Evening Prayer on Thursday
Thursday, 23 June 2022
Etheldreda, Abbess of Ely, c.678 [Lesser Festival]

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 Chosen One

1There shall come forth a shoot from the stock of Jesse,
and a branch shall grow out of his roots.

2And the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him,
the spirit of wisdom and understanding,

3The spirit of counsel and might,
the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.

4He shall not judge by what his eyes see,
or decide by what his ears hear,

5But with righteousness he shall judge the poor,
and decide with equity for the meek of the earth.

6The wolf shall dwell with the lamb,
and the leopard shall lie down with the kid.

7The calf, the lion and the fatling together,
with a little child to lead them.

8They shall not hurt or destroy in all my holy mountain,
for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord
as the waters cover the sea.

Isaiah 11.1,2,3b-4a,6,9

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 39

Refrain: Lord, let me know my end and the number of my days.

1 I said, ‘I will keep watch over my ways, 
so that I offend not with my tongue.

2 ‘I will guard my mouth with a muzzle, 
while the wicked are in my sight.’

3 So I held my tongue and said nothing; 
I kept silent but to no avail. R

4 My distress increased, my heart grew hot within me; 
while I mused, the fire was kindled
and I spoke out with my tongue:

5 ‘Lord, let me know my end and the number of my days, 
that I may know how short my time is.

6 ‘You have made my days but a handsbreadth,
and my lifetime is as nothing in your sight; 
truly, even those who stand upright are but a breath.

7 ‘We walk about like a shadow
and in vain we are in turmoil; 
we heap up riches and cannot tell who will gather them. R

8 ‘And now, what is my hope? 
Truly my hope is even in you.

9 ‘Deliver me from all my transgressions 
and do not make me the taunt of the fool.’

10 I fell silent and did not open my mouth, 
for surely it was your doing.

11 Take away your plague from me; 
I am consumed by the blows of your hand.

12 With rebukes for sin you punish us;
like a moth you consume our beauty; 
truly, everyone is but a breath. R

13 Hear my prayer, O Lord, and give ear to my cry; 
hold not your peace at my tears.

14 For I am but a stranger with you, 
a wayfarer, as all my forebears were.

15 Turn your gaze from me, that I may be glad again, 
before I go my way and am no more.

Refrain: Lord, let me know my end and the number of my days.

O Christ, Son of the living God,
help us when we are too cast down to pray,
and grant that we may trust you all our days,
for you are with us in our living and our dying,
Jesus, Lord and God.

Psalm 40

Refrain: Great are the wonders you have done, O Lord my God.

1 I waited patiently for the Lord; 
he inclined to me and heard my cry.

2 He brought me out of the roaring pit,
out of the mire and clay; 
he set my feet upon a rock and made my footing sure.

3 He has put a new song in my mouth,
a song of praise to our God; 
many shall see and fear
and put their trust in the Lord.

4 Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, 
who does not turn to the proud that follow a lie.

5 Great are the wonders you have done, O Lord my God.
How great your designs for us! 
There is none that can be compared with you.

6 If I were to proclaim them and tell of them 
they would be more than I am able to express. R

7 Sacrifice and offering you do not desire 
but my ears you have opened;

8 Burnt offering and sacrifice for sin you have not required; 
then said I: ‘Lo, I come.

9 ‘In the scroll of the book it is written of me
that I should do your will, O my God; 
I delight to do it: your law is within my heart.’

10 I have declared your righteousness in the great congregation; 
behold, I did not restrain my lips,
and that, O Lord, you know.

11 Your righteousness I have not hidden in my heart;
I have spoken of your faithfulness and your salvation; 
I have not concealed your loving-kindness and truth
from the great congregation. R

12 Do not withhold your compassion from me, O Lord; 
let your love and your faithfulness always preserve me,

13 For innumerable troubles have come about me;
my sins have overtaken me so that I cannot look up; 
they are more in number than the hairs of my head,
and my heart fails me.

14 Be pleased, O Lord, to deliver me; 
O Lord, make haste to help me.

15 Let them be ashamed and altogether dismayed
who seek after my life to destroy it; 
let them be driven back and put to shame
who wish me evil.

16 Let those who heap insults upon me 
be desolate because of their shame. R

17 Let all who seek you rejoice in you and be glad; 
let those who love your salvation say always,
‘The Lord is great.’

18 Though I am poor and needy, 
the Lord cares for me.

19 You are my helper and my deliverer; 
O my God, make no delay.

Refrain: Great are the wonders you have done, O Lord my God.

Free us from our sins, O God,
and may our sacrifices be of praise
to the glory of your Son,
our Redeemer, Jesus Christ.

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.

