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Content about Epiphany

September 1, 2009

The Advent/Christmas/Epiphany cycle is a time of newness: a new liturgical year begins with the first Sunday of Advent. A new year on the secular calendar begins before the cycle is done. And let’s not forget the new babies in the stories!

September 1, 2009

The season after Christmas and before Lent can often seem like a “down” time in the church year—as if we’re simply marking time while waiting for another grand celebration. Whether it is because people are suffering from holiday fatigue or influenced by gloomy winter weather, the season of Epiphany can go by unnoticed and unheralded.

September 1, 2009

The season after Christmas and before Lent can often seem like a “down” time in the church year—as if we’re simply marking time while waiting for another grand celebration. Whether it is because people are suffering from holiday fatigue or influenced by gloomy winter weather, the season of Epiphany can go by unnoticed and unheralded.

September 1, 2009

Prelude
“We Three Kings/Bell Carol,” arr. Foncannon
“Songs of the Season,” arr. Keveren

Welcome

Epiphany Prayer
Eternal God, you have made yourself known to people of all ages, all times, and all walks of life. As the magi were overjoyed when they saw the star, so may we be filled with joy as you reveal yourself to us this morning. Amen.

September 1, 2009

Prelude
“We Three Kings/Bell Carol,” arr. Foncannon
“Songs of the Season,” arr. Keveren

Welcome

Epiphany Prayer
Eternal God, you have made yourself known to people of all ages, all times, and all walks of life. As the magi were overjoyed when they saw the star, so may we be filled with joy as you reveal yourself to us this morning. Amen.

September 1, 2008

The idea for this service began in late November 2007. As a congregation we were not planning to hold a New Year’s Eve or a New Year’s Day service. So we asked the question, “How will we begin the new year on Epiphany Sunday?” The idea that stuck was to ask members of the congregation to submit Bible texts that had sustained them, given them hope, and challenged them in the past year or two. The members responded with nearly one hundred submissions!

September 1, 2008

The idea for this service began in late November 2007. As a congregation we were not planning to hold a New Year’s Eve or a New Year’s Day service. So we asked the question, “How will we begin the new year on Epiphany Sunday?” The idea that stuck was to ask members of the congregation to submit Bible texts that had sustained them, given them hope, and challenged them in the past year or two. The members responded with nearly one hundred submissions!

March 1, 2007

Our church follows the seasons of the Christian year and the lectionary Scripture passages, changing banners and colors accordingly. When we planned a service called “Singing Through the Christian Year,” it provided us with the opportunity to “walk through” the Christian year in one evening and to reprise many of the choir anthems we had learned and used in services over the past year.

September 4, 2004

During January 2004, worship at Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan, focused on the message of Isaiah 60 (see also p. 22), in light of provocative discussion of this text in Richard Mouw’s When the Kings Come Marching In: Isaiah and the New Jerusalem, (rev. ed. Eerdmans, 2002). The following service was prepared by a Symposium planning team for morning worship in the Calvin College Chapel during the Calvin Symposium on Worship and the Arts.

September 4, 2004

During January 2004, worship at Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan, focused on the message of Isaiah 60 (see also p. 22), in light of provocative discussion of this text in Richard Mouw’s When the Kings Come Marching In: Isaiah and the New Jerusalem, (rev. ed. Eerdmans, 2002). The following service was prepared by a Symposium planning team for morning worship in the Calvin College Chapel during the Calvin Symposium on Worship and the Arts.

September 2, 2002

What is the meaning of light in the Bible? This drama was prepared for the conclusion of a series of sermons our pastor preached between Epiphany and Lent that asked that question. Rather than using a narrative approach, I began with three scenes: creation, fall, and redemption. Using my concordance, I found relevant Scripture passages for each scene. (All Scripture is taken from the NRSV.) When I noticed that my original three-part structure didn’t satisfy, I added scenes 3 and 5.

September 1, 2001

Our children’s ministry team wanted to provide an opportunity for the children of the church to offer their gifts in worship in a visible way. Elizabeth Henstock, a member of the team, developed the concept of creating a collaborative piece for Advent using the fourteenth-century fresco Adoration of the Magi by Italian artist Giotto. The children were told and shown the story of how the magi brought gifts to Jesus. They enthusiastically agreed to work together on a large mosaic as their way of also bringing a gift to Jesus.

