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Monday
Morning Prayer
Nicholas of Myra

The Opening

Opening Sentence

Watch, for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or in the morning, lest he come suddenly and find you asleep. Mark 13:35, 36

Hymn: Toda la tierra

Toda la tierra espera al salvador
Y el surco abierto a la obra del señor;
Es el mundo que lucha por la libertad,
Reclama justicia y busca la verdad.

[All the earth awaits the savior
And the furrow open to the work of the Lord;
It is the world that fights for freedom,
Claim justice and seek the truth.]

Dice el profeta al pueblo de israel
De madre virgen ya viene emmanuel;
Será " dios con nosotros, hermano será,
Con él la esperanza al mundo volverá.

[Says the prophet to the people of israel
Emmanuel already comes from a virgin mother;
He will be "God with us, brother will be,
With him hope to the world will return.]

Cerros y valles habrá que preparar,
Nuevos caminos tenemos que trazar;
El señor esta cerca, hay que irlo a encontrar,
Y todas las puertas abrir de par en par.

[Hills and valleys will have to be prepared,
New paths we have to trace;
The Lord is near, you have to go find him,
And all the doors open wide.]

En un pesebre jesús apareció,
Pero en el mundo es donde nace hoy;
Vive en nuestros hermanos, con ellos está,
Y vuelve de nuevo a darnos libertad.

[In a manger Jesus appeared,
But the world is where he is born today;
He lives in our brothers, with them he is,
And he comes back to give us freedom.]

Toda la tierra espera al salvador
Y el surco abierto a la obra del señor;
Es el mundo que lucha por la libertad,
Reclama justicia y busca la verdad.
Reclama justicia y busca la verdad.

[All the earth awaits the savior
And the furrow open to the work of the Lord;
It is the world that fights for freedom,
Claim justice and seek the truth.
Claim justice and seek the truth.]

Singer: Patricia Morales
Music: Taule Alberto Taulé

Confession

Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.

Most merciful God,
we confess that we have sinned against you
in thought, word, and deed,
by what we have done,
and by what we have left undone.
We have not loved you with our whole heart;
we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves.
We are truly sorry and we humbly repent.
For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ,
have mercy on us and forgive us;
that we may delight in your will,
and walk in your ways,
to the glory of your Name. Amen.

Almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us all our sins through our Lord Jesus Christ, strengthen us in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep us in eternal life. Amen.

Versicle and Response

Lord, open our lips.

And our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

Our King and Savior now draws near:
Come let us adore him.

Jubilate

Be joyful in the Lord, all you lands;
serve the Lord with gladness
and come before his presence with a song.

Know this: the Lord himself is God;
he himself has made us, and we are his;
we are his people and the sheep of his pasture.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving;
go into his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and call upon his Name.

For the Lord is good;
his mercy is everlasting;
and his faithfulness endures from age to age.

Antiphon

Our King and Savior now draws near:
Come let us adore him.

The Psalm

25 Ad te, Domine, levavi or
Coverdale

1To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul;
my God, I put my trust in you; *
let me not be humiliated,
nor let my enemies triumph over me.
2Let none who look to you be put to shame; *
let the treacherous be disappointed in their schemes.
3Show me your ways, O Lord, *
and teach me your paths.
4Lead me in your truth and teach me, *
for you are the God of my salvation;
in you have I trusted all the day long.
5Remember, O Lord, your compassion and love, *
for they are from everlasting.
6Remember not the sins of my youth and my transgressions; *
remember me according to your love
and for the sake of your goodness, O Lord.
7Gracious and upright is the Lord; *
therefore he teaches sinners in his way.
8He guides the humble in doing right *
and teaches his way to the lowly.
9All the paths of the Lord are love and faithfulness *
to those who keep his covenant and his testimonies.
10For your Name's sake, O Lord, *
forgive my sin, for it is great.
11Who are they who fear the Lord? *
he will teach them the way that they should choose.
12They shall dwell in prosperity, *
and their offspring shall inherit the land.
13The Lord is a friend to those who fear him *
and will show them his covenant.
14My eyes are ever looking to the Lord, *
for he shall pluck my feet out of the net.
15Turn to me and have pity on me, *
for I am left alone and in misery.
16The sorrows of my heart have increased; *
bring me out of my troubles.
17Look upon my adversity and misery *
and forgive me all my sin.
18Look upon my enemies, for they are many, *
and they bear a violent hatred against me.
19Protect my life and deliver me; *
let me not be put to shame, for I have trusted in you.
20Let integrity and uprightness preserve me, *
for my hope has been in you.
21Deliver Israel, O God, *
out of all his troubles.

