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101 – A Child at Baptism O God our Father, we thank thee for our child, (N.); and as we take him to his baptism in thy holy Church we pray thee to receive him into the arms of thy love and to keep him ever in thy watchful care. Give us grace to help him grow in grace, both by our own good example and by instruction in the teachings of the Church, and may he remain a faithful soldier and servant of our Lord Jesus Christ, to his life’s end. 102 – Baptism O God, who dost teach and nourish those who are baptized into thy household the Church, strengthen and enlighten them with the gifts of thy Spirit, that they may grow in knowledge and love of thee and of thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. 103 – A Godparent’s Prayer Heavenly Father, thou hast called me to this high privilege and responsibility as a Godfather (mother) for ——. Help me to be worthy of it, and to do my duty faithfully through the years to come. Bless —— and grant that he may become a faithful follower of Christ and a loyal member of the Church, and that we may both continue thine for ever, until we come at last to thine everlasting kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 104 – At the Adoption of a Child O God our Father, who makest us thy children by adoption and grace; Give thy blessing, we humbly beseech thee, to this family, who have now bound themselves one to another in thee, that dwelling together in holiness, they may be made perfect in love; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be all honour and glory, world without end. 105 – On the Adoption of a Child Our Father, who hast bestowed upon us this great privilege of taking to ourselves as one of our own one of thy little ones, to love and care for, and to bring up in thy faith and fear, grant us, we pray thee, the grace to give to him the full measure of our devotion, and to set before him always a good example of Christian life. Bless us in our growth together, and may our home be enriched in the simple joys that come of loving and serving one another; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 106 – For Those Confirmed Almighty and everliving God, who hast knit together in one communion and fellowship all those in every place who call upon the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; We heartily thank thee that, by the guidance of thy Holy Spirit, these thy servants have been led to dedicate their lives to thee in Confirmation; and we humbly beseech thee, O heavenly Father, that through thy grace both they, and we, may ever continue in this holy fellowship, and do all such good works as thou hast prepared for us to walk in; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. 107 – For Those About to Be Confirmed Strengthen, O Lord, we pray Thee, by Thy Holy Spirit, Thy servants who are now preparing to seek Thy help in the sacred rite of Confirmation; and grant that all they who bear the Cross upon their foreheads may bear it also in their hearts, so that boldly confessing Thee before men, they may be found worthy to be numbered among Thy Saints; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 108 – On One Leaving the Home O God, Who art in every place beholding the evil and the good, take into Thine own keeping our dear one now going into the world of strangers. Give him courage, prudence, self-control. Grant him a right judgment in all things. Raise up for him friends, if it be Thy will, and deliver him from the snares and sorrows of loneliness by the power and joy of Thy Presence. Grant that in every place he may find the House of God and the gate of heaven. Safeguard him with the ministry of Thy never-failing Providence, now and always; for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord. 109 – For Those About To Be Married O Lord God, giver of life and love, let thy blessing rest upon those whom thou hast drawn together in love. Build thou for them their home. Give them wisdom for life, and discretion in the guidance of their affairs; and may thy fatherly hand ever be over them and thy Holy Spirit ever be with them; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 110 – For a Marriage Conference O Holy Jesus, who didst bless with thy presence the wedding feast at Cana, bless this man and this woman who are preparing to be joined in the bond of marriage. Give them serenity in their hearts, honesty with each other, and devotion to thee, that they may find strength in time of trouble, patience in time of trial, and joy in companionship all their days. 111 – At a Wedding Rehearsal Behold and bless, we beseech thee O God, these people gathered in thy Name and presence: the bride and the groom, those who attend them, their families and their friends. Help us to understand and to accept the blessings of thy love, and give us reverent hearts and minds as we assist in the sacrament of Christian union; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 112 – A Marriage Blessing O Thou, who by Thy presence in Cana of Galilee, didst sanctify the holy estate of matrimony, send Thy blessing upon Thy servants who have this day entered upon this holy estate, and so fill them with all spiritual benediction and grace, that living together in perfect love and holy peace in this world, in the world to come they may obtain life everlasting; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 113 – For Those Joined in Matrimony Eternal God, we humbly beseech thee favorably to behold these thy servants now (or about to be) joined in wedlock according to thy holy ordinance; and grant that they, seeking first thy kingdom and thy righteousness, may obtain the manifold blessings of thy grace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 114 – For a Married Couple O God of love and tenderness and strength, who hast locked our purposes and made us one flesh, go with us as we walk the ways of the world; bless our home and our love, our comings and our goings; make us worthy of each other’s best; comfort us in trouble, sustain us in the hour of self-distrust; help us to deal tenderly with each other’s dreams and knit our lives together in the good companionship of thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. 