December 18, 2016
*   HYMNS OF WORSHIP: in hymnal or on insert
      #1  Emmanuel  – #201                   #3  Christmas Offering (on insert)
     #2  Joy Has Dawned – #186         #4  Mary, Did You Know – #209
      THE HOLY SCRIPTURES:  Isaiah 55:6-13 (page 525)
                                                         Luke 1:67-79 (page 44)
                                                         Acts 26:9-15 (page 115)
     THE SERMON: “Blinded to See”
*   CONFESSION OF SIN: (first in silence then in unison)
        [from Martin Luther’s A Simple Way to Pray]
C: O dear Lord, God and Father, enter not into judgment against us, because no man living is justified before You. Do not count it against us as a sin, that we are so unthankful for Your unspeakable goodness, spiritual and physical, or that we stray into sin many times every day, more often than we can know or recognize. Do not look upon how good – or how wicked – we have been, but only upon the infinite compassion which You have bestowed upon us in Christ, Your dear Son. Grant forgiveness also to those who have harmed or wronged us, as we forgive them from our hearts. They inflict the greatest injury upon themselves, by arousing Your anger in their actions toward us. We are not helped by their ruin; we would much rather that they be saved with us. Amen.
*   ASSURANCE OF PARDON: #198  O Little Town of Bethlehem
     AN ANTHEM: Chancel Choir
*   THE CLOSING HYMN: #192  Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
*   SILENT MEDITATION – Please remain in your pews in a worshipful attitude until the Pastor leaves
* Indicates congregation standing; C = Congreg.  Response
There are private listening units available during our worship services for anyone with hearing difficulties. Please pick one up at the welcome desk in the narthex and return immediately following the service.
WELCOME TO ALL VISITORS who are worshiping with us. We pray you will have a meaningful time of worship and invite you to worship with us again.
FOR PERSONAL PRAYER AND MINISTRY, please come to the chancel steps following the service. Prayer helpers from the congregation will pray with you. Prayer request cards are located in the pew rack for those who wish to submit them.
CONTRATULATIONS to Alex and Megan (McFarland) Wilwert who were united in Christian marriage yesterday at Leidy’s Church. May God be with them as they begin their life together in Him.
THE CHANCEL FLOWERS are given by John and Elaine Greene in thanksgiving to God for His precious gift to us – our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
USHER CAPTAINS:  Dana Gehman, Stan Ott
GREETERS TODAY:     Andrew and Becca Rosenbaum
TAPE MINISTRY:       Today                       Ruthie Niederhaus
                                             December 25th       Ede Rupp
THE LAY VISITOR for this week is Miriam Weigner.
THE A/V BOOTH technicians are Justin Lockman, Jeff Kirkpatrick, and Mario Guerreiro.
     Infant Nursery – Guppies (0 to 17 months)
     Mike and Shannon Kehs, Caren Elliott
     Toddlers – Lambs (18 months to 3 years)
      Matt and Tara McVaugh, JoAnn Elliott
     Children’s Church – Lions (3-5 years)
     Phil and Renee Shafer, Mitchel VanDerbeek
     HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Alison Grater, Lori Maxwell 22nd; Steve Bandura, Isaac Inyang, Ally Hager, Millie Hughes, Bryan Ziegler 24th; Nicole Moyer 25th; Debbie Bandura, Patricia Martindell 27th; Sue Lindner 28th.
     HAPPY ANNIVERSARY! John and Elaine Greene, Ken and Nicole Peck 27th; Jeff and Lori Maxwell 28th.
THE SERMON TITLE this morning is Blinded to See. Paul tells the gathered dignitaries he was convinced he had to suppress, root out, and destroy the errant teaching about Jesus of Nazareth. It was clear as a bell to him that what some were saying about Jesus was entirely wrong. Such folk were misguided and wrong-headed. He went to great lengths to stomp out this new teaching. He was unstoppably relentless. Until he was blinded. It was while he was blind that he began to see clearly. Zacharias had to be muted before he could begin to proclaim the excellencies of God. It’s really God’s word that is relentless, it does not fail.
