Sunday, November 21, 2021

The Holy Communion on Christ the King Sunday


November 21, 2021, 10:30 a.m.

Christ the King



Christ before Pilate




FIRST READING: Exiled in Babylon, the Jewish people longed for the great day of God’s victory, when those who had done evil would be judged, and those who had done good would see the fullness of salvation. The prophet Daniel gave voice to these hopes in recording the vision of God on his throne and giving authority to the anointed king. His kingship would be universal, eternal, and just. The early Christians saw the revealing of this kingship in Jesus. Although it is hidden from those who are perishing, the kingdom of Jesus is universal, eternal, and just. We look for the kingdom to be made manifest in our lives while we wait for its fulfillment in the time to come.


SECOND READING: Like much of the book of Daniel, the book of Revelation is written in a style called ‘apocalyptic.’ It is filled with fantastic imagery which is meant to express deep and abiding truth. We need not understand or embrace each detail of the imagery in order to understand and embrace the truths: God is eternal, he is righteous, and he will come with authority to renew the world and to judge the living and the dead.


GOSPEL: In the art on the cover of today’s bulletin, the contrast could not be starker. Pilate is clothed with the symbols of authority and sits to receive Jesus; Jesus is a shackled prisoner who stands before his interrogator. And yet, Jesus appeals to a power far greater than Pilate’s: the power of truth. Jesus’ words are an invitation, not only to Pilate, but to all of us, to joyfully embrace his rule of truth which is not based upon naked power. In God’s time, truth and authority will be inseparably joined; all power that is based upon falsehood will be less than memory. We ask for grace to see the dawn of that day of the Kingdom.




OPENING MUSIC        Lo, He Comes with Clouds Descending – Wilbur Held


Choir Anthem:                                     Christus Paradox –Text/ Sylvia Dunstan

                                                                                      Music/Alfred Fedak

You, Lord, are both Lamb and Shepherd,

You, Lord, are both prince and slave,

You, peacemaker and sword bringer

of the way you took and gave.

You the everlasting instant;

You, whom we both scorn and crave.


Clothed in light upon the mountain,

stripped of might upon the cross,

shining in eternal glory,

beggar’d by a soldier’s toss,

You, the everlasting instant;

You, who are both gift and cost.


You, who walk each day beside us,

sit in power at God’s side.

You, who preach a way that’s narrow,

have a love that reaches wide.

You, the everlasting instant;

You, who are our pilgrim guide.


Worthy is our earthly Jesus!

Worthy is our cosmic Christ!

Worthy your defeat and vict’ry.

Worthy still your peace and strife.

You, the everlasting instant;

You, who are our death and life….

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia….

You, who are our death and our life.


The Head That Once Was Crowned - Donald Busarow




X HYMN                                                               The Head That Once Was Crowned


 1      The head that once was crowned with thorns

        is crowned with glory now;

        a royal diadem adorns

        the mighty victor's brow.


2      The highest place that heav'n affords

        is his by sov'reign right,

        the King of kings, and Lord of lords,

        and heav'n's eternal light.


3      The joy of all who dwell above,

        the joy of all below

        to whom he manifests his love,

        and grants his name to know;


4     To them the cross, with all its shame,

        with all its grace, is giv'n;

        their name, an everlasting name,

        their joy, the joy of heav'n.


5      They suffer with their Lord below;

        they reign with him above;

        their profit and their joy to know

        the myst'ry of his love.


6      The cross he bore is life and health,

        though shame and death to him;

        his people's hope, his people's wealth,

        their everlasting theme!


Text: Thomas Kelly, 1769-1855


The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God,

and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

  And also with you.



In peace, let us pray to the Lord.                                 Lord, have mercy.

For the peace from above,

and for our salvation, let us pray to the Lord.       Lord, have mercy.

For the peace of the whole world,

for the well-being of the Church of God,

and for the unity of all, let us pray to the Lord.    Lord, have mercy.

For this holy house,

and for all who offer here their worship and praise,

let us pray to the Lord.                                                   Lord, have mercy.

Help, save, comfort and defend us, gracious Lord.                       Amen



This is the feast of victory for our God.



Worthy is Christ, the Lamb who was slain,

  whose blood set us free to be people of God.

