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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 on Wednesday
Wednesday, 28 September 2022
Ember Day

Preparation

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

The Blessing of Light (page 110) may replace the Preparation at Evening Prayer on any occasion.

One or more of the following is said or sung:

A prayer of thanksgiving (page 110),

Blessed are you, Lord God, creator of day and night:
to you be praise and glory for ever.
As darkness falls you renew your promise
to reveal among us the light of your presence.
By the light of Christ, your living Word,
dispel the darkness of our hearts
that we may walk as children of light
and sing your praise throughout the world.
Blessed be God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit:
AllBlessed be God for ever.

or a suitable hymn,

or A Song of God’s Descending

1I love you, O Lord my strength.
The Lord is my crag, my fortress and my deliverer.

2In my distress I called upon the Lord
and cried out to my God for help.

3He heard my voice in his temple
and my cry came to his ears.

4He parted the heavens and came down
and thick darkness was under his feet.

5He rode upon the cherubim and flew;
he came flying on the wings of the wind.

6He made darkness his covering round about him,
dark waters and thick clouds his pavilion.

7From the brightness of his presence, through the clouds
burst hailstones and coals of fire.

8The Lord also thundered out of heaven;
the Most High uttered his voice
with hailstones and coals of fire.

9For you will save a lowly people
and bring down the high looks of the proud.

10You also shall light my candle;
the Lord my God shall make my darkness to be bright.

11As for God, his way is perfect;
the word of the Lord is tried in the fire;
he is a shield to all who trust in him.

Psalm 18.1, 6, 7 ,10-14, 28, 29, 31

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.

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 119.33-56

Refrain: My delight shall be in your commandments.

33 Teach me, O Lord, the way of your statutes 
and I shall keep it to the end.

34 Give me understanding and I shall keep your law; 
I shall keep it with my whole heart.

35 Lead me in the path of your commandments, 
for therein is my delight.

36 Incline my heart to your testimonies 
and not to unjust gain. R

37 Turn away my eyes lest they gaze on vanities; 
O give me life in your ways.

38 Confirm to your servant your promise, 
which stands for all who fear you.

39 Turn away the reproach which I dread, 
because your judgements are good.

40 Behold, I long for your commandments; 
in your righteousness give me life. R

41 Let your faithful love come unto me, O Lord, 
even your salvation, according to your promise.

42 Then shall I answer those who taunt me, 
for my trust is in your word.

43 O take not the word of truth utterly out of my mouth, 
for my hope is in your judgements.

44 So shall I always keep your law; 
I shall keep it for ever and ever. R

45 I will walk at liberty, 
because I study your commandments.

46 I will tell of your testimonies, even before kings, 
and will not be ashamed.

47 My delight shall be in your commandments, 
which I have greatly loved.

48 My hands will I lift up to your commandments,
which I love, 
and I will meditate on your statutes. R

49 Remember your word to your servant, 
on which you have built my hope.

50 This is my comfort in my trouble, 
that your promise gives me life.

51 The proud have derided me cruelly, 
but I have not turned aside from your law.

52 I have remembered your everlasting judgements, O Lord, 
and have been comforted. R

53 I am seized with indignation at the wicked, 
for they have forsaken your law.

54 Your statutes have been like songs to me 
in the house of my pilgrimage.

55 I have thought on your name in the night, O Lord, 
and so have I kept your law.

56 These blessings have been mine, 
for I have kept your commandments.

Refrain: My delight shall be in your commandments.

God of loving mercy,
in this place of our pilgrimage
turn your laws into songs,
that we may find your promises
fulfilled 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.

Zechariah 12.1-10

An Oracle.

The word of the Lord concerning Israel: Thus says the Lord, who stretched out the heavens and founded the earth and formed the human spirit within: See, I am about to make Jerusalem a cup of reeling for all the surrounding peoples; it will be against Judah also in the siege against Jerusalem. On that day I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples; all who lift it shall grievously hurt themselves. And all the nations of the earth shall come together against it. On that day, says the Lord, I will strike every horse with panic, and its rider with madness. But on the house of Judah I will keep a watchful eye, when I strike every horse of the peoples with blindness. Then the clans of Judah shall say to themselves, ‘The inhabitants of Jerusalem have strength through the Lord of hosts, their God.’

On that day I will make the clans of Judah like a blazing pot on a pile of wood, like a flaming torch among sheaves; and they shall devour to the right and to the left all the surrounding peoples, while Jerusalem shall again be inhabited in its place, in Jerusalem.

And the Lord will give victory to the tents of Judah first, so that the glory of the house of David and the glory of the inhabitants of Jerusalem may not be exalted over that of Judah. On that day the Lord will shield the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the feeblest among them on that day shall be like David, and the house of David shall be like God, like the angel of the Lord, at their head. And on that day I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.

And I will pour out a spirit of compassion and supplication on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that, when they look on the one whom they have pierced, they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for an only child, and weep bitterly over him, as one weeps over a firstborn.

Canticle

A Song of the Blessed, or another suitable canticle,
for example, number 69 (page 627), may be said

Refrain:

AllRejoice and be glad
for you are the light of the world,
and great is your reward in heaven. Alleluia.

1Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

2Blessed are those who mourn,
for they shall be comforted.

3Blessed are the meek,
for they shall inherit the earth.

4Blessed are those who hunger
and thirst after righteousness,
for they shall be satisfied.

5Blessed are the merciful,
for they shall obtain mercy.

6Blessed are the pure in heart,
for they shall see God.

7Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they shall be called children of God.

8Blessed are those who suffer persecution
for righteousness’ sake,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 5.3-10

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.

AllRejoice and be glad
for you are the light of the world,
and great is your reward in heaven. Alleluia.

Scripture Reading

One or more readings appointed for the day are read.

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

Mark 11.27-end

Jesus and his disciples came to Jerusalem. As he was walking in the temple, the chief priests, the scribes, and the elders came to him and said, ‘By what authority are you doing these things? Who gave you this authority to do them?’ Jesus said to them, ‘I will ask you one question; answer me, and I will tell you by what authority I do these things. Did the baptism of John come from heaven, or was it of human origin? Answer me.’ They argued with one another, ‘If we say, “From heaven”, he will say, “Why then did you not believe him?” But shall we say, “Of human origin”?’—they were afraid of the crowd, for all regarded John as truly a prophet. So they answered Jesus, ‘We do not know.’ And Jesus said to them, ‘Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things.’

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

Lord, you will guide me with your counsel
and afterwards receive me with glory.
AllLord, you will guide me with your counsel
and afterwards receive me with glory.

For I am always with you;
you hold me by my right hand.
AllAnd afterwards receive me with glory.
Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit.
AllLord, you will guide me with your counsel
and afterwards receive me with glory.

from Psalm 73

Gospel Canticle

The Magnificat (The Song of Mary) is normally said,
or the Nunc dimittis (The Song of Simeon) (page 613) may be said

AllRemember your promise of mercy,
to Abraham and his children for ever.

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.

AllRemember your promise of mercy,
to Abraham and his children for ever.

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 362–363

The social services
All who work in the criminal justice system
Victims and perpetrators of crime
The work of aid agencies throughout the world
Those living in poverty or under oppression

One of the forms of prayer found on pages 362–371 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

God, who in generous mercy sent the Holy Spirit
      upon your Church in the burning fire of your love:
grant that your people may be fervent
in the fellowship of the gospel
that, always abiding in you,
they may be found steadfast in faith and active in service;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
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

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)

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

All The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,
and the love of God,
and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit,
be with us all evermore.
Amen.

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