Monday morning August 8

Tuesday morning
Sunday morning


Opening response

Lord, open our lips
and our mouth will proclaim your praise.

Prayer of thanksgiving

Blessed are you, Sovereign God, creator of all,
to you be glory and praise forever.
You founded the earth in the beginning
and the heavens are the work of your hands.
In the fullness of time you made us in your image,
and in these last days you have spoken to us
in your Son Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh.
As we rejoice in the gift of your presence among us
let the light of your love always shine in our hearts,
your Spirit ever renew our lives
and your praises ever be on our lips.
Blessed be God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Blessed be God forever.


See How Great a Flame Aspires

Charles Wesley
See how great a flame aspires,
Kindled by a spark of grace.
Jesus’ love the nations fires,
Sets the kingdoms on a blaze:
To bring fire on earth he came;
Kindled in some hearts it is;
O that all might catch the flame,
All partake the glorious bliss!

When he first the work begun,
Small and feeble was his day:
Now the word doth swiftly run;
Now it wins its widening way:
More and more it spreads and grows,
Ever mighty to prevail;
Sin’s strongholds it now overthrows,
Shakes the trembling gates of hell.

Sons of God, your Savior praise,
who the door hath opened wide;
He hath given the word of grace,
Jesus’ word is glorified;
Jesus, mighty to redeem,
He alone the work hath wrought;
Worthy is the work of him,
Him who spake a world from naught.

Saw ye not the cloud arise,
Little as a human hand?
Now it spreads along the skies,
Hangs over all the thirsty land.
Lo! the promise of a shower
Drops already from above;
But the Lord will shortly pour
All the spirit of his love.

Confession of sin

Come, Holy Spirit of God,
and search our hearts with the light of Christ.

Our Lord Jesus Christ said:
The first commandment is this:
‘Israel, listen! Our God is the one Lord, 
and you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, 
with all your being, with all your mind, 
and with all your strength.’

The second is this: ‘You must love your neighbor as yourself.’
No other commandment is greater than these.
All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commandments.

Amen. Lord, have mercy.

After a period of reflection

Come, let us return to the Lord and say:

Lord our God,
in our sin we have avoided your call.
Our love for you is like a morning cloud,
like the dew that goes away early.
Have mercy on us;
deliver us from judgment;
bind up our wounds and revive us;
in Jesus Christ our Lord.

cf Hosea 6

May almighty God,
who sent his Son into the world to save sinners,
bring us his pardon and peace, now and forever.

The Word of God

Psalm 80

Restore us, God! Make your face shine so that we can be saved!

Shepherd of Israel, listen!
    You, the one who leads Joseph as if he were a sheep.
    You, who are enthroned upon the winged heavenly creatures.
Show yourself before Ephraim, Benjamin, and Manasseh!
    Wake up your power!
    Come to save us!
Restore us, God!
    Make your face shine so that we can be saved!
Lord God of heavenly forces,
    how long will you fume against your people’s prayer?
You’ve fed them bread made of tears;
    you’ve given them tears to drink three times over!
You’ve put us at odds with our neighbors;
    our enemies make fun of us.
Restore us, God of heavenly forces!
    Make your face shine so that we can be saved!
You brought a vine out of Egypt.
    You drove out the nations and planted it.
You cleared the ground for it;
    then it planted its roots deep, filling the land.
The mountains were covered by its shade;
    the mighty cedars were covered by its branches.
It sent its branches all the way to the sea;
    its shoots went all the way to the Euphrates River.
So why have you now torn down its walls
    so that all who come along can pluck its fruit,
    so that any boar from the forest can tear it up,
    so that the bugs can feed on it?
Please come back, God of heavenly forces!
    Look down from heaven and perceive it!
Attend to this vine,
    this root that you planted with your strong hand,
    this son whom you secured as your very own.
It is burned with fire. It is chopped down.
    They die at the rebuke coming from you.
Let your hand be with the one on your right side—
    with the one whom you secured as your own—
    then we will not turn away from you!
Revive us so that we can call on your name.
    Restore us, Lord God of heavenly forces!
    Make your face shine so that we can be saved!