Gloria Patri

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son,
and to the Holy Ghost:
as it was in the beginning, is now,
and ever shall be.
World without end. Amen. Amen.

The Lessons

The Old Testament Lesson

Amos 7:1-9

1This is what the Lord God showed me: he was forming locusts at the time the latter growth began to sprout (it was the latter growth after the king’s mowings).2When they had finished eating the grass of the land, I said, “O Lord God, forgive, I beg you! How can Jacob stand? He is so small!”3The Lord relented concerning this; “It shall not be,” said the Lord.4This is what the Lord God showed me: the Lord God was calling for a shower of fire, and it devoured the great deep and was eating up the land.5Then I said, “O Lord God, cease, I beg you! How can Jacob stand? He is so small!”6The Lord relented concerning this; “This also shall not be,” said the Lord God.7This is what he showed me: the Lord was standing beside a wall built with a plumb line, with a plumb line in his hand.8And the Lord said to me, “Amos, what do you see?” And I said, “A plumb line.” Then the Lord said, “See, I am setting a plumb line in the midst of my people Israel; I will never again pass them by;9the high places of Isaac shall be made desolate, and the sanctuaries of Israel shall be laid waste, and I will rise against the house of Jeroboam with the sword.”

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Canticle 9
The First Song of Isaiah
Ecce, Deus

Isaiah 12:2-6

Surely, it is God who saves me; *
I will trust in him and not be afraid.
For the Lord is my stronghold and my sure defense, *
and he will be my Savior.
Therefore you shall draw water with rejoicing *
from the springs of salvation.
And on that day you shall say, *
Give thanks to the Lord and call upon his Name;
Make his deeds known among the peoples; *
see that they remember that his Name is exalted.
Sing the praises of the Lord, for he has done great things, *
and this is known in all the world.
Cry aloud, inhabitants of Zion, ring out your joy, *
for the great one in the midst of you is the Holy One of Israel.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

The New Testament Lesson

Revelation 1:1-8

1The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place; he made it known by sending his angel to his servant John,2who testified to the word of God and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, even to all that he saw.

3Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of the prophecy, and blessed are those who hear and who keep what is written in it; for the time is near.4John to the seven churches that are in Asia: Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne,5and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood,6and made us to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.7Look! He is coming with the clouds; every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and on his account all the tribes of the earth will wail. So it is to be. Amen.8“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Canticle 19
The Song of the Redeemed
Magna et mirabilia

Revelation 15:3-4

O ruler of the universe, Lord God,
great deeds are they that you have done, *
surpassing human understanding.
Your ways are ways of righteousness and truth, *
O King of all the ages.
Who can fail to do you homage, Lord,
and sing the praises of your Name? *
for you only are the holy One.
All nations will draw near and fall down before you, *
because your just and holy works have been revealed.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

The Gospel

Matthew 22:23-33

23The same day some Sadducees came to him, saying there is no resurrection; and they asked him a question, saying,24“Teacher, Moses said, ‘If a man dies childless, his brother shall marry the widow, and raise up children for his brother.’25Now there were seven brothers among us; the first married, and died childless, leaving the widow to his brother.26The second did the same, so also the third, down to the seventh.27Last of all, the woman herself died.28In the resurrection, then, whose wife of the seven will she be? For all of them had married her.”29Jesus answered them, “You are wrong, because you know neither the scriptures nor the power of God.30For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven.31And as for the resurrection of the dead, have you not read what was said to you by God,32‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? He is God not of the dead, but of the living.”33And when the crowd heard it, they were astounded at his teaching.

