Family Prayer

according to the Book of Common Prayer, 2019
Anglican Church in North America


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Family Prayer
in the Early Evening

Wednesday after the Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost, or the Nineteenth Sunday after Trinity (Proper 23)

Edward the Confessor, King of England, 1066

Season After Pentecost


These devotions follow the basic structure of the Daily Office of the Church and are particularly appropriate for families with young children.

The Reading and the Collect may be read by one person, and the other parts said in unison, or in some other convenient manner.

This devotion may be used before or after the evening meal.

Opening Sentence

How excellent is your mercy, O God!
   The children of men shall take refuge under the shadow of your wings.
For with you is the well of life,
   and in your light shall we see light.

PSALM 36:7, 9

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

PSALM 141:2

PHOS HILARON

O Gladsome Light

O gladsome 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.

A READING FROM HOLY SCRIPTURE

JOHN 8:12


Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

II Maccabees 8:1-29


The Revolt of Judas Maccabeus

But Judas, who was also called Maccabe′us, and his companions secretly entered the villages and summoned their kinsmen and enlisted those who had continued in the Jewish faith, and so they gathered about six thousand men. They besought the Lord to look upon the people who were oppressed by all, and to have pity on the temple which had been profaned by ungodly men, and to have mercy on the city which was being destroyed and about to be leveled to the ground, and to hearken to the blood that cried out to him, and to remember also the lawless destruction of the innocent babies and the blasphemies committed against his name, and to show his hatred of evil.

As soon as Maccabe′us got his army organized, the Gentiles could not withstand him, for the wrath of the Lord had turned to mercy. Coming without warning, he would set fire to towns and villages. He captured strategic positions and put to flight not a few of the enemy. He found the nights most advantageous for such attacks. And talk of his valor spread everywhere.

When Philip saw that the man was gaining ground little by little, and that he was pushing ahead with more frequent successes, he wrote to Ptol′emy, the governor of Coelesyria and Phoenic′ia, for aid to the king’s government. And Ptol′emy promptly appointed Nica′nor the son of Patroc′lus, one of the king’s chief friends, and sent him, in command of no fewer than twenty thousand Gentiles of all nations, to wipe out the whole race of Judea. He associated with him Gor′gias, a general and a man of experience in military service. 10 Nica′nor determined to make up for the king the tribute due to the Romans, two thousand talents, by selling the captured Jews into slavery. 11 And he immediately sent to the cities on the seacoast, inviting them to buy Jewish slaves and promising to hand over ninety slaves for a talent, not expecting the judgment from the Almighty that was about to overtake him.

Preparation for Battle

12 Word came to Judas concerning Nica′nor’s invasion; and when he told his companions of the arrival of the army, 13 those who were cowardly and distrustful of God’s justice ran off and got away. 14 Others sold all their remaining property, and at the same time besought the Lord to rescue those who had been sold by the ungodly Nica′nor before he ever met them, 15 if not for their own sake, yet for the sake of the covenants made with their fathers, and because he had called them by his holy and glorious name. 16 But Maccabe′us gathered his men together, to the number of six thousand, and exhorted them not to be frightened by the enemy and not to fear the great multitude of Gentiles who were wickedly coming against them, but to fight nobly, 17 keeping before their eyes the lawless outrage which the Gentiles had committed against the holy place, and the torture of the derided city, and besides, the overthrow of their ancestral way of life. 18 “For they trust to arms and acts of daring,” he said, “but we trust in the Almighty God, who is able with a single nod to strike down those who are coming against us and even the whole world.”

19 Moreover, he told them of the times when help came to their ancestors; both the time of Sennach′erib, when one hundred and eighty-five thousand perished, 20 and the time of the battle with the Galatians that took place in Babylonia, when eight thousand in all went into the affair, with four thousand Macedonians; and when the Macedonians were hard pressed, the eight thousand, by the help that came to them from heaven, destroyed one hundred and twenty thousand and took much booty.

Judas Defeats Nicanor

21 With these words he filled them with good courage and made them ready to die for their laws and their country; then he divided his army into four parts. 22 He appointed his brothers also, Simon and Joseph and Jonathan, each to command a division, putting fifteen hundred men under each. 23 Besides, he appointed Elea′zar to read aloud from the holy book, and gave the watchword, “God’s help”; then, leading the first division himself, he joined battle with Nica′nor.

24 With the Almighty as their ally, they slew more than nine thousand of the enemy, and wounded and disabled most of Nica′nor’s army, and forced them all to flee. 25 They captured the money of those who had come to buy them as slaves. After pursuing them for some distance, they were obliged to return because the hour was late. 26 For it was the day before the sabbath, and for that reason they did not continue their pursuit. 27 And when they had collected the arms of the enemy and stripped them of their spoils, they kept the sabbath, giving great praise and thanks to the Lord, who had preserved them for that day and allotted it to them as the beginning of mercy. 28 After the sabbath they gave some of the spoils to those who had been tortured and to the widows and orphans, and distributed the rest among themselves and their children. 29 When they had done this, they made common supplication and besought the merciful Lord to be wholly reconciled with his servants.

A period of silence may follow.

The Apostles' Creed

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 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.

Intercessions

A hymn or canticle may be used.

Prayers may be offered for ourselves and others. It is appropriate that prayers of thanksgiving for the blessings of the day, and penitence for our sins, be included.

The Lord's Prayer

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,

and the power, and the glory,

for ever and ever. Amen.

The Collect

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.

Wednesday after the Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost, or the Nineteenth Sunday after Trinity (Proper 23)

O God, our refuge and strength, true source of all godliness: Graciously hear the devout prayers of your Church, and grant that those things which we ask faithfully, we may obtain effectually; 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

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.


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