Morning Prayer

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Draw Aside – Return Refreshed

Unless otherwise indicated, the material below is suggested by the Church of England’s Morning Prayer for Saturdays (https://www.churchofengland.org/prayer-and-worship/worship-texts-and-resources/common-worship/daily-prayer/morning-and-evening#mm008e6m), accessed 24 August 2021.

Facilitator:  Introducing one another, the theme and purpose of the day, going into silence….

Facilitator:  Hand Up/ Hands Down Exercise (from, among others, Celebration of Discipline: The Path to Spiritual Growth by Richard Foster).

FacilitatorWe say together:

Meet me, O Christ,

in the stillness of this morning.

Move me, O Spirit,

to quiet my heart.

Mend me, O Father from yesterday’s harms.

From the discords of yesterday,

Resurrect my peace.

From the discouragements of yesterday,

Resurrect my hope.

From the weariness of yesterday,

Resurrect my strength.

From the doubts of yesterday,

Resurrect my love.

Let me enter this new day,

Aware of my need

And awake to your grace,

O Lord.

Amen.

(A liturgy for the ritual of morning coffee, from Every Moment Holy, vol.1, by Douglas Kaine McKelvey, Rabbit Room Press, 2017, p 135)

FacilitatorLet us continue our worship of God in the words of Psalm 63: 1-9.  Please say the words in bold:

1    O God, you are my God; eagerly I seek you;  

my soul is athirst for you.

2    My flesh also faints for you,  

as in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water.

3    So would I gaze upon you in your holy place,  

that I might behold your power and your glory.

4    Your loving-kindness is better than life itself  

and so my lips shall praise you.

5    I will bless you as long as I live  

and lift up my hands in your name.

6    My soul shall be satisfied, as with marrow and fatness,  

and my mouth shall praise you with joyful lips,

7    When I remember you upon my bed  

and meditate on you in the watches of the night.

8    For you have been my helper  

and under the shadow of your wings will I rejoice.

   My soul clings to you;  

your right hand shall hold me fast.

Amen.

A moment of silence to absorb what we have just said.

Facilitator

The night has passed, and the day lies open before us;

Our lives are entwined for these few hours as we come together to speak and to be silent, to think, pray and imagine;

let us pray with one heart and mind.

A moment of silence, as we think about the day ahead.

As we rejoice in the gift of this new day,

so may the light of your presence, O God,

set our hearts on fire with love for you;

now and for ever.

Amen.

Facilitator: Crying out to God.

We rejoice in the gift of this new day but that does not mean that we are unaware of grief, pain or frustration in our lives and the wider world.

This is not a moment for deep reflection or profound lament – Sonja will lead us further into that in a moment.  But there might be difficult or painful things so deeply on your heart (on any subject) that you wish to bring them before God now in prayer.  I invite you to pray silently for a few moments, or simply sit in stillness aware of the presence and space of God.

(An extended moment of silence).

Facilitator: We remember that God is a God of consolation.  We say together:

This is what God says: I will comfort you,

you shall see and your heart shall rejoice.

Facilitator: We’ll hear some words from Scripture about the consolation of God:

A reading from Isaiah 66.10,11a,12a,12c,13a,14a,b  – SONJA

 ‘Rejoice with Jerusalem and be glad for her, 

all you who love her,’ says the Lord.

2    ‘Rejoice with her in joy,  

all you who mourn over her,

3    ‘That you may drink deeply with delight  

from her consoling breast.’

4    For so says our God,  

‘You shall be nursed and carried on her arm.

5    ‘As a mother comforts her children,  

so I will comfort you;

6    ‘You shall see and your heart shall rejoice;  

you shall flourish like the grass of the fields.’

Facilitator:  We say together:

This is what God says: I will comfort you,

you shall see and your heart shall rejoice.

A reading from Luke 1.68-79 – ANN

1    Blessed be the Lord the God of Israel,  

who has come to his people and set them free.

2    He has raised up for us a mighty Saviour,  

born of the house of his servant David.

3    Through his holy prophets God promised of old  

to save us from our enemies,

from the hands of all that hate us,

4    To show mercy to our ancestors,  

and to remember his holy covenant.

5    This was the oath God swore to our father Abraham:  

to set us free from the hands of our enemies,

6    Free to worship him without fear,  

holy and righteous in his sight

all the days of our life.

7    And you, child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High,  

for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,

8    To give his people knowledge of salvation  

by the forgiveness of all their sins.

9    In the tender compassion of our God  

the dawn from on high shall break upon us,

10  To shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death,  

and to guide our feet into the way of peace.

FacilitatorWe thank God for these words by saying:

Your salvation is near to those who fear you;

that glory may dwell in our land.

Mercy and truth have met together;

righteousness and peace have kissed each other.

Glory to the Father and to the Son

and to the Holy Spirit;

as it was in the beginning is now

and shall be for ever. Amen.

Facilitator:  We draw all our hopes and prayers for today and for each other together by saying the Lord’s Prayer.  I will say it in English but please use any language you wish.

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.

Lead us not into temptation

but deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom, the power,

and the glory are yours

now and for ever.

Amen.

FacilitatorWe bless one another for the day by saying:

May the God who guides our journey,

The Christ who bears the suffering of the world,

The Spirit who empowers us with the gifts of life,

Fill us with courage, wisdom and joy this day.

Amen.

(From Naming God by Jan Berry, Granary publications 2011, p 79).

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