Sunday Sneak Peek – January 1, 2022

Join us this Sunday, the first Sunday after Christmas Day (in-person and livestream when available)

“Happy 157th Birthday St. John’s”


S4K-color-horiz400“Angels Watching Over Me”

Thank you for worshiping online with us.  We are so glad that you are spending part of your day with us!

Order of Service

Worship Service Participants

Rev. Scott Siefert | Organist: Penny Rolf | DJ:  Mark Polzin

Ringing of the Church Bell


Call to Worship

One: Let all of creation praise the name of the Holy One!

All: The rhythms of life praise the everlasting God through the markings of time.

One: Let all of creation praise the name of the Holy One!

All: We praise the divine 

*Opening Hymn: “Holy, Holy, Holy(The Hymnal #1)

Prayer of Invocation 

One:  O God,  you made this community part of the Body of Christ 156 years ago. You gather us as offspring and knit us together with grace and mercy. In your presence, there is a fullness of love, joy, peace, and hope. Thank you for being among us this day and with us in every moment of our being. Receive our praise, dwell in our midst, and create in us a clean heart that yearns for you and your kingdom.

All: In the name of Emmanuel, God With Us, we pray. AMEN. 

Lighting of the Advent Candles

One: We are gathered as God’s people to celebrate again what Christ’s coming means to the world. We recall what the good news means.  We join with the eternal body of Christ and with all of the faithful that have worshipped and celebrated You. 

Song Before Lighting the Candle

Lyrics (to be sung to “O Come, O Come Emmanuel”)

O come you source of Love unto us all

Enlighten us and help us hear your call

To bear your Love out into the wild

And celebrate God’s wondrous Holy Child!

Rejoice, rejoice!

Emmanuel shall come to us

And all things shall be well

One: Jesus Christ is the greatest gift who makes all these other gifts possible. So we light the Christ candle now, as we think about what Christ’s coming means to each one of us. 

(Lighting of the candles in the wreath )  

All: We thank you, God, for your gift of Jesus Christ to the entire world. We thank you that Christ’s coming makes hope, peace, joy, and love possible for every person in every nation. Encourage us to do our part to bring goodwill and peace to our families, our churches, our neighborhoods, and the world. Now let your Spirit put us in touch with you, the living God. In the name of Jesus Christ we pray.  AMEN.

Collection and Presentation of the Offering

Invitation to the Offering

One: On this day that has become synonymous with gift giving, let us reflect on the gifts of love, hope, joy, and peace. Let us respond to the generosity of the one that gives us all things beautiful. Let us give generously to share God’s beauty in our community.  

Hymn: “Praise God from Whom All Blessing Flow” (The Hymnal #551)

Prayer of Dedication

Prayer of Confession – Rev Scott

One: Eternal God, the dawn of a new year prompts us to reflect on our past and hope for our future. Help us live every day seeking your way and moving on your path. We pray that you help us to live our lives with respect and honor for all those that came before.  Help us to commit to love and resolve to extend the grace and mercy that we have received. 

All:  Help us to choose your way every day as we do this day. May the beauty of the Christmas season be the good news that carries us and empowers us toward new life in you.

–Time of Silent Confession-

Assurance of Grace

One: The God who counts our days knows us intimately, loves us abundantly, and abides with us relentlessly. Receive the brand new mercies of the day. Hold the love of God closely, firmly, and freely. Transformation, grace, and new life is assured this day.

Scripture Readings – Psalm 148 and Matthew 2:13-23 

Pastoral Meditation

Hymn of Response: “The First Nowell” (The Hymnal #118)

Prayers and Concerns

Joys – Concerns – Blessings 

Please share any special concerns, joys, and blessings.

Silent Prayer – Pastoral Prayer – Lord’s Prayer 

ALL: 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 debts, as we forgive our debtors.  Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.  For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever.  AMEN.

Collection and Presentation of the Offering

Invitation to the Offering

One: Let us put our trust in the Living God, who is faithful. Let us praise God for the abundance of creation in the sharing of our gifts of time, talent, and treasure.

*Hymn: “Praise God from Whom All Blessing Flow” (The Hymnal #551)

*Prayer of Dedication

All: Generous God, bless these offerings. Stir up the gifts within for your glory. We ask that by sharing our resources that you empower us to be stewards of your steadfast love. AMEN.

Closing and Blessing

Closing Hymn:  “Good Christian Men Rejoice” (The Hymnal #116)

Benediction and Blessing

Ringing of the Church Bell

Upcoming Events & Announcements

  • Wednesdays – Confirmation Class – 6pm – schedule on website
  • Thursdays – Bible Fellowship – 6pm – Fellowship Hall and ZOOM
  • TODAY – Fellowship with birthday cake following Worship
  • Jan. 16 – Consistory Team Meeting – 6pm via ZOOM
  • Jan. 29 – Consistory Team Strategic Planning Meeting – 1030am
  • Feb. 19th – Annual Meeting in the Sanctuary following worship

Fruit of the Spirit. The January Fruit of Spirit offering will go towards helping the homeless. Look for the special collection basket at the rear of the sanctuary. 

Weather Watch Policy.  This includes weather forecasts for wind chills below -20 degrees, significant snowfall, or dangerous winter weather conditions.  Announcements cancelling services or events will be made via social media, our website, and email. 

Many hands make light work!  Please consider serving as a Consistory Team Member.  We need 3 members in 2023. All talents and skills are welcomed. Contact Michelle Bachmann at 952-361-3033 or Pastor Scott for more details.

Find Food Carver County.  Volunteers are needed to pack produce, sort food items, and distribute food into vehicles in NYA the first Friday of the month.  This program helps with food insecurity and food rescue to reduce waste.  If interested, contact Michelle Bachmann at 952-361-3033 or

Live Streaming:  We want to train others on live-streaming and recording services.  Contact Michelle Bachmann if you’re interested.

Looking for a church community?  If you have been led to St. John’s looking to be more than a visitor, we welcome you openly and would love an opportunity to chat.  Contact Pastor Scott at 804-350-0826 or email

The Word To Go:  Find Sunday morning worship services on our YouTube channel, St. John’s UCC-BongardsWorship will also be live-streamed on Facebook, when available.

Bongards Buzz:  Submit items for the newsletter by the 1st of each month to Michelle Bachmann or

For Pastoral Care.  Please contact Pastor Scott at 804-350-0826 or email  Vacation planned for Jan. 9 to 15th.


We’ve partnered with easyTithe so you can use your bank account for a direct ACH, debit card, or a credit card to make a secure one time or reoccurring gift.

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