Litany for A Blue Christmas

by Christine Sine

Candle for a Blue Christmas

The following creative litany is adapted from a service that was sent to me by Morgan Schmidt, our youth pastor, a couple of years ago.

Welcome

Opening Song: O Come All Ye Faithless 
(To the tune of O Come All Ye Faithful. )

O come, all ye faithless, doubtful and disheartened
Oh come ye O come ye just as you are
Come and be honest, come in all your brokenness
O come let us adore him Christ the Lord.

Sing, choirs of sinners, sing of your redemption!
Sing, sing and testify of power from within
Glory to G-d, glory in your presence
O come let us adore him, Christ the Lord.

Yea, G-d we greet thee, come this longest evening
Spirit to thee be all glory given
Name of Creation, come in flesh appearing:
O come let us adore him, Christ the Lord.

Call to Worship | Psalm 13:3-6

One: Consider and answer me, O Lord my God; lighten my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death; lest my enemy say “I have prevailed over him”; lest my foes rejoice because I am shaken.

All: We come to you O Lord, seeking answers to our questions.
We come to you O God, because you are the Creator.

One: But I have trusted your steadfast love;
my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.
I will sing to the Lord, because he has dealt bountifully with me.

All: We come looking for a song to sing;
We wait for your voice to call us from beyond our fear.

Litany of Lament & Song (O God Where Are You Now? – David Crowder)

(v. 1) – O God, hold me now

Come and lament with me.
Let us attend.
Come and let sorrow fill your marrow with such sadness that we are made strong,
so that our legs can bear the weight of our glory.

Come and lament for broken hearts and lives.
for lovers who leave, and for mothers who abandon.
for those who are hungry, & those whose souls starve.
for the teenagers in the back seats of cars.
for cancer and lonely toddlers.
for medical bills and those with no insurance.
for the bus that never comes & for the bills we can’t pay.
for racism and sexism & all the lives those have ruined.
for our bodies and our souls.
For today and most days
All we bring are broken things.

(v. 2) – O God, hold me now

Come and lament with me.
for the food we waste, and for the food that harms.
for those who are starving,
for those who try and find peace by starving themselves.

Come and lament for broken hearts and lives
for those who hate their thighs and for those who have been abused.
for the bones that break and the cancer that spreads.
for blisters and splinters and hairs that split.
for asthma that seizes and for those we love who never get better.
for those who can’t get warm enough to sleep.
for those who wake early to find the dreams of beauty are not real.
for those whose coffee pots break when they need it most.
for hangovers and regrets and nights spent tossing.

Come and lament with me.
Let us attend.
For today and most days
All we bring are broken things.

Reflection & Response

In the midst of a season that often feels frantic, loud, and anything but peaceful, may the next few moments offer you space to reconnect with your soul, reflect, or simply be. We’ve prepared spaces around the sanctuary where we hope you’ll find rest: cozy drinks & a fire, candle lighting, creativity, and healing.

Communion

Post Communion Prayer – After the Storm

Reading / Poem

Lines for Winter by Mark Strand

lyrics here http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/lines-for-winter/

Reflection on Darkness & Light

A Liturgy of Remembering

One: The first candle we light is to remember those whom we
have loved and lost. We pause to remember their name, their face, their voice, the memory that binds them to us in this season.

All: May God’s eternal love surround them.

(Pause while the first candle is lit)

One: The second candle we light is to redeem the pain of loss, the loss of someone who was very important to us, part of our lives, part of our own selves. We pause to
gather up the pain of the past and offer it to God, asking that from God’s hands we receive the gift of peace.

All: Refresh, restore, renew us O God, and lead us into your future.

(Pause while the second candle is lit)

One: The third candle we light is to remember ourselves this Christmas time. We pause and remember these past weeks and months, the disbelief, the anger, the down times, the poignancy of reminiscing, the hugs and  handshakes of family and friends, all those who stood with us. We give thanks for all the support we have known.

All: Let us remember that dawn defeats darkness, life overcomes death.

(Pause while the third candle is lit)

One: The fourth candle is lit to remember our faith and the gift of hope which the Christmas story offers to us. We  remember that God, who shares our life, promises us a place and time of no more pain and suffering.

All: Let us remember the One Who shows the way, who brings the truth and Who bears the light.

(Pause while the fourth candle is lit. The Christ candle will re-main unlit as a sign of waiting for a future that is yet unknown to us, from which God beckons us)

Lingering Benediction

O Come O Come Emmanuel

For more Blue Christmas resources check out these posts:

Preparing for a Blue Christmas – New Ideas for 2015

Resources for a Blue Christmas

 

 

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Blue Christmas | pilgrimwr.unitingchurch.org.au December 22, 2016 - 5:05 am

[…] Blue Christmas liturgy on Godspace blog. […]

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