Thursday morning March 8

Friday morning
Wednesday morning


Opening response

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

Hear our voice, Lord, according to your faithful love,
according to your judgment give us life.

Prayer of thanksgiving

Blessed are you, God of compassion and mercy,
to you be praise and glory forever.
In the darkness of our sin,
your light breaks forth like the dawn
and your healing springs up for deliverance.
As we rejoice in the gift of your saving help,
sustain us with your bountiful Spirit
and open our lips to sing your praise.
Blessed be God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Blessed be God forever.

The night has passed, and the day lies open before us;
let us pray with one heart and mind.

Silence is kept.

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 forever.


Come, O thou greater than our heart

Charles Wesley
Come, O thou greater than our heart,
And make thy faithful mercies known;
The mind which was in thee impart,
Thy constant mind in us be shown.

O let us by thy cross abide,
Thee, only thee, resolved to know,
The Lamb for sinners crucified,
A world to save from endless woe.

Take us into thy people’s rest,
And we from our own works shall cease;
With thy meek Spirit arm our breast,
And keep our minds in perfect peace.

Jesus, for this we calmly wait;
O let our eyes behold thee near!
Hasten to make our heaven complete:
Appear, our glorious God, appear!

Confession of sin

When we cry out to the Lord in our distress,
he will save us from our desperate circumstances.

God will bring us out of darkness
and out of the shadow of death.

Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.

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

May the Father forgive us
by the death of his Son
and strengthen us
to live in the power of the Spirit
all our days.

Let us thank the Lord for his faithful love,
and his wondrous works for all people.

Let us offer thanksgiving sacrifices
and declare what God has done in songs of joy.

cf Psalm 107

The Word of God

Psalm 56

I trust in God; I won’t be afraid.

God, have mercy on me because I’m being trampled.
    All day long the enemy oppresses me.
My attackers trample me all day long
    because I have so many enemies.
Exalted one, whenever I’m afraid,
    I put my trust in you—
        in God, whose word I praise.
        I trust in God; I won’t be afraid.
    What can mere flesh do to me?
All day long they frustrate my pursuits;
    all their thoughts are evil against me.
They get together and set an ambush—
    they are watching my steps,
    hoping for my death.
Don’t rescue them for any reason!
    In wrath bring down the people, God!
You yourself have kept track of my misery.
    Put my tears into your bottle—
    aren’t they on your scroll already?
Then my enemies will retreat when I cry out.
    I know this because God is mine.
    God: whose word I praise.
        The Lord: whose word I praise.
I trust in God; I won’t be afraid.
    What can anyone do to me?
I will fulfill my promises to you, God.
    I will present thanksgiving offerings to you
    because you have saved my life from death,
    saved my feet from stumbling
        so that I can walk before God in the light of life.

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.

I trust in God; I won’t be afraid.

Psalm prayer

Faithful God,
your deliverance is nearer than we know;
free us from fear
and help us to find courage in your Word,
Jesus Christ our Lord.

Psalm 57

Exalt yourself, God, higher than heaven! Let your glory be over all the earth!

Have mercy on me, God;
    have mercy on me
    because I have taken refuge in you.
    I take refuge
    in the shadow of your wings
        until destruction passes by.
I call out to God Most High—
    to God, who comes through for me.
He sends orders from heaven and saves me,
    rebukes the one who tramples me.
        God sends his loyal love and faithfulness.
My life is in the middle of a pack of lions.
    I lie down among those who devour humans.
        Their teeth are spears and arrows;
        their tongues are sharpened swords.
Exalt yourself, God, higher than heaven!
    Let your glory be over all the earth!
They laid a net for my feet to bring me down;
    they dug a pit for me,
    but they fell into it instead!
My heart is unwavering, God—
    my heart is unwavering.
I will sing and make music.
    Wake up, my glory!
    Wake up, harp and lyre!
    I will wake the dawn itself!
I will give thanks to you,
my Lord,
    among all the peoples;
I will make music to you among the nations
    because your faithful love
        is as high as heaven;
    your faithfulness reaches the clouds.
Exalt yourself, God, higher than heaven!
    Let your glory be over all the earth!

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.

Exalt yourself, God, higher than heaven! Let your glory be over all the earth!

Psalm prayer

Tender God,
gentle protector in time of trouble,
pierce the gloom of despair
and give us, with all your people,
the song of freedom and the shout of praise;
in Jesus Christ our Lord.

Old Testament reading
Genesis 49:33-50:26

After he finished giving orders to his sons, he put his feet up on the bed, took his last breath, and joined his people. 