115 – For a Marriage Anniversary Almighty God, who didst institute the holy estate of matrimony for the mutual help and comfort of Thy children: we thank Thee that Thou hast preserved these Thy servants to this hour. We praise Thee for Thy goodness to them in making their union one of love, peace, and happiness, and that through Thy grace they have been enabled to keep the vow and covenant betwixt them made. Protect them, we beseech Thee, through the years to come, and multiply Thy blessings upon them. May they abound together in love and bear together willingly the burdens of life; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 116 – In Marriage Counseling O God, our Father, who knowest all thy children, help us with thy wisdom to understand ourselves and each other; melt our pride with the warmth of thy redeeming charity and take us back to our days of loving trust, that we may build again in the good companionship of Jesus Christ our Lord. 117 – For One Lonely After a Divorce O God, who art merciful with our weakness and patient with our pride, help this thy servant, we beseech thee, in the brokenness of his home and in the loneliness of his heart. Give him penitence for his wrong choices, thankfulness for thy goodness in the past, and a will to serve thee gladly in the years that lie ahead; through Jesus Christ our Lord. X. – CHRISTIAN EDUCATION 118 – For Parents Almighty God, heavenly Father, who hast blessed us with the joy and care of children; Give us light and strength so to train them, that they may love whatsoever things are true and lovely and of good report, following the example of their Saviour, Jesus Christ. 119 – Families and Homes Almighty Father, from whom every family in heaven and earth is named: we entreat Thy mercy for the families of this and every land, for man and wife and child, and for all who have the care of children; that by Thy hallowing our homes may be blessed and our children may grow up in the knowledge of Thee and of Thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. 120 – Children and Parents Heavenly Father, from whom all fatherhood in heaven and earth is named, bless we beseech thee, all children, and give to their parents, and to all in whose charge they may be, thy Spirit of wisdom and love; so that the home in which they grow up may be to them an image of thy Kingdom, and the care of their parents a likeness of thy love; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 121 – For Children O Lord Jesus Christ who dost embrace children with the arms of thy mercy, and dost make them living members of thy Church; Give them grace, we pray thee, to stand fast in thy faith, to obey thy word, and to abide in thy love; that, being made strong by thy Holy Spirit, they may resist temptation and overcome evil, and may rejoice in the life that now is, and dwell with thee in the life that is to come; through thy merits, O merciful Saviour, who with the Father and the Holy Ghost livest and reignest one God, world without end. 122 – For the Opening of Schools Bless, we pray thee, O Father, the children and youth of this nation, returning to their schools and colleges. May thy Holy Spirit enlighten their minds, purify their vision, and strengthen their wills; that being taught of thee they may learn to follow in the steps of him who grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man; through Jesus. Christ our Lord. 123 – For Religious Education Almighty God, our heavenly Father, who has committed to thy holy Church the care and nurture of thy children; Enlighten with thy wisdom those who teach and those who learn, that, rejoicing in the knowledge of thy truth, they may worship thee and serve thee from generation to generation; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 124 – Religious Education O God, who hast sent thy beloved Son to be unto us the Way, the Truth and the Life; Grant that we, looking unto him, may set forward the teaching power of thy Church, to the nurture of thy children, the increase of thy Kingdom and the glory of thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. 125 – For a Church School O Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named: Grant that, according to the riches of thy glory, thy servants and children in this School may be strengthened with power through thy Spirit, that Christ may dwell in their hearts by faith; that they, being rooted and grounded in love, may be strong to apprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge; that they may be filled with all thy fulness; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. 126 – A Young People’s Group O God, who hast made us in thy image, we give thee thanks for friends and homes, for youth and strength, for hopes and dreams. Help us to be honest, to live up to the best we know, and to grow in the knowledge and love of thy Son, our Saviour Jesus Christ. 127 – For College Work Guide, we beseech thee, Almighty God, our sons and daughters in the schools and colleges of this land. Protect them in danger, enlighten them in study, kindle them in imagination, confirm them in usefulness. Bless with wisdom and honesty those who minister to them in their needs, both intellectual and spiritual, and bring them close to thee, who art the beginning and ending of all truth; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 128 – For Schools, Colleges, and Universities Almighty God, we beseech thee, with thy gracious favour to behold our universities, colleges, and schools, that knowledge may be increased among us, and all good learning flourish and abound. Bless all who teach and all who learn; and grant that in humility of heart they may ever look unto thee, who art the fountain of all wisdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 129 – Teachers and Students Grant, O Lord, to all teachers and students to know that which is worth knowing, to love that which is worth loving, to praise that which pleaseth Thee most, to esteem that which is most precious to Thee, and to dislike whatsoever is evil in Thine eyes. Grant them with true judgment to distinguish things that differ, and above all to search out and to do what is well-pleasing unto Thee, to desire Thee with a whole heart; so desiring Thee, to find Thee; so finding, to love Thee; so loving, to rejoice in Thee. 130 – For Foreign Students O God, the Father of all mankind, we remember before thee those who come from many lands to study in our schools and universities. Guide and protect them in the difficulties and temptations which beset them in their new surroundings. Keep alive in their hearts the love of all that is good in their life at home, and give them insight to appreciate and share that which is good in ours. Pardon the faults of temper and manners by which we so often offend them; and grant unto us true humility, love, and patience, that we may welcome them in the spirit of the Master whom we desire to serve, thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. 