Power and riches and wisdom and strength,

  and honor and blessing and glory are his.

 This is the feast of victory for our God. Alleluia.


Sing with all the people of God

  and join in the hymn of all creation:

Blessing and honor and glory and might

  be to God and the Lamb forever. Amen.


This is the feast of victory for our God,

  for the Lamb who was slain has begun his reign. Alleluia, alleluia!



 The Lord be with you.

  And also with you.

Almighty and everlasting God, whose will it is to restore all things to your beloved Son, whom you anointed priest forever and king of all creation: Grant that all the people of the earth, now divided by the power of sin, may be united under the glorious and gentle rule of your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.





The testimonies of the LORD are very sure,

and holiness adorns his house forever and forevermore.       Psalm 93:6

  Let us hear the Word of the Lord.



First READING                                           Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14



9As I watched,
 thrones were set in place,
  and an Ancient One took his throne,
 his clothing was white as snow,
  and the hair of his head like pure wool;
 his throne was fiery flames,
  and its wheels were burning fire.
10A stream of fire issued
  and flowed out from his presence.
 A thousand thousands served him,
  and ten thousand times ten thousand stood attending him.
 The court sat in judgment,
  and the books were opened.
13As I watched in the night visions,
 I saw one like a human being
  coming with the clouds of heaven.
 And he came to the Ancient One
  and was presented before him.

14To him was given dominion
  and glory and kingship,
 that all peoples, nations, and languages
  should serve him.
 His dominion is an everlasting dominion
  that shall not pass away,
 and his kingship is one
  that shall never be destroyed.


The Word of the Lord.                                                                                                  

  Thanks be to God.



Ever since the world began, your throne has been established.        (vs.  3)

  Ever since the world began, your throne has been established.        



1 The Lord is king; he has put on splen- | did apparel;*

                the Lord has put on his apparel

and girded him- | self with strength.

2 He has made the whole | world so sure*

                that it can- | not be moved;

3 ever since the world began, your throne has | been established;*

                you are from | everlasting.

4 The waters have lifted up, O Lord,

the waters have lifted | up their voice;*

                the waters have lifted up their | pounding waves.

5 Mightier than the sound of many waters,

mightier than the breakers | of the sea,*

                mightier is the Lord who | dwells on high.

6 Your testimonies are | very sure,*

                and holiness adorns your house,

O Lord, forever and for- | evermore.                                       R                  

SECOND READING                                                    Revelation 1:4b-8


4bGrace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, 5and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.

  To him who loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood, 6and made us to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

7Look! He is coming with the clouds;
  every eye will see him,
 even those who pierced him;
  and on his account all the tribes of the earth will wail.
So it is to be. Amen.
8“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.


The Word of the Lord.                                                                                                  

  Thanks be to God.



VERSE    Revelation 22:13                                    Setting by Paul D. Weber

Alleluia. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last,

the beginning and the end. Alleluia.


Gospel                                                          John 18:33-37


The Holy Gospel according to St. John.


33Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” 34Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” 35Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” 36Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.” 37Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”


The Gospel of the Lord.





X HYMN OF THE DAY                          Lo! He Comes With Clouds Descending



1      Lo! He comes with clouds descending,

        once for favored sinners slain;

        thousand thousand saints attending

        swell the triumph of his train:

        Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!

        Christ the Lord returns to reign.


2      Ev’ry eye shall now behold him

        robed in glorious majesty;

        those who set at nought and sold him,

        pierced and nailed him to the tree,

        deeply wailing, deeply wailing, deeply wailing,

        shall their true Messiah see.


3      Those dear tokens of his passion

        still his dazzling body bears,

        cause of endless exultation

        to his ransomed worshipers.

        With what rapture, with what rapture, with what rapture

        gaze we on those glorious scars!


4     Yea, amen, let all adore thee,

        high on thine eternal throne;

        Savior, take the pow’r and glory,

        claim the kingdom as thine own.

        Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!

        Thou shalt reign, and thou alone!


Text: Charles Wesley, 1707-1788, alt.