THE FOURTH CANDLE on the Advent Wreath is the candle of Love. The birth of Jesus is God’s love reaching out to us. It is His love that calls us to faith in Christ. As we remain in His love, our lives will bear fruit for His glory.
ISSUES & ANSWERS upcoming schedule is as follows:
      December 25th – Merry Christmas!
LEIDY’S CHURCH HAS GREAT KIDS! There is an urgent need for teacher’s helpers in the Toddler and 5th/6th Grade Sunday School. Helpers need not prepare lessons, but are a very necessary extra set of hands in the classroom each week. If you can help or have questions, contact Bekah Kulp (215-622-0813) or the church office.
REALM, A MIDWEEK WORSHIP AND BIBLE STUDY starting Thursday, January 5th at 7:00 p.m. What is Realm? It is a midweek time of worship, prayer, and Bible teaching (let’s not forget the coffee) in a relaxed but passionate atmosphere. Realm is for everyone young and old to come and sing praises to God in the form of modern worship songs and engage with the Scriptures. If you have any questions, please contact the church office.
THE TREASURER’S BOOKS for 2016 giving will close at noon on Friday, December 30th. Please make sure your final 2016 contributions are at the church by that time. Thanks for your help – and your faithful giving!
MARCH FOR LIFE 2017 takes place on Friday, January 27th. Leidy’s Church will have a Perkiomen coach taking folk down. Cost is $12 per person. The bus will leave the Leidy’s Church parking lot at 6 a.m. and usually returns between 8:30 and 9 in the evening. A sign-up sheet is posted in the narthex. Youth under 18 years of age must have a responsible adult assigned with them.
Christmas Activities & Services
            Family Service of Worship at 7:00 p.m. will celebrate the birth of The Light of the World. It is another musical event arranged and directed by Curt Lockman telling the how and why of the Christmas story with songs, congregational carols, and instrumental music provided by many of the musicians from within our fellowship. Pre-service music from the instrumentalists will begin at 6:30.
            A more formal service of worship will take place at 10:30. It will be a preaching service, this year with the focus on God’s purposes in sending the Redeemer that makes Christmas a big deal for each Christian. There will be some special music as well as an anthem from the chancel choir and the sharing of the Lord’s Supper. Our time of worship will end with the candle light singing of Silent Night.
            Christmas Day is the last Sunday of 2016. There will be no Sunday School that day, but coffee and snacks will be available during the Sunday School Hour. At 9:45 Christmas carols will be sung by the congregation. At 10, the normal service of worship will begin.
DEAR CHURCH FAMILY, thank you all very much for the continued prayers, gifts, meals and help. Our family is truly blessed to have you in our lives. Each day continues to be a struggle but your prayers and God’s grace help us every minute. With love, the Lafty’s
THANK YOU TO ALL who contributed to the Pik Bible Fund. Between the offerings from the Sunday School classes, a contribution from the Mission Committee, and giving from individuals within in the congregation, a check for $1,318.23 was sent on its way to Living Hope Native Ministries. It will be used for Bibles and other teaching resources to undergird the faithful ministry of Colleen Estes in the Pikangikum community.
HELP NEEDED TODAY following the service of worship. We need to transform the Fellowship Hall into a Concert Hall. Dave Doran will guide us as we take down tables and set up chairs for this afternoon’s much anticipated concert with the Southeastern Pennsylvania Symphony Orchestra. [By the way, the concert begins at 3 pm and if you attend you’ll be glad you did.]
CHRISTMAS SUNDAY is next Sunday! We will have an adjusted schedule. There will be no Sunday School classes, but there will be pre-service singing of Christmas carols. We start singing about fifteen minutes before the service of worship begins. Yes, you, your family, and friends are invited to join in the caroling chorus next Sunday morning. Some choir members will be up front to keep us on track.
THE FLOWER CHART FOR 2017 is posted on the wall in the narthex for those who would like to sponsor flowers for our sanctuary. The chart will be posted until the end of December.
THE TREASURER’S BOOKS for 2016 giving will close at noon on Friday, December 30th. Please make sure your final 2016 contributions are at the church by that time. Thanks for your help – and your faithful giving!