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

The Creed

The Apostle's Creed

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

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.

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.

The Prayers

The Lord's Prayer

or traditional

Our 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.

Save us from the time of trial,
and deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours,
now and for ever. Amen.

Suffrages

Save your people, Lord, and bless your inheritance;

Govern and uphold them, now and always.

Day by day we bless you;

We praise your Name for ever.

Lord, keep us from all sin today;

Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy.

Lord, show us your love and mercy;

For we put our trust in you.

In you, Lord, is our hope;

And we shall never hope in vain.

Collect of the Day: The Second Sunday of Advent

Merciful God, who sent your messengers the prophets to preach repentance and prepare the way for our salvation: Give us grace to heed their warnings and forsake our sins, that we may greet with joy the coming of Jesus Christ our Redeemer; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

For Mission

O God, you have made of one blood all the peoples of the earth, and sent your blessed Son to preach peace to those who are far off and to those who are near: Grant that people everywhere may seek after you and find you; bring the nations into your fold; pour out your Spirit upon all flesh, and hasten the coming of your kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

World Cycle of Prayer

We pray for the people of Saint Lucia

Ecumenical Cycle of Prayer

We pray for our sisters and brothers, members of the Bolivian Evangelical Lutheran Church

A Collect for Peace

O God, the author of peace and lover of concord, to know you is eternal life and to serve you is perfect freedom: Defend us, your humble servants, in all assaults of our enemies; that we, surely trusting in your defense, may not fear the power of any adversaries; through the might of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Commemoration

The story of St. Nicholas offers a possible way of dealing with the "Santa Claus" problem, to parents who do not want to lie to their children, even in fun, but do not want to say simply: "Bah, humbug! There is no such thing as Santa. Forget about him."

Nicholas was a native of the western part of what is now Asiatic Turkey. He became Bishop of Myra in the fourth century, and there are many stories of his love for God and for his neighbor.

The best-known story involves a man with three unmarried daughters, and not enough money to provide them with suitable dowries. This meant that they could not marry, and were likely to end up as prostitutes. Nicholas walked by the man's house on three successive nights, and each time threw a bag of gold in through a window (or, when the story came to be told in colder climates, down the chimney). Thus, the daughters were saved from a life of shame, and all got married and lived happily ever after.

Because of this and similar stories, Nicholas became a symbol of anonymous gift-giving. Hence, if we give a gift to someone today without saying whom it is from, it can be called "a present from Saint Nicholas (or Santa Claus)." Some parents explain this to their children and invite the child to join them in wrapping a toy (either something purchased for that purpose, at least partly with the child's allowance, or else a toy that the child has outgrown but that is still serviceable) or an outgrown but not shabby item of the child's clothing, or a package of food, and then going along to donate it to a suitable shelter that will give it to someone who will welcome it. This gift is then called "a present from Santa," so that the child understands that this is another name for an anonymous gift given to someone whom we do not know, but whom we love anyway because God does. (Presents within the family can be "From Santa" or "From Santa and...")

Pictures of Nicholas often show three bags of gold next to him, and often these bags have become simply three disks or balls. Nicholas became the patron of an Italian city (I think Bari, which is where his body is now buried) that was a center of the pawnbroking business, and hence a pawnbroking shop traditionally advertises by displaying three gold balls over its front. It is thought that some persons looking at pictures of Nicholas confused the three round objects with human heads. Hence there is a story of a wicked innkeeper who murdered three boys and salted their bodies to serve to his guests, to save on the butcher's bill. Nicholas visited the inn and confronted the innkeeper, who confessed his crime, whereupon Nicholas prayed over the brine-tub and the three boys leaped out unharmed. Other stories have him saving the lives of three innocent men who had been condemned to death. Still other stories have him coming to the rescue of drowning sailors (could this be related to the brine-tub incident?). Nicholas has always been popular with children, mariners, pawnbrokers, the Dutch, the Russians, and recently, the department-store owners. (American readers may remember the story of the brine-tub through reading it as children in the book The Dutch Twins, by Lucy Fitch Perkins, author of The Spanish Twins, The Italian Twins, and many similar books, all children's favorites in the middle of this century. They may now be banned as politically incorrect -- I have no idea. If your children know the brine-tub story, from this book or elsewhere, they may be interested to know how it may have originated.)

