• Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Evening Prayer for December 14, 2021

Third Tuesday of Advent

Evening Prayer

December 14, 2021


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Evening Prayer

Enriching Our Worship 1 and Book of Common Prayer



Watch, for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or in the morning, lest he come suddenly and find you asleep.

[Mark 13:35-36; BCP, p. 75]



Confession & Absolution

[EOW1, pp. 19-20]


Let us confess our sins to God.


Silence may be kept.


God of all mercy,

we confess that we have sinned against you,

opposing your will in our lives.

We have denied your goodness in each other,

in ourselves, and in the world you have created.

We repent of the evil that enslaves us,

the evil we have done,

and the evil done on our behalf.

Forgive, restore, and strengthen us

through our Savior Jesus Christ,

that we may abide in your love

and serve only your will. Amen.


A Bishop or Priest says:

Almighty God have mercy on you, forgive you all your sins through the grace of Jesus Christ, strengthen you in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep you in eternal life. Amen.


[OR, a Deacon or Lay Person says:]

[Almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us all our sins through the grace of Jesus Christ, strengthen us in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep us in eternal life. Amen.]



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!



O Gracious Light (Phos hilaron)

[BCP, p. 118]


O gracious light, pure brightness of the everliving Father in heaven, O Jesus Christ, holy and blessed!

Now as we come to the setting of the sun, and our eyes behold the vesper light, we sing your praises, O God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

You are worthy at all times to be praised by happy voices, O Son of God, O Giver of life, and to be glorified through all the worlds.



The Psalm or Psalms Appointed


Psalm 47

[BCP, p. 650]


1 Clap your hands, all you peoples; *

shout to God with a cry of joy.

2 For the LORD Most High is to be feared; *

he is the great King over all the earth.

3 He subdues the peoples under us, *

and the nations under our feet.

4 He chooses our inheritance for us, *

the pride of Jacob whom he loves.

5 God has gone up with a shout, *

the LORD with the sound of the ram's-horn.

6 Sing praises to God, sing praises; *

sing praises to our King, sing praises.

7 For God is King of all the earth; *

sing praises with all your skill.

8 God reigns over the nations; *

God sits upon his holy throne.

9 The nobles of the peoples have gathered together *

with the people of the God of Abraham.

10 The rulers of the earth belong to God, *

and he is highly exalted.


Psalm 48

[BCP, p. 651]


1 Great is the LORD, and highly to be praised; *

in the city of our God is his holy hill.

2 Beautiful and lofty, the joy of all the earth, is the hill of Zion, *

the very center of the world and the city of the great King.

3 God is in her citadels; *

he is known to be her sure refuge.

4 Behold, the kings of the earth assembled *

and marched forward together.

5 They looked and were astounded; *

they retreated and fled in terror.

6 Trembling seized them there; *

they writhed like a woman in childbirth, like ships of the sea when the east wind shatters them.

7 As we have heard, so have we seen, in the city of the LORD of hosts, in the city of our God; *

God has established her for ever.

8 We have waited in silence on your loving-kindness, O God, *

in the midst of your temple.

9 Your praise, like your Name, O God, reaches to the world's end; *

your right hand is full of justice.

10 Let Mount Zion be glad and the cities of Judah rejoice, *

because of your judgments.

11 Make the circuit of Zion; walk round about her; *

count the number of her towers.

12 Consider well her bulwarks; examine her strongholds; *

that you may tell those who come after.

13 This God is our God for ever and ever; *

he shall be our guide for evermore.


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 Matthew (24:32-44)


"From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see all these things, you know that he is near, at the very gates. Truly I tell you, this generation will not pass away until all these things have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. "But about that day and hour no one knows, neither the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. For as the days of Noah were, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day Noah entered the ark, and they knew nothing until the flood came and swept them all away, so too will be the coming of the Son of Man. Then two will be in the field; one will be taken and one will be left. Two women will be grinding meal together; one will be taken and one will be left. Keep awake therefore, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming. But understand this: if the owner of the house had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and would not have let his house be broken into. Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an unexpected hour.


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

Thanks be to God.



Canticle D: A Song of the Wilderness

[EOW1, p. 32; Isaiah 35:1-7, 10]


The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad, *

the desert shall rejoice and blossom;

It shall blossom abundantly, *

and rejoice with joy and singing.