Baptismal Candidate:     Poppy Faith Robinson

sponsored by her mother, Jackie Schwartzmiller


In Holy Baptism our gracious heavenly Father liberates us from sin and death by joining us to the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. We are born children of a fallen humanity; in the waters of Baptism we are reborn children of God and inheritors of eternal life. By water and the Holy Spirit we are made members of the Church which is the body of Christ. As we live with him and with his people, we grow in faith, love, and obedience to the will of God.


The parent presents the child:

I present Poppy Faith to receive the Sacrament of Holy Baptism.


In Christian love you have presented Poppy Faith for Holy Baptism. You should, therefore, faithfully bring her to the services of God's house, and teach her the Lord's Prayer, the Creed, and the Ten Commandments. As she grows in years, you should place in her hands the Holy Scriptures and provide for her instruction in the Christian faith, that, living in the covenant of her Baptism and in communion with the Church, she may lead a godly life until the day of Jesus Christ.


Do you promise to fulfill these obligations?

R             I do.



Let us pray for the whole people of God in Christ Jesus, and for all people according to their needs.


That you would keep your holy Church steadfast in the faith and confession of the holy and blessed Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit: Lord, in your mercy,

  hear our prayer.


That Poppy Faith and all baptized in the Triune name may daily die to sin and rise to newness of life: Lord, in your mercy,

  hear our prayer.


That all pastors may teach with boldness; that those in government may be filled with wisdom, that our nation and world may know the gifts of peace and justice: Lord, in your mercy,

  hear our prayer.


That the blessings of your grace may be showered upon all, especially the sick in body, mind, and spirit, the poor and those with no one to care for them, and that you would call us, who are baptized in your name, into solidarity with them. Hear now in this time our spoken and silent prayers… Lord, in your mercy,

  hear our prayer.


That, following in the footsteps of our ancestors, Poppy Faith and all the baptized may be strengthened on earth and attain to the joy of heaven: Lord, in your mercy,

  hear our prayer.


Abba, Father, hear the prayers we offer in the power of the Spirit, through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.



The Lord be with you.

  And also with you.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

  It is right to give him thanks and praise.


Holy God, mighty Lord, gracious Father: We give you thanks, for in the beginning your Spirit moved over the waters and you created heaven and earth. By the gift of water you nourish and sustain us and all living things.


By the waters of the flood you condemned the wicked and saved those whom you had chosen, Noah and his family. You led Israel by the pillar of cloud and fire through the sea, out of slavery into the freedom of the promised land. In the waters of the Jordan your Son was baptized by John and anointed with the Spirit. By the baptism of his own death and resurrection your beloved Son has set us free from the bondage to sin and death, and has opened the way to the joy and freedom of everlasting life. He made water a sign of the kingdom and of cleansing and rebirth. In obedience to his command, we make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.


Pour out your Holy Spirit, so that she who is here baptized may be given new life. Wash away the sin of her who is cleansed by this water and bring her forth as an inheritor of your glorious kingdom.


To you be given praise and honor and worship through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, now and forever.



The minister addresses the parent:


I ask you to profess your faith in Christ Jesus, reject sin, and confess the faith of the Church, the faith in which we baptize.


Do you renounce the devil and all the forces that defy God?

R             I renounce them.


Do you renounce the powers of this world that rebel against God?

R             I renounce them.


Do you renounce the ways of sin that draw you from God?

R             I renounce them.


With the people of God, do you believe in God the Father?

  I believe in God, the Father almighty,

creator of heaven and earth.


Do you believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God?

  I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord.

                He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit

                                and born of the virgin Mary.

                He suffered under Pontius Pilate,

                                was crucified, died, and was buried.

                He descended into hell.

                On the third day he rose again.

                He ascended into heaven,

                                and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

                He will come again to judge the living and the dead.

Do you believe in God the Holy Spirit?

  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



The minister baptizes the candidate.


Poppy Faith, I baptize you in the name of the Father,

and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

  Amen. You belong to Christ,

  in whom you have been baptized. Alleluia.


The minister and the baptismal group go before the altar.

The Lord be with you.

  And also with you.


The minister lays both hands on the head of the baptized and prays for the Holy Spirit:


God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we give you thanks for freeing your daughter from the power of sin and for raising her up to a new life through this holy sacrament. Pour your Holy Spirit upon Poppy Faith: the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord, the spirit of joy in your presence.



