top of page

12/14/2022 Bulletin (Blue Christmas Service)


Blue Christmas Wednesday, Dec 14, 2022 at 7:00 PM In our Sanctuary and on Facebook Live Prelude In Dulci Jubilo J.S. Bach Welcome Rev.TJ Mack Opening Hymn Abide with Me (vs. 1,2,3) B. # 99 Abide with me; fast falls the eventide; The shadows deepen, Lord, with me abide; When other helpers fail, and comforts flee. Help of the helpless, O abide with me. Swift to its close ebbs out life's little day; Earth's joys grow dim, its glories pass away; Change and decay in all around I see; O Christ who changes not, abide with me. I need your presence every passing hour; I need your grace to foil the tempter’s power. Give me your love my guide and stay to be. Through cloud and sunshine, O abide with me. A Litany of Darkness and Light black hymnal #880, adapted John 1:1-5 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it. Leader 1: We wait in the darkness, expectantly, longingly, anxiously, thoughtfully. Leader 2: The darkness is our friend. In the darkness of the womb, we have all been nurtured and protected. In the darkness of the womb, the Christ-child was made ready for the journey into light. All: You are with us, O God, in darkness and in light. - silence - light one candle - break the silence Psalm 121:1-2 I lift up my eyes to the hills – from where will my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. Leader 1: It is only in the darkness that we can see the splendor of the universe – blankets of stars, the solitary glowings of distant planets. Leader 2: It was the darkness that allowed the Magi to find the star that guided them to where the Christ-child lay. All: You are with us, O God, in darkness and in light. - silence - light one candle - break the silence Isaiah 40:28-31 Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. God gives power to the faint, and strengthens the powerless. Even youths will faint and be weary, and the young will fall and be exhausted; but those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint. Leader 1: In the darkness of night, desert people find relief from the cruel, relentless heat of the sun. In the darkness of sleep, we are soothed and restored, healed and renewed. Leader 2: In the blessed desert darkness, Mary and Joseph were able to flee with the infant Jesus to safety in Egypt. In the darkness of sleep, dreams rise up. God spoke to Jacob and Joseph through dreams. God is speaking still. All: You are with us, O God, in darkness and in light. - silence - light one candle - break the silence Isaiah 40:1 Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God. Leader 1: In the solitude of darkness, we sometimes remember those who need God’s presence in a special way – the sick, the unemployed, the bereaved, the persecuted, the homeless, those who are demoralized and discouraged, those whose fear has turned to cynicism, those whose vulnerability has become bitterness. Leader 2: Sometimes in the darkness, we remember those who are near to our hearts – colleagues, partners, parents, children, neighbors, friends. We thank God for their presence and ask God to bless and protect them in all that they do – at home, at school, as they travel, as they work, as they play. All: You are with us, O God, in darkness and in light. - silence - light one candle - break the silence Psalm 13:1-2a How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I bear pain in my soul, and have sorrow in my heart all day long? Leader 1: Sometimes, in the solitude of darkness, our fears and concerns, our hopes and our visions rise to the surface. We come face to face with ourselves and with the road that lies ahead of us. And in that same darkness, we find companionship for the journey. Leader 2: In that same darkness, we sometimes allow ourselves to wonder and worry whether the human race is going to survive. All: We know you are with us, O God, yet we still await your coming. In the darkness that contains both our hopelessness and our expectancy, we watch for a sign of God’s hope. - silence - light one candle - break the silence Special Music The Sleep of the Infant Jesus French Carol/ Gilbert Martin Reading #1 The Plan lyrics (excerpt) singer/songwriter Dan Fogelberg Prayers holding space for our grief – and pain – and sorrow – and loss – silent and spoken Special Music Noel for Flute Stops Claude Daquin Reading #2 Blessing That Does Not End Jan Richardson Closing Hymn Breathe On Me, Breath of God B. #292 Breathe on me, Breath of God, fill me with life anew That I may love the way you love and do what you would do. Breathe on me, Breath of God, until my heart is pure, Until with you I will one will, to do and to endure. Breathe on me, Breath of God, stir in me one desire: That every earthly part of me may glow with holy fire. Breathe on me, Breath of God, so shall I never die, But live with you the perfect life of your eternity. Benediction – Postlude I Wonder as I Wander Arr. Robert Lau Many thanks to those who helped make this service possible – in front of the camera and behind the scenes. Deb Riley – Music Minister Mary Angela Davis & Vicky Espling – Liturgists Cynthia Wood – Graphics Minister Vicky Espling – Office Secretary TJ Mack – Settled Minister You – The Body of Christ To donate to our church online via PayPal: Please visit or Hancock (Maine) UCC on Facebook or mail offerings to: Union Congregational Church PO Box 443 Hancock, ME 04640 Attention: Treasurer Resources: "Permission to podcast / stream the music in this service obtained from ONE LICENSE, License #A-738532. All rights reserved.”

Abide With Me

Words and Music - ©2021 Stephen DeCesare / Exultet Music

Contributors: Henry Lyte, William Monk, Stephen DeCesare

Breathe on Me, Breath of God

Music - ©2014 Selah Publishing Co., Inc.

Contributors: Edwin Hatch (PD), Craig Phillips

Reading # 1

The Planlyrics (excerpt)

singer/songwriter Dan Fogelberg

I have these moments all steady and strong I'm feeling so holy and humble The next thing I know, I'm all worried and weak And I feel myself starting to crumble

The meanings get lost, and the teachings get tossed And you don't know what you're gonna do next You wait for the sun but it never quite comes Some kind of message comes through to you Some kind of message comes through

And it says to you Love when you can Cry when you have to Be who you must That's a part of the plan Await your arrival With simple survival and One day, we'll all understand One day, we'll all understand One day, we'll all understand

Reading # 2

Blessing That Does Not End –

Jan Richardson

From the moment

it first laid eyes

on you,

this blessing loved you.

This blessing

knew you

from the start.

It cannot explain how.

It just knows

that the first time

it sat down beside you,

it entered into a conversation

that had already been going on


Believe this conversation

has not stopped.

Believe this love

still lives—

the love that crossed

an impossible distance

to reach you,

to find you,

to take your face

into its hands

and bless you.

Believe this

does not end—

that the gesture,

once enacted,


Believe this love

Goes on—

that it still

takes your face into its hands,

that it presses

its forehead to yours

as it speaks to you

in undying words,

that it has never ceased

to gather your heart

into its heart.

Believe this blessing


Believe it goes with you


Believe it knows you


3 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page