• Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Evening Prayer for February 11, 2021

Thursday in the Week of 5th Epiphany

Evening Prayer

February 11, 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, Rite II

[BCP, p. 116]



Jesus said, "I am the light of the world; whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."

[John 8:12; BCP, p. 116]



Confession of Sin

[BCP, p. 116]


Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.


Most merciful God,

we confess that we have sinned against you

in thought, word, and deed,

by what we have done,

and by what we have left undone.

We have not loved you with our whole heart;

we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves.

We are truly sorry and we humbly repent.

For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ,

have mercy on us and forgive us;

that we may delight in your will,

and walk in your ways,

to the glory of your Name. Amen.


The Officiant says the following (a Priest substitutes "you" for "us")


Almighty God have mercy on [us], forgive [us] all your sins through our Lord 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

[BCP, p. 117]


V: O God, make speed to save us. R: O Lord, make haste to help us.


Glory to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Spirit:

as it was in the beginning, is now, * and will be forever. Amen.

Alleluia!



O Gracious Light

[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 85

[BCP, p. 708]


1 You have been gracious to your land, O LORD, *

you have restored the good fortune of Jacob.

2 You have forgiven the iniquity of your people *

and blotted out all their sins.

3 You have withdrawn all your fury *

and turned yourself from your wrathful indignation.

4 Restore us then, O God our Savior; *

let your anger depart from us.

5 Will you be displeased with us for ever? *

will you prolong your anger from age to age?

6 Will you not give us life again, *

that your people may rejoice in you?

7 Show us your mercy, O LORD, *

and grant us your salvation.

8 I will listen to what the LORD God is saying, *

for he is speaking peace to his faithful people and to those who turn their hearts to him.

9 Truly, his salvation is very near to those who fear him, *

that his glory may dwell in our land.

10 Mercy and truth have met together; *

righteousness and peace have kissed each other.

11 Truth shall spring up from the earth, *

and righteousness shall look down from heaven.

12 The LORD will indeed grant prosperity, *

and our land will yield its increase.

13 Righteousness shall go before him, *

and peace shall be a pathway for his feet.


Psalm 86

[BCP, p. 709]


1 Bow down your ear, O LORD, and answer me, *

for I am poor and in misery.

2 Keep watch over my life, for I am faithful; *

save your servant who puts his trust in you.

3 Be merciful to me, O LORD, for you are my God; *

I call upon you all the day long.

4 Gladden the soul of your servant, *

for to you, O LORD, I lift up my soul.

5 For you, O LORD, are good and forgiving, *

and great is your love toward all who call upon you.

6 Give ear, O LORD, to my prayer, *

and attend to the voice of my supplications.

7 In the time of my trouble I will call upon you, *

for you will answer me.

8 Among the gods there is none like you, O LORD, *

nor anything like your works.

9 All the nations you have made will come and worship you, O LORD, *

and glorify your Name.

10 For you are great; you do wondrous things; *

and you alone are God.

11 Teach me your way, O LORD, and I will walk in your truth; *

knit my heart to you that I may fear your Name.

12 I will thank you, O LORD my God, with all my heart, *

and glorify your Name for evermore.

13 For great is your love toward me; *

you have delivered me from the nethermost Pit.

14 The arrogant rise up against me, O God, and a band of violent men seeks my life; *

they have not set you before their eyes.

15 But you, O LORD, are gracious and full of compassion, *

slow to anger, and full of kindness and truth.

16 Turn to me and have mercy upon me; *

give your strength to your servant; and save the child of your handmaid.

17 Show me a sign of your favor, so that those who hate me may see it and be ashamed; *

because you, O LORD, have helped me and comforted me.


Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.



The Lessons



A reading from Mark (10:17-31)


As he was setting out on a journey, a man ran up and knelt before him, and asked him, "Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" Jesus said to him, "Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. You know the commandments: 'You shall not murder; You shall not commit adultery; You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness; You shall not defraud; Honor your father and mother.'" He said to him, "Teacher, I have kept all these since my youth." Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said, "You lack one thing; go, sell what you own, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me." When he heard this, he was shocked and went away grieving, for he had many possessions. Then Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, "How hard it will be for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!" And the disciples were perplexed at these words. But Jesus said to them again, "Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God." They were greatly astounded and said to one another, "Then who can be saved?" Jesus looked at them and said, "For mortals it is impossible, but not for God; for God all things are possible." Peter began to say to him, "Look, we have left everything and followed you." Jesus said, "Truly I tell you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields, for my sake and for the sake of the good news, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this age-- houses, brothers and sisters, mothers and children, and fields with persecutions-- and in the age to come eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last will be first."


The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.