THIS AFTERNOON, the Southeastern Pennsylvania Symphony Orchestra will present its annual Family Holiday Concert here at Leidy’s Church. The concert begins at 3 p.m. Tickets will be available at the door: Adults $20; Seniors $15; Students $10; Under 18 free.
PARENTS – If you are looking for your Toddler thru Kindergarten child, they are staying in their classrooms a little longer this morning so we can enjoy them at the service.
THE GROUP that is headed to Philadelphia on Christmas Eve to distribute the donated winter items, is also looking for cookies and hard candy to bless the recipients. You may bring the items to the church office. Thank you and Merry Christmas to all who donated.
OFFERING ENVELOPES – If you are a non-member and would like to receive offering envelopes for 2017, please contact the office and they will see that you receive them. If you have been contributing financially during 2016, but do not have a mailbox, your record of contributions will be delivered to you via first-class mail.
A BIG THANK YOU to the iBlast team for a fantastic term. Also, a huge thank you to all who donated toys/prizes to iBlast, the kids were overjoyed at the end of term Family Christmas Party. Your donations were a tangible blessing to the kids and their families, it was a great night! iBlast will be collecting new or gently used toys (still in original packaging) for the second semester. After Christmas, there will be a box in the narthex for donations. Contact Pastor Andrew if you have a questions.
SIGN-UP SHEETS are on a table outside the Fellowship Hall to sign up for the 2017 Committees of consistory. Read over the responsibilities of each committee and prayerfully consider where you might best serve the Lord and Leidy’s Church.
LEIDY’S YOUTH NEW YEAR’S EVE, EVE LOCK-IN – From 8 p.m. on Friday, December 30th to 8 a.m. on Saturday, December 31st young people 7th thru 12th grade, are welcome to come for an overnight event of games, food and friends. Bring a snack (chips, cookies, etc.) or a drink (soda, juice, etc.). The lock-in will be held on the ground level in the gym. RSVP to Pastor Andrew at 215-272-2769.
NEWSLETTER articles for the January Newsletter are due in the office by Tuesday. Thank you.
               11:30 p.m.              Sm. Group – C.R.
                 3:00 p.m.              Family Holiday Concert
                 6:00 p.m.              Sanctuary Resvd.
                9:00 a.m.               Home School Christmas Party
                 9:30 a.m.              Kitchen Resvd.
                 6:00 p.m.              Sanctuary Resvd.
                 6:30 p.m.              Volleyball
                 6:45 p.m.              Women’s Bible Study – Rm. 118
                 7:00 p.m.              FCA – C.R.
                 6:30 a.m.              Elder Prayer
                 9:30 a.m.              Mom’s Fellowship – Rm. 111
                 7:00 p.m.              Choir Rm. Resvd.
                 9:30 a.m.              Staff Mtg. – C.R.
                 1:30 p.m.              Small Group – C.R.
                 4:00 p.m.              F.H. Resvd.
                 7:00 p.m.              Bell Choir
                 8:00 p.m.              Chancel Choir
                 7:30 p.m.               Men’s Bible Study
                  7:00 p.m.              Sanctuary Resvd.
                 6:30 p.m.              Pre-Service Music
                 7:00 p.m.              Christmas Eve Service
               10:15 p.m.               Pre-Service Music
               10:30 p.m.              Christmas Eve Service
SUNDAY:                               Merry Christmas
               10:00 a.m.              Worship Service
January 14      Congregational Dinner & Business Mtg.
January 27        March for Life
Christmas Offering
Over the skies of Bethlehem appeared a star
While angels sang to lowly shepherds
Three wise men seeking truth traveled from afar
Hoping to find the child from Heaven
Falling on their knees they bowed before
The humble Prince of Peace
I bring an offering of worship to my King
No one on earth deserves the praises that I sing
Jesus may You receive the honor that You’re due
Oh Lord I bring an offering to You
The sun cannot compare to the glory of Your love
There is no shadow in Your presence
No mortal man would dare
To stand before Your throne
Before the Holy One of Heaven
It’s only by Your blood
It’s only through Your mercy, Lord I come