A Service of Evening Prayer at St. Mark’s Church Adapted from the Service for Evening Prayer: Rite II, Book of Common Prayer and Night Prayer, the New Zealand Prayer Book
The angels of God guard us through the night And quieten the powers of darkness
The Spirit of God be our guide To lead us to peace and to glory
It is but lost labour that we haste to rise up early and so late take rest, and eat the bread of anxiety. For those beloved of God are given gifts even while they sleep.
The Psalm (Psalm 121) (Book of Common Prayer p. 779) 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.
8The LORD shall watch over your going out and your coming in, * from this time forth for evermore
The First Reading
The First Canticle
Canticle 15--The Song of Mary/Magnificat:Luke 1:46-55 (Hymnal S242) My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my Savior; * for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant. From this day all generations will call me blessed: * the Almighty has done great things for me, and holy is his Name. He has mercy on those who fear him * in every generation. He has shown the strength of his arm, * he has scattered the proud in their conceit. He has cast down the mighty from their thrones, * and has lifted up the lowly. He has filled the hungry with good things, * and the rich he has sent away empty. He has come to the help of his servant Israel, * for he has remembered his promise of mercy, The promise he made to our fathers, * to Abraham and his children for ever. 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.
Pour Down You Heavens from Above: Isaiah 45:8 (refrain); 64:9; 64:6, 43:10-11; 44:22
REFRAIN: Pour down you heavens from above and let the skies rain down righteousness
Be not exceeding angry, Lord, do not remember iniquity forever. Your holy cities are a wilderness, Zion is a wilderness, Jerusalem a desolation.Our holy and beautiful house, the temple where our forebears praised you.
We have all become like unclean things, we all wither like leaves, and our misdeeds carry us off like the wind; for you have hidden your face from us, and left us in the grip of our iniquities.
You are my witnesses says the Lord, and my servants whom I have chosen that you may know me and believe in me: it is I, I am the Lord, and besides me there is no Savior, there is none who can deliver out of my hand.
Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God; my salvation will not tarry: I have swept away your transgressions like a cloud: fear not, for I will save you, for I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your redeemer.
The Second Reading
The Second Canticle: Canticle 17, The Song of Simeon, Nunc Dimittis, Luke 2:29-32 (Hymn S254) Lord, you now have set your servant free * to go in peace as you have promised; For these eyes of mine have seen the Savior, * whom you have prepared for all the world to see: A Light to enlighten the nations, * and the glory of your people 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 Lord’s Prayer [Traditional] Our 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, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.
That this evening may be holy, good, and peaceful, We entreat you, O Lord.
That your holy angels may lead us in paths of peace and goodwill, We entreat you, O Lord.
That we may be pardoned and forgiven for our sins and offenses, We entreat you, O Lord.
That there may be peace to your Church and to the whole world, We entreat you, O Lord.
That we may depart this life in your faith and fear, and not be condemned before the great judgment seat of Christ, We entreat you, O Lord.
That we may be bound together by your Holy Spirit in the communion of [________ and] all your saints, entrusting one another and all our life to Christ, We entreat you, O Lord.
A Collect for Peace
Most holy God, the source of all good desires, all right judgments, and all just works: Give to us, your servants, that peace which the world cannot give, so that our minds may be fixed on the doing of your will, and that we, being delivered from the fear of all enemies, may live in peace and quietness; through the mercies of Christ Jesus our Savior. Amen.
Prayer for Mission
Keep watch, dear Lord, with those who work, or watch, or weep this night, and give your angels charge over those who sleep. Tend the sick, Lord Christ; give rest to the weary, bless the dying, soothe the suffering, pity the afflicted, shield the joyous; and all for your love's sake. Amen.
Prayers of the People Please share your own prayers and thanksgivings.
Lord It is night. The night is for stillness. Let us be still in the presence of God.
It is night after a long day. What has been done has been done; What has not been done has not been done; Let it be.
The night is dark. Let our fears of the darkness of the world and of our own lives rest in you.
The night is quiet. Let the quietness of your peace enfold us, all dear to us, And all who have no peace.
The night heralds the dawn. Let us look expectantly to a new day, new joys, new possibilities.
Guide us waking, O Lord, and guard us sleeping. That awake we may watch with Christ, and asleep we may rest in peace.