10.29pm on Tuesday 18 May 2021

Evening Prayer (Evensong) in Contemporary Language


Please note: Daily Prayer provided by the official Church of England web site, © The Archbishops' Council of the Church of England, 2002-2004.

Evening Prayer
from the day after Ascension Day
until the Day of Pentecost
Tuesday, 18 May 2021

Preparation

O God, make speed to save us.
AllO Lord, make haste to help us.

Send your Holy Spirit upon us,
Alland clothe us with power from on high. Alleluia..

One or more of the following is said or sung:

this or another prayer of thanksgiving

Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation,
to you be glory and praise for ever.
Raised to your right hand on high
the ascended Christ shows the prints of love
and bestows on us the gifts of grace.
As your Spirit renews the face of the earth,
may we bring forth the fruit of the Spirit
and reveal your glory in all the world.
Blessed be God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
AllBlessed be God for ever.

A Song of God’s Greatness (page 565), the following or another suitable hymn

Creator Spirit, Lord of grace,
come, make in us your dwelling place;
O purest Light, in darkness shine;
fill loveless hearts, O Love Divine.

Consoler, hear your people’s cry;
come down, O Gift of God, Most High.
Descend in peace, O heav’nly Dove;
come Fount of Life; come Flame of Love.

As once on Christ the Servant’s head
the oil of sevenfold grace you shed,
so now anoint from love’s deep springs
your chosen prophets, priests and kings.

Of ev’ry gift the living source,
of mighty deeds the unseen force,
the Father sends his promised One
to speak for all who serve his Son.

Keep far all those who wish us ill,
O Dove of Peace, be with us still,
in ev’ry danger at our side
O Friend, befriend us; be our guide.

Reveal to us the Father’s love,
reveal his Son, who reigns above.
To truth, O Truth, make us all true;
in love, O Love, make all things new.


James Quinn S J, based on Veni, Creator Spiritus
(Tune: LM)

This opening prayer may be said

That this evening may be holy, good and peaceful,
let us pray with one heart and mind.

Silence is kept.

As our evening prayer rises before you, O God,
so may your mercy come down upon us
to cleanse our hearts
and set us free to sing your praise
now and for ever.
AllAmen.

The Word of God

Psalmody

The appointed psalmody is said.

Psalm 68

Refrain: Sing to God, sing praises to his name.

1 Let God arise and let his enemies be scattered; 
let those that hate him flee before him.

2 As the smoke vanishes, so may they vanish away; 
as wax melts at the fire,
so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.

3 But let the righteous be glad and rejoice before God; 
let them make merry with gladness.

4 Sing to God, sing praises to his name;
exalt him who rides on the clouds. 
The Lord is his name; rejoice before him.

5 Father of the fatherless, defender of widows, 
God in his holy habitation!

6 God gives the solitary a home
and brings forth prisoners to songs of welcome, 
but the rebellious inhabit a burning desert. R

7 O God, when you went forth before your people, 
when you marched through the wilderness,

8 The earth shook and the heavens dropped down rain,
at the presence of God, the Lord of Sinai, 
at the presence of God, the God of Israel.

9 You sent down a gracious rain, O God; 
you refreshed your inheritance when it was weary.

10 Your people came to dwell there; 
in your goodness, O God, you provide for the poor. R

11 The Lord gave the word;
great was the company of women who bore the tidings: 
‘Kings and their armies they flee, they flee!’
and women at home are dividing the spoil.

12 Though you stayed among the sheepfolds, 
see now a dove’s wings covered with silver
and its feathers with green gold.

13 When the Almighty scattered the kings, 
it was like snowflakes falling on Zalmon. R

14 You mighty mountain, great mountain of Bashan! 
You towering mountain, great mountain of Bashan!

15 Why look with envy, you towering mountains,
at the mount which God has desired for his dwelling, 
the place where the Lord will dwell for ever?

16 The chariots of God are twice ten thousand,
even thousands upon thousands; 
the Lord is among them, the Lord of Sinai in holy power.

