Wednesday evening February 24

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Opening response

O God, make speed to save us.
O Lord, make haste to help us.
Hear our voice, O Lord, according to your faithful love,
according to your judgment give us life.

Prayer of thanksgiving

Blessed are you, Lord God of our salvation,
to you be glory and praise forever.
In the darkness of our sin you have shone in our hearts
to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God
in the face of Jesus Christ.
Open our eyes to acknowledge your presence,
that freed from the misery of sin and shame
we may grow into your likeness from glory to glory.
Blessed be God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Blessed be God forever.


Captain of Israel’s Host

Charles Wesley
Captain of Israel's host, and guide
Of all who seek the land above,
Beneath thy shadow we abide,
The cloud of thy protecting love;
Our strength, thy grace; our rule, thy word;
Our end, the glory of the Lord.

By thine unerring Spirit led,
We shall not in the desert stray;
We shall not full direction need
Nor miss our providential way;
As far from danger as from fear,
While love, almighty love, is near.

Confession of sin

Seek the Lord when he can still be found;
call him while he is yet near.
Let the wicked abandon their ways
and the sinful their schemes.
Let them return to the Lord so that he may have mercy on them,
to our God, because he is generous with forgiveness.

cf Isaiah 55

A time of silence and self-examination may be kept.

Lord God,
we have sinned against you;
we have committed evil in your sight.
We are sorry and repent.
Have mercy on us according to your faithful love.
Wash us completely clean of our guilt; purify us from our sin.
Put a new, faithful spirit deep inside us,
and return the joy of your salvation to us
through Jesus Christ our Lord.


cf Psalm 51

May the Father of all mercies
cleanse us from our sins,
and restore us in his image
to the praise and glory of his name,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Bless the Lord,
because he has listened to our request for mercy.
Therefore our hearts will rejoice
and we will thank him with our song.

cf Psalm 28:7,9

The Word of God

Psalm 3

You, Lord, are my shield!

Lord, I have so many enemies!
    So many are standing against me.
So many are talking about me:
    “Even God won’t help him.”
But you, Lord, are my shield!
    You are my glory!
    You are the one who restores me.
I cry out loud to the Lord,
    and he answers me from his holy mountain. 
I lie down, sleep, and wake up
    because the Lord helps me.
I won’t be afraid of thousands of people
    surrounding me on all sides.

Stand up, Lord!
    Save me, my God!
In fact, hit all my enemies on the jaw;
    shatter the teeth of the wicked!
Rescue comes from the Lord!
    May your blessing be on your people!

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen.

You, Lord, are my shield!

Psalm prayer

Shield us, Lord, from all evil,
and lift us from apathy and despair, 
that even when we are terrified,
we may trust your power to save;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Psalm 51

A broken spirit is my sacrifice, God.

Have mercy on me, God, according to your faithful love!
    Wipe away my wrongdoings according to your great compassion!
Wash me completely clean of my guilt;
    purify me from my sin!
Because I know my wrongdoings,
    my sin is always right in front of me.
I’ve sinned against you—you alone.
    I’ve committed evil in your sight.
That’s why you are justified when you render your verdict,
    completely correct when you issue your judgment.
Yes, I was born in guilt, in sin,
    from the moment my mother conceived me.
And yes, you want truth in the most hidden places;
    you teach me wisdom in the most secret space.

Purify me with hyssop and I will be clean;
    wash me and I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and celebration again;
    let the bones you crushed rejoice once more.
Hide your face from my sins;
    wipe away all my guilty deeds!
Create a clean heart for me, God;
    put a new, faithful spirit deep inside me!
Please don’t throw me out of your presence;
    please don’t take your holy spirit away from me.
Return the joy of your salvation to me
    and sustain me with a willing spirit.
Then I will teach wrongdoers your ways,
    and sinners will come back to you.

Deliver me from violence, God, God of my salvation,
    so that my tongue can sing of your righteousness.
Lord, open my lips,
    and my mouth will proclaim your praise.
You don’t want sacrifices.
    If I gave an entirely burned offering,
    you wouldn’t be pleased.
A broken spirit is my sacrifice, God.
    You won’t despise a heart, God, that is broken and crushed.
Do good things for Zion by your favor.
    Rebuild Jerusalem’s walls.
Then you will again want sacrifices of righteousness—
    entirely burned offerings and complete offerings.
        Then bulls will again be sacrificed on your altar.

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen.

A broken spirit is my sacrifice, God.

Psalm prayer

Take away, good Lord, the sin that corrupts us;
give us the sorrow that heals
and the joy that praises
and restore by grace your own image within us,
that we may take our place among your people;
in Jesus Christ our Lord.