131 – For a Conference Group Grant, O Lord, we pray thee, that as we seek for truth we may find that the search leads us to thyself. Give us courage to seek honestly and reverence to seek humbly; and when our minds are perplexed, and we cannot find thee, give us patience and light to go on with our work until at length we come into thy Presence; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 132 – For a Conference O God, bless to us what we have learned in our fellowship, that we may bring forth in our lives the fruits of Christian truth and love. Confirm us in our renewed resolve to love Thee more and serve Thee better; and may Thy Spirit so move us that henceforth it may be the work of our lives to obey Thee, the joy of our souls to please Thee, and, at the last, the fulfillment of all our desires to dwell with Thee in Thy holy and everlasting kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 133 – For a Clergy Conference O Lord Jesus Christ, Head of the Church which is thy Body, by whom we have been chosen as ambassadors and ministers of reconciliation, direct us, we beseech thee, in all our doings with thy most gracious favor; let all our plans and purposes be in accordance with thy holy will, our aim only that we may serve thee and our people faithfully as good shepherds of thy flock. Enlighten us by thy Holy Spirit as we consider together the meaning and obligations of our sacred calling, and the opportunities and responsibilities of the Church in these times. Inspire our minds, assist our wills, and strengthen our hands, that we may not falter or fail in the work thou hast given us to do, to thy honor and glory. 134 – For Understanding of the Scriptures Blessed Lord, who hast caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning; grant that we may in such wise hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that by patience and comfort of thy holy Word, we may embrace, and ever hold fast, the blessed hope of everlasting life, which thou hast given us in our Saviour Jesus Christ. 135 – Before the Bible Reading O gracious God and most merciful Father, who hast vouchsafed us the rich and precious jewel of thy holy Word: Assist us with thy Spirit that it may be written in our hearts to our everlasting comfort, to reform us, to renew us according to thine own image, to build us up, and edify us into the perfect building of thy Christ, sanctifying and increasing in us all heavenly virtues. Grant this, O heavenly Father, for Jesus Christ’s sake. 136 – For Students of God’s Word O Almighty God, who has taught us that thy Word is a lantern unto our feet and a light unto our path; grant that we, with all who devoutly read the Holy Scriptures, may realize our fellowship one with another in thee; and may learn thereby to know thee more fully, to love thee more truly, and to follow more faithfully in the steps of thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God blessed for evermore. 137 – For Theological Education Let us pray for theological seminaries: For all who teach and all who learn, for those who teach each other; for benefactors, for men and women of vision and generosity, for builders; for librarians and caretakers and secretaries and cooks; for all who make it possible for men and women to know and experience and show forth the truth of God. For Christian homes where the vision of God is first seen in forbearance and forgiveness and thanksgiving. For all honest pursuit of truth in whatever place. For Christian parishes where our Lord Jesus Christ is known in darkness and in light, in prayer and word and sacrament, in faith and patience, in the living of our common life in God. For college chaplains and student workers who minister to growing minds. For those who labor for our Lord in far off places and against great odds. O God, who hast preserved thy Church and the true worship of thyself through the fall of empires, the decay of cultures, and the perplexities of reformations, we beseech thee for thy world in which a new age is coming to birth. Keep our spirits alert and hopeful and our wills faithful in whatever tribulations there may be. Help us so to understand our faith that we may pass through critical study to sure conviction. Raise up in our midst scholars who shall be prophets and apostles. Silence the fearful voices of those who would hold us back, and preserve us from either impatience or cynicism. Take away our heart of stone and give us a heart of flesh that we may be filled with love of thee; that so thy way may be known upon earth, thy saving health among all nations; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 138 – For Theological Schools O God, who through thy Holy Spirit dost illuminate the minds and sanctify the lives of those whom thou dost call to the work of pastors and teachers; Look with favor upon all schools for the instruction and discipline of those who are to serve in the sacred ministry of thy Church. Bless those who teach and those who learn, that they may apply themselves with such diligence to the knowledge which is able to make men wise unto salvation, and submit themselves with such ready obedience to the law of thy Son our Saviour, that they may fulfill their ministry with joy; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. 139 – For Charity Let us pray that our fellowship with one another may be deepened. