11.52am on Thursday 12 December 2019

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
Advent
Thursday, 12 December 2019

Preparation

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

Reveal among us the light of your presence
Allthat we may behold your power and glory.

One or more of the following is said or sung:

this or another prayer of thanksgiving

Blessed are you, Sovereign God,
creator of light and darkness,
to you be glory and praise for ever.
As evening falls, you renew your promise
to reveal among us the light of your presence.
May your word be a lantern to our feet
and a light upon our path
that we may behold your coming among us.
Strengthen us in our stumbling weakness
and free our tongues to sing your praise.
Blessed be God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
AllBlessed be God for ever.

A Song of Mercy and Truth (page 559), the following or another suitable hymn

Creator of the stars of night,
thy people’s everlasting light,
O Jesu, Saviour of us all,
regard thy servants when they call.

Thou, grieving at the bitter cry
of all creation doomed to die,
didst come to save a ruined race
with healing gifts of heavenly grace.

Thou camest, Bridegroom of the bride,
as drew the world to evening-tide,
proceeding from a virgin shrine,
the Son of Man, yet Lord divine.

At thy great name, exalted now,
all knees must bend, all hearts must bow,
and things in heaven and earth shall own
that thou art Lord and King alone.

To thee, O holy One, we pray
our judge in that tremendous day,
preserve us, while we dwell below,
from every onslaught of the foe.

All praise, eternal Son, to thee,
whose advent sets thy people free,
whom with the Father we adore,
and Spirit blest, for evermore.

Latin, tr: J M Neale
(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 73

Refrain: In the Lord God have I made my refuge.

1 Truly, God is loving to Israel, 
to those who are pure in heart.

2 Nevertheless, my feet were almost gone; 
my steps had well-nigh slipped.

3 For I was envious of the proud; 
I saw the wicked in such prosperity;

4 For they suffer no pains 
and their bodies are sleek and sound;

5 They come to no misfortune like other folk; 
nor are they plagued as others are;

6 Therefore pride is their necklace 
and violence wraps them like a cloak.

7 Their iniquity comes from within; 
the conceits of their hearts overflow. R

8 They scoff, and speak only of evil; 
they talk of oppression from on high.

9 They set their mouth against the heavens, 
and their tongue ranges round the earth;

10 And so the people turn to them 
and find in them no fault.

11 They say, ‘How should God know? 
Is there knowledge in the Most High?’

12 Behold, these are the wicked; 
ever at ease, they increase their wealth.

13 Is it in vain that I cleansed my heart 
and washed my hands in innocence?

14 All day long have I been stricken 
and chastened every morning.

15 If I had said, ‘I will speak as they do,’ 
I should have betrayed the generation of your children. R

16 Then thought I to understand this, 
but it was too hard for me,

17 Until I entered the sanctuary of God 
and understood the end of the wicked:

18 How you set them in slippery places; 
you cast them down to destruction.

19 How suddenly do they come to destruction, 
perish and come to a fearful end!

20 As with a dream when one awakes, 
so, Lord, when you arise you will despise their image.

21 When my heart became embittered 
and I was pierced to the quick,

22 I was but foolish and ignorant; 
I was like a brute beast in your presence. R

23 Yet I am always with you; 
you hold me by my right hand.

24 You will guide me with your counsel 
and afterwards receive me with glory.

25 Whom have I in heaven but you? 
And there is nothing upon earth that I desire
in comparison with you.

26 Though my flesh and my heart fail me, 
God is the strength of my heart and my portion for ever.

27 Truly, those who forsake you will perish; 
you will put to silence the faithless who betray you.

28 But it is good for me to draw near to God; 
in the Lord God have I made my refuge,
that I may tell of all your works.

Refrain: In the Lord God have I made my refuge.

Holy God,
may we find wisdom in your presence
and set our hope not on uncertain riches
but on the love that holds us to the end;
in 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.

Isaiah 48.1-11

Hear this, O house of Jacob,
   who are called by the name of Israel,
   and who came forth from the loins of Judah;
who swear by the name of the Lord,
   and invoke the God of Israel,
   but not in truth or right.
For they call themselves after the holy city,
   and lean on the God of Israel;
   the Lord of hosts is his name.


The former things I declared long ago,
   they went out from my mouth and I made them known;
   then suddenly I did them and they came to pass.
Because I know that you are obstinate,
   and your neck is an iron sinew
   and your forehead brass,
I declared them to you from long ago,
   before they came to pass I announced them to you,
so that you would not say, ‘My idol did them,
   my carved image and my cast image commanded them.’


