Today the service is based on the Saltbush service for this Sunday as Keith & Ros are away for a two week break. It includes the Saltbush sermon & liturgy as well as a few YouTube videos.

Opening Carol: “Of the Father’s love begotten”

Today’s opening music is the carol, “Of the Father’s Love begotten”. Se the video below, and use the YouTube link if you have problems connecting.

Welcome & Lighting of Christ Candle 

You are invited to light the Christ candle. The dawn has come, gentle as the being of a child, clothed in the light of its newness. 

Responses & Gathering Prayer

The dawn has come, not in the harsh midday sun, but as fragile rays of pale light, feeling their way through the darkness. The dawn has come, calling the world into vulnerable hope and claiming a space for God deep in the centre of our brokenness. The dawn has come! Let us worship our God,for the Word has been revealed, Amen. 

Music for Reflection 

Song: Morning has BrokenWritten by Eleanor Farjeon sung by Yusaf Islam (Cat Stevens). If you have problems connecting you can go directly to YouTube with this link:

Passing the Peace

The peace of the Lord be with you. 
And also with you. 

You are invited to turn to those around you and offer them a word of greeting and peace. 

The Word around the Bush 

John 1:1-18 
1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was in the beginning with God. 3All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being 4in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. 5The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.6There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. 8He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. 9The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. 10He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. 11He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. 12But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, 13who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God. 14And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.15(John testified to him and cried out, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me ranks ahead of me because he was before me.’”)16From his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. 17The law indeed was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18No one has ever seen God. It is God the only Son, who is close to the Father’s heart, who has made him known. 

The Message 

Rev. Tim Jensen from the Saltbush team speaks to us on John 1:1-18.

Questions for conversation 

●I wonder what you have heard and thought from the Word today? 
●I wonder what you heard in the Word for our church? 
●What one action can you or your church take in response to the Word today? 

Silence in Two Ways 

Spend some time in silence sitting still (suggested 5 minutes). Close your eyes lightly. Sit relaxed but alert. 
 – You may like to say the prayer phrase “Mar-an-ath-a” (which means come Lord). Say this as four syllables. Do not try to think or imagine anything. If thoughts or distractions come, simply return to saying the word. 
 – Or you may like “sitting with God” — a silent time in which we focus all our mind, heart and soul on the presence of God without trying to create it. Simply be still and open to God. 

Prayers for Others 

O God, Light dispelling the darkness, we pray for the world, in its yearning for signs of good and hope, in its fears that nothing will ever change enough for free and just life to be given to its people. Silence 

We pray for those who look with longing eyes for tiny signs that there are better things to come, who clutch the fragments of survival as though tomorrow they may never see the dawn. Especially we pray for these people and situations: 
The people pray 

Come in new possibilities among them Jesus Christ. 
As we celebrate your coming in gifts and gatherings of plenty, we make our commitment to them,the commitment that we will not forget them on this day or the next. 

And at this time when, for many people, betrayals and loneliness become stark, like the bare bones of death confronting the fullness of life as they see those who enjoy the privilege of love, we pray that you will hold them close to your heart. 

Be with all those who find this season a mockery and painful reminder of who they are and what their life is like.Join us in every place Jesus Christ. Visit us whoever we are and wherever we are this day, we pray in your name. Amen. 

Carol: “The first Noel”

‘Pentatonix’ sing the carol, “The first Noel”. If you have problems connecting you can go directly to the video in YouTube with the following link:

Closing Responses & Blessing 

Rejoice and know the Living God, the One who loves, the One who nurtures, the One who is Word. Bless us, and the people we meet along the way, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen 


The postlude today is from Handel’s Messiah: “For unto us a child is born”. Sung by ‘Kings College Cambridge’. If you have problem connecting, use the link below.


Unless otherwise indicated: © 2020 Saltbush Community Ministers 

Prayers for others: ©Dorothy McRae-McMahon 2006. Liturgies for High Days – Advent 4 liturgies

Eastern Riverina Uniting Churches