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Assembly Title
Christmas Mass 2

Submitted by
S. Daly

Age Group

To celebrate the arrival of Christmas

Faith Group

Hosts, wine, water, candles, chalice, ciborium, cloths, Advent wreath, altar frontal showing the people who welcomed Jesus in Bethlehem
Large sheet of paper showing the Bidding Prayers responses

Time of Year
The end of the autumn term, just before Christmas

Other Details
This is written as a Mass for a Catholic school, but could be adapted for other services

The Prayers of the Faithful were written by children

If your school has an Advent wreath, all four candles could be lit for this Mass as the children will not be in school at the correct time for the fourth candle to be lit. This can be explained to the children

The theme is Welcome

'O Come, all ye Faithful', by F. Oakeley (Celebration Hymnal for Everyone number 520)

Today, we are thinking about the happiness that Jesus brought to our world, when he came so long ago in Bethlehem.
During this Mass, we will think about the kind of WELCOME he had then and the kind of WELCOME that WE give him, when he comes today.

God our Father, you sent joy into the world, through the birth of your Son, Jesus. May we give him a ready WELCOME during this season - and throughout the whole year; for he lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.

(1 Cor. 1:4-9)
This reading is from a letter written by Saint Paul. He is telling his friends, in Corinth, to live always as though Jesus were about to visit them.

"Dear friends, I often thank God for all the things he has done for you.
He has given you such good teachers. They help you live like Christ our Lord.
You are filled with God's Spirit of love and truth.
You must always be ready to welcome our Lord Jesus, whenever he may come.
God's Spirit will help you be strong Christians, until the very day that Jesus comes.
You can trust God. He will never let you down."
The Word of the Lord.


PRIEST - GOSPEL (Luke 2: 1-20)
When it was nearly time for Mary's child to be born, a law was announced by Augustus Caesar that all the people in the world should be registered. Everybody had to go to the town where they had been born, for this registration. Joseph and Mary went from Nazareth to Bethlehem.

They looked everywhere for a room, but the town was full. Two innkeepers turned them away. Then the third innkeeper WELCOMED them. He had no empty rooms, but let them sleep in his stable. Here Mary's baby was born.
She wrapped him up and laid him in a manger.

Not far away, there were some shepherds looking after their sheep.
Suddenly, an angel appeared before them and there was a great light. The shepherds were very frightened.

The angel said, "Do not be afraid. I bring you wonderful news. Today, in David's city, a saviour has been born for you. He is Christ the Lord.
You will find him wrapped up and lying in a manger."

Then, there appeared with the angel a great throng of angels, saying:
"Glory to God in heaven and on earth peace to men who are good."

The angels left, and the shepherds said to each other, "Let's hurry to Bethlehem and see this for ourselves." They travelled quickly and found Mary, Joseph and the baby. Then they told everyone about the child. They returned to their sheep, marvelling at what had happened.

The Gospel of the Lord.

CHILDREN - THEIR OWN PRAYERS OF THE FAITHFUL on the themes of welcome and Christmas.

1. The response to these prayers is ... hear our prayer.
One day, an angel came to Mary. She said, "Will you agree to have a baby?"
Mary said, "Yes."
Then the angel said, "He'll be the Son of God."
Mary told Joseph. Joseph was happy and full of light. Then Mary had the baby one night.
We thank Mary and Joseph who gave the baby Jesus such a welcome.
May we be as welcoming.
Lord in your goodness ...

2. We thank God, for Mary and Joseph who took good care of Jesus.
Joseph helped Mary look after Jesus, even though Jesus was not his own baby boy.
May we help people, even though we sometimes find it difficult.
Lord in your goodness ...

3. We think of the innkeeper who welcomed Jesus.
He let Mary, Joseph and Jesus stay in his stable because there were no rooms left.
He could have refused them, but he didn't.
We thank Jesus, for coming into our lives.
May we make room for him in our lives. May we give him a real welcome this Christmas and throughout the year.
Lord in your goodness ...

4. We thank God for sending us his Son.
May we worship him with the angels, who welcomed Jesus, singing, "Glory to God in the highest and peace to his people on earth."
Lord in your goodness ...

5. We think of the shepherds who welcomed Jesus by giving him a sheepskin to keep him warm.
May we give Jesus whatever we can afford.
Lord in your goodness ...

7. In the countdown to Christmas, we think of the Wise Men who welcomed Jesus with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.
May we welcome Jesus with gifts of love, peace and sharing.
Lord in your goodness ...

8. May we give Jesus a welcome this Christmas.
May we not just think of presents and food.
Lord in your goodness ...

9. Let us be like the people who welcomed Jesus, that first Christmas.
If anyone wants to be friends with us, let them come and be our friends.
Lord in your goodness ...
We will now ask Mary to help carry our prayers to heaven. Hail Mary...

OFFERTORY HYMN - 'Little Jesus, Sweetly Sleep' (Celebration Hymnal for Everyone number 372)

Father, accept this bread and wine, which we offer as we celebrate the birth of your Son, Jesus. He comes to show us your love. Let us be ready to WELCOME him, who lives and reigns with you for ever and ever.


HYMN - to conclude the Sign of peace - 'Shalom, my Friend' by S. Jones (Celebration Hymnal for Everyone number 639).

Why did you come, Lord, the way you did? Poor, homeless, not welcomed by all.
Born, not among leaders and princes - but born among the outcasts of society.
The silence of your birth broken only by the cry of a child, the noise of an animal and the hymn of the angels.
No welcoming fanfares for you.
Why did you come, Lord, the way you did?

Loving God, we are happy to share in this Eucharist - and to celebrate our joy at the birth of your Son, Jesus. We wish that everyone could know him and WELCOME him. Help US to WELCOME Jesus into our lives this Christmas and help US stay close to him. We need your help for this, through the same Jesus, your Son, who lives and reigns with you for ever and ever. Amen.

HYMN - 'O little town of Bethlehem', by P. Brooks (Celebration Hymnal for Everyone number 540)

S. Daly 2000

Last updated 23-7-16.