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.

Restore us, God! Make your face shine so that we can be saved!

Psalm prayer

Faithful shepherd of your people,
as we look for the light of your countenance,
restore in us the image of your glory
and graft us into the risen life of your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord.

Psalm 82

Lord God of heavenly forces, hear my prayer.

God takes his stand in the divine council;
    he gives judgment among the gods:
“How long will you judge unjustly
    by granting favor to the wicked? 
Give justice to the lowly and the orphan;
    maintain the right of the poor and the destitute!
Rescue the lowly and the needy.
    Deliver them from the power of the wicked!
They don’t know; they don’t understand;
    they wander around in the dark.
    All the earth’s foundations shake.
    I hereby declare, “You are gods,
    children of the Most High—all of you!
But you will die like mortals;
    you will fall down like any prince.”
Rise up, God! Judge the earth
    because you hold all nations in your possession!

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.

Lord God of heavenly forces, hear my prayer.

Psalm prayer

God our deliverer,
when the foundations are shaken
and justice has departed,
defend the poor and needy
and give your people strength to fight all wrong
in the name of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Old Testament reading
2 Samuel 3:12-39

Abner sent messengers to represent him to David and to say, “Who will own the land? Make a covenant with me, then I’ll help bring all Israel over to your side.”

“Good!” David replied. “I will make a covenant with you, but on one condition: don’t show yourself in my presence unless you bring Saul’s daughter Michal when you come to see me.”

Then David sent messengers to Saul’s son Ishbosheth. “Give me my wife Michal,” he demanded. “I became engaged to her at the cost of one hundred Philistine foreskins.”

Ishbosheth then sent for Michal and took her from her husband Paltiel, Laish’s son. Her husband went with her all the way to Bahurim, crying as he followed her.

“Go home!” Abner told him. So he went home.

Abner then sent word to Israel’s elders. “You’ve wanted David to be your king for some time now,” he said. “It’s time to act because the Lord has said about David: I will rescue my people Israel from the power of the Philistines and all their enemies through my servant David.”

Abner also spoke directly to the Benjaminites. He then went to inform David in person at Hebron regarding everything that all Israel and the house of Benjamin were willing to do.

When Abner, along with twenty others, reached David at Hebron, David threw a celebration for Abner and his men. Then Abner said to David, “Please let me get going so I can assemble all Israel for my master the king. Then they can make a covenant with you, and you will rule over everything your heart desires.” At that, David sent Abner off in peace.

Right then, David’s soldiers and Joab returned from a raid, bringing a great deal of loot with them. Abner was no longer with David in Hebron because David had sent him off in peace. When Joab and all the troops with him returned, Joab was told that Abner, Ner’s son, had come to the king and that David had sent him off in peace.

Joab went to the king and asked, “What have you done? Abner came to you here! Why did you send him off? Now he’s gotten away! Don’t you know the evil ways of Abner, Ner’s son? He came to trick you, to find out where you come and go, and to learn everything you do!”

Joab left David and sent messengers after Abner. They brought him back from the well at Sirah, but David didn’t know anything of this. When Abner returned to Hebron, Joab took him aside next to the gate to speak with him in private. But instead Joab stabbed Abner in the stomach, and he died for shedding the blood of Asahel, Joab’s brother.

When David heard about this later, he said, “I and my kingdom are forever innocent before the Lord concerning the shedding of the blood of Abner, Ner’s son. May it fall upon the head of Joab and his entire family tree! May Joab’s family never be without someone with a discharge or a skin disease, someone who uses a crutch, someone who dies by the sword, or someone who is hungry!”

So that is how Joab and his brother Abishai murdered Abner, because he killed their brother Asahel in the battle at Gibeon.

Then David ordered Joab and all the troops who were with him, “Tear your clothes and put on funeral clothes! Mourn for Abner!” King David himself walked behind the body. They buried Abner in Hebron. The king wept loudly at Abner’s grave. All the troops cried too. Then the king sang this funeral song for Abner:

“Should Abner have died like a fool dies?
Your hands weren’t bound,
    your feet weren’t chained,
    but you have fallen
    like someone falls before the wicked.”
Then the troops cried over Abner again.

