Vespers for Sunday, February 2

January 2

Feast of the Presentation (Candlemas)


Almighty and everliving God, we humbly pray that, as your only-begotten Son was this day presented in the temple, so we may be presented to you with pure and clean hearts by Jesus Christ our Lord; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.


Opening

The light shines in the darkness,
and the darkness has not overcome it.

Prayer

God our Savior: Meet us in this time and place;
focus our hearts on your love,
feed the hungry places of our souls,
release us from all that resists your grace,
and renew our bodies to serve your world. Amen.

Praise

Scripture

See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is. And all who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. –1 John 3:1-3

Meditation

Holiness is not an attainment, in any sense of the term, but is a gift of the Word of God. Holiness is not a badge of achievement for a saint, but is wrought in the life, in the very being, of an ordinary person by the will of the Word of God. Holiness … is the restoration of integrity and wholeness to a person. –William Stringfellow

What do we, needing wholeness, present to God at this hour?

Confession

Word of God, we confess that we need your wholeness.
We have often looked to outward gifts and measures
when what we need is your love in our hearts.
We have often aimed toward what we can achieve
or where we stand in relation to others,
when what we desire is the integrity your love bestows.
We confess our need for your illumination.
Be our light, O Christ.

Assurance of Pardon

God forgives all our sins and heals all our infirmities.
God lifts us from the low places and sets mercy and love upon us.
God fills us with goodness and renews our lives.

Thanks be to God.

Prayers

For all who are oppressed,
May we proclaim the justice of God’s Kingdom.
For all who hunger,
May we, the Body of Christ, be bread.
For all who weep,
May we offer comfort and joy.
For all who are outcast or in any need or trouble:

Feel free to add your own prayers and intercessions, or take a moment to Light a Prayer Candle with your intention for the day.

We pray for those in formation with the St. Phoebe School; for those seeking and discerning; and for all deacons in their lives, work, and ministries bridging the Church and the world.

As we yearn to be the faithful people of God,
May we be people of true and gracious welcome to all.

The Lord be with you.
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.

TRANSLATION OF TEXT:
The old man carried the Child,
but the Child governed the old man;
The One whom the Virgin birthed
(and after which birth remained a virgin),
she adored.
–Tomas Luis de Victoria (1548-1611)

Canticle 17: The Song of Simeon Nunc Dimittis
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.

Going Out

The light shines in the darkness,
and the darkness has not overcome it.