Wednesday
Morning Prayer
Joseph Butler and George Berkeley

The Opening

Opening Sentence

Send out your light and your truth, that they may lead me, and bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling. Psalm 43:3

Hymn: Lord God of morning and of night

Lord God of morning and of night,
We thank Thee for Thy gift of light;
As in the dawn the shadows fly,
We seem to find Thee now more nigh.

Yet, whilst Thy will we would persue
Oft what we would we cannot do
The sun may stand in zenith skies
But on the soul thick midnight lies

O Lord of lights, tis Thou alone
Canst make our darkened hearts Thine own;
O then be with us, Lord, that we
In Thy great day may wake to Thee.

Praise God our Maker and our Friend;
Praise Him through time, till time shall end;
Till psalm and song His name adore
Through heavens great day of evermore.

Singers: Harvard University Choir
Text: Francis Turner Palgrave
Music: M. Lee Suitor

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.

The mercy of the Lord is everlasting:
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

The mercy of the Lord is everlasting:
Come let us adore him.

The Psalm

119:97-120 or
Coverdale

Mem Quomodo dilexi!

97 Oh, how I love your law! *
all the day long it is in my mind.
98 Your commandment has made me wiser than my enemies, *
and it is always with me.
99 I have more understanding than all my teachers, *
for your decrees are my study.
100 I am wiser than the elders, *
because I observe your commandments.
101 I restrain my feet from every evil way, *
that I may keep your word.
102 I do not shrink from your judgments, *
because you yourself have taught me.
103 How sweet are your words to my taste! *
they are sweeter than honey to my mouth.
104 Through your commandments I gain understanding; *
therefore I hate every lying way.

Nun Lucerna pedibus meis

105 Your word is a lantern to my feet *
and a light upon my path.
106 I have sworn and am determined *
to keep your righteous judgments.
107 I am deeply troubled; *
preserve my life, O Lord, according to your word.
108 Accept, O Lord, the willing tribute of my lips, *
and teach me your judgments.
109 My life is always in my hand, *
yet I do not forget your law.
110 The wicked have set a trap for me, *
but I have not strayed from your commandments.
111 Your decrees are my inheritance for ever; *
truly, they are the joy of my heart.
112 I have applied my heart to fulfill your statutes *
for ever and to the end.

Samekh Iniquos odio habui

113 I hate those who have a divided heart, *
but your law do I love.
114 You are my refuge and shield; *
my hope is in your word.
115 Away from me, you wicked! *
I will keep the commandments of my God.
116 Sustain me according to your promise, that I may live, *
and let me not be disappointed in my hope.
117 Hold me up, and I shall be safe, *
and my delight shall be ever in your statutes.
118 You spurn all who stray from your statutes; *
their deceitfulness is in vain.
119 In your sight all the wicked of the earth are but dross; *
therefore I love your decrees.
120 My flesh trembles with dread of you; *
I am afraid of your judgments.

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

1 Samuel 2:12-26

12Now the sons of Eli were scoundrels; they had no regard for the Lord 13or for the duties of the priests to the people. When anyone offered sacrifice, the priest’s servant would come, while the meat was boiling, with a three-pronged fork in his hand, 14and he would thrust it into the pan, or kettle, or caldron, or pot; all that the fork brought up the priest would take for himself. This is what they did at Shiloh to all the Israelites who came there. 15Moreover, before the fat was burned, the priest’s servant would come and say to the one who was sacrificing, “Give meat for the priest to roast; for he will not accept boiled meat from you, but only raw.” 16And if the man said to him, “Let them burn the fat first, and then take whatever you wish,” he would say, “No, you must give it now; if not, I will take it by force.” 17Thus the sin of the young men was very great in the sight of the Lord; for they treated the offerings of the Lord with contempt. 18Samuel was ministering before the Lord, a boy wearing a linen ephod. 19His mother used to make for him a little robe and take it to him each year, when she went up with her husband to offer the yearly sacrifice. 20Then Eli would bless Elkanah and his wife, and say, “May the Lord repay you with children by this woman for the gift that she made to the Lord”; and then they would return to their home. 21And the Lord took note of Hannah; she conceived and bore three sons and two daughters. And the boy Samuel grew up in the presence of the Lord. 22Now Eli was very old. He heard all that his sons were doing to all Israel, and how they lay with the women who served at the entrance to the tent of meeting. 23He said to them, “Why do you do such things? For I hear of your evil dealings from all these people. 24No, my sons; it is not a good report that I hear the people of the Lord spreading abroad. 25If one person sins against another, someone can intercede for the sinner with the Lord; but if someone sins against the Lord, who can make intercession?” But they would not listen to the voice of their father; for it was the will of the Lord to kill them. 26Now the boy Samuel continued to grow both in stature and in favor with the Lord and with the people.

