphany of Our Lord Jesus Christ - Holy Eucharist at 6:00 PM

C. Conversations on Relationships and Race (CORR) on 12/12: St. Matthew’s is partnering with St. Thomas’ Episcopal Church, Isle of Hope UMC, and Asbury UMC to hold a monthly book club and dialogue series on race and relationships that will focus on a different book about racial injustice every month. Our hope is to continue learning more about others and ourselves, while also building deeper and meaningful relationships with our greater community across the barriers of denomination and race.

Our third gathering will be held on Sunday, December 12, 4:00-5:30 PM in person only at St. Matthew’s. Refreshments will be served outdoors (weather permitting) before gathering for discussion indoors.

Our current book is called Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man by Emmanuel Acho. Please read Chapters 7 through 15 (i.e., Part II and Part III) before the December meeting. You can purchase the book online or in most book stores (Amazon link).

D. Christmas Poinsettias Memorials Due 12/19; Funds For Operations: St. Matthew's invites worshippers to make memorial and/or thanksgiving donations to the church this Christmas in honor of loved ones or other intentions. Please inform the church office about your memorial and thanksgiving intentions by Sunday, December 19.

This year, the Altar Guild has volunteered to purchase necessary poinsettias to decorate the church for Christmas, rather than using these funds to purchase flowers. Christmas donations will thus be redirected toward general operations to help reduce our operating deficit going into 2022. The Altar Guild promises not to compromise the church's Christmas.

E. Upcoming Dates for Baptisms & Confirmations: Holy Baptism is available to anyone at any age who has not already been baptized. Confirmation or Reception is available for teens and adults who would like to make a mature commitment to The Episcopal Church. Baptisms can be performed on almost any Sunday or feast day based on your family's schedule. Confirmations, Receptions, and Renewals of Baptismal Vows must take place when a Bishop is present. The Right Rev. Frank Logue, Bishop of Georgia, will hold his next visitation to St. Matthew's on Sunday, January 16, 2022. If you are interested in taking any of these next steps in your faith journey, please contact Fr. Arboleda by cell phone or email (

F. T/W/Th Evening Prayer via Zoom: On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, St. Matthew's invites you to pray Evening Prayer over Zoom. The video will continue to stream to Facebook Live at 5:00 PM. Please join the Zoom call by 4:55 PM. Otherwise, watch the prayer service as you have been on Facebook Live.

For security purposes, below is the Meeting ID only; please check your St. Matthew's e-Newsletter for the password (or email to request it).

Topic: Zoom Evening Prayer

Time: 05:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada) every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday

Join Zoom Meeting: See e-Newsletter

Meeting ID: 991 8577 8541

Passcode: See e-Newsletter

Dial by your location: +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington D.C)

Meeting ID: 991 8577 8541

Passcode: See e-Newsletter

G. Revised COVID-19 Safety Guidelines for In-Person Worship: On June 21, the Vestry authorized revised COVID-19 Safety Guidelines for in-person worship at St. Matthew's. At the October Vestry meeting, they reaffirmed the use of these guidelines and the maintenance of this temporary Sunday worship schedule.

All people in attendance are still required to wear masks that cover the nose and mouth at all times and maintain social distancing in their assigned seating areas. Click here to read the Vestry's June 2021 COVID-19 Safety Guidelines in their entirety.

The Dismissal

[BCP, p. 366]

Go in peace to love and serve the Lord!

Thanks be to God!

The Parish Prayer List

Prayer List: Guillermo G. Arboleda, Martha Avery, Christine Brown, Jacqueline Bryant, Lazola Cope, Annie Bell Greer, Loretta Harmond, Marva Harris, Genelle Joseph and her children, Whitney Kennedy, Sada Maxwell, Craig Maxwell, Jameel Newton, Mackenzie Orth, Helen Scroggins, and the Townsend family

Birthdays: Rashaad Jones (12/6), Jade Carrington (12/6), Monica Gray Williams (12/9), LaShon Washington (12/9), and Noel Wheeler (12/10)

Wedding Anniversaries: N/A

Recent Deaths: Ronald Baynes (11/21/21), Louis H. Martin (11/28/21; brother of Martha Avery)

May the souls of all the departed rest in peace; and may light perpetual shine upon them. Amen.

Note: This service is reproduced from The Book of Common Prayer 1979 (BCP), The Hymnal 1982 (Hymn), Lift Every Voice and Sing II: An African American Hymnal (LEV), African American Heritage Hymnal (AAHH), and other sources cited. The Scripture readings are from the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) of the Bible.

Image Credit:

54 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page