September 1, 2000

In the front of the church where I worship, we have always had a beautifully proportioned cross that is mounted against a light-colored wall. This wall is lit from both sides, and where the light mixes in the middle, there is the most interesting vertical stripe of light. Because of its prominence and the lighting, I wanted to do something with the cross--something different than our usual crown of thorns and purple cloth, perfectly draped for Easter. Something for Advent.

September 1, 1996

This litany attempts to encourage and challenge us in the work of evangelism by voicing Scripture's call to witness, along with the words of those who have obeyed Christ's command. It also incorporates section 44 of the contemporary testimony Our World Belongs to God. It was usedfirstin a Refoimation Day service togivewitness to the Reformed heritage and legacy of reaching out for Christ. The litany would also be fitting to use during Epiphany, or in any service of worship that seeks to highlight or encourage evangelism.

September 1, 1996

I was reading the paper the other day and ran across the line, "That was a real epiphany for me!" No, it wasn't in a church publication; it was the daily paper. And the context made it clear that the author meant something like, "It was a real eye-opener!" But it got me thinking: What is an epiphany anyway? How did a word with such a focused doctrinal Christian meaning come to be used this way in everyday speech?

September 1, 1995

Cast
Wife
Narrator
Man
Candle 1 (red, female)
Candle 2 (male)
Candle 3 (purple)
Candle 4 (female)






Props
Large box (such as a refrigerator box) opened down one side and facing congregation
Bic lighter
Candles should dress in solid bright colors (turtlenecks and matching pants)


September 1, 1995
DECEMBER

When Luther began to prepare songs for congregational singing, he composed some and translated others. One of the first hymns the reformer chose goes all the way back to the fourth-century Ambrose, often called the father of Latin hymnody.

September 1, 1994

Since many congregations are still new to observing the Christian Year, a teaching service about the various church seasons can be very instructive The following service was first conducted at the Neland Avenue Christian Reformed Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Although hymns are suggested in the service, feel free to substitute other seasonal hymns Also, whether you use more or less choir participation will depend on your local situation.

September 1, 1994

Would you be surprised to find an ad in your local newspaper announcing an Epiphany service in your church?

Most of us would. Traditionally churches in the Reformed tradition have not observed Epiphany. Many of us are probably not even sure what Epiphany is all about or where the idea of celebrating it began. Although a growing appreciation of the church year has given Christians a better understanding of Advent and Lent, Epiphany still seems a bit "foreign" to some of us.

September 1, 1992
Why Celebrate Epiphany?

Epiphany seems particularly appropriate for a gentile church. It reminds us that God did something quite remarkable: he extended his grace to those who were originally outside the covenant. As Paul reminds the Eph-esians, we were aliens and strangers, but Christ made us part of the new Israel.

September 1, 1992

The following brief song services were prepared for the Sundays after Epiphany in 1993; the topics were chosen to correspond with the Revised Common Lectionary (Year A) for that season. These song services could be used in the morning service during this portion of the church year, as part or all of a second-service hymnsing, or at any other time in Christian worship (independent from the use of the Lectionary). Selections not in your hymnal could be sung by a small group taught by rote and sung from memory, or printed in the bulletin (with proper copyright permission).

September 1, 1991

From Hebrews 1:1-3 NRSV

Long ago, God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets;

now God has spoken to us by a Son.

God made the world through the Son, who has been appointed heir of all things and the perfect reflection of God's glory.

The Son is the exact representation of God's being, sustaining all things by his powerful word.

Praise God for the gift of the Son.

We welcome the Light of the world!

September 1, 1990
A Scripture Drama from John 4

[Jesus enters and sits on a stool draped with a dark cloth (to look like a rock) near the well.]

Narrator: He came to a town in Samaria named Sychar,
which was not far from the field
that Jacob had given to his son Joseph.
Jacob's well was there,
and Jesus, tired out by the trip,
sat down by the well.




[Woman begins to enter and will sit on well seat.]

September 1, 1989