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Canticle 11 The Third Song of Isaiah
Isaiah 60:1-3, 11a, 14c, 18-19
Surge, illuminare

Arise, shine, for your light has come, *
and the glory of the Lord has dawned upon you.

For behold, darkness covers the land; *
deep gloom enshrouds the peoples.

But over you the Lord will rise, *
and his glory will appear upon you.

Nations will stream to your light, *
and kings to the brightness of your dawning.

Your gates will always be open; *
by day or night they will never be shut.

They will call you, The City of the Lord, *
The Zion of the Holy One of Israel.

Violence will no more be heard in your land, *
ruin or destruction within your borders.

You will call your walls, Salvation, *
and all your portals, Praise.

The sun will no more be your light by day; *
by night you will not need the brightness of the moon.

The Lord will be your everlasting light, *
and your God will be your glory.
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

Acts 2:1-21

1When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. 2And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. 4All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.

5Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. 6And at this sound the crowd gathered and was bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in the native language of each. 7Amazed and astonished, they asked, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? 8And how is it that we hear, each of us, in our own native language? 9Parthians, Medes, Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, 11Cretans and Arabs—in our own languages we hear them speaking about God’s deeds of power.” 12All were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” 13But others sneered and said, “They are filled with new wine.”

14But Peter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them, “Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen to what I say. 15Indeed, these are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only nine o’clock in the morning. 16No, this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel: 17‘In the last days it will be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams. 18Even upon my slaves, both men and women, in those days I will pour out my Spirit; and they shall prophesy. 19And I will show portents in the heaven above and signs on the earth below, blood, and fire, and smoky mist. 20The sun shall be turned to darkness and the moon to blood, before the coming of the Lord’s great and glorious day. 21Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Canticle 16
The Song of Zechariah
Benedictus Dominus Deus

Luke 1:68-79

Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; *
he has come to his people and set them free.
He has raised up for us a mighty savior, *
born of the house of his servant David.
Through his holy prophets he promised of old,
that he would save us from our enemies, *
from the hands of all who hate us.
He promised to show mercy to our fathers *
and to remember his holy covenant.
This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham, *
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
Free to worship him without fear, *
holy and righteous in his sight
all the days of our life.
You, my child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High, *
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
To give his people knowledge of salvation *
by the forgiveness of their sins.
In the tender compassion of our God *
the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
To shine on those who dwell in darkness and the
shadow of death, *
and to guide our feet into the way of peace.

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

Luke 20:27-40

27Some Sadducees, those who say there is no resurrection, came to him 28and asked him a question, “Teacher, Moses wrote for us that if a man’s brother dies, leaving a wife but no children, the man shall marry the widow and raise up children for his brother. 29Now there were seven brothers; the first married, and died childless; 30then the second 31and the third married her, and so in the same way all seven died childless. 32Finally the woman also died. 33In the resurrection, therefore, whose wife will the woman be? For the seven had married her.” 34Jesus said to them, “Those who belong to this age marry and are given in marriage; 35but those who are considered worthy of a place in that age and in the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. 36Indeed they cannot die anymore, because they are like angels and are children of God, being children of the resurrection. 37And the fact that the dead are raised Moses himself showed, in the story about the bush, where he speaks of the Lord as the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. 38Now he is God not of the dead, but of the living; for to him all of them are alive.”

