Advent Candle 1

Service for the 3rd Sunday in Advent – 12th December 2021

Welcome to St Paul’s Athens,   especially if you are here for the first time or visiting Athens.  Deacon Christine leads our worship today, and is the preacher.  Fr. Leonard is in Thessaloniki today. Please remember that masks are mandatory in church and when you are in groups in the garden. We are required to be 1.5m apart for worship.


Opening Hymn:

How lovely on the mountains are the feet of Him
Who brings good news, good news
Proclaiming peace, announcing news of happiness
Our God reigns, our God reigns

Our God reigns, our God reigns
Our God reigns, our God reigns


You watchmen lift your voices joyfully as one
Shout for your King, your King,
See face to face the Lord restoring Zion
Your God reigns, your God reigns!

Waste places of Jerusalem break forth with joy
We are redeemed, redeemed
The Lord has saved and comforted His people
Our God reigns, our God reigns!

Ends of the earth, see the salvation of your God
Jesus is Lord, is Lord.
Before the nations He has bared His holy arm
Our God reigns, our God reigns!


Lighting of the 3rd Advent Candle

Minister: People of God, return! You are called to be God’s own. From the mountains announce good news. God comes in justice and peace, to all who follow in his ways. You are God’s Children.

All: Lord make us one in the peace of Christ today and forever. Amen.

 Minister:  Grace, mercy and peace from God our Father

and the Lord Jesus Christ be with you

All:            and also with you.

Minister:  O Lord, open our lips

All:            and our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Minister: Give us the joy of your saving help

All:            and sustain us with your life-giving Spirit.


The minister then welcomes people informally.

Prayers of Penitence

Minister:   Jesus says, Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is close at hand. So let us turn away from our sin and turn to Christ, confessing our sins in penitence and faith.

All: Lord God, we have sinned against you;

       we have done evil in your sight.

       We are sorry and repent.

       Have mercy on us according to your love.

       Wash away our wrongdoing and cleanse us from our sin.

       Renew a right spirit within us and restore us to the joy of your salvation;

       through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

 Minister:  May the Father of all mercies cleanse us from our sins, and restore us

in his image to the praise and glory of his name, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

All:            Amen


Psalm        Help me, Lord, for no one godly is left;  ♦

the faithful have vanished from the whole human race.

2    They all speak falsely with their neighbour;  ♦

they flatter with their lips, but speak from a double heart.

3    O that the Lord would cut off all flattering lips  ♦

and the tongue that speaks proud boasts!

4    Those who say, ‘With our tongue will we prevail;  ♦

our lips we will use; who is lord over us?’

5    ‘Because of the oppression of the needy,

and the groaning of the poor,  ♦

I will rise up now,’ says the Lord,

‘and set them in the safety that they long for.’

6    The words of the Lord are pure words,  ♦

like silver refined in the furnace

and purified seven times in the fire.

7    You, O Lord, will watch over us  ♦

and guard us from this generation for ever.

8    The wicked strut on every side,  ♦

when what is vile is exalted by the whole human race.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; as it was in the beginning, is now and shall be for ever.  Amen


First Reading:  Zephaniah 3, 14-end                                                (Shirley Poulakis)

Sing aloud, O daughter Zion; shout, O Israel! Rejoice and exult with all your heart, O daughter Jerusalem! The Lord has taken away the judgments against you, he has turned away your enemies. The king of Israel, the Lord, is in your midst; you shall fear disaster no more. On that day it shall be said to Jerusalem: Do not fear, O Zion; do not let your hands grow weak. The Lord, your God, is in your midst, a warrior who gives victory; he will rejoice over you with gladness, he will renew you in his love; he will exult over you with loud singing as on a day of festival. I will remove disaster from you, so that you will not bear reproach for it. I will deal with all your oppressors at that time. And I will save the lame and gather the outcast, and I will change their shame into praise and renown in all the earth. At that time I will bring you home, at the time when I gather you; for I will make you renowned and praised among all the peoples of the earth, when I restore your fortunes before your eyes, says the Lord.


Reader: Hear what the Spirit is saying to the churches.

All:         Thanks be to God.


Minister:  Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead.

All:            And Christ shall give you light.

Minister:  You have died and your life is hid with Christ in God.

All:            Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead.

Minister:  Set your minds on things that are above,  not on things that are on the earth.

All:            And Christ shall give you light.

Minister:  When Christ our life appears you will appear with him in glory.

All:            Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give you light.