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. O God, who hast taught us that all our doings without charity are nothing worth, forgive us what is lacking in our fellowship in this (school), for the barriers we have put up between one another, our lack of sensitiveness to one another’s needs, and our failure to help and encourage one another. Set us on the right path; grant that we discern thee in the breaking of the Bread, and do thou perfect our fellowship in thee, by sending to us the Holy Spirit, the very bond of peace and of all virtues, who with thee and thy Son Jesus Christ liveth and reigneth, world without end. 140 – Knowledge of Ourselves O God, Inspirer and Teacher of men, who art the truth thou lovest; send out thy light and illumine us. Give us a deep and clear knowledge of ourselves; help us to a growing knowledge of our world; confirm in us the holiness of true reason; strengthen in us the aspiration toward noble and spacious thinking; and in thy good time bring us unto thy holy hill and to thy dwelling; through Jesus Christ our Saviour. 141 – For Teachers O God, who didst teach the hearts of thy faithful people by sending to them the light of thy Holy Spirit; bless and direct those to whom the office of teacher is committed; give them wisdom to understand the varied scene of life and to see thy purpose as it unfolds; keep their spirits young and fresh that they may understand the aspirations and needs of learners; and so bind teacher and pupil together in a fellowship of discovery that thy presence may be seen in their midst; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 142 – A Teacher’s Prayer O my dear Master, give me a deeper love for the minds of those I teach. Keep me from forcing my opinions on them. Let me reverence them, and so teach them to reverence themselves. XI – STUDY 143 – A Private Prayer for Teachers Lord Jesus, merciful and patient, grant us grace, I beseech thee, ever to teach in a teachable spirit; learning along with those we teach, and learning from them whenever thou so pleasest. Word of God, speak to us, speak by us, what thou wilt. Wisdom of God, instruct us, instruct by us, if and whom thou wilt. Eternal Truth, reveal thyself to us, reveal thyself by us, in whatsoever measure thou wilt; that we and they may all be taught of God. 144 – The Limits of Knowledge O Lord, my Maker and Protector, who has graciously sent me into this world, to work out my salvation, enable me to drive from me all such unquiet and perplexing thoughts as may mislead or hinder me in the practice of those duties which thou hast required. When I behold the works of thy hands and consider the course of thy providence, give me Grace always to remember that thy thoughts are not my thoughts, nor thy ways my ways. And while it shall please thee to continue me in this world where much is to be done and little to be known, teach me by thy Holy Spirit to withdraw my mind from unprofitable and dangerous inquiries, from difficulties vainly curious, and doubts impossible to be solved. Let me rejoice in the light which thou hast imparted, let me serve thee with active zeal and humble confidence, and wait with patient expectation for the time in which the soul which thou receivest, shall be satisfied with knowledge. Grant this, O Lord, for Jesus Christ’s sake. 145 – The Study of Religion Almighty God, our heavenly Father, without whose help labor is useless, without whose light search is vain, invigorate my studies and direct my inquiries, that I may, by due diligence and right discernment establish myself and others in thy holy Faith. Take not, O Lord, thy Holy Spirit from me, let not evil thoughts have dominion in my mind. Let me not linger in ignorance, but enlighten and support me, for the sake of Jesus Christ. 146 – Before Any New Study Almighty God, in whose hands are all the powers of man; who givest understanding, and takest it away; who, as it seemeth good unto thee, enlightenest the thoughts of the simple, and darkenest the meditations of the wise, be present with me in my studies and inquiries. Grant, O Lord, that I may not lavish away the life which thou hast given me on useless trifles, nor waste it in vain searches after things which thou hast hidden from me. Enable me, by thy Holy Spirit, so to shun sloth and negligence, that every day may discharge part of the task which thou hast allotted me; and so further with thy help that labour which, without thy help, must be ineffectual, that I may obtain, in all my undertakings, such success as will most promote thy glory, and the salvation of my own soul, for the sake of Jesus Christ. 147 – New Learning In times of doubt and questionings, when our belief is perplexed by new learning, our faith tried by facts too hard for us to grasp and by riddles too deep for us to read, give us still the humility of disciples and the trust of believers. Grant us patience to master the facts, candor to face the issues, insight to penetrate the mysteries, loyalty to truths already known, and courage to welcome new truth yet to be made known. 148 – The Growth of Knowledge Almighty God, who hast given us powers which our fathers never knew, to probe thine ancient mysteries, and to discover thy hidden treasures: Quicken our conscience, we beseech thee, as thou dost enlighten our understanding; lest, having tasted the fruits of knowledge, we perish through our own pride and disobedience. We ask it for Jesus Christ’s sake. 149 – Before Preparing a Sermon O God the Holy Ghost, Who enlightenest the minds of Thy children; send down upon me, I pray Thee, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, to lead me into all truth, that I may so feed the flock committed unto me with the words of eternal life, as with them, to attain unto that place where, with the Father and the Son, Thou livest and reignest ever, One God, world without end. 150 – On Writing Sermons O Thou in whom peace abides from age to age, give me now a quiet mind and a listening heart, that the word which thou wouldest speak in this church thou mayest make known to me, and the will which thou wouldest reveal to thy people here thou mayest lodge in my soul this day and for