39Then some of the scribes answered, “Teacher, you have spoken well.” 40For they no longer dared to ask him another question.

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

The Commemoration

Joseph Butler was born in 1692 and ordained in 1718. In 1726 he published Fifteen Sermons, preached at the Rolls Chapel in London, which chiefly dealt with human nature and its implications for ethics and practical Christian life. He maintained that it is normal for a man to have an instinct of self-interest, which leads him to seek his own good, and equally normal for him to have an instinct of benevolence, which leads him to seek the good of others individually and generally, and that the two aims do not in fact conflict.

He served as parish priest in several parishes, and in 1736 was appointed chaplain to Queen Caroline, wife of King George II. In the same year he published his masterpiece, The Analogy of Religion, Natural and Revealed, to the Constitution and Cource of Nature (often cited simply as "Butler's Analogy"), a work chiefly directed against Deism, of which more will be said below. Appended to the main work was a treatise, Of the Nature of Virtue, which establishes him as one of the foremost British writers on ethics, or moral philosophy.

When the Queen died in 1737, Butler was made Bishop of Bristol. (In England at that time, bishoprics and parish churches were supported each by a separate source of income that had been established for it perhaps centuries earlier, and in consequence the funding was very unequal. Bristol, being the lowest paid of all bishoprics, was where a new bishop usually started. Later, he might be promoted to another diocese. The Reform movement of the 1830's and its aftermath have remedied this situation.) However, George II had been impressed with him earlier, and in 1746 he was called back to court and the next year offered the post of Archbishop of Canterbury. He refused the post, but in 1750 he became Bishop of Durham (in the north of England, near the Scottish border, and well known even then as having a tradition of bishops whose speeches and writings attract public attention). He died there on 16 June 1752.

And now to return to the subject of Butler and Deism.

In the early 1700's, Deism was a religion rapidly gaining ground in intellectual circles in England and France. Not all who called themselves Deists were agreed on the tenets of the system, but in general it may be said that a Deist believed in God, and believed that God had revealed himself in two ways: "the starry heavens above us, and the moral law within us," as Kant put it. An examination of the physical world made it clear that it had been designed by some great intelligence. Our conscience, or moral faculty, made it clear that certain actions are wrong, and will surely be punished, here or hereafter. Thus, Deists believed in God the Creator and Judge, in the Moral Law, and in immortality, with rewards and punishments to come.

What a Deist emphatically did not believe was that God had revealed himself through prophets, visions, angels, miracles, inspired writings, and the like. Thus, a Deist was not a Christian, or a Jew, or a Moslem, or a Zoroastrian, or.... In the historical context, what chiefly mattered was that he was not a Christian. In speaking of Christianity, some Deists used conciliatory language, saying that the essence of Christianity was Christ's ethical teaching, which confirmed the teachings of the moral faculty, and so there was no real disagreement. Others were more assertive, and spoke at length of all the harm that had been done by false prophets (on their view the only kind). The second half of Thomas Paine's The Age of Reason is an example of this. In particular, he complained that the Old Testament often represents God as approving or commanding harsh, cruel, unjust, or murderous conduct; and that the New Testament claim that salvation comes only through Jesus is inconsistent with the idea of a just God, since justice means rewarding good deeds and punishing wicked ones. Paine believed that he had found many contradictions in the Bible, as well as historical inaccuracies and morally unacceptable teachings, and he did not hesitate to say so. (I am guilty of an anachronism here, in that Paine wrote in the 1790's, long after Butler was dead. I simply refer to him because he is the example that most readers of this list will find most familiar and most accessible. He represents in extreme form a point of view that had existed long before him, and which by his own time was in retreat, thanks in large measure to Butler.)

Butler's reply to the Deist objections to Christianity could be summarized in a single quote from Origen. "Those who believe the Author of Nature to be also the Author of Scripture must expect to find in Scripture the same sorts of difficulties that they find in Nature." Thus, for example, the Deists would say:

The Bible says that God visits the iniquities of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generation. In view of that teaching, can any decent man be a Christian?

