The Festival (observed) of The Epiphany

of our Lord  January 07, 2024

     Their Journey Was Worth It!

The Perseverance of The Wise Men “Paid Off” as they finally met the Savior


            This morning you and I have the privilege of celebrating  one of the Christian Church’s oldest, most meaningful festivals, “The Festival of the Epiphany of our Lord.”    Its origin can be traced back to the 2nd century A.D.    By tradition, Epiphany officially occurred yesterday, on January 6th.  However, we will be observing it today.     The season of Epiphany is the third festival season of the Christian Church year, which began on the first Sunday of this past December (the first two festival season were Advent and Christmas).  The Epiphany season varies in length from 3 to 9 Sundays, depending on when Epiphany occurs, as well as the date of Easter.  An early Easter means a short Epiphany season, and a later Easter means a longer Epiphany season.  (This year’s Epiphany season will be six Sundays in length).

            With the exception of the Festival of the Resurrection of our

Lord (Easter Sunday), the celebration of the Epiphany of our Lord is the oldest of the Christian church’s festivals.  Almost 2000 years before the birth of Christ, January 6th marked the date of a celebration dedicated to the birth of the sun-god, Aeon.  By the close of the second century A.D., Christians “took over” this date and “reformed” it into the Festival of the Epiphany of our Lord, replacing any and all pagan overtones connected to the sun-god, with Christian meaning, significance, and worship of the “Son of God,” Who is the true Light of the world.

            The word “Epiphany” comes from the Greek word, “epi-phan-eh-oh” which means “to reveal,” or “to

 manifest.”    For us, Epiphany reminds us of the manifestation, or revelation, of God’s glory to mankind through the Father’s sending of His Son, who took upon Himself our human nature, into our world.  Until the inauguration of Christmas in the 4th century AD, both the birth and the baptism of Jesus were commemorated on the day of the Epiphany of our Lord.  When the celebration of Christ’s birth was changed to December 25th, the Eastern Church (today’s Eastern/Greek Orthodox  Church) restricted Epiphany to the celebration of Christ’s baptism.  In the Western Church, Epiphany became associated with the coming of the Wise Men. The reason for this is not clear.  However, since the Wise Men were not Jews, the primary thrust of the Epiphany message in the Western Church has been the importance of the revelation of Christ to the non-Jewish people (the Gentiles) of this world.  Accordingly, the Epiphany season has become a time to emphasize the missionary/out-reach/witnessing work which Christ has entrusted to every member of His Church on earth. One final point of interest.  While very little is said about the Wise Men (Magi) in Matthew’s account of their visit to the Christ Child, legend has fixed their number at 3 (no doubt because three gifts were brought to Jesus by them:  gold, frankincense, and myrrh), and has identified them as Caspar, Balthasar, and Melchior.  In addition, by another legend they have come to be regarded not only as wise men, but as kings.   Of course, we do not — nor should we — put our faith in legends.

                Today’s Scripture lessons are the historic/traditional readings for the Festival of the Epiphany.    Along with this morning’s second hymn, they serve to emphasize God’s grace in sharing the mystery of the Gospel with the Wise Men, but also – notably – with the non-Jewish (Gentile) peoples of the world. 

            Our Old Testament Lesson is a prophesy about Gentiles coming to the Messiah which found its immediate fulfillment in today’s Sermon Text, the story of the Wise Men coming to worship the infant Jesus.  

            In our Epistle Lesson, Paul rejoices because of the privilege God has given him of bringing the Light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the Gentile world.  Today, you and I are entrusted with proclaiming that saving message, formerly a mystery to all but the nation of Israel, throughout our community and the world.  

            Today’s Gospel Lesson, also provides us with the bases for our Children’s Lesson and our Sermon.   It’s the account the Wise Men and their trek following the star to worship Christ, and it will lead us back to our own celebration of Christ’s birth in order to find the enduring joy and encouragement to worship Christ as our Savior and Lord.