evermore; through Jesus Christ our Lord. XII – CALLS 151 – Before Pastoral Visiting Grant, O Lord, I pray, that this day I may go forth as Thy messenger. Quicken my sympathy and understanding. Give me Thy comfort for the sick and sorrowful, Thy cheer for the glad, Thy love for the lonely, Thy riches for the poor, Thy peace for the anxious. Make me friendly, patient, courageous and wise. So use me, I pray, as to turn many to righteousness; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 152 – Before Making a Call O Thou who hast Thine own message for those whom I shall meet this afternoon, give me such openness toward Thee, that through me Thy love may be made known, Thy help bestowed, and the next step for each be made plain; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 153 – Before Making Calls Be with me, O God, as I make the rounds of my parish; give me willingness in thy service, patience with my faults, understanding with the faults of others, compassion for all men. Help me, a sinner, to carry into the homes of my people some of the wholeness of thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. XIII – BLESSINGS 154 – A Home O eternal God, who settest the solitary in families and fillest the hungry with good things, visit this home and family with thy grace and favor; knit them together in thy love through good times and bad, bless their comings in and their goings out, give them thankful hearts for their daily bread and for each other, and bring them at the last into thy heavenly dwelling place; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 155 – For a Home O Heavenly Father, of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named; Be present in this house, that all who live here, being kindly affectioned one to another, may find it a haven of blessing and of peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 156 – For the Family Shed the bright rays of thy light, O Father, upon this family and household, that every member of the same, made confident by thy guidance, may fulfill his daily duty with pure motives and a gallant heart. Be close to us in times of stress and strain, that our courage and our hope may never fail. Let thy sheltering arm protect us, that we may be valiant in all peril. Turn for us sorrow into joy, darkness into sunshine, death into life; so that when the evening comes and our work on earth is done, we may pass triumphantly into the uplands of fellowship in thy family above; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 157 – This Habitation Visit, we beseech thee, O Lord this habitation, and drive far from it all snares of the enemy; let thy holy Angels dwell herein to preserve us in peace, and let thy blessing be ever upon us; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 158 – Blessing of a Home Our heavenly Father, fill this home with the gladness of Thy presence. Bless all who live here with thy gift of love; help them to show forth thy love to each other and to all men. Keep them safe from all evil and bring them to thy heavenly Kingdom. 159 – Blessing of a Religious Object O glorious God, whose perfect beauty the wonderful design of all thy works proclaim; Bless, we beseech thee, this ——, which we devoutly offer unto thee, that it may beautify the place of thy sanctuary and show forth thy glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 160 – Blessing of a Cross O heavenly Father, who gave thine only-begotten Son both to die for our sins, and to rise again for our justification; Bless, we beseech thee, this Cross, that looking upon it with reverence and true devotion, it may be unto us a sign of triumph, and the banner of our salvation; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. 161 – Blessing of a Wedding Ring[s] Bless, O Lord, this Ring, that he [she] who gives it and she [he] who wears it may abide in thy peace, and continue in thy favour, unto their life’s end; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 162 – Breaking Ground for a Church I break ground for this Church; In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen. O Lord God of Israel, who didst move thy servant David to find out a place for thy temple, and dost have thy habitation among the sons of men; Vouchsafe, we beseech thee, to hallow this ground, upon which we propose to build a Church and to set up an Altar therein, that the work now begun may be brought to completion, to the honour and glory of thy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 163 – Laying a Church Corner Stone I lay this Corner Stone: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Here let the true faith and fear of God, with brotherly love, ever abide; and may this place now set apart with prayer, and with the invocation and praise of the Most Holy Name, be evermore the Temple of the Most High God; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with the Father and the Holy Ghost, be all honour and glory, world without end. 164 – Building a New Church Almighty Father, Who dwellest not in temples made with hands, and yet willest that Thy children shall worship Thee in houses set apart to Thine honour: look graciously, we beseech Thee, upon us whom Thou halt called to build a Church for this parish, that Thou mayest put Thy Name there and hallow it as a witness to generations that are yet to come. Inspire us by Thy Spirit, that we may lay its foundations in love and set up its pillars with sacrifice. Move the hearts of Thy people to give willingly and to work patiently that this Thy house may be brought to fulfillment in beauty, and that we ourselves may be built up a spiritual temple acceptable unto Thee; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 165 – Before a Journey or New Undertaking Lord, we pray thee that thou wilt be with us and keep us as we go upon this journey (or enter upon this new undertaking). Let no change or chance take us out of thy hand; prosper us in our way, and give us grace always to do the things that will please thee. 166 – For Direction Direct us, O Lord, in all our doings, with thy most gracious favour, and further us with thy continual help; that in all our works begun, continued, and ended in thee, we may glorify