Butler's reply would be:

According to Deists, we have a sufficient revelation of God in Nature, which he created. But in Nature, we find that a sexually promiscuous father may give syphilis to his children and grandchildren. If a pregnant woman abuses her body in various ways, her child is likely to have a low birth weight, lowered intelligence, and other problems. If we consult the Book of Nature to learn about God, we conclude that he visits the iniquities of the fathers on the children. In view of that teaching, can any decent man be a Deist?

He would then add that it is not a simple matter of finding that both Bible and Nature portray God as wicked, in which case it is better to repudiate both Christianity and Deism and adopt atheism as the only moral position. Rather, we find that God has so made the world that our actions affect others as well as ourselves. A world in which no one could hurt anyone would also be a world in which no one could help anyone. Now a world in which every thinking being had a planet all to himself would be a world without the possibility of injustice between man and man, but it would also be a world without the possibility of gratitude between man and man (do I really have to explain that Butler normally uses the word "man" in a gender-inclusive sense?), and it is not clear that it would be a better world than the one we have.

Again, the Deist complains bitterly against the doctrine that salvation is ours only through the action of Christ, and that the normal way, at least, of being saved is through faith in Christ. This seems unfair to the virtuous pagan, not to mention the virtuous atheist. The gist of Butler's reply is the same. He would say:

Consider the following speech:
I am an atheist, and I figure that I am great shape. I have all my bets covered. I can do anything I want, while my Christian friends are hemmed in by all kinds of silly restrictions. Sometimes they say to me: "But suppose that there is a God after all. Then your choice doesn't make sense in the long run." I reply that it makes perfect sense. If there is a God, he is not going to blame me for acting on my sincere convictions. He is supposed to be fair, and it is not fair to penalize someone for an honest mistake. Therefore, if there is a God, I am going to be right up there in heaven along with the Christians, so I haven't lost anything. And if, as I suppose, there is no God, then I am certainly better off not spending all that time and money on religion, and being otherwise hemmed in. So, as aforesaid, I have all the possibilities covered. Now, some of my friends have said that I ought not to be so sure that I have nothing to worry about if there is a God. But I say that if the Universe is ruled by a Being who is so unfair that he would punish someone for an honest mistake, then I want nothing to do with such a being. He is mean, and nasty, and unjust, and I defy him. So there!

Compare it with another speech:
Here I sit in my chemistry lab, with a nice cup of coffee in front of me, to which I have just added a spoonful of sugar, and which I am now about to drink. My lab partner has just said, "Stop! Don't drink that coffee. I was watching, and instead of adding sugar from the sugar jar, you added cyanide from the cyanide jar which is just next to it. If you drink it, it will surely kill you." But I shall pay no attention to this warning. I do not think that I am likely to make that sort of stupid mistake. Besides, if by any chance I am wrong, and this really is cyanide, I am in no danger, because I truly and sincerely believe that this is sugar. I am a chemist, and I have great faith in the Laws of Chemistry. I know that it is the Laws of Chemistry that enabled life to originate and evolve in the first place. (Some chemists have given reasons for supposing that, given the Laws of Chemistry, the development of life on any planet at a suitable distance from its sun is inevitable.) I owe my life to the Laws of Chemistry. I know that those laws are pro-life, that they are on my side. The suggestion that those laws would penalize me for an honest mistake, for acting on a sincerely held belief, is ridiculous and blasphemous. If the Laws of Chemistry are really as unjust as that, then I defy the Laws of Chemistry. So there!

Having mentioned the two speakers, Butler makes his point:
It is most perverse of a Deist to complain that Christians do not believe in a God who forgives honest error. If a Deist really got his views of God from a study of Nature, as he claims, he would find no reason to suppose that God makes any distinction whatever, as to consequences, between an act committed in honest error and the same act committed in wilful cussedness. The Laws of Chemistry, which God created, make no such distinction. Why should the Deist believe that God does? And why should he demand that the Christian believe that God does? In fact, we do have some grounds for supposing that God is gracious to those who do wrong out of honest error or ignorance (see Luke 23:34 and 1 Timothy 1:13), but we find these grounds in the study of Scripture, not in the study of Nature.

