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  • Writer's pictureFr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Evening Prayer for June 10, 2020

Wednesday in the Week of Trinity Sunday (Proper 5)

Evening Prayer

June 10, 2020

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Note: We are praying using Rite II (contemporary English) language, as is our normal pattern at St. Matthew's. It reminds us that we can speak to God with our ordinary, everyday language. 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.

Evening Prayer, Rite II

[BCP, p. 117]

Let my prayer be set forth in your sight as incense, the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.

[Psalm 141:2; BCP, p. 115]

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.


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 119:73-96

Yodh Manus tuœ fecerunt me

73 Your hands have made me and fashioned me; *

    give me understanding, that I may learn your commandments.

74 Those who fear you will be glad when they see me, *

    because I trust in your word.

75 I know, O LORD, that your judgments are right *

    and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me.

76 Let your loving-kindness be my comfort, *

    as you have promised to your servant.

77 Let your compassion come to me, that I may live, *

    for your law is my delight.

78 Let the arrogant be put to shame, for they wrong me with lies; *

    but I will meditate on your commandments.

79 Let those who fear you turn to me, *

    and also those who know your decrees.

80 Let my heart be sound in your statutes, *

    that I may not be put to shame.

Kaph Defecit in salutare

81 My soul has longed for your salvation; *

    I have put my hope in your word.

82 My eyes have failed from watching for your promise, *

    and I say, "When will you comfort me?"

83 I have become like a leather flask in the smoke, *

    but I have not forgotten your statutes.

84 How much longer must I wait? *

    when will you give judgment against those who persecute me?

85 The proud have dug pits for me; *

    they do not keep your law.

86 All your commandments are true; *

    help me, for they persecute me with lies.

87 They had almost made an end of me on earth, *

    but I have not forsaken your commandments.

88 In your loving-kindness, revive me, *

    that I may keep the decrees of your mouth.

Lamedh In œternum, Domine

89 O LORD, your word is everlasting; *

    it stands firm in the heavens.

90 Your faithfulness remains from one generation to another; *

    you established the earth, and it abides.

91 By your decree these continue to this day, *

    for all things are your servants.

92 If my delight had not been in your law, *

    I should have perished in my affliction.

93 I will never forget your commandments, *

    because by them you give me life.

94 I am yours; oh, that you would save me! *

    for I study your commandments.

95 Though the wicked lie in wait for me to destroy me, *

    I will apply my mind to your decrees.

96 I see that all things come to an end, *

    but your commandment has no bounds.

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 Galatians (5:1-15)

For freedom Christ has set us free. Stand firm, therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.

Listen! I, Paul, am telling you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no benefit to you. Once again I testify to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obliged to obey the entire law. You who want to be justified by the law have cut yourselves off from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. For through the Spirit, by faith, we eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything; the only thing that counts is faith working[a] through love.

You were running well; who prevented you from obeying the truth? Such persuasion does not come from the one who calls you. A little yeast leavens the whole batch of dough. 10 I am confident about you in the Lord that you will not think otherwise. But whoever it is that is confusing you will pay the penalty. 11 But my friends,[b] why am I still being persecuted if I am still preaching circumcision? In that case the offense of the cross has been removed. 12 I wish those who unsettle you would castrate themselves!

13 For you were called to freedom, brothers and sisters;[c] only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for self-indulgence,[d] but through love become slaves to one another. 14 For the whole law is summed up in a single commandment, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 15 If, however, you bite and devour one another, take care that you are not consumed by one another.

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 [["non-biblical Christian literature" (BCP, p. 142)]]

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]

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: Proper 5

[BCP, p. 229]

O God, from whom all good proceeds: Grant that by your inspiration we may think those things that are right, and by your merciful guiding may do them; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Collect of the Day: St. Ephrem of Nisibis, Deacon and Poet (d. 373)

[Lesser Feasts and Fasts 2018, p. 266 (pre-publication)]

Pour out upon us, O Lord, that same Spirit by which your deacon Ephrem declared the mysteries of faith in sacred song; that, with gladdened hearts, we too might proclaim the riches of your glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

A Collect for Protection

[BCP, p. 124]

O God, the life of all who live, the light of the faithful, the strength of those who labor, and the repose of the dead: We thank you for the blessings of the day that is past, and humbly ask for your protection through the coming night. Bring us in safety to the morning hours; through him who died and rose again for us, your Son our Savior Jesus Christ. 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.

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]

About Today's Commemoration(s)

June 10: St. Ephrem of Nisibis, Deacon and Poet (d. 373)

[Lesser Feasts and Fasts 2018, p. 265 (pre-publication)]

Ephrem of Nisibis was a teacher, poet, orator, and defender of the faith, and the foremost Christian theologian who wrote in the Syriac language. The Syrians called him “The Harp of the Holy Spirit,” and his hymns still enrich the liturgies of the Syriac churches. Ephrem was one whose writings were influential in the development of Christian doctrine. Jerome writes: “I have read in Greek a volume of his on the Holy Spirit, and though it was only a translation, I recognized therein the sublime genius of the man.”

Ephrem was born at Nisibis in Mesopotamia. At eighteen, he was baptized by James, Bishop of Nisibis. It is believed that Ephrem accompanied James to the famous Council of Nicaea in 325 and served as his secretary, deacon, and theological assistant. He lived at Nisibis until 363, when the Persians captured the city and drove out the Christians.

Ephrem retired to a cave in the hills above the city of Edessa. There he wrote most of his spiritual works. Discovering that hymns could be of great value in support of the Christian faith, he opposed Gnostic hymns with his own, sung by choirs of women. An example is “From God Christ’s deity came forth” (The Hymnal 1982, #443). This establishment of female choirs gave an important liturgical role to women within the early Syriac church, and the strong theological content of the hymns meant that women were also being educated in theology. Catechizing women was considered to be the most effective way of teaching the faith because of the influence that they would likely have on their children. Therefore, women’s education was a high priority.

Ephrem’s homilies and poems often employ vivid and memorable imagery. In describing the death and resurrection of Christ in his Homily on Our Lord, he wrote: “When Death came confidently as usual, to feed on mortal fruit, Life, the killer of Death, was lying in wait...Because of one thing which it could not eat, Death had to give back everything inside that it had eaten, for when a person's stomach is upset, he vomits out what had agreed with him as well as what disagrees with him. Thus Death's stomach became upset, and when it vomited out the Medicine of Life which had soured it, it vomited out with Him all those whom it had been pleased to swallow.”

During a famine in 372–373, Ephrem distributed food and money to the poor and organized a sort of ambulance service for the sick. He died of exhaustion, brought on by his long hours of relief work.

Of his writings, there remain dozens of poems and hymns, commentaries on the Old and New Testaments, and numerous homilies. In his commentary on the Passion, he wrote: “No one has seen or shall see the things which you have seen. The Lord himself has become the altar, priest, and bread, and the chalice of salvation. He alone suffices for all, yet none suffices for him. He is Altar and Lamb, victim and sacrifice, priest as well as food.”

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