• Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Evening Prayer for Ascension Day 2021

The Ascension of Our Lord Jesus Christ

Evening Prayer

May 13, 2021


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Want to pray on your own? Visit prayer.forwardmovement.org for many varieties of Daily Prayer in the Episcopal tradition.




Evening Prayer

Enriching Our Worship 1 and Book of Common Prayer



Christ has entered, not into a sanctuary made with hands, a copy of the true one, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf.

[Hebrews 9:24; BCP, p. 77]



The Invitatory and Psalter

[EOW1, p. 20]


V: O God, be not far from us. R: Come quickly to help us, O God.


Praise to the holy and undivided Trinity, one God:

as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Alleluia!



Light of the World (Phos hilaron)

[EOW1, p. 23]


Light of the world, in grace and beauty,

Mirror of God’s eternal face,

Transparent flame of love’s free duty,

You bring salvation to our race.

Now, as we see the lights of evening,

We raise our voice in hymns of praise;

Worthy are you of endless blessing,

Sun of our night, lamp of our days.



The Psalm or Psalms Appointed


Psalm 24

[BCP, p. 613]


1 The earth is the LORD'S and all that is in it, *

the world and all who dwell therein.

2 For it is he who founded it upon the seas *

and made it firm upon the rivers of the deep.

3 Who can ascend the hill of the LORD? *

and who can stand in his holy place?

4 Those who have clean hands and a pure heart, *

who have not pledged themselves to falsehood, nor sworn by what is a fraud.

5 They shall receive a blessing from the LORD *

and a just reward from the God of their salvation."

6 Such is the generation of those who seek him, *

of those who seek your face, O God of Jacob.

7 Lift up your heads, O gates; lift them high, O everlasting doors; *

and the King of glory shall come in.

8 Who is this King of glory? *

"The LORD, strong and mighty, the LORD, mighty in battle."

9 Lift up your heads, O gates; lift them high, O everlasting doors; *

and the King of glory shall come in.

10 Who is he, this King of glory? *

"The LORD of hosts, he is the King of glory."


Psalm 96

[BCP, p. 725]


1 Sing to the LORD a new song; *

sing to the LORD, all the whole earth.

2 Sing to the LORD and bless his Name; *

proclaim the good news of his salvation from day to day.

3 Declare his glory among the nations *

and his wonders among all peoples.

4 For great is the LORD and greatly to be praised; *

he is more to be feared than all gods.

5 As for all the gods of the nations, they are but idols; *

but it is the LORD who made the heavens.

6 Oh, the majesty and magnificence of his presence! *

Oh, the power and the splendor of his sanctuary!

7 Ascribe to the LORD, you families of the peoples; *

ascribe to the LORD honor and power.

8 Ascribe to the LORD the honor due his Name; *

bring offerings and come into his courts.

9 Worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness; *

let the whole earth tremble before him.

10 Tell it out among the nations: "The LORD is King! *

he has made the world so firm that it cannot be moved; he will judge the peoples with equity."

11 Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; let the sea thunder and all that is in it; *

let the field be joyful and all that is therein.

12 Then shall all the trees of the wood shout for joy before the LORD when he comes, *

when he comes to judge the earth.

13 He will judge the world with righteousness *

and the peoples with his truth.


Praise to the holy and undivided Trinity, one God:

as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.



The Lessons



A Reading from Acts (1:1-11)


In the first book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus did and taught from the beginning until the day when he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. After his suffering he presented himself alive to them by many convincing proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God. While staying with them, he ordered them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait there for the promise of the Father. "This," he said, "is what you have heard from me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now."


So when they had come together, they asked him, "Lord, is this the time when you will restore the kingdom to Israel?" He replied, "It is not for you to know the times or periods that the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." When he had said this, as they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. While he was going and they were gazing up toward heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. They said, "Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up toward heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven."


Hear what the Spirit is saying to God's people.

Thanks be to God.



Canticle J: A Song of Judith

[EOW1, p. 35; Judith 16:13-16]


I will sing a new song to my God, *

for you are great and glorious, wonderful in strength, invincible.

Let the whole creation serve you, *

for you spoke and all things came into being.

You sent your breath and it formed them, *

no one is able to resist your voice.

Mountains and seas are stirred to their depths, *

rocks melt like wax at your presence.

But to those who fear you, *

you continue to show mercy.

No sacrifice, however fragrant, can please you, *

but whoever fears the Lord shall stand in your sight for ever.


Praise to the holy and undivided Trinity, one God:

as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.



