God said: “Let there be light”; and there was light,
And God saw that the light was good.
This very day the Lord has acted.
May God’s Name be praised.
Venite [Psalm 95]
Come, let us raise a joyful song,
a shout of triumph to the rock of our salvation.
Let us come into Your presence with thanksgiving,
singing songs of triumph.
For You are a great God, a great king over all gods.
The depths of the earth are in Your hands; mountains belong to You.
The sea is Yours, for You made it;
and the dry land Your hands fashioned.
Let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the One who made us.
For You are our God, and we are the flock that You shepherd.
We will know Your power and presence this day,
if we will but listen for Your voice.
Collect of the Season [A Collect for Eastertide]
Through Your Divine Son,
You overcame death and offer to us the gift of life that knows no end:
Grant that we who celebrate this truth with joy,
may be raised from the death of sin to a life of grace…
Collect of the Office [A Collect for Morning Prayer]
Drive far from us all wrong desires,
and incline our hearts to keep Your ways:
Grant that having cheerfully done Your will this day,
we may, when night comes, rejoice and give You thanks;
through the One Who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
Canticle: Benedictus [Zechariah's Song]
Blessed be God, who has turned to His people and saved us and set us free.
You have raised up for us a strong deliverer, and so You promised:
Age after age You proclaimed by the lips of Your holy prophets,
that You would deliver us, calling to mind Your solemn covenant.
This was the promise that You made: To rescue us and free us from fear,
so that we might worship You with a holy worship,
in Your holy presence our whole life long.
In Your tender compassion, the morning sun has risen upon us –
to shine on us in our darkness, to guide our feet into the paths of peace.
Canticle of the Day [A Song of the Knowledge of Wisdom from the Book of Wisdom]
God of our fathers, merciful Lord, grant us wisdom:
Do not refuse us a place as Your servants.
You made all things by Your Word,
and in Your wisdom fashioned us to rule over creation,
to be stewards of the world in holiness and righteousness,
and to administer justice with an upright heart.
We are weak, and with but a short time to live,
too feeble to understand Your justice and law.
Let no one claim to be perfect in the eyes of their fellows,
for if the wisdom You give is found wanting,
all their knowledge will be of no account.
With You is the Spirit of Wisdom, familiar with all Your works,
and present with You when You created the world,
the One Who knows what is acceptable to You,
and is in keeping with Your commandments.
Send her forth from Your holy heavens,
bid her come down and labor by our side,
that we may learn what is pleasing to You.
For she knows and understands all things;
she will guide us in all that we do, and guard us in all her glory. [A]
24. The earth is Yours and all that is in it.
Who can ascend Your holy hill; who can stand in Your holy place?
Those who have clean hands and a pure heart;
Those who have not pledged themselves to falsehood.
They shall receive a blessing from the Lord,
and a just reward from the God of salvation.
Such is the generation of those who seek your face. [A]
Lift up your heads, O you gates, and the King of glory shall come to you.
Lift them high, O doors, and the King of glory shall enter.
And who is this King of glory? It is the Lord, strong and mighty.
It is You, the Lord of hosts Who is the King of Glory. [A]
25. To You we lift up our souls; and we put our trust in You.
Show us Your ways, and teach us Your paths.
Lead us in Your truth; in You have we put our trust.
Remember Your compassion and love, for they are from everlasting.
Remember not the sins of our youth; remember us according to Your love. [A]
Gracious You are and upright; therefore You teach sinners in Your ways.
You guide the humble in doing what is right and teach Your ways to the lowly.
All of Your paths are love and faithfulness to those who keep Your ways.
To those who fear You will You teach the way that they should choose.
You are a friend to them, and You will show them Your covenant. [A]
Our eyes will ever look to You, for You shall pluck our feet from the net.
For Your Name’s sake, we pray, deliver us from out of all of our troubles.
Turn to us and have pity, for we are alone and in misery.
The sorrows of our hearts have increased; bring us out of trouble.
Look upon our misery and forgive us all our sin.
Protect us and deliver us, for we have trusted in You.
Let integrity and uprightness preserve us, for our hope has been in You. [A]
26. Speak for us, for we have trusted in You and have not faltered.
Test us, and try us; examine our hearts and minds.
For Your love is ever before us, and we have walked faithfully with You.
We will wash our hands in innocence, that we may come before You,
Singing songs of thanksgiving, recounting Your wonderful deeds.
We love the place where You dwell, the place where Your glory abides.
Redeem us, we pray, and have pity upon us; do not sweep us away. [A]
The Kingdom is already here.
The kingdom does not come at some future time,
so you cannot say when it will come.
It does not come at some future place,
so you cannot say where it will come.
What you are looking for has already come
and you do not know it.
It is spread out over the whole earth,
and no one sees it.
It is within you,
and it is without you,
and it is all around you.
Many prophets desired to see what you can see
and to hear what you can hear.
But they could not see it
and they could not hear it.
Blessed be the One Who has made us,
and Who has hidden these things from the learned
and reveals them to the simple.
And blessed are the ones who have not seen me
and yet have still believed.
This is the way of the kingdom–
It is like a woman on her way home, carrying a jar of grain.
She did not notice that the jar was cracked
and that the grain had trailed behind her as she walked.
By the time she got home, the jar was empty.
You say to me:
“When will the kingdom come?”
and “Where will we find it?”
The kingdom is here among you now, I say to you.
The kingdom is already here.
Prayers of the People
We give You thanks, Almighty God: For all Your gifts
so freely bestowed upon us and all whom You have made:
We bless You for our creation, preservation, and all the blessings of life;
above all, for the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ,
for the hope of glory and for the means of grace.
We thank You, O Lord.
Grant us such an awareness of Your mercies, we pray,
that with truly thankful hearts, we may give You praise,
not only with our lips, but in our lives, by giving ourselves to Your service,
and by walking before You in holiness and righteousness all our days.
Hear us, O Lord.
We offer prayers for all those with whom we share the Journey:
For our loved ones, those who have been given to us,
and to whom we have been given: [n].
Lord, have mercy; Christ, have mercy.
For those whom we have loved who are now absent from us: [n].
Lord, have mercy; Christ, have mercy.
And for those we know who face particular trials and tests this day: [n].
Lord, have mercy; Christ, have mercy.
We entrust all who are dear to us to Your never-failing love and care,
for this life and the life to come;
knowing that You will do for them
far more than we can desire or pray for.
Now with all your people on earth, we pray the prayer
that Jesus taught those He called brothers and sisters and friends:
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, the power, and the glory, for ever and ever.
Thanks be to God – Creator, Redeemer, and Giver of Life.
We go in peace to serve the Lord,
and may the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ go with us all.
[Taken from Venite: A Book of Daily Prayer. Please send any typos to Phil Owen.]