December 26, 2019
for Sunday, Dec. 30
Multiple Readings as part
of Lessons and Carols
As we celebrate the Twelve Days of Christmas, our gospel today confronts us with the death of innocent children at the hands of Herod. The birth of Christ does not remove the power of evil from our world, but its light gives us hope as we walk with all the “holy innocents” of past generations and today who have suffered unjustly. In our gathering around [the] word…, God continues to redeem us, lift us up, and carry us as in days of old.
The joy-filled carols of Christmas still seem to echo in the nave as the assembly gathers for worship. …Still, our joy is not complete for sin continues, even in these days. Herod, bent on destroying Jesus, orders the murders of the youngest children of Bethlehem. Even today the distress present in a dangerous and unjust human society presses in. Human sin severs our relationships with God and one another.
In the midst of our distress, Jesus comes in flesh and blood and is proclaimed in today’s readings to be fully human, and even vulnerable, just as we are. Yet the Christ child also is Lord and Savior. Even while Herod plots, God makes a way to use this for good. Guiding Joseph by dreams, Jesus and his family are saved and the words of Hosea 11:1 are fulfilled. In this way we are reminded once more this is no ordinary child, this is the Christ child, the Messiah, the one sent to save and redeem a broken and sinful humanity.
Once more we discover God does not simply fix our lives, removing all obstacles and difficulties. Instead, God uses the harsh realities of life as opportunities for the gospel to be proclaimed, hope to triumph, and grace to shine forth. This is Jesus, our Emmanuel, God with us, when we flee to Egypt and as we return to dwell in Nazareth.
13 Now after they had left, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Get up, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you; for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” 14 Then Joseph got up, took the child and his mother by night, and went to Egypt, 15 and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet, “Out of Egypt I have called my son.”
16 When Herod saw that he had been tricked by the wise men he was infuriated, and he sent and killed all the children in and around Bethlehem who were two years old or under, according to the time that he had learned from the wise men. 17 Then was fulfilled what had been spoken through the prophet Jeremiah:
18 “A voice was heard in Ramah,
wailing and loud lamentation,
Rachel weeping for her children;
she refused to be consoled, because they are no more.”
19 When Herod died, an angel of the Lord suddenly appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt and said, 20 “Get up, take the child and his mother, and go to the land of Israel, for those who were seeking the child’s life are dead.” 21 Then Joseph got up, took the child and his mother, and went to the land of Israel. 22 But when he heard that Archelaus was ruling over Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there. And after being warned in a dream, he went away to the district of Galilee. 23 There he made his home in a town called Nazareth, so that what had been spoken through the prophets might be fulfilled, “He will be called a Nazorean.”
Names will remain of the Prayer List for a month - at which
time it will be taken off unless, or course, there is still a continued need
for our prayers and we’re asked to keep the name on.
***Pastor Ivy Gauvin is on vacation until Monday, Dec. 25 - Jan 1. If you have a pastoral emergency before she returns to work, please contact Pastor Timothy Hoyer at 716-487-7521.
***Katie Castro will be guest preacher Sunday December 29th.
***5 & 2 Ministry Food Bins Donated to Date: 71
***ONLINE GIVING now available at St. Timothy for Debit/Credit cards. 3 ways to give:
- Go directly to our website at
- Use our QR code with the QR reader on your smartphone
- Download the app ‘GivePlus Church’. Create an account.
For further information, see Kathy Carlson on Sundays or call her at 485-1316.
St. Timothy’s Annual Congregational Meeting will be held Sunday, January 26th following worship. Everyone is encouraged to attend.
Committee heads – all reports are due into St. Timothy office no later than tomorrow, Friday, December 27th for inclusion in the Annual Report. Reports can be hand written and left on the office desk or emailed to the office at
· For our community of faith as we seek to do God’s work in the world.
· For those in our congregation and community who suffer silently with illness, financial burdens, and family obligation.
· For victims of violence and their families in all places.
· For victims of wildfires, flooding and earthquakes.
· For: Ned Lindstrom, Rev Alan Anderson, Dick Starks, Tim O’Brien, Gretta Kettle, George and Janet Balcom, Maj-Britt Traynor, Pat & Maureen Kibbe, Beverly Klang, Trudy Fetzner, Arden Johnson, Thom Shagla, Matt Isaacson, Sarah Van Staalduinen, Mabel Tranum, Bryan Brown, Craig Jackson, Jim Doherty, Karen Brown, and Bonnie Christoferson.
· For people serving in the military, including Ben Wickerham, and their families, those caught up in persecution, violence and war.
· For all children, that the love of Christ may reach them through all of us who have resources to love, protect, pray and provide for them.
· For: The ELCZ Evangelical Lutheran Church in Zimbabwe and ELCZa Evangelical Lutheran Church in Zambia.