Sunday Worship Service

Dec 4, 2022, 11:00 am12:00 pm
All are welcome


Event Description

It's that beautiful, peaceful time of year! Below is the Advent Season Worship Service schedule featuring Rev. Alison Boden, Ph.D., Dean of Religious Life and the Chapel, and Rev. Dr. Theresa Thames, Associate Dean of Religious Life and the Chapel, and includes wonderful guest preachers as well.

The Worship Service is held every Sunday at 11am in the University Chapel. The services are also live streamed on the ORL YouTube page each week.

The bulletin for this week's service is below:

Princeton University Chapel, December 4, 2022 – the second Sunday of Advent

A Service of Holy Communion

You are invited to rise, in body or spirit, for those parts of the service marked with an asterisk (*)

Invitatory: Prelude, Fugue and Variation by César Franck (1822-1890), from The Complete Works of César Franck: XII

Welcome and Announcements by Dean Thames             

*Hymn No. 101: Comfort, Comfort, O My People, Freu dich sehr

*Call to Worship by Natalie Harvey         

Leader: We have lit a second candle as a sign of the coming light of Christ.

Advent means coming.

We are preparing ourselves for the days

When the nations shall beat their swords into plowshares,

And their spears into pruning hooks;

Nation shall not lift up sword against nation,

Neither shall they learn war any more.

The wolf shall dwell with the lamb,

The leopard shall lie down with the kid,

The calf and the lion and the fatling together,

And a little child shall lead them.

(All sing)

O come, O come, Emmanuel, and ransom captive Israel,

That mourns in lonely exile here until the Son of God appear.

Rejoice!  Rejoice!  Emmanuel shall come to thee O Israel!

O come, O Wisdom from on high, and order all things far and nigh;

To us the path of knowledge show, and help us in that way to go.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.                                                     

One: Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.

All: Have mercy on us, most merciful Creator;

in your compassion forgive us our sins, known and unknown, things done and left undone; and so uphold us by your Spirit that we may serve you in newness of life, to the honor and glory of your Name; through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.

*Assurance of Pardon: Friends, hear the Good News of Advent. God's love is known across time, in Jesus Christ, and at this very moment. Hear these words of assurance that God, who makes all things new, also covers us with grace, love, and forgiveness. Thanks be to God. Amen.

Reading: Isaiah 11:1-10 - A shoot shall come out from the stock of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots.  The spirit of God shall rest on him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of God.  His delight shall be in the fear of God. He shall not judge by what his eyes see, or decide by what his ears hear; but with righteousness he shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth; he shall strike the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips he shall kill the wicked.  Righteousness shall be the belt around his waist, and faithfulness the belt around his loins. The wolf shall live with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them.  The cow and the bear shall graze, their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.  The nursing child shall play over the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put its hand on the adder’s den.  They will not hurt or destroy on all my holy mountain; for the earth will be full of the knowledge of God as the waters cover the sea.  On that day the root of Jesse shall stand as a signal to the peoples; the nations shall inquire of him, and his dwelling shall be glorious.

Anthem: Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming arr. J. Edmund Hughes (b. 1947) 15th c. carol, tr. Theodore Baker Aurelius Clemens Prudentius (348-410), tr. J. M. Neale

Lo, how a Rose e'er blooming                                                                                      

From tender stem hath sprung!                                                                          

Of Jesse's lineage coming

As saints of old have sung.

It came, a flow’ret bright,

Amid the cold of winter

When half spent was the night.

Of the Father's love begotten

ere the worlds began to be,

he is Alpha and Omega,

he the source, the ending he,

of the things that are, that have been,

and that future years shall see

evermore and evermore.                                                    

Reading: Matthew 3:1-12 - In those days John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness of Judea, proclaiming, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.” This is the one of whom the prophet Isaiah spoke when he said, “The voice of one crying out in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.’” Now John wore clothing of camel’s hair with a leather belt around his waist, and his food was locusts and wild honey. Then the people of Jerusalem and all Judea were going out to him, and all the region along the Jordan, and they were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins.   But when he saw many Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism, he said to them, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear fruit worthy of repentance. Do not presume to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our ancestor’; for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. Even now the ax is lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. “I baptize you with water for repentance, but one who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and will gather his wheat into the granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”                                          

Sermon: "Up Above My Head" by Rev. Dr. Judy Fentress-Williams  

*Hymn No. 109: With Joy Draw Water, St. Columba

Prayers of the People by Dean Boden

(If there are prayer requests that you would like to share, please raise your hand.) 

After each petition:               

One: God of love and mercy,

All: Hear our prayer.

Lord’s Prayer: Our Father, who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy Name. kingdom come. Thy will be done, On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. forgive us our trespasses, As we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.