The Song of Mary

[BCP, p. 119; Luke 1:46-55]


My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my Savior; * for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant. From this day all generations will call me blessed: * the Almighty has done great things for me, and holy is his Name. He has mercy on those who fear him * in every generation. He has shown the strength of his arm, * he has scattered the proud in their conceit. He has cast down the mighty from their thrones, * and has lifted up the lowly. He has filled the hungry with good things, * and the rich he has sent away empty. He has come to the help of his servant Israel, * for he has remembered his promise of mercy, The promise he made to our fathers, * to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.



A Reading from Lesser Feasts and Fasts 2018

February 11: Theodora, Empress, d. circa 867 (p. 89)


Theodora was a 9th century Byzantine empress who has long been commemorated as a saint in the Orthodox Churches for her role in the restoration of icons following the iconoclastic controversy. Although in theory that conflict had been settled in favor of the veneration of icons at the Seventh Ecumenical Council in 787, in practice disagreements remained strong, and the iconoclastic party included many prominent members of society, including within the imperial family.


A young noblewoman of Armenian descent, Theodora was married to the young emperor Theophilos in the year 830. Although both were sincere Christians, the couple had strong disagreements about religious matters. Theophilos was an iconoclast and believed that the veneration of icons was idolatry. Theodora, however, maintained her own practice of venerating images in spite of her husband’s opposition. On one occasion, when a servant reported to Theophilos that his wife had been seen venerating icons, she sweetly informed him that she had merely been “playing with dolls.” Two of her icons are kept in a monastery on Mount Athos to this day, where they are referred to as “Theodora’s dolls.”


In spite of this theological conflict, the couple seem to have had a largely happy marriage, and had five daughters and two sons. Theophilos, however, died very young at the age of 29, and Theodora’s life changed considerably. Her young son Michael was only a toddler and was too young to assume leadership, and so she ruled the Byzantine emperor as his regent from 842 until 855.


One of Theodora’s first acts as regent was summon a synod of bishops to revisit the question of icons and iconoclasm. The practice of icon veneration was restored, and the synod ended in a procession that carried icons back into the Hagia Sophia.


Despite this victory, however, Theodora was noted for the particular gentleness with which she treated her theological opponents. She negotiated strongly with the church to ensure that her late husband would not be condemned as a heretic, and pursued a moderate policy of accommodation with clergy who had been iconoclasts. This was strongly opposed by more extreme factions within the church who wanted to see them denounced and punished as heretics, but Theodora remained firm in her attitude of respect for those who had held differing opinions. This ultimately led most of the iconoclastic party to gradually accept the majority view and to remain within the church.


Theodora is therefore remembered not only for her role in restoring the veneration of icons to the church, but for her firm and diplomatic insistence upon reconciliation with those who had held opposing views, which made this one theological controversy that ended in reconciliation rather than in schism.


Theodora ruled as regent until her son came of age in 855. In 857 she retired to the monastery of Gastria, and seems to have died there some time after 867.



The Song of Simeon

[BCP, p. 120; Luke 2:29-32]


Lord, you now have set your servant free *

to go in peace as you have promised;

For these eyes of mine have seen the Savior, *

whom you have prepared for all the world to see:

A Light to enlighten the nations, *

and the glory of your people Israel.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Spirit:

as it was in the beginning, is now, * and will be forever. Amen.



The Apostles' Creed

[BCP, p. 120]


I believe in God, the Father almighty,

creator of heaven and earth.


I believe in Jesus Christ, his only son, our Lord.

He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit

and born of the Virgin Mary.

He 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,

and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

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

[BCP, p. 121]


V: The Lord 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 Blessed Mary the Bearer of God, Blessed Matthew our patron, Blessed Theodora whom we commemorate today, and all your saints, entrusting one another and all our life to Christ,

We entreat you, O Lord.



Collect of the Day: 5th Sunday after the Epiphany

[BCP, p. 216]


Set us free, O God, from the bondage of our sins, and give us the liberty of that abundant life which you have made known to us in your Son our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.



Collect of the Day: Theodora, Empress, d. circa 867

[Lesser Feasts and Fasts 2018, p. 90 (pre-publication)]


O God, who called your servant Theodora to an earthly throne that she might advance your heavenly kingdom and who gave her the wisdom to establish unity where there had been division; Create in your church such godly union and concord that we might proclaim the Gospel of the Prince of Peace, not only in correct theology but in right actions; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. 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. 124]


Keep watch, dear Lord, with those who work, or watch, or weep this night, and give your angels charge over those who sleep. Tend the sick, Lord Christ; give rest to the weary, bless the dying, soothe the suffering, pity the afflicted, shield the joyous; and all for your love's sake. 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. Thanks be to God.


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. (2 Corinthians 13:14)



Note: This service is drawn from The Book of Common Prayer (1979) 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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