Video Evensong 14.2.20, Cyril & Methodius, Missionaries to the Slavs, 869, 885

If you were Abraham’s children, you would be doing what Abraham did, but now you are trying to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God.

Pope Francis has said no to married priests in the Amazon, a possibility he raised a few weeks ago which was met with immediate criticism from conservatives. An Austrian-born bishop who has served in the vast territory covering part of five nations says he has 30 priests to cover 800 villages; the faithful wait months for Mass. “We cannot say that our church, in terms of priests, is present in the community,” Dom Erwin Kräutler told AP. “They’re always traveling from one community to another.” Above: waiting for Mass last fall in Novo Cruzador, Brazil. (Fernando Vergara/AP)

Seek the One who made the Pleiades and Orion, and turns deep darkness into the morning, and darkens the day into night; who calls for the waters of the sea and pours them out upon the surface of the earth: The Lord is his name. Amos 5:8

GENERAL CONFESSION

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.

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.

INVITATORY AND PSALTER

O God, make speed to save us.
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 for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

If possible, light a candle here.

VIDEO: Hail, Gladdening Light (Hannah Glavor) – Imago Dei Community, 2012

Hymn: O Gracious Light

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.

VIDEO: Psalm 91 (Greg Armstrong, Jacquelyn Owens) – Jacquelyn Owens, 2016

Psalm 91

1 You who dwell in the shelter of the Most High, *
abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
2 You shall say to the LORD,
“You are my refuge and my stronghold, *
my God in whom I put my trust.”
3 God shall deliver you from the snare of the hunter *
and from the deadly pestilence.
4 God’s pinions will cover you,
and you shall find refuge under the wings of the LORD; *
whose faithfulness shall be a shield and buckler.
5 You shall not be afraid of any terror by night, *
nor of the arrow that flies by day;
6 Of the plague that stalks in the darkness, *
nor of the sickness that lays waste at mid-day.
7 A thousand shall fall at your side
and ten thousand at your right hand, *
but it shall not come near you.
8 Your eyes have only to behold *
to see the reward of the wicked.
9 Because you have made the LORD your refuge, *
and the Most High your habitation,
10 There shall no evil happen to you, *
neither shall any plague come near your dwelling.
11 For God shall give the holy angels charge over you, *
to keep you in all your ways.
12 They shall bear you in their hands, *
lest you dash your foot against a stone.
13 You shall tread upon the lion and the adder; *
you shall trample the young lion and the serpent under your feet.
14 Because they are bound to me in love,
therefore will I deliver them; *
I will protect them, because they know my Name.
15 They shall call upon me, and I will answer them; *
I am with them in trouble;
I will rescue them and bring them to honor.
16 With long life will I satisfy them, *
and show them my salvation.

VIDEO: Psalm 92 (Tzadik Katamar, Friedman) – Nashirah and Choral Arts Philadelphia, 2 months ago

Psalm 92

1 It is a good thing to give thanks to the LORD, *
and to sing praises to your Name, O Most High;
2 To tell of your loving-kindness early in the morning *
and of your faithfulness in the night season;
3 On the psaltery, and on the lyre, *
and to the melody of the harp.
4 For you have made me glad by your acts, O LORD; *
and I shout for joy because of the works of your hands.
5 LORD, how great are your works! *
your thoughts are very deep.
6 The dullard does not know,
nor does the fool understand, *
that though the wicked grow like weeds,
and all the workers of iniquity flourish,
7 They flourish only to be destroyed for ever; *
but you, O LORD, are exalted for evermore.
8 For lo, your enemies, O LORD,
lo, your enemies shall perish, *
and all the workers of iniquity shall be scattered.
9 But my horn you have exalted like the horns of wild bulls; *
I am anointed with fresh oil.
10 My eyes also gloat over my enemies, *
and my ears rejoice to hear the doom of the wicked who rise up against me.
11 The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree, *
and shall spread abroad like a cedar of Lebanon.
12 Those who are planted in the house of the LORD *
shall flourish in the courts of our God;
13 They shall still bear fruit in old age; *
they shall be green and succulent;
14 That they may show how upright the LORD is, *
my Rock, in whom there is no fault.

