Christmas Eve




St. Matthew Lutheran Church

3620 Red Rose Farm Road

Baltimore, Maryland 21220


Pastor John M. Kulczycki


















































St. Matthew Lutheran Church

3620 Red Rose Farm Road   

Sunday, December 24, 2017

The Nativity of Our Lord

Welcome to our 2017 Children's Christmas Eve Service. We hope that you will be blessed by your participation. May the light that made this night so bright lighten your heart during this whole Christmas Season.



Prelude  Music from “the Polar Express” (Sylvestri)     M. Hurley, Organist

Call to Worship                                                         WP # 36

Welcome & Announcements


*Gathering Carol   O Come All Ye Faithful” (vs.1 & 2) ELW # 283

            O Come all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant! O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem; come and behold him, born the king of angels: O come, let us adore him, O come, let us adore him, O come, let us adore him, Christ the Lord!

            The highest, most holy, light of light eternal, born of a virgin, a mortal he comes; Son of the Father now in flesh appearing! O come, let us adore him, O come, let us adore him, O come, let us adore him, Christ the Lord!


*Confession and Forgiveness           (at Altar)

Reader:            Almighty and compassionate God, we regret that we have not lived graceful lives in response to your gracious gift!

Congregation:           We have not renounced our godless ways, forsaken our worldly values or lived our lives in temperance, honesty and righteousness. Forgive us we pray.


*Confession and Forgiveness

Reader:            In mercy and loving kindness God forgives us all our sins for the sake of Jesus, who delights to call us sisters and brothers.

Congregation:            Amen


*Gathering Canticle  (at Altar)

Reader:            Behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy that will be to all people.

Congregation:            Unto us this night is born a savior who is the Christ.

Reader:            Glory to God in the highest!

Congregation:            And peace on earth among all people whom God has chosen to favor.


Prayer of the Day      (Pastor)

Let us pray…O God, you have made this most holy night to shine with the brightness of the true Light, Jesus Christ, our Lord. Grant that as we have known on earth the mysteries of that Light, we may also come to the fullness of his joys in heaven; through your Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.



*Anthem Hymn                                                         Joyful Singers


First Reading (Worship Assistant)                           Isaiah 7:10-14

The Word of the Lord came to King Ahaz, encouraging him to be bold and to ask for a sign from the Lord. Ahaz, in his stubbornness, refused to ask God for a sign, claiming that would be “putting God to the test.” Ahaz discounted the reassurance that the Lord was offering him and continued deeper in his sin by rejecting God’s offer of a sign. That sign was nothing less than Immanuel, the son of the virgin.


10Again the Lord spoke to Ahaz: 11“Ask a sign of the Lord your God; let it be deep as Sheol or high as heaven.” 12But Ahaz said, “I will not ask, and I will not put the Lord to the test.” 13And he said, “Hear then, O house of David! Is it too little for you to weary men, that you weary my God also? 14Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” The word of the Lord, thanks be to God.


Psalm  (Worship Assistant, read responsively)           Psalm # 110

In this psalm we hear the promise of God to bless the kingly line of David. As Christians, we hear it as the union of king and priest in the person of Jesus Christ. Not only was Jesus a descendant of King David, he was also David’s Lord and was anticipated by David.


The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.”

The Lord will send the scepter of your power out of Zion, saying, “Rule over your enemies round about you.

Princely state has been yours from the day of your birth; in the beauty of holiness have I begotten you, like dew from the womb of the morning.”

The Lord has sworn and he will not recant: “You are a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.”


Second Reading         (Worship Assistant)                 1 John 4:7-16

St. John makes it clear that we love only because God has loved us first. God sent Jesus to be the Savior of our lives and the one who grants us forgiveness. The love of God can only be known through his love flowing through the lives of his children.


7Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. 10In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.13By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. Word of God, word of life, thanks be to God.


(Worship Assistant: “Please rise for the reading of the Holy Gospel.”)


*Holy Gospel: (Pastor) The Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew, the 1st Chapter. Glory to you, O Lord.  Matthew 1:18-25: As Joseph was wrestling with what to do about the situation concerning his pregnant fiancé, an angel of the Lord was sent to him in a dream. The angel explained how the child Mary was carrying was the Son of the Most High God, and Joseph was to care for them and name the child “Jesus,” which means “He saves.”


18Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. 19And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. 20But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” 22All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet: 23“Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel” (which means, God with us). 24When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him: he took his wife, 25but knew her not until she had given birth to a son. And he called his name Jesus. The gospel of the Lord, praise to you, O Christ.


Children's Sermon                                                    Amy Rey


*Hymn of the Day     "Away in the Manger" (verse 1)     ELW # 277

Away in a manger, no crib for a bed, the little Lord Jesus laid down his sweet head; the stars in the sky looked down where he lay, the little Lord Jesus asleep on the hay.



Offering                                                                     Joyful Singers

Offertory Carol "Angels We…” (verse 1)               ELW # 289

Angels we have heard on high, sweetly singing o’er the plains, and mountains in reply, echoing their joyous strains. Gloria in excelsis Deo; gloria in excelsis Deo.


