For an introduction to our daily prayers, click here

Versicle

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 Advent]

You sent your messengers, the prophets,
to preach repentance and to prepare the way for our salvation:
Give us grace to heed their warnings, and to forsake our sins,
that we may greet with joy the coming of our Redeemer...

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.
Amen

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 Repentance from the First Letter of John]

Here is the message that we now have heard:
God is light, and there is no darkness in God.

If we claim to be sharing in Your life
while we go on living in darkness,
our words and our lives are a lie.

But if we live in the light, as You are the light,
then we share a common life,
and the blood of Your Son cleanses us from all sin.

If we claim to be sinless
we are deceiving ourselves,
and the truth does not live within us.

If we confess our sins,
You may be trusted to forgive them,
and to cleanse us from every wrongdoing.

If we say we have committed no sin,
we make You out to be a liar,
and Your Word has no place within us. [A]

Psalter

116. We love You, because You have heard our voice.

You have inclined Your ear to us whenever we call upon You.
The cords of death entangled us; we came to grief and sorrow.
Then we called upon You to save our life,
And You were gracious and full of compassion.
You watch over the innocent; we were brought low and You helped us.
Our souls may turn again to their rest, for You have treated us well.
You have rescued us from death;
You cleansed the tears from our eyes, and kept our feet from stumbling. [A]

How shall we repay You for all the good things You have done for us?
We shall walk in Your presence in the land of the living.
We shall lift up the cup of salvation, and call upon Your Name.
We shall fulfill our vows to You, in the presence of Your people.
We shall offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving, in the courts of Your love. [A]


117. May all the people praise You forever.

May all the nations praise You, O God;
May all people everywhere give honor to Your Name,
For Your loving kindness toward us is great,
and Your faithfulness endures forever. [A]


118. We shall give our thanks to You, for You are good.

We called upon You in our distress; You answered by setting us free.
You are with us, we shall not fear; what can anyone do to us?
You are at our side to help us; it is better to rely on You than on all others.
You are our strength and our song, and You have become our salvation. [A]

We shall not die, but live, and declare Your mighty works.
Open for us the gates of the righteous; and we shall enter and give thanks.
We will give thanks for You have answered us, and become our salvation.
The same stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone;
And it is Your doing, and it is marvelous in our sight.
This very day You have acted, let us rejoice and be glad. [A]

Blessed is the one who comes in Your Name,
We bless them from the house of God.
You are our God and we shall thank You;
You are our God and we shall exalt You. [A]

Gospel

Do not make a show of your religion.

It is true that if you do not fast from the world,
you will not find the kingdom.
If you do not observe the sabbath,
then you will not find God.

But when you fast, do not act like the hypocrites
who make a big show of being gloomy.
Wash your face and comb your hair,
so that no one will know that you are fasting.

Do not do your acts of charity to win admiration.
Do not even let your left hand know
what your right hand is doing.

Do not tithe your goods and money
only to neglect justice and the love of God.
You ought to do those things without
neglecting justice and the love of God.

Do not say your prayers
so that everyone can see and hear you.
Rather, go into your closet and pray in secret.
The One Who sees you in secret,
will hear you in secret as well.
And do not babble on and on
imagining that the more you say,
the more likely it is that your prayer will be heard.
The One Who made us knows what you need
before you even ask.

This is the way of the kingdom–
Two men went to the temple to pray.
One of them, a teacher of the Law, prayed:
“I thank you, God, that I am not a sinner
because I keep your Law.
I am grateful that I am not a sinner like others,
especially this man here beside me.”
The other man was a tax collector.
He would not even lift his eyes to heaven.
“Lord, have mercy on me, a sinner,” he prayed.
Which of the two went home justified, do you think?

Do not be so busy
checking the speck in your brother’s eye
that you fail to notice the stick that is in your own.
And do not make a show of your religion.

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.

Amen.

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.

Amen.

Blessing

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.

Amen.


[Taken from Venite: A Book of Daily Prayer. Please send any typos to Phil Owen.]