In many countries, Nicholas visits children on his feast day, 6 December, and brings them gifts then. In these countries, there is usually no exchange of Christmas presents, but there may be gifts again on January 6, the feast of the coming of the Wise Men, who brought gifts to the Holy Child of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. In America, it may be thought necessary to yield to outside pressure and let Nicholas distribute gifts on December 25.

If you want to show your children (or yourself) how Nicholas is remembered by Christians with a background different from your own (unless, of course, this IS your background), you might want to attend an East Orthodox service at this time. Many Eastern Orthodox congregations have services on the evening before 6 December that feature "visits from Saint Nicholas." He appears as a bishop, with no red suit. The faithful leave their shoes outside the church door, and find in them afterwards gold coins (actually chocolate wrapped in gold foil) representing the gold dowries of the three daughters. To find a service and inquire what it is likely to be like, look up CHURCHES, ORTHODOX in the Yellow Pages. For an English-language service, "Orthodox Church in America" or "Antiochan Orthodox" parishes are likely choices, but do not overlook other possibilities.

We are told, but it is uncertain, that Nicholas was imprisoned for his faith before the accession of Constantine, and that he was present at the Council of Nicea in 325. We may note in passing that the picture of him as roly-poly is a late development. Early stories indicate that he was generous to others, but not given to self-indulgence. Indeed, even as an unweaned infant, he fasted regularly on Wednesdays and Fridays.

written by James Kiefer

Prayer

Grant, Almighty God, that your church may be so inspired by the example of your servant Nicholas of Myra, that it may never cease to work for the welfare of children, the safety of sailors, the relief of the poor, and the help of those tossed by tempests of doubt or grief; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Intercessions

Let us pray now for our own needs and those of others.

Hymn: To my humble supplication

To my humble supplication
Lord, give ear and acceptation
Save thy servant, that hath none
Help nor hope but Thee alone. Amen.

Birthdays
Anniversaries
For Recovery from Sickness
For Travelers
For a Person in Trouble or Bereavement
For Those to be Baptized
For the Departed
Full list of prayers

For All Sorts and Conditions

O God, the creator and preserver of all, we humbly beseech you for all sorts and conditions of people; that you would be pleased to make your ways known unto them, your saving health unto all nations. More especially we pray for your holy Church universal; that it may be so guided and governed by your good Spirit, that all who profess and call themselves Christians may be led into the way of truth, and hold the faith in unity of spirit, in the bond of peace, and in righteousness of life. Finally, we commend to your fatherly goodness all those who are in any ways afflicted or distressed, in mind, body, or estate; that it may please you to comfort and relieve them according to their several necessities, giving them patience under their sufferings, and a happy issue out of all their afflictions. And this we beg for Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

For the Poor and Neglected

Almighty and most merciful God, we remember before you all poor and neglected persons whom it would be easy for us to forget: the homeless and the destitute, the old and the sick, and all who have none to care for them. Help us to heal those who are broken in body or spirit, and to turn their sorrow into joy. Grant this, Father, for the love of your Son, who for our sake became poor, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

For Those Who Live Alone

Almighty God, whose Son had nowhere to lay his head: Grant that those who live alone may not be lonely in their solitude, but that, following in his steps, they may find fulfillment in loving you and their neighbors; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Hymn: Waiting in silence

Waiting in silence,
waiting in hope,
we are your people,
we long for you, Lord.
Lord God, ever with us,
Emmanuel.
Come Lord Jesus.
Maranatha!