Grace Lutheran Church of Northwest Arkansas

is affiliated with the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod, a church body which spans the United States and Canada, and which also operates a number of foreign missions.

Our Vision:   Extend God’s Kingdom through His Word, serving each Soul.

Our Mission:  Share the Gospel, Encourage Faith, and Prepare Souls through Worship, Education and Fellowship.




Prayer Upon Entering Church    Heavenly Father, You showed Your grace by bringing me to faith in Christ through the work of Your Holy Spirit, and then by giving me the blessing of being called Your child.  Though what I offer You today is so small, compared to all You have done for me, please accept my humble offerings of praise and thanksgiving, as well as my gifts.  Also, Lord, help me gladly hear and take to heart the Good News of salvation from sin for me and all people through faith in Your Son, my Savior.  Renew and invigorate me with Your Holy Spirit today and every day, that I might live a confident life of faith and love to Your glory,  and that I might share, by all possible means, at every opportunity, the same Good News of salvation through Christ which has filled my life with peace and purpose.  Amen.

The portions of God’s Word used in this worship flyer have been taken from The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version    Copyright 2019,    The Wartburg Project, Inc.   All rights reserved.   Used with permission Music and lyrics, as needed, are used with permission via #A712831

Pre-service prayer                                                                                                                Pre-worship music


Let Us Praise The Lord

The Greeting and Invitation to Worship


The Opening Hymn                                                                               Hymn 75  “Father, Let Me Dedicate”


1 Father, let me dedicate   All this year to you, In whate’er my earthly state,   In whate’er I do.

Not from sorrow, pain, or care   Freedom dare I claim; This alone shall be my prayer:   Glorify your name.


2 Can a child presume to choose   Where or how to live?   Can a father’s love refuse   All the best to give?

More you give me ev’ry day   Than the best can claim;   Help me trust you that I may   Glorify your name.


3 If in mercy you prolong   Joys that now are mine,   If on life serene and fair   Brighter rays may shine,

Let my glad heart, while it sings,   You in all proclaim  And, whate’er the future brings,   Glorify your name.


4 If you have for me a cross   And its shadow come,   Turning all my gain to loss,   Shrouding heart and home,

Let me think how your dear Son   To his glory came   And in deepest woe pray on:   “Glorify your name.”



After which the Congregation will rise for


P:  We make our beginning this morning, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.     Amen.

     The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you

C:   (Sung)      And also with you.



The Confession of Sins


Pastor       God, our Heavenly Father, invites us to come into His presence and to worship Him with humble and

penitent hearts.  Therefore, let us now turn to Him, acknowledging our sinfulness and seeking His forgiveness for all our sins.

Congregation       Holy and merciful Father, +   I confess that I am by nature sinful   +   and that I have disobeyed

                             You in my thoughts, words, and actions;    +    I have done what is evil in Your sight   +   and have failed to do what is good.   +    For this I know that I deserve Your punishment,   +    both now and for eternity.     +     But I am truly sorry for all my sins,     +   and trusting in the perfect life   +   and innocent death of my Savior,  Jesus Christ, +   I plead:    +  God have mercy on me, a sinner.

Pastor       Our gracious Lord and Master has shown us His mercy:   He has given His one and only Son to save us

                 from all our sins.     And now, carrying out my office as a called servant of Christ,  and according to His command and authority,   I forgive you all your sins   in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  May the peace of God rest upon all of you.   

Congregation   (Sung)     Amen.



Lord Have Mercy


P:  For all that we need in life, and for the wisdom to use all Your gifts with gratitude and joy, hear our prayer,  O Lord.

C: (sung)        Lord have mercy

P:  For the steadfast assurance that nothing can separate us from Your love and for the courage to stand firm against the assaults of Satan and every evil, hear our prayer, O Christ:

C: (sung)        Christ have mercy.

P:  For the well-being of Your holy Church in all the world and for those who offer here their worship and praise, hear our prayer, O Lord

C: (sung)        Lord have mercy.