Again, the Deist objects:

We are agreed that God is Love, and that he cares for all those whom he has made. But the Bible describes him as slaying the first-born of Egypt, and commanding the Israelites to slay everyone in the city of Jericho, right down to the new-born babe. Does the Bible reveal a God of Love?

Butler replies:

Nature shows us entire towns destroyed by earthquakes or volcanos, or plague. Worse, every human eventually dies. Why is it consistent with the goodness of God to decide that everyone in Pompeii is to die now, and cause a volcano to kill them, but not consistent with the goodness of God to decide that everyone in Jericho is to die now, and order Joshua to kill them? We are agreed that there is a life after death, and that makes it easier to see that ending Jones's life on Tuesday is not necessarily inconsistent with Jones's longterm best interest. It may seem implausible that everyone in Pompeii, or everyone in Jericho, or everyone on the 747 that crashed, was at precisely that stage in his life where it was best for him to move on, but as long as we do not claim to be omniscient, we can hardly say that we know that it would have been better for some of them to live longer. What is certainly true is that this is no more a problem for the Christian than for the Deist.

It may seem that Butler, by proving that Deism has as many problems as Christianity, is simply encouraging Deists to become Atheists. He would say:

Deists and Christians both have reason to believe in God. Both have seen that without God the world simply does not make sense. Both see many things, in Nature or the Scriptures or both, that are not what we would expect from a good and powerful God. We wonder about the reasons for them. Sometimes we can make a plausible guess at the reasons. Sometimes we cannot begin to guess at why God caused or permitted some event, and yet we continue to believe that there is a good reason. Is this irrational? Why should it be thought so? I believe in what we may conveniently refer to as the laws of physics. When I see a good stage magician at work, he does things that I cannot explain in terms of the laws of physics. Nevertheless, I remain convinced that there is a perfectly good natural explanation for them. Faced with a choice between believing that Nature is in fact lawless and supposing that that there is some way that I have overlooked of sneaking the rabbit into the hat, even though I cannot begin to guess what it is, I opt for the latter every time. Likewise, faced with a death (for example) that seems to serve no purpose, and forced to choose between supposing that there is no God and supposing that God knows more than I do, I opt for the latter every time, because the latter gives me a universe with a few unsolved (by me) puzzles in it, but the former gives me a universe fundamentally without meaning.

Incidentally, the above are not quotations from Butler. They are my attempts to express the gist of Butler's arguments. One of the frustrating things about reading Butler, for me, is that he almost never uses examples or illustrations to bring an argument to life. Everything is stated in terms of general principles, and left there. This, plus the total lack of any devotional atmosphere, can make the book, in one sense, very dry reading. On the other hand, many of his sayings are perceptive, insightful, and memorable. I suspect that most readers of Butler will find themselves often pausing to make a check-mark in the margin (not, of course, if reading a borrowed copy) or reading a remark several times so as to remember it and quote it when appropriate.

In its own day, the book had a tremendous influence. David Hume, a radically skeptical philosopher, who did not admire most Christian apologists, admired Butler, and unsuccessfully sought permission to dedicate his own work to Butler.

written by James Kiefer

Note: More information on Joseph Butler is available on the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

George Berkeley (pronounced /'barkli/) (12 March 1685–14 January 1753), also known as Bishop Berkeley (Bishop of Cloyne), was an Anglo-Irish philosopher whose primary achievement was the advancement of a theory he called "immaterialism" (later referred to as "subjective idealism" by others). This theory contends that individuals can only know directly sensations and ideas of objects, not abstractions such as "matter". The theory also contends that ideas are dependent upon being perceived by minds for their very existence, a belief that became immortalized in the dictum, "esse est percipi" ("to be is to be perceived"). His most widely-read works are A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge (1710) and Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous (1713), in which the characters Philonous and Hylas represent Berkeley himself and his older contemporary John Locke. In 1734, he published The Analyst, a critique of the foundations of infinitesimal calculus, which was influential in the development of mathematics.