Waiting in silence,
waiting in hope,
we are your people,
we trust in your love.
O Sun of Justice,
true Prince of Peace,
Come with your justice, Lord.
Maranatha!

Waiting in silence,
waiting in hope,
we are your people,
Lord, we seek your truth.
Wisdom Incarnate,
teach us your way;
Show us the path of life.
Maranatha!

Waiting in silence,
waiting in hope,
we are your people,
we long for new life.
O Key of David,
open our hearts.
Give us new vision, Lord.
Maranatha!

Waiting in silence,
waiting in hope,
we are your people,
our hearts thirst for you.
Flower of Jesse,
bloom in our midst.
Make us your garden, Lord.
Maranatha!
Make us your garden, Lord.
Maranatha!

Words and Music: Carey Landry

A Prayer of Self-Dedication

Almighty and eternal God,
so draw our hearts to you,
so guide our minds,
so fill our imaginations,
so control our wills,
that we may be wholly yours,
utterly dedicated unto you;
and then use us, we pray you, as you will,
and always to your glory and the welfare of your people;
through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

The Ending

The General Thanksgiving

Almighty God, Father of all mercies,
we your unworthy servants give you humble thanks
for all your goodness and loving-kindness
to us and to all whom you have made.
We bless you for our creation, preservation,
and all the blessings of this life;
but above all for your immeasurable love
in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ;
for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory.
And, we pray, give us such an awareness of your mercies,
that with truly thankful hearts we may show forth your praise,
not only with our lips, but in our lives,
by giving up our selves to your service,
and by walking before you
in holiness and righteousness all our days;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit,
be honor and glory throughout all ages. Amen.

A Prayer of St. Chrysostom

Almighty God, you have given us grace at this time with one accord to make our common supplication to you; and you have promised through your well-beloved Son that when two or three are gathered together in his Name you will be in the midst of them: Fulfill now, O Lord, our desires and petitions as may be best for us; granting us in this world knowledge of your truth, and in the age to come life everlasting. Amen.

Benediction

Let us bless the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

May the God of hope fill us with all joy and peace in believing through the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Romans 15:13

Hymn: God Be With You

God be with you till we meet again;
By his counsels guide, uphold you;
With his sheep securely fold you.
God be with you till we meet again.
Till we meet, till we meet,
Till we meet at Jesus' feet,
Till we meet, till we meet,
God be with you till we meet again.


Noonday

The Opening

O God, make speed to save us.

O Lord, make haste to help us.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

The Psalm

Psalm 121 Levavi oculos

1I lift up my eyes to the hills; *
from where is my help to come?
2My help comes from the LORD, *
the maker of heaven and earth.
3He will not let your foot be moved *
and he who watches over you will not fall asleep.
4Behold, he who keeps watch over Israel *
shall neither slumber nor sleep;
5The Lord himself watches over you; *
the Lord is your shade at your right hand,
6So that the sun shall not strike you by day, *
nor the moon by night.
7The Lord shall preserve you from all evil; *
it is he who shall keep you safe.
8 The Lord shall watch over your going out and
your coming in, *
from this time forth for evermore.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

The Reading

If anyone is in Christ he is a new creation; the old has passed away, behold the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation. 2 Corinthians 5:17-18

Thanks be to God.

The Prayers

Lord, have mercy.

Christ, have mercy.

Lord, have mercy.

The Lord's Prayer

or traditional

Our 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.

Save us from the time of trial,
and deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours,
now and for ever. Amen.

Lord, hear our prayer;

And let our cry come to you.

Let us pray.

Blessed Savior, at this hour you hung upon the cross, stretching out your loving arms: Grant that all the peoples of the earth may look to you and be saved; for your tender mercies sake. Amen.

Let us pray now for our own needs and those of others.

Birthdays
Anniversaries
For Recovery from Sickness
For Travelers
For a Person in Trouble or Bereavement
For Those to be Baptized
For the Departed
Full list of prayers

The Ending

Let us bless the Lord.

Thanks be to God.