General Christmas Prayer
Lord, in this holy season of prayer and song and laughter, we praise you for the great wonders you have sent us: for shining star and angel’s song, for infant’s cry in lowly manger. We praise you for the Word made flesh in a little Child. We behold his glory, and are bathed in its radiance.
Be with us as we sing the ironies of Christmas, the incomprehensible comprehended, the poetry made hard fact, the helpless Babe who cracks the world asunder. We kneel before you shepherds, innkeepers, wisemen. Help us to rise bigger than we are. Amen.
Before Breakfast Prayer for Christmas Season
The Word was made flesh, alleluia, alleluia!
And dwelt among us, alleluia, alleluia!
Let the heavens rejoice and the earth be glad, before the face of the Lord, for He comes. Bless us, O Lord, and these Thy gifts, which we are about to receive from Thy bounty. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Christmas Anticipation Prayer
((Beginning on St. Andrew the Apostle’s feast day, November 30th, the following prayer is traditionally prayed 15 times a day until Christmas. This is a very meditative prayer that helps us increase our awareness of the real focus of Christmas and helps us prepare ourselves spiritually for His coming.)
Hail and blessed be the hour and moment
in which the Son of God was born
of the most pure Virgin Mary,
in the piercing cold.
In that hour vouchsafe, I beseech Thee, O my God,
to hear my prayer and grant my desires,
through the merits of Our Saviour Jesus Christ,
and of His blessed Mother.
Opening Prayer for Christmas Eve Service
Rev. Dr. Sean B. Murray
Gracious, loving and merciful God, on this Christmas Eve, as the light of your Word penetrates our hearts, as we are reminded of the gift of life and faith, as the glories of the heavenly hosts are echoed in our church, we open ourselves up to your Spirit and give you thanks. We are grateful, Lord Jesus, that your story has become our story, and we celebrate your birth.
Continue, we pray, to instill in us a profound sense of your abiding presence, and help us to take to heart the wonder of your love, that we may walk in your ways and delight in your will.
Help us, Lord God, to be the faithful, gracious, loving, giving and forgiving people you would have us be.
Please forgive me for being so grumpy as I trudge through the never-ending tasks set before me this holiday season…
My to-do list seems to keep growing with shopping, church services, and family gatherings—
and I’m running short of time!
Restore the joy of Christmas to my heart . . .
and help me to relax each day and make time for
my one true Source of Joy.
Before opening presents
Lord and Giver of all good things, the magi travelled for miles to bring the Christ child the first Christmas presents. So may we, too, remember with thankful hearts the love that comes with each present we open. We also thank you for the love you have for each of us, and we thank you for the many gifts that you give us, especially the gift of live itself. Amen
A Christmas Prayer for those who have suffered the recent death of a loved one
God of compassion, there is such a hole in my heart! Today should be a day of joy, but I feel only emptiness and loss. While the world celebrates around me, I remember Christmas celebrations of the past and I long to have my loved one with me. I bring my sorrows to you, Lord, like some odd gift of the magi and dump them at your feet. In my blind tears I wonder if anyone can possibly understand the depth of my sadness.
I know, you can. You sent your son to be with us in our deepest sorrows and I know that even though I might not feel it now, you are here with me, grieving with me, caring for me in my sadness. Dearest lord, help me to turn to the one I miss so much today and speak. Help me heal the loss of our parting and help me not to regret the things I didn’t say. Sorrow tears at my heart, but today I ask that my loss soften my heart and make me more compassionate with everyone I meet, so that my loss may become a gift to others.
Christmas Dinner Grace
In the peace of this season our spirits are joyful:
With the beasts and angels,
the shepherds and stars,
with Mary and Joseph we sing God’s praise.
By your coming may the hungry be filled with good things,
and may our table and home be blessed.
Bless us O Lord, and these Thy gifts,
which we are about to receive from Thy bounty
through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Candle Wreath Prayer
God of love, Father of all,
the darkness that covered the earth
has given way to the bright dawn of your Word made flesh.
Make us a people of this light.
Make us faithful to your Word
that we may bring your life to the waiting world.
Grant this through Christ our Lord.
Christmas Gift Prayer
Thank you, God for the wonderful gift of your son, Jesus, as we celebrate His birthday. Help us to remember Him as we give and receive gifts, taking time to pray for each person and for those who have nothing. Help us, Lord, to fill this Christmas with you and with your love, peace and joy.
A Prayer for Christmas Morning
The day of joy returns, Father in Heaven, and crowns another year with peace and good will.
Help us rightly to remember the birth of Jesus, that we may share in the song of the angels, the gladness of the shepherds, and the worship of the wise men.
Close the doors of hate and open the doors of love all over the world?
Let kindness come with every gift and good desires with every greeting.
Deliver us from evil, by the blessing that Christ brings, and teach us to be merry with clean hearts.
May the Christmas morning make us happy to be thy children,
And the Christmas evening bring us to our bed with grateful thoughts, forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus’ sake.
Let Your goodness Lord appear to us, that we
made in your image, conform ourselves to it.
In our own strength
we cannot imitate Your majesty, power, and wonder
nor is it fitting for us to try.
But Your mercy reaches from the heavens
through the clouds to the earth below.
You have come to us as a small child,
but you have brought us the greatest of all gifts,
the gift of eternal love
Caress us with Your tiny hands,
embrace us with Your tiny arms
and pierce our hearts with Your soft, sweet cries.
St. Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153)
Christmas Tree Blessing
Holy Creator of Trees, Bless with your abundant grace this our Christmas tree as a symbol of joy. May its evergreen branches be a sign of your never-fading promises. May its colorful lights and ornaments call us to decorate with love our home and our world. May the gifts that surround this tree be symbols of the gifts that we have received from the Tree of Christ’s Cross. Holy Christmas tree within our home, may Joy and Peace come and nest in your branches and in our hearts. Amen.
Nativity Prayer of St. Augustine
Let the just rejoice, for their justifier is born. Let the sick and infirm rejoice, For their saviour is born. Let the captives rejoice, For their Redeemer is born. Let slaves rejoice, for their Master is born. Let free men rejoice, For their Liberator is born. Let All Christians rejoice, For Jesus Christ is born. Amen.