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November 28, 2021 – Advent I (Come Again)


The Brick Church  /The Brick-less Church


Whoever you are, wherever you may be on life’s journey, you are welcome here.


We ask that all members and guests wear masks throughout the service.

We ask also that you refrain from singing; humming is permitted during hymns.


November 27, 2021 – Advent I


Today’s readers and candle-lighters are Tim N. and Tom M.

For reasons of safety due to Covid, today’s Interlude has been pre-recorded.




Adagio   Pietro Nardini
Dr. Thomas Pousont, organ







Watchman, tell us of the night; what its signs and promise are.
Traveler, o’er yon mountain height, see that glory-beaming star!
Watchman, does its beauteous ray aught of joy or hope foretell?
Traveler, yes: it brings the day, promised day of Israel.



We invite you to light a candle at home, as part of your worship.


One candle is a fragile defense,
against the darkness of a winter night.
But one candle can kindle another,
and so bring light to the world.


God of Advent, kindle within our hearts a flame of hope.


We light this candle in hope.   {1st candle is lit}





from V’al Hanissim, traditional Hanukkah prayer


[We thank you] for the miracles and for the redemption and for the mighty deeds and for the saving acts and for the victories that you wrought for our ancestors in those days at this time.

In the days of Mattathias son of Yohanan the high priest, the Hasmonean, and his sons, when an evil kingdom stood against your people Israel in order to make them forget your Torah and violate your laws,

You, in your enormous mercy, stood up for them in their time of great need, upheld their cause, judged their case, and avenged their oppressors.

You delivered the mighty into the hands of the weak, the many into the hands of the few, the impure into the hands of the pure, the wicked into the hands of the righteous, and the degenerates into the hands of those who cling to your Torah;

And you made for yourself a great and holy name in your world, and performed a great deliverance and miracle for your people Israel; as you do today.

And afterward, your children came to the Holy of Holies in your House, and they cleansed your Palace and purified your Temple. And they kindled lights in the courtyard of your Sanctuary, and they established these eight days of Hanukkah, to give thanks and to praise your great name.


Psalm 25 (NRSV, adapt.)


To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul. O my God, in you I trust.

Make me to know your ways, O Lord;  teach me your paths.

Lead me in your truth, and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation.

Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord; remember your steadfast love.

For your name’s sake, O Lord, pardon my guilt, for it is great.

Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted.

Relieve the troubles of my heart, and bring me out of my distress.

Consider my affliction and my trouble, and forgive all my sins.

O guard my life, and deliver me, for I take refuge in you.

May integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I wait for you.

Redeem the nation, O God, out of all its troubles, for your goodness’ sake.




Veni, Veni Emmanuel     trad., 12th century

sung by Stephen, Choral Scholar


The Gospel According to Luke, 21:25-36


 “There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars, and on the earth distress among nations confused by the roaring of the sea and the waves. People will faint from fear and foreboding of what is coming upon the world, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then they will see ‘the Son of Man coming in a cloud’ with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to take place, stand up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”

Then he told them a parable: “Look at the fig tree and all the trees; as soon as they sprout leaves you can see for yourselves and know that summer is already near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that the kingdom of God is near. Truly I tell you, this generation will not pass away until all things have taken place.  Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.

 “Be on guard so that your hearts are not weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of this life, and that day does not catch you unexpectedly, like a trap. For it will come upon all who live on the face of the whole earth. Be alert at all times, praying that you may have the strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.”




Come Again
Rev. Liza B. Knapp



(an Advent prayer by Walter Brueggemann)


In our secret yearnings
we wait for your coming,
and in our grinding despair
we doubt that you will.
And in this privileged place
we are surrounded by witnesses who yearn more than do we
and by those who despair more deeply than do we.
Look upon your church and its pastors
in this season of hope
which runs so quickly to fatigue
and in this season of yearning
which becomes so easily quarrelsome.
Give us the grace and the impatience
to wait for your coming to the bottom of our toes,
to the edges of our fingertips.
We do not want our several worlds to end.
Come in your power
and come in your weakness
in any case
and make all things new.





O Come, O Come, Emmanuel, and ransom captive Israel
who mourns in lonely exile here, until the Son of God appear.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.






Wachet Auf, Ruft Uns Die Stimme   J.G. Walther




Praise God from whom all blessing flow,
Praise God all creatures here below
God’s praise ye hosts on high proclaim
Who doth create, redeem, sustain.


from Jan L. Richardson, Night Visions


Ancient One
who makes all things new,
may we receive with gentleness
and touch with hopefulness
and protect with fierceness
and love with tenderness:
and may we celebrate with gratefulness
and welcome with humbleness
and tend with gracefulness
all that you give
into our care.




Watchman, tell us of the night, higher yet that star ascends.
Traveler, blessedness and light, peace and truth its course portends.
Watchman, will its beams alone gild the spot that gave them birth?
Traveler, ages are its own; see, it bursts o’er all the earth!




may the blessing of light be upon you
light without, and light within

may the blessed sunlight shine on you
and warm your heart

until it glows like a peat fire


so that a stranger come
and may be warmed by it

and, also, a friend





God Gave To Us This Glorious Day   J.G. Walther





The Brick-less Church presents: 
A Virtual Advent Calendar!

Each evening at 8pm, from December 1st through December 25th, those who wish may receive a special Advent Calendar email to open.

Each of these digital “windows” will contain a poem, an image, or a music link, each selected by the pastor or a member of the Brick Church community. Our hope is that these “treats” will help us to pause and experience the hope, peace, and mystery of Advent.

If you would like to contribute an item (poem, picture, or music link) to be included in the Advent Calendar, or if you would like to be added to the Calendar mailing list, please email Pastor Liza.


The First Church of Deerfield

PO Box 276, Deerfield, Massachusetts 01342 / (413) 773-5323