Welcome to our Easter Vigil service. The traditional purpose of this service is to remember the promises God made to Israel — and to us — throughout the Bible. We begin by lighting a new fire. As fire is a source of warmth and light, this new fire of the Easter Vigil represents the victory in Christ of light and life over darkness and death.

We invite you to proceed through the readings (click on the reference and you will be taken to the passage), and after each one, pause to look at the picture provided and reflect on what you just read. Alternatively, if you have children you may want to tell the story from their children's Bibles, or just tell from your memory as you and your children look at the pictures.

We recommend for this service that you have a candle and a bowl of water.

The Lord be with you!

Opening sentences

Sisters and brothers in Christ: on this holy night, when our Lord Jesus passed over from death to life, we gather in vigil and prayer with members of the Christian community dispersed throughout the world. We join with the whole company of God's people in recalling and celebrating his victory over death, and our deliverance from the bondage of sin and darkness to everlasting light.

At this time you are invited to light your candle.

Once the candle is lit, say this prayer in unison:

Eternal Lord of Life, through your Son you have given your people the brightness of your light. Sanctify this new fire, and kindle in our hearts and minds a holy desire to shine forth with the brightness of Christ's rising until we feast at the banquet of Eternal Light; through Jesus Christ, the Sun of Righteousness. Amen.

The Service of Light

O Christ, you are the Light and Day, you drive our death and night away! We know you as the Light of light, illuminating mortal sight.

O sing, you angels, now rejoice, to Christ our light, lift up your voice; exult the Lord, our reigning king, with joyful hearts your worship bring.

Praise God, from whom all blessings flow; praise him, all creatures here below; praise him above, you heavenly host; praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

Sisters and brothers in Christ, this is the solemn vigil. We hear the Word of God, recalling God's saving deeds in history and how God's own Son was sent to be our Redeemer. May the Holy Spirit illuminate our hearts and minds in the hearing of the Word.

Genesis 1-2:3

The Creation

Genesis 7:1-5,11-18; 8:6-18; 9:8-15

The Covenant Between God and the Earth

Exodus 14:10-31

Israel's Deliverance at the Sea

The Service of The Word

Job 7:1-21

Cristian Mihut:Where the Wild Things Are

John 19:38-40

The Burial of Jesus

The Service of The Word

We respond to God's Word with our confession of faith.

Confession of our Faith

Do you believe in God the Father?
I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.

Do you believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God?
I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord.
He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit
and born of the Virgin Mary.
He suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried.
He descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again.
He ascended into heaven,
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again to judge the living and the dead.

Do you believe in God the Holy Spirit?
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen


God - Father, Son, and Holy Spirit - we have heard of your covenant faithfulness and your saving deeds for your people long ago. We celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ, our Lord, by the power of God’s Holy Spirit. We ask you to do once again in our day what you have always done for your people: create, restore, deliver, redeem, raise us up to a life that never ends. We trust you, O God. We commit ourselves to you. We love you. Amen

Time of Renewal
At this time please place the bowl of water in the middle of the participants.

I ask you now, in the presence of God and these people:
Do you renounce sin and the power of evil in your life and the world?
I renounce them.

Who is your Lord and Savior?
Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior.

Do you, by the grace of God, promise to be Christ’s disciple, to follow in Christ’s way to show love, to practice justice, to resist evil, and to witness to the living Christ?
I promise, with the help of God.

Do you promise to devote yourself to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, in the breaking of bread and in prayer, to celebrate Christ’s presence and to further Christ’s mission in the world?
I promise, with the help of God.

Each person takes a turn dipping their finger in the water and making the sign of the cross on their foreheads. Parents can do this for young children.

Closing Prayer

Almighty God, who for our redemption gave your only begotten Son to the death of the cross, and by his glorious resurrection delivered us from the power of our enemy: grant that we may die daily to sin, that we may evermore live with him in the joy of his resurrection; through Jesus Christ your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen

We Respond

to God's Word

Christ, We do All Adore You

Theodore duBois