thy holy Name, and finally, by thy mercy, obtain everlasting life; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 167 – Church Institutions Vouchsafe, we beseech Thee, merciful Lord, to prosper with Thy blessing all institutions designed for the promotion of Thy glory and the good of souls. Grant that those who serve Thee in religious houses, hospitals and schools, may set Thy holy will ever before them, and do that which is well-pleasing in Thy sight, and persevere in Thy service unto the end. 168 – For the Church’s Mission Pour out, we beseech thee, O Lord, thy Spirit upon thy Church, that to all its members may come new visions, new life, new fellowship with Christ, its living Head. Send us out, if thou wilt, and through us send out many another to work for the extension of thy Kingdom throughout the world. Open our hearts that we may receive thy power; open our eyes that we may see Christ with hands outstretched to bless. Do with us what thou wilt and as thou wilt. So shall the earth be filled with the knowledge of thyself as the waters cover the sea. And to thee be the glory and praise, now and for evermore. 169 – Benedictions The Peace of God, which passeth all understanding, keep your hearts and minds in the knowledge and love of God, and of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord: And the Blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, be amongst you, and remain with you always.• The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Ghost, be with us all evermore.• Unto God’s gracious mercy and protection we commit you. The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious unto you. The Lord lift up the light of his countenance upon you, and give you peace, both now and for evermore.• Now unto him who is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think according to the power that worketh in us, unto him be glory in the Church and in Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end.• Go forth into the world in peace; be of good courage; hold fast that which is good; render to no man evil for evil; strengthen the fainthearted; support the weak; help the afflicted; honor all men. Love and serve the Lord rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit. And the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost be upon you and remain with you for ever.• The God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you. And to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever.• Peace be with you all that are in Christ Jesus.• Now the God of peace, who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus Christ, that great Shepherd of the sheep, make us perfect in every work to do his will, working in us that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever.• Now unto him who is able to keep us from falling, and to present us faultless before the presence of his glory, with exceeding joy, to the only wise God, our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and for ever.• And now may the blessing of the Lord rest and remain upon all his people in every land of every tongue. The Lord meet in mercy all that seek him. The Lord comfort all that suffer and mourn. The Lord hasten his coming, and now give us and all his people peace by all means.• God Almighty, bless us with his Holy Spirit; guard us in our going out and coming in; keep us ever steadfast in his Faith, free from sin and safe from danger; through Jesus Christ our Lord.• May the love of the Lord Jesus draw you to himself. May the power of the Lord Jesus strengthen you in his service. May the joy of the Lord Jesus fill your soul.• May the grace of courage, gaiety and quiet mind, with all such blessedness as belongeth to the children of the Father in heaven, be ours, to the praise of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, who liveth and reigneth one God, world without end. XIV – TROUBLE 170 – For the Desolate Have compassion, O most merciful Lord, on all who are lonely and desolate. Be thou their Comforter and Friend; give them such earthly solace as thou seest to be best for them; and bring them to the fuller knowledge of thy love; for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord. 171— For the Lonely Almighty God, look upon those who are lonely and hungry-hearted, the uncompanioned, the unwanted: on all who feel themselves left out and in exile from the joys for which they long. Grant them, O God, some comradeship of understanding and affection; arouse in them an interest or engage them in activity to comfort them in discontent or desolation; and if at times they see that there is no one who would know them, be thou a place for them to flee unto, and cheer them with the welcome of thy love; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 172— For the Fearful Almighty God, look upon those whose hearts fail them for fear, whose path is dark from overshadowing threats or strewn with obstacles, whose footsteps have well nigh slipped. Deliver them, O God, from every apprehension which is groundless; teach them to trust in the mercies thou bestowest through the changing course of things; let them not feed anxiety or terror with their life-blood, but let them walk in quiet confidence and fortitude, leaning on the staff of thine assistance; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 173 – For Those Who Have Not Found Love O God of Love, who art in all places and times, pour thy spirit of healing and comfort upon every lonely heart. Have pity upon those who are bereft of human love, and on those to whom it has never come. Be unto them a strong consolation, and in the end give them fulness of joy; for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord. 174 – For the Gift of Sleep O Lord, who hast pity for all our weakness; put from us all worry and all misgiving, that having done our best while it was day, we may, when the night cometh, commit ourselves, our tasks, and all we love into thy keeping, so receiving, as from thee, the gift of sleep; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 175 – Sleeplessness O Holy Jesus, who had no place to lay thy head, watch with me in the night hours, I beseech thee; calm my fears and relieve my anxieties with thy blessed gift of sleep; give me thy peace and grant that I may wake up refreshed for thy service; who with the Father and the Holy Spirit rulest all things. 