P:  Merciful God, Maker and Preserver of life, uphold us by Your power, and keep us in Your tender care:

C: (sung)        Amen.

P:  The works of the Lord are great and glorious;   His name is worthy of praise.

(Sung)      O Lord, our Lord,

How glorious is Your name in all the earth.

Almighty God, merciful Father,

Your crown our life with Your love.

You take away our sin;    You comfort our spirit;

You make us pure and holy in Your sight.

You did not spare Your only Son,

but gave Him up for us all.

O Lord, our Lord,

 How glorious is Your name in all the earth.

O Son of God, eternal Word of the Father,

You came to live with us;

  You made Your Father known;

You washed us from our sins in Your own blood.

You are the King of glory;   You are the Lord!

O Lord, our Lord, How glorious is Your name in all the earth

The Prayer for This Morning

O God, in Your grace You revealed Your Son to strangers and foreigners   +   by the guidance of a miraculous star.   +   Be merciful to us, O Lord,   +    Whom You have called out of the darkness of sin and unbelief   +   and into the light of saving faith in Christ Jesus.   +   Lead us now, we pray,   +   by the light of Your Word    +   to contemplate the beauty    +   and glory of Your majesty as our Sovereign Lord and Savior-God.   +   We ask this for the sake of Jesus Christ,  Your Son,  our Lord,   +   Who lives and rules with You and the Holy Spirit,   +   as the One true God,   +   now and forever.   +    Amen.


After which the Congregation may be seated

Feed Us, Lord

The Old Testament Lesson                                                                                                          Isaiah 60:1-6


Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord is dawning upon you.   2 Look, darkness covers the earth, and deep darkness covers the peoples, but the Lord will dawn upon you,  and His glory will be seen over you.   3 Nations will walk to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.  

4 Look up. Look all around and see!  All of them have been gathered. They are coming to you. Your sons will come from far away, and people will carry your daughters on their side.  5 Then you will look and be radiant.  Your heart will race with excitement and burst with joy.  For great riches from the sea will be delivered to you.  The wealth of the nations will come to you.  6 Caravans of camels will cover your land, young camels from Midian and Ephah.   All those from Sheba will come.   They will carry gold and incense, and they will announce the good news of the praise of the Lord.

The Epistle Lesson                                                                                                                 Ephesians 3:2-12

2 Surely you have heard of the administration of God’s grace given to me for you, 3 namely, that the mystery was made known to me by revelation (as I have already written briefly). 4 When you read this, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ. 5 This mystery was not made known to people in past generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to his holy apostles and prophets. 6 This mystery is that in Christ Jesus the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and people who also share in the promise through the gospel.

7 I became a servant of this gospel, in keeping with the gift of God’s grace that was given to me by the working of his power. 8 To me—even though I am the very least of all the saints—was given this grace: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ 9 and to enlighten everyone about the administration of this mystery. In past ages this mystery remained hidden in God, who created all things. 10 He did this so that, through the church, the multifaceted wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. 11 This was done according to the eternal purpose that he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. 12 In him we can freely approach God with confidence through faith in him. your glory.


After which, the Congregation will rise for

 The Gospel Lesson                                                                                                                  Matthew 2:1-12

After Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, when Herod was king, Wise Men from the east came to Jerusalem. They asked, 2 “Where is he who has been born King of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” 3 When King Herod heard this, he was alarmed, and all Jerusalem with him. 4 He gathered together all the people’s chief priests and experts in the law. He asked them where the Christ was to be born. 5 They said to him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, because this was written through the prophet:

6 You, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are certainly not least among the rulers of Judah: because out of you will come a ruler, who will shepherd my people, Israel.”

7 Then Herod secretly summoned the Wise Men and found out from them exactly when the star had appeared. 8 He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. When you find him, report to me, so that I may also go and worship him.”

9 After listening to the king, they went on their way. Then the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them, until it stood still over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with overwhelming joy. 11 After they went into the house and saw the child with Mary, his mother, they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and offered him gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh. 12 Since they had been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they went back to their own country by another route.

