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    Today Is: Third Sunday of Advent

Sun, 17 Dec 2023 -- The Lectionary Cycle is: B

Click for Responsorial Psalm

Collect for: Third Sunday of Advent
Stir up your power, O Lord, and with great might come among us; and, because we are sorely hindered by our sins, let your bountiful grace and mercy speedily help and deliver us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit, be honor and glory, now and for ever. Amen.

Old Testament
Isaiah 61:1-4, 10-14

1 The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, Because the LORD has anointed Me To preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives, And the opening of the prison to those who are bound; 2 To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, And the day of vengeance of our God; To comfort all who mourn, 3 To console those who mourn in Zion, To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.' 4 And they shall rebuild the old ruins, They shall raise up the former desolations, And they shall repair the ruined cities, The desolations of many generations.

10 I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, My soul shall be joyful in my God; For He has clothed me with the garments of salvation, He has covered me with the robe of righteousness, As a bridegroom decks himself with ornaments, And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. 11 For as the earth brings forth its bud, As the garden causes the things that are sown in it to spring forth, So the Lord GOD will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations.

Officiant: The Word of the Lord.
The People: Thanks be to God.


Psalm
Psalm 126

1 When the LORD brought back the captivity of Zion, We were like those who dream. 2 Then our mouth was filled with laughter, And our tongue with singing. Then they said among the nations, 'The LORD has done great things for them.'
The LORD has done great things for us, and we are glad with expectation.

3 The LORD has done great things for us, And we are glad. 4 Bring back our captivity, O LORD, As the streams in the South.
The LORD has done great things for us, and we are glad with expectation.

5 Those who sow in tears Shall reap in joy. 6 He who continually goes forth weeping, Bearing seed for sowing, Shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, Bringing his sheaves with him.
The LORD has done great things for us, and we are glad with expectation.



*At the end of the Psalms this is sung or said
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.


New Testament
1 Thessalonians 5:16-24

16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 19 Do not quench the Spirit. 20 Do not despise prophecies. 21 Test all things; hold fast what is good. 22 Abstain from every form of evil. 23 Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it.

Officiant: The Word of the Lord.
The People: Thanks be to God.


Gospel
John 1:6-8, 19-28

Introduction to the Gospel:
Deacon:The Lord be with you.
People: And also with you. Or And with your spirit
Deacon: May the Lord be on our minds, on our lips, and on our hearts as we hear His Holy Gospel. The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Saint John.
People: Glory to You, Lord Christ.
Deacon: We are reading from John's Gospel chapter 1, beginning at verse 6.

6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7 This man came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all through him might believe. 8 He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. 19 Now this is the testimony of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, 'Who are you?' 20 He confessed, and did not deny, but confessed, 'I am not the Christ.' 21 And they asked him, 'What then? Are you Elijah?' He said, 'I am not.' 'Are you the Prophet?' And he answered, 'No.' 22 Then they said to him, 'Who are you, that we may give an answer to those who sent us? What do you say about yourself?' 23 He said: 'I am 'The voice of one crying in the wilderness: 'Make straight the way of the LORD,' ' as the prophet Isaiah said.' 24 Now those who were sent were from the Pharisees. 25 And they asked him, saying, 'Why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?' 26 John answered them, saying, 'I baptize with water, but there stands One among you whom you do not know. 27 It is He who, coming after me, is preferred before me, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose.' 28 These things were done in Bethabara beyond the Jordan, where John was baptizing.

After the Gospel reading, the deacon can elevate the book and says:

Deacon: The Gospel of the Lord.
People: Praise to You, Lord Jesus Christ.

Prayers of the People

Prayers of the People for: Third Sunday of Advent

Brothers and sisters, trusting in God's mercy, let us bring our petitions before Him.  That the Church will proclaim the Good News of peace with God through Jesus Christ alone.
Lord in Your mercy,            Hear our prayer.

That elected leaders will be people of integrity and put an end to corruption and injustice.
Lord in Your mercy,            Hear our prayer.

That young people will respond to the challenges of the Gospel enthusiastically and further Gods kingdom to the next generation.
Lord in Your mercy,            Hear our prayer.

That the people of God will not quench the Holy Spirit but earnestly desire and seek His Gifts.
Lord in Your mercy,            Hear our prayer.

That those who are burdened by suffering and despair will be touched by the healing power of Christ.
Lord in Your mercy,            Hear our prayer.

That the sick or near death will be comforted by the love of God and the care of the Christian community.
Lord in Your mercy,            Hear our prayer.

For our own special intentions. (Pause)
Lord in Your mercy,            Hear our prayer.


Gracious Father, You are faithful in all Your ways.  Hear our prayer and sanctify us that we may be found holy and blameless at the coming of Your Son.  We ask this through Christ our Lord.  AMEN