176 – A Person Needing Sleep O Heavenly Father, who givest thy children sleep for the refreshing of their souls and bodies; Grant this gift to thy servant; keep him in that perfect peace which thou hast promised to those whose minds are stayed on thee; inspire him with a sense of thy presence; so that in the hours of silence he may enjoy the blessed assurance of thy love; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 177 – For the Despondent O God, we beseech thee for all who are weighed down with the burdens of this world, for whom there seems little hope; comfort them with the assurance of thy love, give them some token of thy continual care for them and, in thy good time, restore them to a measure of cheerfulness in the good companionship of Jesus Christ our Lord. 178 – For the Stricken Almighty God, look upon those who have been stricken by disaster or a tragic grief, through adversity of circumstance or at the hands of others or by their own unwisdom or misdoing: who eat bread as it were ashes: to whom the morning brings no brightness and the night no rest. Loose them, O God, from the bonds of their imprisonment to misery; lift them from the deep whence their sorrow cries aloud to thee; impart to them the grace of rallying, and console them with the peace which thou hast promised to the souls of men; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 179 – For Those Who Hallow Suffering We thank Thee, O Father, for all who hallow suffering; for those who in their thought for others leave no room for pity for themselves; for those whose faith brings light to the dark places of life; and for those whose patience inspires others to hold on. And grant, O loving Father, to all who are bound in the mysterious fellowship of suffering the sense of comradeship with others and the knowledge of Thy love, and give them Thy peace which passes all understanding; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 180 – A Person Troubled in Conscience O Blessed Lord, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort: We beseech thee look down in pity and compassion on thy servant whose soul is full of trouble. Give him a right understanding of himself, and also of thy will for him, that he may neither cast away his confidence in thee nor place it anywhere but in thee. Deliver him from the fear of evil; lift up the light of thy countenance upon him, and give him thine everlasting peace; through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ our Lord. 181 – The Nervous Regard, O Lord, with thy fatherly compassion, all who are disquieted and tense, who cannot lose themselves either in happy work by day or in restful sleep by night, who looking within do not know themselves and looking to thee do not find thee. Lead them, we pray thee, out of clangor into quietude, out of futility into usefulness, out of despair into the sure serenity of truth. Teach them to believe that thou art faithful, and that thy charity hopeth all things and endureth all things; that all the darkness of the world, even the inner blackness of the soul, cannot quench one small candle of fidelity. Give them of thy perspective, thy humor, thy gift of tranquility and poise. Be so patient with them that they may learn to be patient with themselves; so firm, that they may lean on thee; so persistent in leading, that they may venture out and find pasture in the sunny fields of thy kingdom, where all who follow thy shepherding may find gladness and delight; in the Name of earth’s most calm and daring Son, Word of God, and Master of men, our Saviour Jesus Christ. 182 – A Prayer for the Despondent Comfort, we beseech thee, most gracious God, this thy servant, cast down and faint of heart amidst the sorrows and difficulties of the world; and grant that, by the power of thy Holy Spirit, he may be enabled to go upon his way rejoicing, and give thee continual thanks for thy sustaining providence; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 183 – For the Needy Almighty God, look upon those who are in need but cannot work, or who lack employment and search for it in vain: on those who struggle to meet exacting claims with inadequate resources: on all who move in insecurity, attended by worry or despair. Stand by them, O God, in their deprivations, their dilemmas, and guide them as they try to solve their problems; let them come to open doors of opportunity or refuge; and so quicken and extend the world’s concern for all its people that every man may be ensured a livelihood and safety from the bitterness of want; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 184 – For the Heavy-Laden Almighty God, look upon those who are weighed down by uncongenial or exhausting tasks or by crippling responsibilities: whose lot is disappointment or frustration, whose freedoms are enchained, whose hopes are forfeit. Strengthen them, O God, for burden-bearing; give them a gallant spirit for performing all hard duties as necessity demands; let their load be sometimes lightened by being shared, if it may not be removed; and refresh them in their heaviness as thou alone canst do; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 185 – An Intercession Have mercy, O Lord, on all who are homeless, bereaved, and sorrowful and give them comfort. Have mercy on all who have none to pray for them, and none to succour them. Have mercy on those who have brought punishment and trouble on themselves, and on those who are dear to them. Have mercy on all, and give them this day some token of grace, and some sign of hope; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 186 – For the Faint-Hearted O God, who hast made all men, and carest for all alike, have pity on those whose strength seems unequal to the battle of life. Encourage and protect them, and give wisdom and patience to those who are trying to help them; for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord. 187 – For the Handicapped O Loving Father, we, pray for all who are handicapped in the race of life; the blind, the defective and the delicate, and all who are permanently injured. We pray for those worn with sickness and those who are wasted with misery, for the dying and all unhappy children. May they learn the mystery of the road of suffering which Christ has trodden and the Saints have followed, and bring thee this gift that angels cannot bring, a heart that trusts thee even in the dark; and this we ask in the name of him who himself took our infirmities upon him, even the same Jesus Christ, our Saviour. 