*Exchange of the Peace

One: The peace of God be always with you.

All: And also with you.

(The people may exchange the peace with one another.)   

Offertory Sentence

Music at the Offering: O Sapientia by Douglas Byler (b. 1988)                                                                                                                                         

O Wisdom, coming forth from the mouth of the Most High, reaching from one end to the other, mightily and sweetly ordering all things: Come and teach us the way of prudence. Vespers antiphon for Advent, 6th c.

*Doxology: Sung to the tune of hymn no. 27, Lasst uns erfreuen

Praise God from whom all blessings flow, Praise God all creatures here below, alleluia, alleluia. Praise God above ye heavenly hosts, Creator, Christ, and Holy Ghost, Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!


Invitation to Communion by Dean Thames

One: God be with you.

All: And also with you.

One: Lift up your hearts.

All: We lift them to God.

One: Let us give thanks to God most high.

All: It is right to give God thanks and praise.

One: Holy God, our loving Creator, close to us as breathing and distant as the farthest star, we thank you for your constant love for all you have made. We thank you for all that sustains life, for all people of faith in every generation who have given themselves to your will, and especially for Jesus Christ, whom you have sent from your own being as our Savior. We praise you for Christ’s birth, life, death, and resurrection, and for the calling forth of your church in the world. Gifted by the presence of your Holy Spirit, we offer ourselves to you as we unite our voices with the entire family of your faithful people everywhere:

All: Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.

One: Creator God, We bless you and praise you, You spoke and the Earth was formed. You drew a breath and the sea rose. All of creation sings your praises:

One: From the dust of the Earth, you created our bodies.  You gave us our senses and blessed us with the power of reason and love. Yet we turned   against you and one another.

One: And so you sent us Jesus, the incarnate one, to show us how to love you.  He announced good news to the poor, release to the captive, sight to the blind, and freedom to the oppressed.

All: Through all his life and death, He reconciled us to you and to one another.

One: Witnessing to that reconciliation, on the night he was arrested, in company with his good friends, Jesus took bread.  After giving thanks, he broke it and said:

All: Take. Eat.  This is my body, which is given for you.  Do this, remembering me.

One: After supper, he took a cup of wine and said:

All: “Drink this, all of you.  This is the new covenant, sealed in my blood; whenever you drink it, do this, remembering me.”

One: Remembering Jesus, we ask you to send the power of the Holy Spirit upon this bread and this wine that these gifts may be for us the sacrament of your healing presence among us in a broken and bleeding world.  Feed us with your power; fill us with your peace; lead us, reconciled and redeemed, into the world, to work for the liberation and reconciliation of all peoples.  In the name of God, Creating, Redeeming, and Sanctifying, we pray, Amen.         

All: Christ has died.  Christ is risen.  Christ will come again!

One: The gifts of God for the people of God. All of God’s people are welcome at God’s table.

Please come forward to receive Communion. You are then invited to return to your seats to keep silence for meditation and prayer.

Music during Communion: O Emmanuel by Ēriks Ešenvalds (b. 1977) Vespers Antiphon for Advent, 6th c.

O Emmanuel, our king and our lawgiver. The hope of the nations and their Savior. Come and save us, Lord our God.

*Thanksgiving: To be said by all.

 Eternal God, we thank you for graciously calling us into community with Jesus and one another, and for beginning in us the age that is to come.  Grant us courage and send us forth to do the work you have given us to do, to love and serve you as faithful witnesses of Jesus Christ.  To Christ, to you, and to the Holy Spirit, be honor and glory, now and forever.  Amen.

*Prayer for Princeton: to be said by all: O Eternal God, the source of life and light for all peoples, we pray you would endow this University with your grace and wisdom: give inspiration and understanding to those who teach and to those who learn; grant vision to its trustees and administrators; to all who work here and to all who bear her name give your guiding Spirit of sacrificial courage and loving service.  Amen.                        

*Hymn No. 108: Isaiah the Prophet Has Written of Old, Judas and Mary


Voluntary: Toccata on “Wachet Auf, Ruft Uns die Stimme” by Francis Jackson (b.1917)                                                                                                                                                                          

University Chapel Staff: The Rev. Alison L. Boden, Ph.D., Dean of Religious Life and of the Chapel; The Rev. Dr. Theresa S. Thames, Associate Dean of Religious Life and of the Chapel; Dr. Nicole Aldrich, Director of Chapel Music; Eric Plutz, University Organist; Elizabeth Powers, Chapel Administrator; Natalie Harvey and Becky Schad, Seminary Interns; Edgar Gomez, Sexton; Lisa McGurr, Sexton                                                                                                                                                                                                        

The University Chapel is a welcoming community of faith.  We gather to sing God's praises, to hear God's living Word, to seek justice, and to proclaim God's love for all people. If you are interested in making a contribution toward Sunday flowers in the chapel as a memorial please contact Liz Powers for details at 258-3048.