*Prayer                                                                      ELW Pg. 129, # 1

Worship Assistant:      Let us pray…Holy God, gracious and merciful, you bring forth food from the earth and nourish your whole creation. Turn our hearts toward those who hunger in any way, that all may know your care; and prepare us now to feast on the bread of life, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.

Congregation:            Amen


*The Great Thanksgiving                                        ELW Pg. 144

Pastor:             The Lord be with you.

Congregation:            And also with you.

Pastor:             Lift up your hearts.

Congregation:            We lift them to the Lord.

Pastor:             Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

Congregation:            It is right to give him thanks and praise.


*Words of Institution                                                ELW Pg. 108, #II

In the night in which he was betrayed, our Lord Jesus took bread, and gave thanks; broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying: Take and eat; this is my body, given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.

Again, after supper, he took the cup, gave thanks, and gave it for all to drink, saying: This cup is the new covenant in my blood, shed for you and for all people for the forgiveness of sin. Do this for the remembrance of me.


*The Lord's Prayer                                                  ELW Pg. 145

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed by thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever. Amen


Communion               (wait for direction from ushers)


Communion Hymns

“O Little Town of Bethlehem” (verse 1-3)                ELW # 279

O little town of Bethlehem, how still we see thee lie! Above thy deep and dreamless sleep the silent stars go by; yet in thy dark streets shineth the everlasting light. The hopes and fears of all the years are met in thee tonight.

For Christ is born of Mary, and, gathered all above while mortals sleep, the angels keep their watch of wond’ring love. O morning stars, together proclaim the holy birth, and praises sing to God the king, and peace to all the earth!

How silently, how silently the wondrous gift is giv’n! So God imparts to human hearts the blessings of his heav’n. No ear may hear his coming; but, in this world of sin, where meek souls will receive him, still the dear Christ enters in.


 “It Came Upon the Midnight Clear” (verse 1-3)       ELW # 282

It came upon the midnight clear, that glorious song of old, from angels bending near the earth to touch their harps of gold: Peace on earth, good will to all, from heaven’s all gracious king. The world in solemn stillness lay to hear the angels sing.

Still through the cloven skies they come with peaceful wings unfurled, and still their heavenly music floats over all the weary world. Above its sad and lowly plains they bend on hovering wing, and ever over its babel sounds the blessed angels sing.

And you, beneath life’s crushing load, whose forms are bending low, who toil along the climbing way with painful steps and slow: look now, for glad and golden hours come swiftly on the wing; oh, rest beside the weary road and hear the angels sing!


“Silent Night”                                                             ELW # 281

Silent night, holy night! All is calm, all is bright round yon virgin mother and child. Holy infant, so tender and mild, sleep in heavenly peace, sleep in heavenly peace. 

Silent Night, holy night! Shepherds quake at the sight; glories stream from heaven afar, heavenly hosts sing, alleluia! Christ, the Savior, is born! Christ, the Savior, is born!

Silent Night, holy night! Son of God, love’s pure light radiant beams from your holy face, with the dawn of redeeming grace, Jesus, Lord, at your birth, Jesus, Lord, at your birth.


*Table Blessing                                                          Pastor John

The body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ strengthen you and keep you in his grace. Amen.


*Post Communion Carol  Joy to the World” (verse 1) ELW # 267

Joy to the world, the Lord is come! Let earth receive her king; let every heart prepare him room and heav’n and nature sing, and heav’n and nature sing, and heav’n, and heav’n and nature sing.




Worship Assistant:      Let us Pray...Almighty God, you gave your Son both as a sacrifice for sin and a model of the godly life. Enable us to receive him always with thanksgiving and to conform our lives to his; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.

Congregation:            Amen



Pastor:                         The God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Congregation:           Amen.



Worship Assistant:      Go in peace. Serve the Lord.

Congregation:            Thanks be to God.


*Sending Song:  "Hark! The Herald…"(verse 1)      ELW # 270

Hark! The herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn king; peace on earth, and mercy mild, God and sinners reconciled.” Joyful, all you nations rise; join the triumph of the skies; with angelic hosts proclaim, “Christ is born in Bethlehem!” Hark! The herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn king!”


Postlude                      “Sleigh Ride” (Anderson)      M. Hurley, Organist


angel18c*Congregation Please Stand

ELW - Evangelical Lutheran  Worship




 Helping with the Children’s Service

Worship Assistant: Ray Grumbine

Acolyte: Carley Rey

Ushers: Joy Mayne, Tim Mayne & James Anders












A Blessed Christmas and Happy New Year to All!

From Pastor John, His Family,

and the Church Staff!


A special "Thank You" to everyone who helped with the preparation and served in the Children’s Children Eve Service.


If you placed an order for Poinsettias,

you may pick them up after the 11PM Service. Plastic sleeves for carrying the plants are available in the Narthex closet.

Please check your name off the list.


Thank You!