17 You have gone up on high and led captivity captive; 
you have received tribute,
even from those who rebelled,
that you may reign as Lord and God. R

18 Blessed be the Lord who bears our burdens day by day, 
for God is our salvation.

19 God is for us the God of our salvation; 
God is the Lord who can deliver from death.

20 God will smite the head of his enemies, 
the hairy scalp of those who walk in wickedness.

21 The Lord has said, ‘From the heights of Bashan, 
from the depths of the sea will I bring them back,

22 ‘Till you dip your foot in blood 
and the tongue of your dogs has a taste of your enemies.’ R

23 We see your solemn processions, O God, 
your processions into the sanctuary, my God and my King.

24 The singers go before, the musicians follow after, 
in the midst of maidens playing on timbrels.

25 In your companies, bless your God; 
bless the Lord, you that are of the fount of Israel.

26 At the head there is Benjamin, least of the tribes,
the princes of Judah in joyful company, 
the princes of Zebulun and Naphtali. R

27 Send forth your strength, O God; 
establish, O God, what you have wrought in us.

28 For your temple’s sake in Jerusalem 
kings shall bring their gifts to you.

29 Drive back with your word the wild beast of the reeds, 
the herd of the bull-like, the brutish hordes.

30 Trample down those who lust after silver; 
scatter the peoples that delight in war.

31 Vessels of bronze shall be brought from Egypt; 
Ethiopia will stretch out her hands to God. R

32 Sing to God, you kingdoms of the earth; 
make music in praise of the Lord;

33 He rides on the ancient heaven of heavens 
and sends forth his voice, a mighty voice.

34 Ascribe power to God, whose splendour is over Israel, 
whose power is above the clouds.

35 How terrible is God in his holy sanctuary, 
the God of Israel, who gives power and strength to his people!
Blessed be God.

Refrain: Sing to God, sing praises to his name.

Blessed are you, gracious God;
you make your home among the weak,
you deliver us from death,
you bring us joy beyond our imagining
to the praise of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Each psalm or group of psalms may end with

AllGlory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and shall be for ever. Amen.

If there are two Scripture readings, the first may be read here, or both may be read after the canticle.

Numbers 22.36-23.12

When Balak heard that Balaam had come, he went out to meet him at Ir-moab, on the boundary formed by the Arnon, at the farthest point of the boundary. Balak said to Balaam, ‘Did I not send to summon you? Why did you not come to me? Am I not able to honour you?’ Balaam said to Balak, ‘I have come to you now, but do I have power to say just anything? The word God puts in my mouth, that is what I must say.’ Then Balaam went with Balak, and they came to Kiriath-huzoth. Balak sacrificed oxen and sheep, and sent them to Balaam and to the officials who were with him.

On the next day Balak took Balaam and brought him up to Bamoth-baal; and from there he could see part of the people of Israel.

Then Balaam said to Balak, ‘Build me seven altars here, and prepare seven bulls and seven rams for me.’ Balak did as Balaam had said; and Balak and Balaam offered a bull and a ram on each altar. Then Balaam said to Balak, ‘Stay here beside your burnt-offerings while I go aside. Perhaps the Lord will come to meet me. Whatever he shows me I will tell you.’ And he went to a bare height.

Then God met Balaam; and Balaam said to him, ‘I have arranged the seven altars, and have offered a bull and a ram on each altar.’ The Lord put a word in Balaam’s mouth, and said, ‘Return to Balak, and this is what you must say.’ So he returned to Balak, who was standing beside his burnt-offerings with all the officials of Moab. Then Balaam uttered his oracle, saying:
‘Balak has brought me from Aram,
   the king of Moab from the eastern mountains:
“Come, curse Jacob for me;
   Come, denounce Israel!”
How can I curse whom God has not cursed?
   How can I denounce those whom the Lord has not denounced?
For from the top of the crags I see him,
   from the hills I behold him;
Here is a people living alone,
   and not reckoning itself among the nations!
Who can count the dust of Jacob,
   or number the dust-cloud of Israel?
Let me die the death of the upright,
   and let my end be like his!’

Then Balak said to Balaam, ‘What have you done to me? I brought you to curse my enemies, but now you have done nothing but bless them.’ He answered, ‘Must I not take care to say what the Lord puts into my mouth?’

Canticle

A Song of God’s Children, or another suitable canticle, for example, number 60 or number 63, may be said

Refrain:

AllThe Spirit of the Father,
who raised Christ Jesus from the dead,
gives life to the people of God. Alleluia.

1The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus
has set us free from the law of sin and death.

2All who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God;
for we have received the Spirit that enables us to cry, ‘Abba, Father’.

3The Spirit himself bears witness that we are children of God
and if God’s children, then heirs of God;

4If heirs of God, then fellow-heirs with Christ;
since we suffer with him now, that we may be glorified with him.