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.

Descendants of Abraham: an elegant inlaid box excavated from the ruins of Ur in ancient Mesopotamia, near Nasiriyah in modern Iraq. The city dates from about 3800 B.C. (ucg.org)

THE LESSON
John 8:33-47 (NRSV)

The Pharisees answered Jesus, “We are descendants of Abraham and have never been slaves to anyone. What do you mean by saying, ‘You will be made free’?”

Jesus answered them, “Very truly, I tell you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not have a permanent place in the household; the son has a place there forever. So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed. I know that you are descendants of Abraham; yet you look for an opportunity to kill me, because there is no place in you for my word. I declare what I have seen in the Father’s presence; as for you, you should do what you have heard from the Father.”

They answered him, “Abraham is our father.” Jesus said to them, “If you were Abraham’s children, you would be doing what Abraham did, but now you are trying to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God. This is not what Abraham did. You are indeed doing what your father does.” They said to him, “We are not illegitimate children; we have one father, God himself.” Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and now I am here. I did not come on my own, but he sent me. Why do you not understand what I say? It is because you cannot accept my word. You are from your father the devil, and you choose to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks according to his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies. But because I tell the truth, you do not believe me.

“Which of you convicts me of sin? If I tell the truth, why do you not believe me? Whoever is from God hears the words of God. The reason you do not hear them is that you are not from God.”

VIDEO: Canticle of Simon (uncredited) – University of Notre Dame Folk Choir, last year

Canticle: The Song of Simeon
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 for ever. Amen.

THE APOSTLES’ CREED

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 power of 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

VIDEO: The Lord’s Prayer (Ben Calhoun) – Citizen Way, 2019

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.

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.

Clergy in Germany were bitterly opposed to Cyril and Methodius’s use of Slavonic in liturgy and preaching, considering it a “barbarous language” – but that was more about political power, money and class than faith. The Germans wanted to keep the Slavs subjugated, so they made the brothers their target. Saints get remembered, while their enemies are forgotten.

Collect of the Day: Cyril and Methodius, Monk and Bishop, Missionaries to the Slavs, 869, 885

Almighty and everlasting God, who by the power of the Holy Spirit moved your servants Cyril and Methodius to bring the light of the Gospel to a hostile and divided people: Overcome all bitterness and strife among us by the love of Christ, and make us one united family under the banner of the Prince of Peace; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

A Collect for Fridays

Lord Jesus Christ, by your death you took away the sting of death: Grant to us your servants so to follow in faith where you have led the way, that we may at length fall asleep peacefully in you and wake up in your likeness; for your tender mercies’ sake. Amen.

Friday Evening Prayer List: For the Church

For Peace among Christians, Jews & Muslims in the Middle East
Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel and Palestine, Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria, Yemen

For Church Unity
World Methodism

For the Anglican Communion
Anglican Cycle of Prayer: Dioceses of Mahajanga, Madagascar, and Terekeka, South Sudan

Primates of the Anglican Communion
Linda Nicholls, Canada
Albert Chama, Central Africa
Julio Murray, Central America
Henri Isingoma, Congo
Justin Welby, England

For Ecumenical Partners
Pope Francis, Bishop of Rome
Elizabeth A. Eaton, Presiding Bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in North America
Robert T. Fuentes, Moderator, The Old Catholic Church USA
The Moravian Church

Our Candidate for Ordination
Steve, ELCA Rocky Mountain Synod, next fall

Our Seminarians & Their Schools
David, Wendy and Maureen, Nashotah House, Wisconsin
Greg, Christian Leaders Institute

College of the Resurrection, UK
College of the Transfiguration, South Africa
Cranmer Hall, Durham, UK
Episcopal School for Deacons, Berkeley, California
General Theological Seminary, New York City

Please add your own prayers and supplications here.

Prayer for Mission

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.

A Prayer of St. Chrysostom

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: Fulfil 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.

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++

VIDEO: Mighty God (Joseph Omo Ebhodaghe) – Joe Praize and Soweto Gospel Choir, 2012

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