2 Chronicles 35.1-19

Josiah kept a passover to the Lord in Jerusalem; they slaughtered the passover lamb on the fourteenth day of the first month. He appointed the priests to their offices and encouraged them in the service of the house of the Lord. He said to the Levites who taught all Israel and who were holy to the Lord, ‘Put the holy ark in the house that Solomon son of David, king of Israel, built; you need no longer carry it on your shoulders. Now serve the Lord your God and his people Israel. Make preparations by your ancestral houses by your divisions, following the written directions of King David of Israel and the written directions of his son Solomon. Take position in the holy place according to the groupings of the ancestral houses of your kindred the people, and let there be Levites for each division of an ancestral house. Slaughter the passover lamb, sanctify yourselves, and on behalf of your kindred make preparations, acting according to the word of the Lord by Moses.’

Then Josiah contributed to the people, as passover offerings for all that were present, lambs and kids from the flock to the number of thirty thousand, and three thousand bulls; these were from the king’s possessions. His officials contributed willingly to the people, to the priests, and to the Levites. Hilkiah, Zechariah, and Jehiel, the chief officers of the house of God, gave to the priests for the passover offerings two thousand six hundred lambs and kids and three hundred bulls. Conaniah also, and his brothers Shemaiah and Nethanel, and Hashabiah and Jeiel and Jozabad, the chiefs of the Levites, gave to the Levites for the passover offerings five thousand lambs and kids and five hundred bulls.

When the service had been prepared for, the priests stood in their place, and the Levites in their divisions according to the king’s command. They slaughtered the passover lamb, and the priests dashed the blood that they received from them, while the Levites did the skinning. They set aside the burnt-offerings so that they might distribute them according to the groupings of the ancestral houses of the people, to offer to the Lord, as it is written in the book of Moses. And they did the same with the bulls. They roasted the passover lamb with fire according to the ordinance; and they boiled the holy offerings in pots, in cauldrons, and in pans, and carried them quickly to all the people. Afterwards they made preparations for themselves and for the priests, because the priests the descendants of Aaron were occupied in offering the burnt-offerings and the fat parts until night; so the Levites made preparations for themselves and for the priests, the descendants of Aaron. The singers, the descendants of Asaph, were in their place according to the command of David, and Asaph, and Heman, and the king’s seer Jeduthun. The gatekeepers were at each gate; they did not need to interrupt their service, for their kindred the Levites made preparations for them.

So all the service of the Lord was prepared that day, to keep the passover and to offer burnt-offerings on the altar of the Lord, according to the command of King Josiah. The people of Israel who were present kept the passover at that time, and the festival of unleavened bread for seven days. No passover like it had been kept in Israel since the days of the prophet Samuel; none of the kings of Israel had kept such a passover as was kept by Josiah, by the priests and the Levites, by all Judah and Israel who were present, and by the inhabitants of Jerusalem. In the eighteenth year of the reign of Josiah this passover was kept.

Canticle

Great and Wonderful, or another suitable canticle, for example, number 63 (page 621), may be said

Refrain:

AllAll nations shall come and worship you, O Christ,
and share in the feast of your kingdom. Alleluia.

1Great and wonderful are your deeds,
Lord God the Almighty.

2Just and true are your ways,
O ruler of the nations.

3Who shall not revere and praise your name, O Lord?
for you alone are holy.

4All nations shall come and worship in your presence:
for your just dealings have been revealed.

Revelation 15.3, 4

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.

AllAll nations shall come and worship you, O Christ,
and share in the feast of your kingdom. Alleluia.

Scripture Reading

One or more readings appointed for the day are read.

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

Romans 8.12-17

So then, brothers and sisters, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh—for if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’ it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ—if, in fact, we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him.

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

Fear not, for I have redeemed you.
I have called you by name; you are mine.
AllFear not, for I have redeemed you.
I have called you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you.
When you walk through fire, you shall not be burned.
AllI have called you by name; you are mine.
Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit.
AllFear not, for I have redeemed you.
I have called you by name; you are mine.

from Isaiah 43

Gospel Canticle

The Magnificat (The Song of Mary) is normally said,
or A Song of Christ’s Appearing (page 621) may be said

Refrain:

AllYou have left all things and followed me:
you will be rewarded a hundred times over and gain eternal life. Alleluia.

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:

AllYou have left all things and followed me:
you will be rewarded a hundred times over and gain eternal life. Alleluia.

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

Local government, community leaders
All who provide local services
Those who work with young or elderly people
Schools, colleges and universities
Emergency and rescue organizations

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

Eternal God,
who bestowed such grace upon your servant Etheldreda
that she gave herself wholly to the life of prayer
      and to the service of your true religion:
grant that we, like her,
may so live our lives on earth seeking your kingdom
that by your guiding
we may be joined to the glorious fellowship of your saints;
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.