5These sufferings that we now endure
are not worth comparing to the glory that shall be revealed.

6For the creation waits with eager longing
for the revealing of the children of God.

Romans 8.2, 14, 15b-19

AllGlory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and shall be for ever. Amen.

AllThe Spirit of the Father,
who raised Christ Jesus from the dead,
gives life to the people of God. Alleluia.

Scripture Reading

One or more readings appointed for the day are read.

The reading(s) may be followed by a time of silence.

Luke 8.1-15

Soon afterwards he went on through cities and villages, proclaiming and bringing the good news of the kingdom of God. The twelve were with him, as well as some women who had been cured of evil spirits and infirmities: Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out, and Joanna, the wife of Herod’s steward Chuza, and Susanna, and many others, who provided for them out of their resources.

When a great crowd gathered and people from town after town came to him, he said in a parable: ‘A sower went out to sow his seed; and as he sowed, some fell on the path and was trampled on, and the birds of the air ate it up. Some fell on the rock; and as it grew up, it withered for lack of moisture. Some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew with it and choked it. Some fell into good soil, and when it grew, it produced a hundredfold.’ As he said this, he called out, ‘Let anyone with ears to hear listen!’

Then his disciples asked him what this parable meant. He said, ‘To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God; but to others I speak in parables, so that
“looking they may not perceive,
   and listening they may not understand.”

‘Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. The ones on the path are those who have heard; then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. The ones on the rock are those who, when they hear the word, receive it with joy. But these have no root; they believe only for a while and in a time of testing fall away. As for what fell among the thorns, these are the ones who hear; but as they go on their way, they are choked by the cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not mature. But as for that in the good soil, these are the ones who, when they hear the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bear fruit with patient endurance.

A suitable song or chant, or a responsory in this or another form, may follow

When you send forth your Spirit, we are created;
you renew the face of the earth.
AllWhen you send forth your Spirit, we are created;
you renew the face of the earth.
O Lord, how manifold are your works;
in wisdom you have made them all.
AllYou renew the face of the earth.
Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit.
AllWhen you send forth your Spirit, we are created;
you renew the face of the earth.
from Psalm 104

Gospel Canticle

The Magnificat (The Song of Mary) is normally said, or Great and Wonderful may be said

Refrain:

AllHow excellent is your name in all the world,
you have set your glory above the heavens. Alleluia.

1My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour;
he has looked with favour on his lowly servant.

2From this day all generations will call me blessed;
the Almighty has done great things for me
and holy is his name.

3He has mercy on those who fear him,
from generation to generation.

4He has shown strength with his arm
and has scattered the proud in their conceit,

5Casting down the mighty from their thrones
and lifting up the lowly.

6He has filled the hungry with good things
and sent the rich away empty.

7He has come to the aid of his servant Israel,
to remember his promise of mercy,

8The promise made to our ancestors,
to Abraham and his children for ever.

Luke 1.46-55

AllGlory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and shall be for ever. Amen.

Refrain:

AllHow excellent is your name in all the world,
you have set your glory above the heavens. Alleluia.

Prayers

Thanksgiving may be made for the day.

Intercessions are offered
for peace
for individuals and their needs

Prayers may include the following concerns from the cycle on pages 364–365

God’s royal priesthood, for empowerment by the Spirit
Those who wait on God, that they may find renewal
All people, that they may acknowledge the kingdom of the ascended Christ
The earth, for productivity and for fruitful harvests
All who are struggling with broken relationships

A form of prayer found on page 383 may be used.

These responses may be used

Lord, in your mercy
hear our prayer

(or)

Lord, hear us.
Lord, graciously hear us.

Silence may be kept.

The Collect of the day is said

O God the King of glory,
you have exalted your only Son Jesus Christ
with great triumph to your kingdom in heaven:
we beseech you, leave us not comfortless,
but send your Holy Spirit to strengthen us
and exalt us to the place where our Saviour Christ is gone before,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
AllAmen.

The Lord’s Prayer is said

Being made one by the power of the Spirit,
as our Saviour taught us, so we pray

AllOur Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours
now and for ever.
Amen.

(or)

Being made one by the power of the Spirit,
let us pray with confidence as our Saviour has taught us

AllOur 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.

The Conclusion

May the Spirit kindle in us the fire of God’s love.
AllAmen.

Let us bless the Lord. Alleluia, alleluia.
AllThanks be to God. Alleluia, alleluia.

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