Old Testament reading
Jeremiah 8:18-9:11

No healing,
    only grief;
        my heart is broken.
Listen to the weeping of my people
        all across the land:
    “Isn’t the Lord in Zion?
        Is her king no longer there?”
Why then did they anger me with their images,
    with pointless foreign gods?
“The harvest is past,
    the summer has ended,
        yet we aren’t saved.”
Because my people are crushed,
    I am crushed;
    darkness and despair overwhelm me.

What to do with God’s people
Is there no balm in Gilead?
    Is there no physician there?
Why then have my people
    not been restored to health?

If only my head were a spring of water,
    and my eyes a fountain of tears,
I would weep day and night
    for the wounds of my people.
If only I could flee for shelter in the desert,
    to leave my people
        and forget them—
    for they are all adulterers,
        a bunch of crooks.
They bend their tongues like bows
        to spew out lies;
    they are renowned in the land,
        but not for truth.
They go from bad to worse.
    They don’t know me!
        declares the Lord.
Be wary of your friends!
    Don’t trust your sibling!
    Every sibling is a cheater,
        and every friend traffics in slander.
One cheats the other;
    no one tells the truth;
        they train themselves to lie;
        they wear themselves out by doing wrong.
You live in a world of deceit, and in their deceit
    they refuse to know me,
        declares the Lord.
Therefore, the Lord of heavenly forces proclaims:
I’m going to refine and test them,
    for what else can I do with my people?
Their tongue is a lethal arrow;
    their words are deceitful.
They wish their neighbors well,
    but in their hearts plot their ruin.
Shouldn’t I punish them for this?
        declares the Lord;
    shouldn’t I avenge such a nation?
I will weep and wail for the mountains,
    and lament for the grazing lands in the wilderness.
They are dried up and deserted;
    no sound of the flocks is heard;
    no sign of birds or animals is seen;
        all have vanished.
I will reduce Jerusalem to ruins,
    a den for wild dogs.
I will make the towns of Judah a wasteland, without inhabitant.

Silence may be kept.

New Testament reading
John 6:60-71

Many of his disciples who heard this said, “This message is harsh. Who can hear it?”

Jesus knew that the disciples were grumbling about this and he said to them, “Does this offend you? What if you were to see the Human One going up where he was before? The Spirit is the one who gives life and the flesh doesn’t help at all. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and life. Yet some of you don’t believe.” Jesus knew from the beginning who wouldn’t believe and the one who would betray him. He said, “For this reason I said to you that none can come to me unless the Father enables them to do so.” At this, many of his disciples turned away and no longer accompanied him.

Jesus asked the Twelve, “Do you also want to leave?”

Simon Peter answered, “Lord, where would we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are God’s holy one.”

Jesus replied, “Didn’t I choose you twelve? Yet one of you is a devil.” He was speaking of Judas, Simon Iscariot’s son, for he, one of the Twelve, was going to betray him.

Silence may be kept.

Gospel canticle
The Magnificat (The Song of Mary)

Come, let us return to the Lord, for our God will richly pardon.

With all my heart I glorify the Lord!
In the depths of who I am I rejoice in God my savior.
He has looked with favor on the low status of his servant.
Look! From now on, everyone will consider me highly favored
because the mighty one has done great things for me.
Holy is his name.
He shows mercy to everyone,
from one generation to the next,
who honors him as God.
He has shown strength with his arm.
He has scattered those with arrogant thoughts and proud inclinations.
He has pulled the powerful down from their thrones
and lifted up the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things
and sent the rich away empty-handed.
He has come to the aid of his servant Israel,
remembering his mercy, 
just as he promised to our ancestors, 
to Abraham and to Abraham’s descendants forever.

Luke 1:46-55

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen.

Come, let us return to the Lord, for our God will richly pardon.

Brief silence

The Apostle’s Creed

Let us unite in this historic confession of the Christian faith:

I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by 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,
is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and 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.


Thanksgiving and intercession

Thanksgiving may be made for the day.
Intercessions are offered
for peace
for individuals and their needs


Lord, in your mercy
hear our prayer.

Silence may be kept.

Collect of the day

Almighty God,
you show to those who are in error the light of your truth,
that they may return to the way of righteousness:
grant to all those who are admitted
      into the fellowship of Christ's religion,
that they may reject those things
      that are contrary to their profession,
and follow all such things as are agreeable to the same;
through our Lord Jesus Christ,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.       

The Lord’s Prayer

Trusting in the compassion of God,
as our Savior taught us, so we 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.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours
now and forever.


May God our Redeemer show us compassion and love.