Holy One, born in a manger, Word become flesh, we rejoice in your coming.
We rejoice that you came to save, not with might and power but through vulnerability and love.
In this dark season, thank you for Christmas, and the gift of a child of hope.
We rejoice for news so good it still rings out through voices around the world speaking of good tidings of great joy which shall be for all people.
We rejoice that people around the world each day are loving their neighbor, opening their door, sharing what they have, trying to find a way to live in peace.
We rejoice that the best laid plans of those who sow hatred and fear, will come to nothing. We rejoice that your angels tell us to “Fear not.”
Today we rejoice that hope lives even in places designed to be hopeless; hope ringing out and over every wall, rising up in refugee camps, walking through locked prison doors, simmering in the hearts of those brought low, rising up in the laughter of children who have no home and no citizenship. We pray that your gift of hope will surround and uphold the lonely, isolated, sick and the suffering.
We pray for all of our loved ones in long-term care. May they know the love of God and the love of family and friends. Grant deep measures of patience, we pray.
We pray for all impacted by covid: the sick, the suffering, the grieved, front line workers, health care and essential workers. May hope burn bright for those receiving treatment or awaiting surgery.
We pray that the comforting presence of God will surround all who are missing loved ones this Christmas.
We pray for our households of faith.
We pray for deep relationships of love and joy especially at this challenging time.
This Christmas open us to your gift of revolutionary hope, and your new ways of seeing and being. Where there is judgement in our families and relationships, bring acceptance. Where there are grudges, your sweet release. Where love has faltered, renew it like the dawn. Let hope be born again in our humblest, darkest places as we join with the angels in their song of joy, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to all .” Let this be our benediction, let this be our song. Let rejoicing be on our lips and in our hearts: “Hallelujah, Christ is born!” Amen