The Nicene Creed

I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth,  and of all things visible and invisible.  And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of His Father before all worlds, God of God,  Light of Light.  Very God of Very God.  Begotten, not made.  Being of one substance with the Father, By whom all things were made;  Who for us men and for our salvation, came down from heaven   And was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary   And was made man;  And was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate.  He suffered and was buried;  And the third day He rose again according to the Scriptures;  And ascended into heaven,  And sitteth on the right hand of the Father;   And he shall come again with glory, to judge both the quick and the dead;  Whose Kingdom shall have no end.   And I believe in the Holy Ghost,  The Lord and Giver of Life,  Who proceedeth from the Father and the Son,  Who with the Father and the Son together is worshiped and glorified,  Who spake by the Prophets.  And I believe one holy Christian and Apostolic Church.  I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins,  And I look for the resurrection of the dead,  And the life of the world to come.  Amen.


After which the Congregation will be seated

The Children’s Lesson                                                                                                       Matthew 2:1-2, 9-11

After Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, when Herod was king, Wise Men from the east came to Jerusalem. They asked, 2 “Where is he who has been born King of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him”………9 After listening to the king, they went on their way. Then the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them, until it stood still over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with overwhelming joy. 11 After they went into the house and saw the child with Mary, his mother, they bowed down and worshipped him. Then they opened their treasures and offered him gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

“They Followed a Star….To Follow God’s Son”



The Second Hymn                                                                      Hymn 83   “As With Gladness Men Of Old”


1 As with gladness men of old   Did the guiding star behold,

As with joy they hailed its light,   Leading onward, beaming bright,

So, most gracious Lord, may we   Evermore your foll’wers be.


2 As with joyful steps they sped,   Savior, to your lowly bed,

There to bend the knee before   You whom heav’n and earth adore,

So may we with willing feet   Ever seek your mercy seat.


3 As they offered gifts most rare   At your cradle, rude and bare,

So may we with holy joy,   Pure and free from sin’s alloy,

All our costliest treasures bring,   Christ, to you, our heav’nly King.


4 Holy Jesus, ev’ry day   Keep us in the narrow way;

And, when earthly things are past,   Bring our ransomed souls at last

Where they need no star to guide,   Where no clouds your glory hide.


5 In the heav’nly country bright   Need they no created light;

You its light, its joy, its crown, You its sun which goes not down.

There forever may we sing Alleluias to our King!


The Pre-Sermon Greeting

Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus Christ, our Lord!   May the words of my mouth and the meditation of our hearts be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, our Rock and our Redeemer.  Amen.

The Sermon Text                                                                                                                      Matthew 2:1-12


Their Journey Was Worth It!

The Perseverance of The Wise Men “Paid Off” as they finally met the Savior



following which the Congregation will rise for

The Post-Sermon Blessing

May the God of peace, Who brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus Christ, that Great Shepherd of the sheep, now equip you with everything good for doing His will!  Amen.

We Bring our Offerings and Prayers to the Lord


Offerings will be received this morning through offering plates passed among those who have gathered here for worship.

   However, for those viewing this service online,  we offer you the following suggestions for providing God with Your thank-offerings through our ministry:     

1) You can mail a check (no cash) to the church address:    (415 N. 6th Place, Lowell, AR 72745)

2) You can also donate on our website:


  • The Offering


    The Responsive Prayer for Epiphany Sunday

    P:  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God and Mary’s Son, in the fullness of time You came into our world to save us from sin and death.

    C: You ushered in the day of grace so long foretold.

    P:  Beloved Son of the Father, revered by the Magi, baptized by John, You came preaching and teaching, healing and comforting, forgiving and encouraging.

    C: You brought the light of life to those walking in darkness, and the joy of salvation to those doomed to death.

    P:  Prince of Peace, shine like a beacon for us and the people of our world. Let the good news of salvation be heard

         in the most remote corners of the earth.  Open our own lips to speak Your name to those around us who still live

         without faith or hope.

