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Janice Scott ... The Village Shepherd

After being ordained in 1994 with the first wave of women priests, Janice became curate in a large city centre parish in Norwich and from there, moved to South Norfolk in 1999 as Rector of a rural benefice of six parishes. After completing her MA in Pastoral Theology with the Cambridge Theological Foundation in 2008 she was appointed Honorary Canon of Norwich Cathedral. Janice now lives with her husband Ian just outside Norwich. In addition to her diocesan work and writing "The Village Shepherd," she is a freelance writer for Redemptorist Publications in the UK. She has also written and broadcasts "Pause For Thought" on a local radio station and has written several novels, all with a church background.

Third Sunday of Advent - C

Sermon

Zephaniah 3:14-20

Janice B. Scott
Now that we're well into December, you need to leave home at daybreak if you want to spot a parking slot in Norwich. By ten o'clock all car parks seem to be full and you find yourself waiting in a long queue, hoping that one of the early shoppers has finished and will soon be leaving, so that another spare parking space appears.

People stagger back to their cars with carrier bags full of Christmas parcels as we all race against time to get everything finished. The supermarkets are already getting crammed, and woe betide anyone who hasn't completed all their shopping by Christmas Eve, for the shops will probably be heaving with people but the shelves virtually empty.

Sermon

Philippians 4:4-7

Janice B. Scott

On the radio this last week, I heard about an engineering firm which has ordered its staff to wear Santa Claus hoods over the festive period. The purpose is to spread jollity and Christmas cheer amongst the firm, and presumably, amongst their customers. The penalty for anyone refusing to wear a Santa hood is the loss of their Christmas bonus.

It's Christmas. You will be happy! Or else!

Sermon

Luke 3:7-18

Janice B. Scott
I've had many reports of the Remembrance Sunday service held at Dickleburgh (in Norfolk, England) this year, mostly about the preacher. Since Dickleburgh has a historic connection with the Americans from the time of Second World War, they always invite the American Air Base at Mildenhall in Suffolk to join them for the service, and always invite the current American air force chaplain to preach.

Intercession

Luke 3:7-18

Janice B. Scott
Prayers usually include these concerns and may follow this sequence:

The Church of Christ

Creation, human society, the Sovereign and those in authority

The local community

Those who suffer

The communion of saints


These responses may be used:


These responses may be used:

Lord, in your mercy
Hear our prayer

Lord, hear us.

Lord, graciously hear us.

Children's Story

Luke 3:7-18

Janice B. Scott
The three children were racing through the woods, and Roly was keeping up as best he could with his short legs. He was a reluctant participant in this escapade, for even though he loved nothing better than the woods, he had an inkling of what the children were about.

There was a battered old caravan standing in a glade deep in the woods. The children had come across it one day, and had amused themselves peering in the gloomy windows and scrawling rude words on the dirty paintwork.

When the owner of the caravan, a derelict old man complete with long, unkempt beard, had suddenly materialised from the woods shouting and brandishing his fist at them, the children had run away laughing.

Children's Liturgy and Story

Luke 3:7-18

Janice B. Scott
Call to Worship:

John the Baptist called people to turn to God for help and support. In our worship today let us follow his advice and turn to our Lord.

Invitation to Confession:

Lord Jesus, we are sorry for the times we turn away from you.

Lord, have mercy.

Lord Jesus, we are sorry for the times when we ignore you.

Christ, have mercy.

Lord Jesus, turn your face upon us, that we may turn again to you.

Lord, have mercy.

Reading:

Luke 3:7-18


What is The Village Shepherd?

The Village Shepherd offers sermons, bible stories, children's stories and prayers based on the Revised Common Lectionary. These inspirational sermons, stories, and prayers are sure to touch your heart, because they reflect the simple virtues and tranquil serenity that characterize Reverend Scott's English countryside pastorate. The questions "Where is God in this particular situation?" and "Where does the Gospel story cross our own human story?" are always at the heart of these meditations -- but rather than finding overt answers, instead you will be gently led to make your own connections and discover the powerful ways in which God works. Janice Scott has the unique ability to find interesting details in ordinary life that illuminate scripture, while still challenging even the most intellectual reader. And that gift is precisely what also makes her an outstanding communicator with children.

Most weeks include:

  • Sermon based on the Gospel reading
  • Sermon based on the Epistle reading
  • Sermon based on the First reading
  • Children's stories linked with the Gospel readings
  • Children's liturgy and story (a different story than mentioned above)
  • An intercessory prayer

New & Featured This Week

The Immediate Word

Thomas Willadsen
Christopher Keating
Dean Feldmeyer
Mary Austin
Ron Love
George Reed
Bethany Peerbolte
For December 16, 2018:
  • Joice Again! by Tom Willadsen -- Rejoice! I can’t hear you, rejoice!! Joice again. “Joice” isn’t a verb in English, but “rejoice” is. Oh, and rejoicing is commanded. Just take a look at the Philippians reading.

Emphasis Preaching Journal

Bill Thomas
Bob Ove
Mark Ellingsen
Bonnie Bates
Frank Ramirez
Ron Love
Zephaniah 3:14-20
Wow, how can things get any better. God has not only taken our punishment, he has turned back our enemy. What more can we ask. We shouldn’t have to fear anything. God says this to Jerusalem. Can this apply to America also?

Isn’t it love that takes away our worry? When we were little kids we didn’t worry about anything as long as our parents were near us. God is bigger and more powerful.

David Kalas
My wife, who thrives on organization, has a motto: “A place for everything, and everything in its place.” It’s an expression of her passion for keeping a room, a house, or a garage orderly. But I think the principle extends still further. It goes beyond just physical spaces. For what is true of cupboards and closets is even more profoundly true of a human life.

StoryShare

David O. Bales
Contents
“A Rainy Road To The Jordan” by David O. Bales
“A Freshman Experience” by David O. Bales


A Rainy Road To The Jordan
by David O. Bales
Luke 3:7-18

CSSPlus

Arley K. Fadness
“...but one who is more powerful than I is coming..” (V. 16a)

Good morning girls, good morning boys!

My, it’s so fun to see you today.  Happy Advent! Know why I (say, sing, shout, chant) Happy Advent? (children may respond)

Advent means “a coming.” Something or somebody is coming. Just around the corner. Know what it is? (children respond)

Yep. It’s Christmas, and John the Baptist is here to help. (show sketch)

The Village Shepherd

Janice B. Scott
I've had many reports of the Remembrance Sunday service held at Dickleburgh (in Norfolk, England) this year, mostly about the preacher. Since Dickleburgh has a historic connection with the Americans from the time of Second World War, they always invite the American Air Base at Mildenhall in Suffolk to join them for the service, and always invite the current American air force chaplain to preach.

SermonStudio

Robert S. Crilley
On the Sunday afternoon following Thanksgiving, when I was in seventh grade, it began to snow. It started slowly and undramatically -- much like any number of other snows I had experienced growing up in Detroit. The sky turned the shade of dirty wool and the flakes danced through the wind as in one of those glass balls that you invert. Little by little the sidewalks whitened, and soon the neighborhood was alive with the rasping sound of shovels. Before long the roads were filled and you could no longer see the curb.

Special Occasion