At MHUMC we love to celebrate Christmas Eve with a service of Candles and Carols. We retell the Christmas story with a tapestry of scripture readings and songs of the season, capped off with singing “Silent Night” by candlelight.
This year, while we are still unable to meet all together in the Sanctuary due to social distancing protocols, we are offering this service as a recorded experience you can participate in from your home.
Follow the entire service in the video here, or go at your own pace with portions of the service provided below. Note that the video has a “Closed Caption” transcript, accessible by clicking the CC button at the bottom of the video window.
|The prelude sets the mood for the service. “Greensleeves” is a traditional tune, played by our pianist Wanda Garrett.
|Choral Introit is “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel,” The United Methodist Hymnal #211, sung by our choir, with piano accompaniment by Denise Melroy and guitar by Steve Cole.
Words of welcome and greeting by Pastor Patrick
May the love of God, the grace of Christ, the friendship and peace of the Holy Spirit, be your experience during this time of worship as we hear again the Christmas story through carols, candles, and lessons.
Our vision, as a faith community, is to create an inclusive, reconciling and progressive spiritual community that welcomes all people based on the teaching of Jesus “to love one another” (John 13:34-35).
Here, in this place, all are welcome;
Here, human diversity matters;
Here, open minds matter.
Here, prayerful hearts guided by spirit and rooted in scripture, tradition, reason and human experience matter.
|Lighting of the Christ Candle, with the Richardson family.
As we light the Christ Candle today and begin our Christmas journey, let us remember how —
By lighting the Christ candle we affirm the Christ who lives in our hearts;
Please Pray With Me:
|“O Come, All Ye Faithful,” The United Methodist Hymnal #234. Sing along with our choir, with piano accompaniment by Denise Melroy and guitar by Steve Cole.
Our first lesson is found in Isaiah 9:2, 6-7, read by Dan Hazen. The Prophet Isaiah tells of the birth of a child who will bring hope, love, joy and peace to the people.
|“A Star Shone Bright,” from Worship & Song #3051. Sing along with the accompaniment played by our pianist Denise Melroy and guitarist Steve Cole.
Our second lesson is Luke 1:26-35, 38, read by Margaret Hazen. The archangel Gabriel tells Mary she will have a baby, who will be called Son of God.
|“Away in a Manger,” The United Methodist Hymnal #217. Sing along with our choir, with piano accompaniment by Denise Melroy and guitar by Steve Cole.
Our third lesson continues our readings from the Gospel of St. Luke. Debbie Ullman reads Luke 2:1, 3-7, which tells of the birth of Jesus.
|“He is Born/Il Est Né,” a traditional song sung by our MHUMC choir and recorded on the CD “Songs of This Raggedy Band 2006.”
Our fourth lesson continues our readings from the Gospel of St. Luke. In Luke 2:8-16, Kathryn Airoldi tells us of the shepherds who go to the manger to see the newborn child, Christ the Lord.
|Special music: “O Holy Night,” sung by Bill Tindall.|
Our fifth lesson comes from the Gospel of St. Matthew. In Matthew 2:1-12, Robert Airoldi tells of the wise men, who came from other countries, following a star to the place where the Christ child was born.
|“View the Promise Through the Present” from Worship & Song #3048. Sing along with the accompaniment played by our pianist Denise Melroy.
Our final lesson comes from the Gospel of St. John. Listen as Trish Catalano reads John 1:1-14, where John tells of the mystery of the incarnation, which is God becoming flesh and living among us.
As we prepare to close our service, please join in singing this carol, and as we sing, we invite you to light a candle in your own home. Imagine all of us lighting our candles together with you and singing “Silent Night” together as one church family.
|“Silent Night,” The United Methodist Hymnal #239. Sing along with our choir, with piano accompaniment by Denise Melroy and guitar by Steve Cole.
Benediction and sending forth
Go forth into this Christmastide with Hope in your heart,
Go and share the Love of God,
Go and with Joy, tell the Good News,
Go with the message of Peace on Earth, Amen and Amen!
Credits and copyrights
Thank you to our musicians Denise Melroy (piano) and Steve Cole (guitar), and our vocalists Steve Cole, Wanda Garrett, Janet Ohene-Nyako, Koiwa Ohene-Nyako Mattia, Mary Richardson, and David Stolowitz.
We also thank Matthew Hendrickson (videographer) and David Tuttle (video and audio production).
- “Greensleeves” is a traditional tune arr. by Lee Evans.
- “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” words from 9th cent. Latin, 2nd vs. by Henry Sloane Coffin; music 15th cent. French, arr. and harm. by Thomas Helmore. © Public domain.
- “O Come, All Ye Faithful” words and music by John F. Wade. © Public domain.
- “A Star Shone Bright” words by F. Richard Garland, with English folk melody harm. by Dean McIntyre. © CCLI License #2718708
- “He is Born/Il Est Né” words and music traditional French. © Public domain.
- “O Holy Night” words by Placide Cappeau, translated from French to English by John Sullivan Dwight; tune by Adolphe Charles Adam. © Public domain.
- “View the Present through the Promise” words by Thomas H. Troeger, with traditional Welsh melody harm. by Luther Orlando Emerson. © CCLI License #2718708
- “Silent Night” words traditional French carol, music traditional French, arr. by Edward Shippen Barnes, harm. by Austin C. Lovelace. © Public domain.