second Sunday in Advent
Sunday, December 5, 2021
Worship & Preaching Schedule
  • 8 am: Traditional Worship (Rite I) in the Chapel - The Rev. Dr. R. Leigh Spruill
  • 9 am: Traditional Worship (Rite II) in the Church - The Rev. Dr. R. Leigh Spruill
    Onsite and Online
  • 9:15 am: Awesome Worship in the Hall Life Center - The Rev. Charlie Holt
  • 11:15 am: Traditional Worship (Rite II) with choir and organ - The Rev. Dr. R. Leigh Spruill
  • 11:15 am: The Table (Ancient Practice | Modern Music) - The Rev. Charlie Holt
    Onsite and Online
  • 5 pm: Traditional Worship in the Chapel - The Rev. Charlie Holt

Parking is available in circle drive off River Oaks Blvd and our parking lot on Westheimer. Additional parking is available at Lamar High School (crossing guards provided on Sunday mornings), and along River Oaks Blvd. 

Sunday Education Hour - 10:15 am

Hall Life Center: A Light for the City: Sharing the Gospel with Family, Friends, and Neighbors in the New Season
Room 201: Love and Law: Rejoicing in the Torah
Youth Room: Youth Sunday School
Various Locations: Kids Sunday Morning

Prepare the Way

Go deeper into the season with a new, self-directed study, available online or for purchase in the SJD Bookstore. Join us in reading daily devotions by signing up for the “Knowing the Word” email series.

The Loving Lamar Alternative Giving Market

This Christmas season, purchase $25 gift cards to fill 35 Christmas stockings for homeless/housing-insecure students at Lamar High School. Drop off at the front desk through Dec. 13. For each $25 gift card you donate, choose between two sets of five Christmas cards featuring photography by the Rev. Greg Buffone. Click here for more information this ministry.

The Collect of the Day

Merciful God, who sent your messengers the prophets to preach repentance and prepare the way for our salvation: Give us grace to heed their warnings and forsake our sins, that we may greet with joy the coming of Jesus Christ our Redeemer; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Luke 3:1-6

3:1 In the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene, 2 during the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John the son of Zechariah in the wilderness. 3 And he went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. 4 As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet,

“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
‘Prepare the way of the Lord,
make his paths straight.
5 Every valley shall be filled,
and every mountain and hill shall be made low,
and the crooked shall become straight,
and the rough places shall become level ways,
6 and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.’”

Traditional Musical Offering

Our worship begins and ends (Prelude and Postlude) with two poignant settings of the Advent hymn “Savior of the Nations, Come” (Hymn 54) as arranged by Johann Sebastian Bach. The melody is highly ornamented in the soprano at the Prelude and is boldly stated in the pedal with long notes at the Postlude.

The Benedictus (also known as the Song of Zachariah) is one of three canticles in the opening chapters of the Gospel of Luke, the other two being the Magnificat (Song of Mary) and the Nunc dimittis (Song of Simeon). The canticle received its name from its first words in Latin, “Benedictus Dominus Deus Israel,” (Blessed be the Lord God of Israel). In the Anglican tradition, it is one of the canticles appointed for Morning Prayer. The Benedictus was the song of thanksgiving uttered by Zachariah on the occasion of the birth of his son, John the Baptist. It is the appointed canticle for today as a response to the Old Testament prophecy and is to be sung in lieu of a Psalm. This morning, the congregation sings a metrical version of the text, set to the familiar hymn tune Forest Green.

At the Offertory, we hear the prophetic words of Isaiah, “And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed,” in a familiar chorus from Handel’s Messiah. At the Ministration, we hear an elegant, contemporary a cappella anthem by Mark Sirett set to the poignant anonymous text: “Thou Shalt Know Him When He Comes”. The anthem begins with an unadorned unison Soprano line before unfolding.

Read about the musical offerings for this and previous weeks on the Music Ministry blog.

Updated COVID-19 Protocols at St. John the Divine

We are consistently evaluating and updating our COVID-19 protocols to align with ever-changing conditions and CDC and Diocesan guidelines.

Read our COVID-19 protocols