Worship Service, Fourth Sunday of Advent

Dec 19, 2021, 11:00 am12:00 pm
Princeton University Chapel
Attend in person* and virtual option



Event Description


Sunday, 11am, Princeton University Chapel

Join us for worship in the University Chapel with preacher Rev. Dr. Theresa S. Thames, Associate Dean of Religious Life and of the Chapel at Princeton University. Music by the Princeton University Chapel Choir with Nicole Aldrich, Director of Chapel Music and of the University Chapel Choir and Eric Plutz, University Organist.

The Worship Service is live streamed on the ORL YouTube page each week.

*All persons, including members of the broader community, are welcome to attend this event if they are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 if over age 12. Face coverings must be worn at all times by everyone over age 2. Registration is required for contact tracing purposes.

Register in advance through this link

The Bulletin for this service is below.

Fourth Sunday of Advent, December 19, 2021

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

Invitatory:  Basse et Dessus de Trompette by Louis-Nicolas Clérambault (1676-1749); Noël Suisse by LouisClaude Daquin (1694-1772); Agincourt Hymn by John Dunstable (1390-1453) and arranged by E. Power Biggs with David Weisberg ’23, organist

Welcome and Announcements:  Dean Boden

*Hymn:  Fling Wide the Door (Macht hoch die Tür)

*Call to Worship:  Dean Thames

Leader:  We have lit a fourth 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.  The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad, the desert shall rejoice and blossom; Like the crocus it shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice with joy and singing.  God will give you a sign.  Look, the young woman is with child and shall bear a son, and shall name him Emmanuel (God is with us).

(All sing):O come, o come, Emmanuel, and ransom captive Israelthat mourns in lonely exile here until the Son of God appear.  Rejoice!  Rejoice!  Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.  O come, O Key of David, come, and open wide your heavenly home; make safe the path to endless day, to hell’s destruction close the way.  Rejoice!  Rejoice!  Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.  O come, O Dayspring, come and cheer our spirits by your advent here; love stir within the womb of night, and death’s own shadows put to flight.  Rejoice!  Rejoice!  Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.  O come, Desire of Nations, bind all peoples in one heart and mind; make envy, strife, and quarrels cease; fill the whole world with heaven’s peace.  Rejoice!  Rejoice!  Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.

*Confession – Leader: 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: Micah 5:2-5a    But you, O Bethlehem of Ephrathah, who are one of the little clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to rule in Israel, whose origin is from of old, from ancient days.  Therefore he shall give them up until the time when she who is in labor has brought forth; then the rest of his kindred shall return to the people of Israel.  And he shall stand and feed his flock in the strength of God, in the majesty of the name of God.  And they shall live secure, for now he shall be great to the ends of the earth; and he shall be the one of peace.

Anthem: Ave Maria by Johann Sebastian Bach/Charles Gounod (1818-1943) with Grace Matthews '22., soprano.    Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you.  Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.  Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

Reading: Luke 1:46b-55    And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant.  Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name.  His mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation.  He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts.  He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly; he has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty.  He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, according to the promise he made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.”

Sermon:  “Hold Music” by Dean Thames

*Hymn No. 119:  My Soul Gives Glory to My God (Morning Song)

Prayers of the People:  (If there are prayer requests that you would like to share, please raise your hand and after each petition.)

Leader:  God of love and mercy,

People:  Hear our prayer.

Lord’s Prayer:  Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be 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.

Choral Response:  He Came Down (Traditional; Cameroon)    He came down that we might have love, Hallelujah forevermore.  He came down that we might have light.  He came down that we might have peace.  He came down that we might have joy. 

*Exchange of the Peace – Leader: The peace of God be always with you.

People: And also with you. (People may exchange the peace with one another.)

Offertory Sentence

Music at the Offering:  Advent Lullaby by John L. Bell (b. 1949)  (The composer imagines Mary singing this lullaby to her unborn child) Lullaby, lullaby, wait till tomorrow.Lullaby, lullaby, wait till tomorrow;your time will come.Your time will come.Lullaby, lullaby, God comes tomorrow.Lullaby, lullaby, God comes tomorrow;and God is here.And God is here.

*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!

*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. 104:  We Hail You God’s Anointed by Ellacombe


Voluntary:  Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland, BWV 661 by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)

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.

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; Nicole Aldrich, Director of Chapel Music and of the Chapel Choir; Eric Plutz, University Organist; Elizabeth Powers, Chapel Administrator; Otis Byrd, Jr. Seminary Intern; Edgar Gomez, Sexton; Lisa McGurr, Sexton

If you would like to make a contribution toward Sunday flowers in the chapel as a memorial, please contact Liz Powers for details at 609-258-3048.  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 the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen.  Their mission is to provide free meals as well as free services and programs to those in need in the Trenton area and to enable them to achieve self-sufficiency.

Christmas services: Skip the line!  We expect very full services on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.  You can still register at the door but if you wish to limit the time you spend outside waiting to check in, we encourage you to visit tickets.princeton.edu in advance and "buy" a free ticket to the service.  You'll receive a "ticket" via email, which you can print out or save on your phone.  When you arrive at the Chapel, simply show the ticket to a door monitor and head to your seat. We look forward to celebrating with you!

Singers!  Join the Christmas Eve Chorus at Princeton University chapel.  The service will be on Friday, December 24, at 8:00 p.m.  Rehearsals: Sunday, December 19, from 1:00-3:00 p.m. and Monday, December 20, from 7:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.  Contact Nicole Aldrich 609-258-3654, [email protected] if you are interested.  All singers must be fully vaccinated and will be masked at all times.

Calendar - 

Today, Sunday, December 19, 2021:  You are invited to coffee hour immediately following the service.

Friday, December 24, 2021, 8:00 p.m., Christmas Eve Service.  The prelude starts at 7:30 with seasonal music.  The preacher will be Dean Boden.

Saturday, December 25, 2021, 11:00 a.m., Christmas Day Service with celebration of Holy Communion.  The preacher will be Dean Thames.

Sunday, December 26, 2021, 11:00 a.m.  A Christmas Festival Service of Lessons and Carols.  Presented by Trinity Episcopal Church, Princeton. 

For additional information, visit chapel.princeton.edu or call 609-258-3047

Copyright information: “He Came Down” arrangement © 1986 Iona Community, admin. GIA Publications, Inc. “Advent Lullaby” © 1995 Wild Goose Resource Group, admin. GIA Publications, Inc. All rights reserved. Reprinted and streamed/recorded by permission under OneLicense.net #A-541135.

Office of Religious Life