Then all the soldiers came to urge David to eat something while it was still day, but David swore, “May God deal harshly with me and worse still if I eat bread or anything else before the sun goes down.” All the troops took notice of this and were pleased by it. Indeed, everything that the king did pleased them. So on that day all the troops and all Israel knew that it wasn’t the king’s idea to kill Abner, Ner’s son.

The king told his soldiers, “Don’t you know that a prince and a great man in Israel has fallen today? And today, though I am the anointed king, I am weak. These men, Zeruiah’s sons, are too strong for me. May the Lord repay the one who does evil according to the evil they did!”

Silence may be kept.

New Testament reading
Acts 6

About that time, while the number of disciples continued to increase, a complaint arose. Greek-speaking disciples accused the Aramaic-speaking disciples because their widows were being overlooked in the daily food service. The Twelve called a meeting of all the disciples and said, “It isn’t right for us to set aside proclamation of God’s word in order to serve tables. Brothers and sisters, carefully choose seven well-respected men from among you. They must be well-respected and endowed by the Spirit with exceptional wisdom. We will put them in charge of this concern. As for us, we will devote ourselves to prayer and the service of proclaiming the word.” This proposal pleased the entire community. They selected Stephen, a man endowed by the Holy Spirit with exceptional faith, Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus from Antioch, a convert to Judaism. The community presented these seven to the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them. God’s word continued to grow. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased significantly. Even a large group of priests embraced the faith.

Stephen, who stood out among the believers for the way God’s grace was at work in his life and for his exceptional endowment with divine power, was doing great wonders and signs among the people. Opposition arose from some who belonged to the so-called Synagogue of Former Slaves. Members from Cyrene, Alexandria, Cilicia, and Asia entered into debate with Stephen. However, they couldn’t resist the wisdom the Spirit gave him as he spoke. Then they secretly enticed some people to claim, “We heard him insult Moses and God.” They stirred up the people, the elders, and the legal experts. They caught Stephen, dragged him away, and brought him before the Jerusalem Council. Before the council, they presented false witnesses who testified, “This man never stops speaking against this holy place and the Law. In fact, we heard him say that this man Jesus of Nazareth will destroy this place and alter the customary practices Moses gave us.” Everyone seated in the council stared at Stephen, and they saw that his face was radiant, just like an angel’s.

Silence may be kept.

Gospel canticle
The Benedictus (The Song of Zechariah)

Lord, you have raised up a mighty savior for us in your servant David’s house.

Bless the Lord God of Israel
because he has come to help and has delivered his people.
He has raised up a mighty savior for us in his servant David’s house,
just as he said through the mouths of his holy prophets long ago.
He has brought salvation from our enemies
and from the power of all those who hate us.
He has shown the mercy promised to our ancestors,
and remembered his holy covenant,
the solemn pledge he made to our ancestor Abraham.
He has granted that we would be rescued
from the power of our enemies
so that we could serve him without fear,
in holiness and righteousness in God’s eyes,
for as long as we live.
You, child, will be called a prophet of the Most High,
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way.
You will tell his people how to be saved
through the forgiveness of their sins.
Because of our God’s deep compassion,
the dawn from heaven will break upon us,
to give light to those who are sitting in darkness
and in the shadow of death,
to guide us on the path of peace.”

Luke 1:68-79

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.

Lord, you have raised up a mighty savior for us in your servant David’s house.

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.


Intercession and thanksgiving

Prayers are offered
for the day and its tasks
for the world and its needs
for the Church and her life


Lord, in your mercy
hear our prayer.

Silence may be kept.

Collect of the day

God, you declare your almighty power
most chiefly in showing mercy and pity:
mercifully grant to us such a measure of your grace,
that we, running the way of your commandments,
may receive your gracious promises,
and be made partakers of your heavenly treasure;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.        

The Lord’s Prayer

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.


The Lord bless us, and preserve us from all evil, and keep us in eternal life.