This Christmas Eve we are having communion together in my congregation. I pastor and lead the contemporary service at my church and over the last few months we have used the more formal Great Thanksgiving liturgy in the United Methodist Hymnal. Due to both time and the fact I we have been pretty high church lately, I decided to use a less formal approach to communion for Christmas Eve.
The tension revolves in the sacramental conviction I have as a Methodist pastor to keep communion in line with the greater tradition of the Church. Specific words do not matter, but the greater story does. I wanted to find something brief but strong and would fit well within our service.
This Advent, my secret weapon for a few special services as been the A Christmas Sourcebook. I found this while in seminary and it has proven its worth several times over. It has plenty small bits that work well in Advent and Christmas services. It is a must buy for worship designers.
Below is what I am using to tell the story of Christ during our communion time. You can find it on pg. 23 of the sourcebook.
The grace of God has appeared, ordering salvation to all men and women. It trains us to reject the godless ways and worldly desires and live temperately, justly and devoutly in this age as we await our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of the great God and of our Savior Christ Jesus. It was he who sacrificed himself for us, to redeem us from all unrighteousness and to cleanse for himself a people of his own, eager to do what is right.
I wanted to share this great resource with you. Buy it and be ready for next Advent season.