    C: Arouse us and our missionaries to flood the world with the light of Your gospel.


    P:  Preserve Your truth among us and by that truth preserve us until You appear in dazzling splendor to bring us to the glory of heaven.  Let our anticipation of the heavenly kingdom ennoble our thinking and speaking, enrich our conduct, and increase our joy in all aspects of earthly life.

    C: Be gracious to all and lead us to reflect Your love in everything we say and do.


    P:  Also hear us, Lord, as we bring You our private petitions and praises


    Silent prayer.

    P:  Finally, bring us and all Your believers to the heavenly home where we will stand in the full light of Your glory and with all Your saints and angels sing the everlasting song of triumph.  All this we offer in Your name, dear Savior, and now we continue by praying:

    C: 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.


    We Celebrate the Lord’s Supper

    P:  The Lord be with you.

    C: (sung)  And also with you.


    P:  Lift up your hearts.

    C: (sung)        We lift them up to the Lord.


    P: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God

    C: (sung)        It is right to give Him thanks and praise.


    P:  Praise to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!   In love He has blessed us with every spiritual blessing.   He sends His Holy Spirit to testify that we are His children, to strengthen us when we are weak, and to enable us to grow in our faith in the one, true God.   Now have come the salvation and power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ.  To Him Who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and thanks and honor and glory forever and ever.  Amen

    (Sung)  Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord of hosts.   The whole earth is full of Your glory

    You are my God and I will exalt You.   I will lift You up for You have become my salvation.

    Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord of hosts.   The whole earth is full of Your glory



    The Words of Institution

    P:  “The peace of the Lord be with you always.”

    C: (sung)    Amen.

    O Christ, Lamb of God, You take away the sin of the world;    Have mercy on us.

    O Christ, Lamb of God, You take away the sin of the world,    Have mercy on us.

    O Christ, Lamb of God, You take away the sin of the world;   Grant us Your peace.   Amen.



    After which the Congregation may be seated.

    The Exhortation Regarding the Lord’s Supper                                                                                               

    The Distribution of the Sacramental Elements



         At Grace Lutheran Church, we practice what is known as “Close Communion.”   That means we are able to offer the Lord’s Supper this morning only to those individuals who have already committed themselves to be members of our fellowship.   In so doing we are endeavoring to express the comprehensive commitment (and unity which we – as a congregation – share with each other) to all the teachings of God’s Word, and to our striving to put them fully and faithfully into practice in our ministry.  

         That “comprehensive commitment” requirement (which our Lord expects of all His children – please see Romans 16:17-18;   2 John 10-11;   I Corinthians 1:10;   I John 4:1-3;   John 8:31-32;   Matthew 28:19-20 …among other portions of Scripture that express this)  allows us only to offer the Lord’s Supper to those persons who are already committed, confirmed, communicant members of Grace Lutheran congregation, or who have become members of one of the congregations of our Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod.   

         To our Guests this morning,  we appreciate your presence among us and celebrate the faith in Christ which we know we share with you.   Please understand that by asking you to refrain from communing with us this morning we are not judging your faith in Christ.   What we are doing is expressing – as a congregation – our unity of faith in Christ, as well as our comprehensive commitment to all the teachings (doctrines) of God’s Word.   Consequently, we ask that you will kindly respect our close communion practice and refrain from taking the Lord’s Supper with us this morning.  

         A brochure further explaining the Biblical basis for this Close Communion practice is available on the entryway tract/brochure rack.    We encourage you to carefully examine it – especially the Biblical references within it –  and also to speak with our Pastor after the service (at your convenience) so that you might better understand and appreciate our Biblically-based “Close Communion” practice.    It is our hope that you – and many others – will one day share with us in the “close” fellowship we enjoy, by your studying God’s Word with us , by committing yourself to membership in our church family and by joining us in this joint, comprehensive commitment to His Biblical teachings that our Lord wants us to have with each other.