They shall see the glory of the Lord, *

the majesty of our God.

Strengthen the weary hands, *

and make firm the feeble knees.

Say to the anxious, “Be strong, do not fear! *

Here is your God, coming with judgment to save you.”

Then shall the eyes of the blind be opened, *

and the ears of the deaf be unstopped.

Then shall the lame leap like a deer, *

and the tongue of the speechless sing for joy.

For waters shall break forth in the wilderness *

and streams in the desert;

The burning sand shall become a pool *

and the thirsty ground, springs of water.

The ransomed of God shall return with singing, *

with everlasting joy upon their heads.

Joy and gladness shall be theirs, *

and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.


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 Lesser Feasts and Fasts 2018

December 14: John of the Cross (Juan de la Cruz), Mystic and Monastic Reformer, d. 1591 [p. 549]


The Carmelite theologian John of the Cross (Juan de la Cruz) has been called “the poet’s poet,” “spirit of flame,” and “celestial and divine.”


John was born in 1542 at Fontiveros, near Avila, Spain. After his third birthday, his father died, leaving his mother and her children reduced to poverty. John received elementary education in an orphanage in Medina del Campo. By the age of seventeen, he had learned carpentry, tailoring, sculpturing, and painting through apprenticeships to local craftsmen.


After university studies with the Jesuits, John entered the Carmelite Order in Medina del Campo and completed his theological studies in Salamanca. In 1567, he was ordained to the priesthood and recruited by Teresa of Avila for the reformation of the Carmelite Order.


John became disillusioned with what he considered the laxity of the Carmelites and, in 1568, he opened a monastery of “Discalced” ([descalzos] strict observance) Carmelites, an act that met with sharp resistance from the General Chapter of the Calced Carmelites. John was seized, taken to Toledo, and imprisoned in the monastery. During nine months of great hardship, he comforted himself by writing poetry. It was while he was imprisoned that he composed the greater part of his luminous masterpiece, The Spiritual Canticle, as well as a number of shorter poems. His other major works include The Ascent of Mount Carmel, The Living Flame of Love, and The Dark Night. It is this latter work, Noche obscura del alma, that gave the English language the phrase “dark night of the soul.”


After a severe illness, John died on December 14th, 1591, in Ubeda, in southern Spain.



Canticle P: A Song of the Spirit

[EOW1, p. 38; Revelation 22:12-17]


“Behold, I am coming soon,” says the Lord,

“and bringing my reward with me, *

to give to everyone according to their deeds.

“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, *

the beginning and the end.”

Blessed are those who do God’s commandments,

that they may have the right to the tree of life, *

and may enter the city through the gates.

“I, Jesus, have sent my angel to you, *

with this testimony for all the churches.

“I am the root and the offspring of David, *

I am the bright morning star.”

“Come!” say the Spirit and the Bride; *

“Come!” let each hearer reply!

Come forward, you who are thirsty, *

let those who desire take the water of life as a gift.


Praise to the holy and undivided Trinity, one God:

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



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 B

[BCP, p. 122]


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.



Collect of the Day: Third Sunday of Advent

[BCP, 211]


Stir up your power, O Lord, and with great might come among us; and, because we are sorely hindered by our sins, let your bountiful grace and mercy speedily help and deliver us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit, be honor and glory, now and for ever. Amen.



Collect of the Day: John of the Cross (Juan de la Cruz), Mystic and Monastic Reformer, d. 1591

[Lesser Feasts and Fasts, p. 550]


Judge eternal, throned in splendor, who gave John of the Cross strength of purpose and faith that sustained him even through the dark night of the soul: Shed your light on all who love you, in unity with Jesus Christ our Savior; who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.



A Collect for Aid Against Perils

[BCP, p. 123]


Be our light in the darkness, O Lord, and in your great mercy defend us from all perils and dangers of this night; for the love of your only Son, our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.



Prayer for Mission

[BCP, p. 124]


O God and Father of all, whom the whole heavens adore: Let the whole earth also worship you, all nations obey you, all tongues confess and bless you, and men and women everywhere love you and serve you in peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.



Offer your own intercessions and thanksgivings.



One or both of the following prayers may be used:


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.


AND/OR


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. Thanks be to God.


May the God of hope fill us with all joy and peace in believing through the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen. [Romans 15:13]



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 Bibl

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