A Reading from Matthew (28:16-20)


Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age."


Hear what the Spirit is saying to God's people.

Thanks be to God.



Canticle S: A Song of Our True Nature

[EOW1, p. 40; St. Julian of Norwich]


Christ revealed our frailty and our falling, *

our trespasses and our humiliations.

Christ also revealed his blessed power, *

his blessed wisdom and love.

He protects us as tenderly and as sweetly when we are in greatest need; *

he raises us in spirit

and turns everything to glory and joy without ending.

God is the ground and the substance, the very essence of nature; *

God is the true father and mother of natures.

We are all bound to God by nature, *

and we are all bound to God by grace.

And this grace is for all the world, *

because it is our precious mother, Christ.

For this fair nature was prepared by Christ

for the honor and nobility of all, *

and for the joy and bliss of salvation.


Praise to the holy and undivided Trinity, one God:

as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.



A Reading on "The Feast of the Ascension" from the Episcopal Diocese of Oregon

[By the Rev. Simon Justice, https://diocese-oregon.org/the-feast-of-the-ascension/]


Today is a major Feast Day in the life of the Church, Ascension Day. The account of Jesus’ ascension into heaven is recorded in both of Luke the Evangelist’s works – the Gospel According to Luke and the Acts of the Apostles. It is interesting that the other three Gospels do not mention the Ascension, neither does Paul nor any of the other writers in the New Testament. So what’s Luke’s point? Two things, at least:


First, by ascending bodily into heaven, back into the full Presence of God, Abba, the Father, Jesus takes his humanity with him. In other words, Jesus takes what it is and what it means to be human into the very Presence of God. Jesus takes what we are right into heaven itself. Heaven and earth are now truly one.


Second, the Ascension underlines the fact that Jesus is physically gone. His Spirit is with us, always, but Jesus is no longer present with us in a physical sense. This means that the ministry he began is now in the hands of the Apostles – quite literally – and by extension us! We are now the hands, the feet, the voice and the presence of Jesus in the world. We are it! Jesus will always be with us, through the Holy Spirit, but the work, the ministry is now ours. Jesus shares it all with us. What a privilege, what a joy!



The Apostles' Creed

[EOW1, p. 41]


I believe in God, the Father almighty,

creator of heaven and earth.


I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, our Lord,

who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,

born of the Virgin Mary,

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,

he is seated at the right hand of the Father,

and 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

[EOW1, p. 42; BCP, p. 121]


V: God be with you. R: And also with you. Let us pray.


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 A

[BCP, p. 121]


V. Show us your mercy, O Lord;

R. And grant us your salvation.

V. Clothe your ministers with righteousness;

R. Let your people sing with joy.

V. Give peace, O Lord, in all the world;

R. For only in you can we live in safety.

V. Lord, keep this nation under your care;

R. And guide us in the way of justice and truth.

V. Let your way be known upon earth;

R. Your saving health among all nations.

V. Let not the needy, O Lord, be forgotten;

R. Nor the hope of the poor be taken away.

V. Create in us clean hearts, O God;

R. And sustain us with your Holy Spirit.



Collect of the Day: Ascension Day

[BCP, 226]


Almighty God, whose blessed Son our Savior Jesus Christ ascended far above all heavens that he might fill all things: Mercifully give us faith to perceive that, according to his promise, he abides with his Church on earth, even to the end of the ages; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.



A Collect for the Presence of Christ

[BCP, p. 124]


Lord Jesus, stay with us, for evening is at hand and the day is past; be our companion in the way, kindle our hearts, and awaken hope, that we may know you as you are revealed in Scripture and the breaking of bread. Grant this for the sake of your love. Amen.



Prayer for Mission

[BCP, p. 125]


O God, you manifest in your servants the signs of your presence: Send forth upon us the spirit of love, that in companionship with one another your abounding grace may increase among us; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.



Offer your own intercessions and thanksgivings.



The General Thanksgiving

[BCP, p. 125]


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

[BCP, p. 126]


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 Dismissal

[BCP, p. 126]


Let us bless the Lord. Alleluia! Alleluia! Thanks be to God. Alleluia! Alleluia!


Glory to God whose power, working in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine: Glory to God from generation to generation in the Church, and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever. Amen. [Ephesians 3:20,21]



Credits: This service is drawn from The Book of Common Prayer (1979), Enriching Our Worship 1 (1997), and other liturgical resources of The Episcopal Church and the scriptures are reprinted from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible.

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