Joseph fell across his father’s body, wept over him, and kissed him. Joseph then ordered the physicians in his service to embalm his father, and the physicians embalmed Israel. They mourned for him forty days because that is the period required for embalming. Then the Egyptians mourned him for seventy days. After the period of mourning had passed, Joseph spoke to Pharaoh’s household: “If you approve my request, give Pharaoh this message: My father made me promise, telling me, ‘I’m about to die. You must bury me in the tomb I dug for myself in the land of Canaan.’ Now, let me leave and let me bury my father, and then I will return.”

Pharaoh replied, “Go, bury your father as you promised.”

So Joseph left to bury his father. All of Pharaoh’s servants went with him, together with the elder statesmen in his household and all of the elder statesmen in the land of Egypt, Joseph’s entire household, his brothers, and his father’s household. Only the children, flocks, and cattle remained in the land of Goshen. Even chariots and horsemen went with him; it was a huge collection of people. When they arrived at the threshing floor of Atad on the other side of the Jordan River, they observed a solemn, deeply sorrowful period of mourning. He grieved seven days for his father.

When the Canaanites who lived in the land saw the observance of grief on Atad’s threshing floor, they said, “This is a solemn observance of grief by the Egyptians.” Therefore, its name is Abel-mizraim. It is on the other side of the Jordan River. Israel’s sons did for him just as he had ordered. His sons carried him to the land of Canaan and buried him in the cave in the field of Machpelah near Mamre, which Abraham had purchased as burial property from Ephron the Hittite. Then Joseph returned to Egypt, he, his brothers, and everyone who left with him to bury his father.

When Joseph’s brothers realized that their father was now dead, they said, “What if Joseph bears a grudge against us, and wants to pay us back seriously for all of the terrible things we did to him?” So they approached Joseph and said, “Your father gave orders before he died, telling us, ‘This is what you should say to Joseph. “Please, forgive your brothers’ sins and misdeeds, for they did terrible things to you. Now, please forgive the sins of the servants of your father’s God.”’” Joseph wept when they spoke to him.

His brothers wept too, fell down in front of him, and said, “We’re here as your slaves.”

But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I God? You planned something bad for me, but God produced something good from it, in order to save the lives of many people, just as he’s doing today. Now, don’t be afraid. I will take care of you and your children.” So he put them at ease and spoke reassuringly to them.

Thus Joseph lived in Egypt, he and his father’s household. Joseph lived 110 years and saw Ephraim’s grandchildren. The children of Machir, Manasseh’s son, were also born on Joseph’s knees. Joseph said to his brothers, “I’m about to die. God will certainly take care of you and bring you out of this land to the land he promised to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob.” Joseph made Israel’s sons promise, “When God takes care of you, you must bring up my bones out of here.” Joseph died when he was 110 years old. They embalmed him and placed him in a coffin in Egypt.

Silence may be kept.

New Testament reading
Hebrews 7:1-10

This Melchizedek, who was king of Salem and priest of the Most High God, met Abraham as he returned from the defeat of the kings, and Melchizedek blessed him. Abraham gave a tenth of everything to him. His name means first “king of righteousness,” and then “king of Salem,” that is, “king of peace.” He is without father or mother or any family. He has no beginning or end of life, but he’s like God’s Son and remains a priest for all time.

See how great Melchizedek was! Abraham, the father of the people, gave him a tenth of everything he captured. The descendants of Levi who receive the office of priest have a commandment under the Law to collect a tenth of everything from the people who are their brothers and sisters, though they also are descended from Abraham. But Melchizedek, who isn’t related to them, received a tenth of everything from Abraham and blessed the one who had received the promises. Without question, the less important person is blessed by the more important person. In addition, in one case a tenth is received by people who die, and in the other case, the tenth is received by someone who continues to live, according to the record. It could be said that Levi, who received a tenth, paid a tenth through Abraham because he was still in his ancestor’s body when Abraham paid the tenth to Melchizedek.

Silence may be kept.

Gospel canticle
The Benedictus (The Song of Zechariah)

Happy are people who are hungry and thirsty for righteousness, because they will be fed until they are full.

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.

Happy are people who are hungry and thirsty for righteousness, because they will be fed until they are full.

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 may be offered for:

the day and its tasks
the world and its needs
the church and her life

Prayers may include the following concerns:

Those preparing for baptism and confirmation
Those serving through leadership
Those looking for forgiveness
Those misled by the false gods of this present age
All who are hungry

Other intercessions and supplications may be offered as the Holy Spirit leads.


In faith we pray
We pray to you, our God.

Silence may be kept.

Collect of the day

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 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

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.