188 – Faith in God Almighty God, Lord of the storm and of the calm, the vexed sea and the quiet haven, of day and of night, of life and of death, – grant unto us so to have our hearts stayed upon Thy faithfulness, Thine unchangingness and love, that, whatsoever betide us, however black the cloud or dark the night, with quiet faith trusting in Thee we may look upon Thee with untroubled eye, and walking in lowliness towards Thee, and in lovingness towards one another, abide all storms and troubles of this mortal life, beseeching Thee that they may turn to the soul’s true good. We ask it for Thy mercy’s sake, shown in Jesus Christ our Lord. 189 – In Time of Disaster Almighty Father, God of Love, we implore thy help in this our great need. If we have neglected thy laws, pardon our carelessness and inspire us to amend our ways. Strengthen the hands of all who minister to the suffering, and make us generous in their support. Have mercy upon all who innocently endure pain or grief. Deal graciously, O God with those who mourn, that they may know the consolation of thy love. May the souls of the departed abide in peace, grow in grace, and rejoice in the everlasting light of thy presence; through thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. 190 – A Steady Hand Give, we beseech thee, merciful Lord, to thy waiting people freedom and strength; that we may be loosed from all our fears, and labor with a steady hand; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 191 – Inward Calm Serene Son of God, whose will subdued the troubled waters and laid to rest the fears of men: Let thy majesty master us, thy power of calm control us; that for our fears we may have faith, and for our disquietude perfect trust in thee; who dost live and govern all things, world without end. 192 – Companionship Walk thou with us, O Christ, in the way, as thou didst with thy disciples, until the day is spent and our journey done; then of thy goodness break with us the bread of eternal life, and grant us the vision of thy face; for thy Name’s sake, world without end. 193 – The Way of the Cross Almighty God, whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain, and entered not into glory before he was crucified; Mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross, may find it none other than the way of life and peace; through the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. 194 – For Quiet Confidence O God of peace, who hast taught us that in returning and rest we shall be saved, in quietness and in confidence shall be our strength; By the might of thy Spirit lift us, we pray thee, to thy presence, where we may be still and know that thou art God; through Jesus Christ our Lord. XV – CONFESSION 195— A General Confession Almighty and most merciful Father; We have erred, and strayed from thy ways like lost sheep. We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts. We have offended against thy holy laws. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; And we have done those things which we ought not to have done; And there is no health in us. But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable offenders. Spare thou those, O God, who confess their faults. Restore thou those who are penitent; According to thy promises declared unto mankind in Christ Jesus our Lord. And grant, O most merciful Father, for his sake; That we may hereafter live a godly, righteous, and sober life, To the glory of thy holy Name. 196 – A Confession of Sins Forgive me my sins, O Lord – the sins of my present and the sins of my past, the sins of my soul and the sins of my body, the sins which I have done to please myself and the sins which I have done to please others. Forgive me my casual sins and my deliberate sins and those which I have laboured so to hide that I have hidden them even from myself. Forgive me them, O Lord, forgive them all; for Jesus Christ’s sake. 197 – Before Listening Help me, O God, to listen to this thy child. Help me to hear what is said and what is unsaid. Help me to be fair-minded, honest, just and loving, that the truth may be spoken and received; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 198 – Before Hearing a Confession O good Lord Jesus, who came to bear our sins, help me, a sinner, to be the minister of thy grace to this thy child; give me patience, wisdom, honesty and compassion, that I may hear and judge rightly in thy Name, who with the Father and the Holy Spirit, art God for ever and ever. 199 – In Counseling O Lord Jesus Christ, Who didst come to seek and to save that which was lost, and Who hast committed to us the ministry of reconciliation, give me a discerning spirit to judge and advise aright. Grant that I may never make sad the hearts that Thou wouldst not have saddened; nor, healing slightly the hurt of Thy people, speak peace where there is no peace; but may faithfully and lovingly, firmly and considerately lead those who seek my help in the paths of truth and peace; for Thy mercies’ sake. 200 – Our Imperfect Service Accept O Lord the imperfect service which we have rendered to thee during the past week (or term). Thou knowest all our idle, trifling and uncharitable words; all our wasted, half-employed and misused hours; all our selfishness, vanity, and ungodliness; all our omitted duties and all our committed sins; thou, O Lord, knowest all, rememberest all and must bring all into judgment, even every secret thing. Suffer us not to cloak or veil before thee our hearts or our lives, but forgive, O God, all that thou hast seen amiss in us, for the sake of him who came into the world to save sinners, Jesus Christ our Lord.

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