You have heard; now see all this;
   and will you not declare it?
From this time forward I make you hear new things,
   hidden things that you have not known.
They are created now, not long ago;
   before today you have never heard of them,
   so that you could not say, ‘I already knew them.’
You have never heard, you have never known,
   from of old your ear has not been opened.
For I knew that you would deal very treacherously,
   and that from birth you were called a rebel.


For my name’s sake I defer my anger,
   for the sake of my praise I restrain it for you,
   so that I may not cut you off.
See, I have refined you, but not like silver;
   I have tested you in the furnace of adversity.
For my own sake, for my own sake, I do it,
   for why should my name be profaned?
   My glory I will not give to another.

Canticle

A Song of the Spirit, or another suitable canticle, for example, number 57 (page 614) or number 72 (page 630), may be said

Refrain:

AllSurely I am coming soon.
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus! Alleluia.

1‘Behold, I am coming soon’, says the Lord,
‘and bringing my reward with me,
to give to everyone according to their deeds.

2‘I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last,
the beginning and the end.’

3Blessed are those who do God’s commandments,
that they may have the right to the tree of life,
and may enter into the city through the gates.

4‘I, Jesus, have sent my angel to you,
with this testimony for all the churches.

5‘I am the root and the offspring of David,
I am the bright morning star.’

6‘Come!’ say the Spirit and the Bride;
‘Come!’ let each hearer reply.

7Come forward, you who are thirsty,
let those who desire take the water of life as a gift.

Revelation 22.12-14, 16, 17

AllTo the One who sits on the throne and to the Lamb
be blessing and honour and glory and might,
for ever and ever. Amen.

AllSurely I am coming soon.
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus! Alleluia.

Scripture Reading

One or more readings appointed for the day are read.

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

1 Thessalonians 3

Therefore when we could bear it no longer, we decided to be left alone in Athens; and we sent Timothy, our brother and co-worker for God in proclaiming the gospel of Christ, to strengthen and encourage you for the sake of your faith, so that no one would be shaken by these persecutions. Indeed, you yourselves know that this is what we are destined for. In fact, when we were with you, we told you beforehand that we were to suffer persecution; so it turned out, as you know. For this reason, when I could bear it no longer, I sent to find out about your faith; I was afraid that somehow the tempter had tempted you and that our labour had been in vain.

But Timothy has just now come to us from you, and has brought us the good news of your faith and love. He has told us also that you always remember us kindly and long to see us—just as we long to see you. For this reason, brothers and sisters, during all our distress and persecution we have been encouraged about you through your faith. For we now live, if you continue to stand firm in the Lord. How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy that we feel before our God because of you? Night and day we pray most earnestly that we may see you face to face and restore whatever is lacking in your faith.

Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus direct our way to you. And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, just as we abound in love for you. And may he so strengthen your hearts in holiness that you may be blameless before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints.

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

My soul is waiting for you, O Lord:
in your word is my hope.
AllMy soul is waiting for you, O Lord:
in your word is my hope.
There is forgiveness with you,
so that you shall be feared.
AllIn your word is my hope.
Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit.
AllMy soul is waiting for you, O Lord:
in your word is my hope.

from Psalm 130

 

Gospel Canticle

The Magnificat (The Song of Mary) is normally said, or The Song of Christ's Glory (page 619) may be said

Refrain:

AllLord Jesus, you are the one who is to come,
the one whom we await with longing hearts.

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:

AllLord Jesus, you are the one who is to come,
the one whom we await with longing hearts.

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

The Church, that she may be ready for the coming of Christ
The leaders of the Church
The nations, that they may be subject to the rule of God
Those who are working for justice in the world
The broken, that they may find God’s healing

A form of prayer found on page 377 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 Lord, raise up, we pray, your power
and come among us,
and with great might succour us;
that whereas, through our sins and wickedness
we are grievously hindered
in running the race that is set before us,
your bountiful grace and mercy
may speedily help and deliver us;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
to whom with you and the Holy Spirit,
be honour and glory, now and for ever.
AllAmen.

The Lord’s Prayer is said

Awaiting his coming in glory,
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)

Awaiting his coming in glory,
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 Lord, when he comes,
find us watching and waiting.
AllAmen.

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

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