The Gathering of the Community

Hymn: Blue #103 On Jordan’s Bank, The Baptist’s Cry

Leader: The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with you all.

All: And also with you

Leader: Almighty God,

All: to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hidden.  Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy name; through Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Collect of the Day

Leader: Almighty God, who sent your servant John the Baptist to prepare your people to welcome the Messiah, inspire us, the ministers and stewards of your truth, to turn our disobedient hearts to you, that when the Christ shall come again to be our judge, we may stand with confidence before his glory; who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.

The Proclamation of the Word

First Reading: Isaiah 11:1-10

Psalm 72: Give the king your justice, O God

Second Reading: Romans 15:4-13

Gradual Hymn: Blue #104 Joy Shall Come

The Gospel: Matthew 3:1-12

The Sermon

The Nicene Creed

We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is seen and unseen.  We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one being with the Father.Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man.  For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end.  We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son.  With the Father and the Son he is worshipped and glorified.  He has spoken through the prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.  We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.  We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come.  Amen.

The Prayers of the People

Watchful at all times, let us pray for strength to stand with confidence before our Maker and Redeemer. That God may bring in his kingdom with justice and mercy,

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

That God may establish among the nations his sceptre of righteousness,

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

That we may seek Christ in the Scriptures and recognize him in the breaking of the bread,

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

That God may bind up the brokenhearted, restore the sick and raise up all who have fallen,

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

That the light of God’s coming may dawn on all who live in darkness and the shadow of death,

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

That, with all the saints in light, we may shine forth as lights for the world,

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

We commend ourselves and all for whom we pray to the mercy and protection of our heavenly Father: Almighty God, as your blessed Son Jesus Christ first came to seek and to save the lost; so may he come again to find in us the completion of his redeeming work; for he is now alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever. Amen.

The Peace

The peace of the Lord be always with you

All:  And also with you.

Offertory Hymn: Blue#106 There’s A Voice In The Wilderness

The Holy Eucharist

A Prayer for Spiritual Communion

All: And also with you.

Leader: Jesus said, “Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood have eternal life, and I will raise them up on the last day; for my flesh is true food and my blood is true drink. Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood abide in me, and I in them. Just as the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so whoever eats me will live because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven, not like that which your ancestors ate, and they died. But the one who eats this bread will live forever.” (John 6:54-58)

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 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.

All: Dear Jesus, I believe that you are truly present in the Holy Sacrament. I love you above all things, and I desire to possess you within my soul. And since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, I beseech you to come spiritually into my heart. I unite myself to you, together with all your faithful people gathered around every altar of your Church, and I embrace you with all the affections of my soul. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen.

Concluding Prayer

Leader: God our strength, we are nothing without you.
Receive all we offer you this day as you sustain us with your mercy; in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. AMEN.

Hymn: Blue #108 Hark, A Herald Voice Is Sounding

Leader: Let us go in peace, to love and serve the Lord.

All: Thanks be to God.

We pray for: Sylvia Sabiiti, Tex and Joan Sackrule


Advent Lessons and Carols: December 18, 4:30 p.m.
Our first Advent Lessons and Carols service!
In this beautiful candlelight service we celebrate with bible readings and carols God’s love and our hope, in the Christ child who is coming. As a sign of that love and hope we will invite donations to support our new refugee sponsorship. Join us on Sunday December 18 as we sing our joy at the coming of the Christ.  

Giving in Advent
Jesus asks us, as we prepare our hearts for his coming, to reach out in
love to each other as he comes in love to us this Christmas. There are
several ways you can give to others at St. Matthew’s this Christmas. You can give to our refugee work, as we prepare to welcome a young Eritrean woman to Canada. You can give to our new Ukraine relief fund, to help
people in need because of the war in Ukraine. And you can bring a small Christmas gift to church for our friends the Berberians.
However you choose to help, may it bring you joy!  

Poinsettia Fund
Each Christmas, we decorate our church with poinsettia plants to
celebrate the birth of the infant Jesus.  We have an annual fund to pay for them.  If you would like to remember a loved one or give thanks by 
contributing to this fund, please place your donation in the envelope
inserted into your bulletin.  Clearly print your name and memorials on
the envelope and place it on the collection plate at the front of the
church.  Donations can also be given through e-transfer.  Any amount is
gratefully received. The last day to contribute is Sunday, December 18th.

St. Matthew’s Anglican Church, Riverdale,

135 First Avenue, Toronto ON, M4M 1W9


Catherine Sider Hamilton

Catherine Sider Hamilton

Catherine Sider Hamilton is Priest-in-Charge of St. Matthew's Riverdale, and Professor of New Testament and New Testament Greek (part-time) at Wycliffe College. She has served also as Chaplain at Havergal College and Associate Priest at Grace Church on-the-Hill and St. John the Baptist, Norway (Toronto). She enjoys singing around the piano with her kids, her husband's Indian food, all things Italian -- and above all her two little grandchildren. Catherine and David live in Greektown. She blogs occasionally on feasts and fasts at