         Thank you for your understanding, your patience, and for your presence here among us this morning.

    Distribution Hymns                                                                Hymn 302  “Lord, To You I Make Confession”


    1 Lord, to you I make confession:   I have sinned and gone astray;

    I have multiplied transgression,   Chosen for myself my way.

    Led by you to see my errors,   Lord, I tremble at your terrors.


    2 Yet, though conscience’ voice appall me,   Father, I will seek your face.

    Though your child I dare not call me,   Yet receive me to your grace.

    Do not for my sins forsake me;   Do not let your wrath o’er take me.


    3 For your Son has suffered for me,   Giv’n himself to rescue me,

    Died to save me and restore me,   Reconciled and set me free.

    Jesus’ cross alone can vanquish   These dark fears and soothe this anguish.


    4 Lord, on you I cast my burden–    Sink it in the depths below!

    Let me know your gracious pardon;   Wash me, make me white as snow.

    Let your Spirit leave me never;    Make me only yours forever.



                                                                                           Hymn 315 “Here, O My Lord I See You Face to Face”


    1 Here, O my Lord, I see you face to face;   Here would I touch and handle things unseen,

    Here grasp with firmer hand eternal grace,   And all my weariness upon you lean.


    2 This is the hour of banquet and of song;   Here is the heav’nly table spread anew.

    Here let me feast and, feasting, still prolong   The brief bright hour of fellowship with you.


    3 I have no help but yours nor do I need   Another arm but yours to lean upon.

    It is enough, O Lord, enough indeed;   My strength is in your might, your might alone.


    4 Mine is the sin but yours the righteousness;   Mine is the guilt but yours the cleansing blood.

    Here is my robe, my refuge, and my peace:   Your blood, your righteousness, O Lord, my God.


    5 Too soon we rise; the vessels disappear.    The feast, though not the love, is past and gone.

    The bread and wine remove, but you are here,   Nearer than ever, still my shield and sun.


    6 Feast after feast thus comes and passes by,   Yet, passing, points to that glad feast above,

    Giving sweet foretaste of the festal joy,   The Lamb’s great marriage feast of bliss and love.

    At the Pastor’s invitation, the Congregation will rise

    The Thanksgiving


    (Sung)   Thank the Lord and sing His praise.      Tell everyone what He has done.

    Let all who seek the Lord rejoice,     and proudly bear His name.

    He renews His promises and leads His people forth in joy,   With shouts of thanksgiving, Alleluia!   Alleluia!



    We Leave with the Lord’s Blessing

    The Closing Prayer

    Hear the prayer of Your people, O Lord, that the lips which have praised You here may glorify You in the world, that the eyes which have seen the coming of Your Son may long for His coming again, and that all who have received in his true body and blood the pledge of Your forgiveness may be restored to live a new and holy life, through Jesus Christ, our Lord, Who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

    C: (sung)     Amen.

    We Conclude Our Worship

    The Benediction


    P:     Brothers and sisters, go in peace.  

    Live in harmony with one another.  

    Serve the Lord in gladness.

    The Lord bless you and keep you

    The Lord make His face to shine upon you

    and be gracious unto you.

    The Lord look upon you with favor, and grant you His peace.   

    C:    (sung)           Amen.   Amen.  Amen.



    The Closing Hymn                                                                    Hymn 64 “Let Us All With Gladsome Voice”


    1 Let us all with gladsome voice   Praise the God of heaven,

    Who, to bid our hearts rejoice,   His own Son has given.


    2 To this vale of tears he comes,   Here to serve in sadness,

    That with him in heav’n’s fair homes   We may reign in gladness.


    3 We are rich, for he was poor;   Is not this a wonder?

    Therefore praise God evermore   Here on earth and yonder.


    4 O Lord Christ, our Savior dear,   Bless us and be near us.

    Grant us now a glad new year.   Amen, Jesus, hear us!


    silent prayer, announcements, post-service music