The minister marks the sign of the cross with oil on the forehead of the baptized. As the sign of the cross is made, the minister says:


Poppy Faith, daughter of God, you have been sealed by the Holy Spirit and marked with the cross of Christ forever.


A candle is lit from the paschal candle, and these words are said as the candle is given:


Let your light so shine before others that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.



The minister prays for the parent.


O God, the giver of all life, look with kindness upon the mother of this child. Let her ever rejoice in the gift you have given her. Make her a teacher and example of righteousness for her child. Strengthen her in her own Baptism so she may share eternally with her child the salvation you have given them, through Jesus Christ our Lord.                                                   




Through Baptism God has made this new sister a member of the priesthood we all share in Christ Jesus, that we may proclaim the praise of God and bear his creative and redeeming Word to all the world.

  We welcome you into the Lord's family. We receive you as a fellow

  member of the body of Christ, a child of the same heavenly Father,

  and a worker with us in the kingdom of God.



The peace of the Lord be with you always.

  And also with you.


The people exchange a sign of peace with the simple words, Peace be with you.



The Lord’s Table is prepared.



OFFERTORY  1 John 3:2-3                                   Setting by David Schack

Beloved, we are God’s children now; it does not yet appear what we shall be, but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. And all who thus hope in him purify themselves as he is pure.



Hear us, O Lord Jesus Christ, from your dwelling place,

from the glorious throne of your kingdom, and come and cleanse us.

  You are seated on high with the Father,

  and you dwell also with us here, although unseen.

By your mighty hand render us worthy to receive in holy communion

your spotless body and your precious blood.






The Lord be with you.                                   

  And also with you.                     

Lift up your hearts.                                         

  We lift them to the Lord.                        

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.                                  

  It is right to give him thanks and praise.


  It is indeed right and salutary that we should at all times and in all places offer thanks and praise to you, O Lord, holy Father,

through Christ our Lord.

  He is the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, the ruler of the kings of the earth; he made us to be a kingdom, priests serving you, his God and Father; and he will be revealed in glory as Judge and Savior.

  And so with the Church on earth and the hosts of heaven, we praise your name and join their unending hymn:




Holy, holy, holy LORD, God of power and might!

                Heaven and earth are full of your glory.

                Hosanna in the highest!

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD!

                Hosanna in the highest!


Holy God, mighty Lord, gracious Father:

                Endless is your mercy and eternal your reign.

You have filled all creation with light and life;

                heaven and earth are full of your glory.

Through Abraham you promised to bless all nations.

                You rescued Israel, your chosen people.

Through the prophets you renewed your promise;

                and, at this end of all the ages, you sent your Son,

                who in words and deeds proclaimed your kingdom

                and was obedient to your will, even to giving his life.


In the night in which he was betrayed,

                        our Lord Jesus took bread, and gave thanks;

                        broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying:

                        Take and eat; this is my body, given for you.

Do this for the remembrance of me.


Again, after supper, he took the cup, gave thanks,

                        and gave it for all to drink, saying:

                        This cup is the new covenant in my blood,

shed for you and for all people for the forgiveness of sin.

Do this for the remembrance of me.


For as often as we eat of this bread and drink from this cup

                we proclaim the Lord's death until he comes.

  Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.


Therefore, gracious Father, with this bread and cup

we remember the life our Lord offered for us.

And, believing the witness of his resurrection,

we await his coming in power

to share with us the great and promised feast.

  Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.



Send now, we pray, your Holy Spirit,

the spirit of our Lord and of his resurrection,

that we who receive the Lord's body and blood

may live to the praise of your glory

and receive our inheritance with all your saints in light.

  Amen. Come, Holy Spirit.


Join our prayers with those of your servants

of every time and every place,

and unite them with the ceaseless petitions of our great high priest

until he comes as victorious Lord of all.


            Through him, with him, in him,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

                all honor and glory is yours,

almighty Father, now and forever. Amen


In the presence of Christ, we pray to his Father using the words he gave us.


Christ is in our midst.

                By the power of the Spirit,

                we pray to his Father, saying:



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                                  Matthew 6:9-15


Rejoice greatly, O Church!

Your king comes to you,

triumphant, victorious, humble.                                                 from Zechariah 9:9

  Thanks be to God.


Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world; have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world; have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world; grant us peace.


Admission to the Sacrament is by invitation of the Lord, presented through the Church to those who are baptized.


They may receive the Lord’s Body and Blood who are baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, who commune in their home churches, and who believe that Jesus Christ, crucified and risen, is truly present in, with, and under the forms of bread and wine for the forgiveness of sins, life, and salvation.


The communicants will be invited forward one family unit at a time. Please do not come forward until the pastor directs you to come forward, do not approach all the way to the table until the pastor has retreated.


 When the pastor says ‘The body of Christ, given for you,’ eat the bread. When the pastor says, ‘The blood of Christ, shed for you,’ drink the wine.  Please take the plate and the glass(es) and place them on the table that is indicated.

HYMNS                                                              Glory Be to God the Father 

 Glory Be to God the Father!


1      Glory be to God the Father!

        Glory be to God the Son!

        Glory be to God the Spirit!

        God eternal, Three in One!


2      Glory be to God who loved us,

        washed from us each spot and stain!

        Glory be to him who bought us,

        now with God on high to reign!


3      Glory to the king of angels!

        Glory to the church’s king!

        Glory to the king of nations!

        Heav’n and earth, your praises bring!


4     Glory, blessing, praise eternal!

        Thus the choir of angels sings.

        Honor, riches, pow’r, dominion!

        Thus its praise creation brings.


5      Glory be to God the Father!

        Glory be to God the Son!

        Glory be to God the Spirit!

        God eternal, Three in One!


Text: Horatius Bonar, 1808-1889, alt.



Beautiful Savior


1      Beautiful Savior,

        King of creation,

        Son of God and Son of Man!

        Truly I'd love thee,

        truly I'd serve thee,

        light of my soul, my joy, my crown.


2      Fair are the meadows,

        fair are the woodlands,

        robed in flow'rs of blooming spring;

        Jesus is fairer,

        Jesus is purer,

        he makes our sorrowing spirit sing.


3      Fair is the sunshine,

        fair is the moonlight,

        bright the sparkling stars on high;

        Jesus shines brighter,

        Jesus shines purer

        than all the angels in the sky.


4     Beautiful Savior,

        Lord of the nations,

        Son of God and Son of Man!

        Glory and honor,

        praise, adoration,

        now and forevermore be thine!


Text: Gesangbuch, Münster, 1677; tr. Joseph A. Seiss, 1823-1904



After all have returned to their places, the people stand at the direction of the pastor.


The body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ strengthen you and keep you in his grace.    



Lord, now you let your servant go in peace;

your word has been fulfilled.

My own eyes have seen the salvation

which you have prepared in the sight of every people:

A light to reveal you to the nations

and the glory of your people Israel.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit;

as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen   

Song of Simeon (Luke 2:29-32)

Almighty God, you gave your Son both as a sacrifice for sin

and a model for the godly life. Enable us to receive him always

with thanksgiving, and to conform our lives to his; through the same

Jesus Christ our Lord.





Almighty God, Father, XSon, and Holy Spirit, bless you now and forever.




Go in peace. Serve the Lord.                                          

  Thanks be to God!




Sun/ Nov 21         Choir rehearsal 9:30 AM


Council Meeting 7:00 PM

Mon/ Nov 22      Morning Prayer (livestream ) 8:30 AM

Tues/ Nov 23      Thanksgiving Worship 7:30 PM

Fri/ Nov 26          Morning Prayer (livestream ) 8:30 AM

Sat/ Nov 27         NA Meeting 11 AM

                                SATURDAY EVENING WORSHIP 6:30 PM

Sun/ Nov 28        Choir rehearsal 9:30 AM


1st Sunday in Advent










From Sundays and Copyright 2021 Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved.

Reprinted by permission under Augsburg Fortress Liturgies Annual License #20540.

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Tissot, James, 1836-1902. Jesus Before Pilate, First Interview, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN. [retrieved November 16, 2021]. Original source:,_First_Interview.jpg.

Agnus Day appears with the permission of


St Stephen Lutheran Church

55 Forsythe Road

Pittsburgh PA 15220

(412) 279-5868


Saturday Evening Worship – 6:30 pm

Sunday Morning Worship –10:30 am