—more at Wikipedia

Prayer

O God, who raises up scholars for your church in every generation; we praise you for the wisdom and insight granted to your servants Joseph Butler and George Berkeley, and pray that your church may never be destitute of such gifts; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Alternate Psalm and Readings

Psalm 119:89-96
Isaiah 6:6-10
Acts 13:38-44
John 3:11-16

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: Pentecost, proper 6

Keep, O Lord, your household the Church in your steadfast faith and love, that through your grace we may proclaim your truth with boldness, and minister your justice with compassion; for the sake of our Savior Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

For Mission

O God and Father of all, whom the whole heavens adore: Let the whole earth also worship you, all nations obey you, all tongues confess and bless you, and men and women everywhere love you and serve you in peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

World Cycle of Prayer

We pray for the people of Nepal.

Ecumenical Cycle of Prayer

We pray for our sisters and brothers, members of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church.

A Collect for Peace

Eternal God, in whose perfect kingdom no sword is drawn but the sword of righteousness, no strength known but the strength of love: So mightily spread abroad your Spirit, that all peoples may be gathered under the banner of the Prince of Peace, as children of one Father; to whom be dominion and glory, now and for ever. Amen.

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.

Prayers and Intercessions

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

For our Country

Almighty God, who has given us this good land for our heritage: We humbly beseech you that we may always prove ourselves a people mindful of your favor and glad to do your will. Bless our land with honorable industry, sound learning, and pure manners. Save us from violence, discord, and confusion; from pride and arrogance, and from every evil way. Defend our liberties, and fashion us into one united people. Endue with the spirit of wisdom those to whom in your Name we entrust the authority of government, that there may be justice and peace at home, and that, through obedience to your law, we may show forth your praise among the nations of the earth. In the time of prosperity, fill our hearts with thankfulness, and in the day of trouble, suffer not our trust in you to fail; all which we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

For the President of the
United States
and all in Civil Authority

O Lord our Governor, whose glory is in all the world: We commend this nation to your merciful care, that, being guided by your Providence, we may dwell secure in your peace. Grant to the President of the United States, the Governor of this State (or, Commonwealth), and to all in authority, wisdom and strength to know and to do your will. Fill them with the love of truth and righteousness, and make them ever mindful of their calling to serve this people in your fear; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, world without end. Amen.

Hymn: Seek ye first the kingdom of God

Seek ye first the kingdom of God
And His righteousness;
And all these things shall be added unto you.
Hallelu, Hallelujah!

Man shall not live by bread alone,
But by every word
That proceeds from the mouth of God.
Hallelu, Hallelujah!

Ask, and it shall be given unto you;
Seek, and ye shall find.
Knock, and the door shall be opened unto you.
Hallelu, Hallelujah!

Singer: Jack Marti

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 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.

The Ending

Benediction

Let us bless the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

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. 2 Corinthians 13:14

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 Prayer

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.

The Psalm

Psalm 119 Lucerna pedibus meis

105Your word is a lantern to my feet *
and a light upon my path.
106I have sworn and am determined *
to keep your righteous judgments.
107I am deeply troubled; *
preserve my life, O Lord, according to your word.
108Accept, O Lord, the willing tribute of my lips, *
and teach me your judgments.
109My life is always in my hand, *
yet I do not forget your law.
110The wicked have set a trap for me, *
but I have not strayed from your commandments.
111Your decrees are my inheritance for ever; *
truly, they are the joy of my heart.
112I have applied my heart to fulfill your statutes *
for ever and to the end.

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

The love of God has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us. Romans 5:5

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.

Lord Jesus Christ, you said to your apostles, Peace I give to you; my own peace I leave with you: Regard not our sins, but the faith of your Church, and give to us the peace and unity of that heavenly City, where with the Father and the Holy Spirit you live and reign, now and for ever. 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.