The Benedictus   Luke 1, 68-79     (Please stand to say the canticle together)

  •  Blessed be the Lord the God of Israel, who has come to his people and set them free.
  • He has raised up for us a mighty Saviour, born of the house of his servant David.
  • Through his holy prophets God promised of old to save us from our enemies, from the hands of all that hate us,
  • To show mercy to our ancestors, and remember your holy covenant.
  • This was the oath God swore to our father Abraham: to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
  • Free to worship him without fear, holy and righteous in his sight all the days of our life.
  • And you, child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High, for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
  • To give his people knowledge of salvation by the forgiveness of all their sins.
  • In the tender compassion of our God the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
  • To shine on those who swell in darkness and the shadow of death, and to guide our feet into the way of peace.
    Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be; world without end.  Amen. Hymn    12  On Jordan’s bank 2nd Reading:   Luke 3, 7-18 (Cees van Beek)John said to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear fruits worthy of repentance. Do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our ancestor’; for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. Even now the ax is lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.” And the crowds asked him, “What then should we do?” In reply he said to them, “Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; and whoever has food must do likewise.” Even tax collectors came to be baptized, and they asked him, “Teacher, what should we do?” He said to them, “Collect no more than the amount prescribed for you.” Soldiers also asked him, “And we, what should we do?” He said to them, “Do not extort money from anyone by threats or false accusation, and be satisfied with your wages.” As the people were filled with expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, whether he might be the Messiah,[a] John answered all of them by saying, “I baptize you with water; but one who is more powerful than I is coming; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. He will baptize you with[b] the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.” So, with many other exhortations, he proclaimed the good news to the people.

    Reader:  Hear what the Spirit is saying to the churches

    All:          Thanks be to God.         

     Sermon   (Please be seated)  


    The Apostles’ Creed  (remain  standing)

    I believe in God, the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth.

    I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,

    born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried;

    he descended to the dead.  On the third day he rose again; he ascended into heaven, he is seated at the right hand of God the Father, and he will come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints,

    the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.    Amen.


    Intercessions:   Lord in your mercy,  Hear our prayer.


    Collect for any season:  

    O Lord Jesus Christ, who at your first coming sent your messenger to prepare your way before you: grant that the ministers and stewards of your mysteries may likewise so prepare and make ready your way by turning the hearts of the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, that at your second coming to judge the world we may be found an acceptable people in your sight; for you are alive and reign with the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.

    All:  Amen

     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, the power, and the glory for ever and ever.   Amen.


    The Peace      (Please stand)           The deacon will introduce words for the Peace

    Christ is our peace. He has reconciled us to God in one body by the cross. We meet in his name and share his peace. The peace of the Lord be always with you

    All:                   and also with you


    Hymn:         7 Hills of the North                                 (the collection will be taken)


    Minister:     Let us say the Grace together:   

     The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with us all evermore.   Amen. 


    Fr. Leonard’s usual Day Off – Monday 

    Home tel :  210 72 14 906;  email

    Deacon Chris: 22950 53164: Please avoid contacting Chris on Fridays.

    Swedish Church: contact Fr. Bjorn on  694 607 2428


    The Anglican Church in Greece (including St. Paul’s) is self – financing, and receives no income other than from the generosity of those who worship here. We are a legal body and we pay tax. Our tax number is 997073090. If you wish to donate direct to our bank (IBAN) the account with Piraeus Bank is:  The Anglican Church in Greece, St. Paul’s Athens  GR 820172 0500 0050 5008 6327 479  Swift code is  PIRB GRAA


    Notices:  Bishops’ Advent Appeal (check the Diocesan website for more details). We are recommending that during the four weeks of Advent we all collect our 5, 10, and 20 cent coins in jars or containers and hand them to our Treasurer after Christmas. We will then pass onto the appeal via the diocesan account in London. Before handing in your coins you might like to count the money so you know how much you have donated – this year the income will be distributed to parts of Europe that suffered from flooding or fires in the Summer, so Apostoli in Athens is receiving part of it.



  • NIGHT PRAYER during Advent: from 1st -22nd December Night Prayer on Zoom. Please see the website for the Zoom link, or contact Fr. Leonard direct. Please Note – not on Dec 11th & 12th as Fr. Leonard is in Thessaloniki.
  • Bible Study for Advent: Four Tuesdays at 19.30. Starting on 30th We’ll look at the First Letter of Peter. See the website for the Zoom link .
  • Specials in December: Christmas programme:
  • 1st December – 22nd December: Advent Night Prayer (not 11th and 12th Dec) at 00hrs on Zoom. See link and order of service on our website.
  • December 24th: Carol Service at 18.00hrs on Zoom. See website for link and order of service.
  • NO Midnight Mass this year (due to COVID restrictions and maybe a curfew!)
  • December 25th 00hrs Christmas Morning Liturgy and carols
  • December 26th 00hrs Feast of St. Stephen
  • December 27th 00hrs Feast of St. John the Evangelist
  • December 28th 00hrs Feast of the Holy Innocents
  • December 29th 00hrs Feast of St. Thomas Becket


No Comments

Post a Comment