Every Sunday of every month the congregation is invited to bring non-perishable food items to be donated to Arm in Arm.

The offering this morning will go to further the ministry of the University Chapel.

César Franck Bicentennial – 2022 marks the bicentennial of French organist and composer César Franck (1822-1890).  In celebration, throughout 2022, University Organist Eric Plutz has offered the complete works for organ.  The Invitatories and Voluntaries at the Sunday morning services provided ample space for the twelve large compositions, and the survey concludes today, honoring Franck’s December 10 birthday.

Judy Fentress-Williams ’84 is in bi-vocational ministry in Alexandria, VA as the Dodge Professor of Biblical Interpretation at Virginia Theological Seminary and the Senior Assistant to the Pastor for Teaching and Preaching at the Alfred Street Baptist Church.

Dr. Fentress-Williams received her Ph.D. in Hebrew Bible from Yale University in 1999.  She earned her M.Div. from Yale Divinity School in 1990 and her A.B. in English from Princeton University in 1984 with certificates in African-American Studies and American Studies.

Prior to her appointment at Virginia Theological Seminary in 2002, she was a member of the faculty at Hartford Seminary as a Professor of Hebrew Bible.  There she was also the director of the Black Ministries Program, a certificate program designed to meet the needs of African-American clergy and laity in the greater Hartford area.  Today, the Rev. Dr. Fentress-Williams lives at the intersection of the church and the academy.  In addition to her tenured teaching position at Virginia Theological Seminary, she works with the Christian Life Institute, Ministers in Training programs and teaches Bible Study at the historic Alfred Street Baptist Church. There she plays a vital role in the development of the church’s own Sunday School curriculum.

Dr. Fentress-Williams’ published work reflects her interest in a literary approach that highlights the multiple voices in scripture.  Her most recent publication is entitled Holy Imagination:  A Literary and Theological Introduction to the Whole Bible. She published a commentary on the book of Ruth for the Abingdon Old Testament Commentary Series and was a contributor and Old Testament Editor for the CEB Women’s Bible.  Published articles include, “Location, Location, Location: Tamar in the Joseph Cycle,” in Bakhtin and Genre, “Exodus” in the Africana Bible, “Esther” in the Fortress Old Testament Commentary and “The Writings” in the Fortress Companion to the Old Testament Introduction.  She is currently working on a Genesis commentary.

A recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award for Excellence in Theological Education from Yale Divinity School, she is a member of the Society for Biblical Literature, and serves on the Advisory Board for Religious Life at Princeton University.

Judy is married to Kevin Williams, M.D., and they are the proud parents of Samantha and Jacob.

Singers!  Join the Christmas Eve Chorus at Princeton University chapel.  The service will be on Saturday, December 24th at 8:00 p.m.  Rehearsals: Thursday, 12/22 from 7:00-9:00 p.m. and Friday, 12/23 from 7:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.  Contact Nicole Aldrich 609-258-3654, [email protected] if you are interested.


Today, December 4, 2022—1:30 p.m. Hallelujah Church @ Princeton, Murray-Dodge Hall, Room 104 — A service of exciting worship, inspiring music, and a place of grace where love, hope and faith come alive. 

2:30 p.m.  Advent Concert —The Chapel Choir presents a program of music inspired by the Great “O” Antiphons, the 9th century source of the beloved hymn “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel.” Featuring prayers and poetry by Joan Mitchell, CSJ, and artwork by Ansgar Holmberg, CSJ, from their book "Praying the Advent Names of God." Admission free. 

Wednesday, December 7, 2022 —12:00 noon — Hour of Power, Murray-Dodge Hall 104—an interdenominational weekly Christian service of praise, prayer, music, and proclamation.

7:30 p.m.—Candlelight Service of Lessons and Carols, music by the Chapel Choir and Princeton a cappella groups.  Admission free.

Thursday, December 8, 2022—12:30 p.m.—After Noon Concert Series—The concerts are free and all are invited.  The performer will be James D. Hicks, Califon, New Jersey.

Sunday, December 11, 2022—11:00 a.m. University Chapel Service. The preacher will be Dean Thames.  

Noteworthy December Events

Monday, December 12, 2022—7:30 p.m. Messiah, Community sing with organ, strings and trumpet.  Bring a score or borrow one at the door.  Admission $5, students free.

Saturday, December 24, 2022—8:00 p.m. Christmas Eve Service—The prelude starts at 7:30 with organ, oboe, strings, and vocalists.  The preacher will be Dean Boden.

Sunday, December 25, 2022—11:00 a.m.  Christmas Day Service with celebration of Holy Communion.  The preacher will be Dean Thames.