Evening Prayer 3.4.19, John & Charles Wesley, Founders of Methodism, 1791, 1788 (tr.)

To all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God.

Charles Wesley, John’s younger brother, was one of the great hymn-writers of all time, with 6000 expressions of profound and personal faith in Jesus Christ. Their father Samuel Wesley the Elder was also a priest and poet, and Charles was the father of Church composers Samuel the Younger and Samuel Sebastian Wesley. In the founding and development of Methodism, John’s preaching brought people to Christ, while Charles’ hymns taught them how to follow his teachings, and Methodism’s. His hymns are the Method in song. (artist unknown)

Their sound has gone out into all lands, and their message to the ends of the world. Psalm 19:4

INVITATORY AND PSALTER

O God, make speed to save us.
O Lord, make haste to help us.

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. Alleluia.

Hymn: O Gracious Light

O gracious Light,
pure brightness of the everliving Father in heaven,
O Jesus Christ, holy and blessed!
Now as we come to the setting of the sun,
and our eyes behold the vesper light,
we sing your praises, O God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
You are worthy at all times to be praised by happy voices,
O Son of God, O Giver of life,
and to be glorified through all the worlds.

Psalm 9

1 I will give thanks to you, O LORD, with my whole heart; *
I will tell of all your marvelous works.
2 I will be glad and rejoice in you; *
I will sing to your Name, O Most High.
3 When my enemies are driven back, *
they will stumble and perish at your presence.
4 For you have maintained my right and my cause; *
you sit upon your throne judging right.
5 You have rebuked the ungodly and destroyed the wicked; *
you have blotted out their name for ever and ever.
6 As for the enemy, they are finished, in perpetual ruin, *
their cities ploughed under, the memory of them perished;
7 But you, O LORD, are enthroned for ever; *
you have set up your throne for judgment.
8 It is you who rule the world with righteousness; *
you judge the peoples with equity.
9 The LORD will be a refuge for the oppressed, *
a refuge in time of trouble.
10 Those who know your Name will put their trust in you, *
for you never forsake those who seek you, O LORD.
11 Sing praise to the LORD who dwells in Zion; *
proclaim to the peoples the things the LORD has done.
12 The Avenger of blood will remember them; *
and will not forget the cry of the afflicted.
13 Have pity on me, O LORD; *
see the misery I suffer from those who hate me,
O you who lift me up from the gate of death;
14 So that I may tell of all your praises
and rejoice in your salvation *
in the gates of the city of Zion.
15 The ungodly have fallen into the pit they dug, *
and in the snare they set is their own foot caught.
16 The LORD is known by divine acts of justice; *
the wicked are trapped in the works of their own hands.
17 The wicked shall be given over to the grave, *
and also all the peoples that forget God.
18 For the needy shall not always be forgotten, *
and the hope of the poor shall not perish for ever.
19 Rise up, O LORD, let not the ungodly have the upper hand; *
let them be judged before you.
20 Put fear upon them, O LORD; *
let the ungodly know they are but mortal.

Psalm 15

1 LORD, who may dwell in your tabernacle? *
who may abide upon your holy hill?
2 Those who lead a blameless life and do what is right, *
who speak the truth from their heart.
3 There is no guile upon their tongue;
they do no evil to their friend; *
they do not heap contempt upon their neighbor.
4 In their sight the wicked are rejected, *
but they honor those who fear the LORD.
5 They have sworn to do no wrong *
and do not take back their word.
6 They do not give their money in hope of gain, *
nor do they take a bribe against the innocent.
7 Those who do these things *
shall never be overthrown.

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.

In the beginning was the Word. (UCdesign Print & Promote)

THE LESSON
John 1:1-18 (NRSV)

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.

There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.

He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.

And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth. (John testified to him and cried out, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me ranks ahead of me because he was before me.'”) From his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. The law indeed was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God. It is God the only Son, who is close to the Father’s heart, who has made him known.

Canticle: The Song of Simeon
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.

THE APOSTLES’ CREED

I believe in God,
the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ,
God’s only son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the power of 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,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he 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.

THE PRAYERS

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.

That this evening may be holy, good, and peaceful,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That your holy angels may lead us in paths of peace and goodwill,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That we may be pardoned and forgiven for our sins and offenses,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That there may be peace to your Church and to the whole world,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That we may depart this life in your faith and fear,
and not be condemned before the great judgment seat of Christ,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That we may be bound together by your Holy Spirit
in the communion of all your saints,
entrusting one another and all our life to Christ,
We entreat you, O Lord.

Of famous conversions that changed history, St. Paul’s was first and most important, but the Wesley brothers’ receiving of a new way of life profoundly affected British and American Christianity. John and Charles Wesley switched from one type of faith to another – from an intellectual, nominal, cultural belief to one that was evangelical, deeply felt and experienced with the senses (the “heart strangely warmed”). This is an engraving of a painting by Marshal Claxton, “John Wesley and His Friends at Oxford” (1858). It illustrates the impulse of most converts to gather with like-minded others, a “Holy Club” like the Wesleys and George Whitefield convened. Christ’s authentic Way invariably leads to community; those who discover an exciting truth (“Good News”) not only want to share it, they need the support and guidance of others. That’s why churches exist; God doesn’t need our worship, but we need to worship God. The Wesleys adapted and personalized Anglicanism, freeing the faith from Anglican class restrictions and democratizing it. Both Methodists and Anglicans know that the brothers “never left Anglicanism,” but it’s also true that Anglicans never threw them out, despite John’s massively significant breach of apostolic succession. He had to do it, given the frank distrust of the Anglican Establishment, but every rupture of the Body of Christ is like a new crucifixion. It’s good that today, both churches celebrate these great priests.

Collect of the Day: John and Charles Wesley, Priests, 1791, 1788

Lord God, you inspired your servants John and Charles Wesley with burning zeal for the sanctification of souls and endowed them with eloquence in speech and song: Kindle in your Church, we entreat you, such fervor, that those whose faith has cooled may be warmed, and those who have not known Christ may turn to him and be saved; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

For Peace

Almighty God, kindle, we pray, in every heart the true love of peace, and guide with your wisdom those who take counsel for the nations of the earth, that in tranquility your dominion may increase until the earth is filled with the knowledge of your love; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Anglican Cycle of Prayer: Diocese of Manicaland, Zimbabwe; Diocese of Toungoo, Myanmar; Diocese of Hawaii’i, USA

Monday Evening Prayer List: Thanksgivings

Clint’s birthday
We raised 100% of our 2019 budget
14th anniversary of the Daily Office Network
Our Evening Prayer podcast hosts and audience
Our subscribers: Asia-Pacific (600), North America (3300) and Oficios Diarios (1300)
New and ongoing donors, including pledgers who sustain us
Our mission partners in Haiti, Liberia, Brazil and on the Rosebud Reservation
Those who give to food banks, pantries and meal programs, and all who receive
Community Health Centers and Free Clinics

Please add your own prayers here.

A Collect for Mission

O God and Father of all, whom the whole heavens adore: Let the whole earth also worship you, all nations obey you, all tongues confess and bless you, and men and women everywhere love you and serve you in peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

A Prayer of St. Chrysostom

Almighty God, you have given us grace at this time with one accord to make our common supplication to you; and you have promised through your well-beloved Son that when two or three are gathered together in his Name you will be in the midst of them: Fulfil now, O Lord, our desires and petitions as may be best for us; granting us in this world knowledge of your truth, and in the age to come life everlasting. Amen.

Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with us all evermore. Amen. 2 Corinthians 13:14++

VIDEO: Jesus Lover of my soul (#699, Aberystwyth, Joseph Parry; Charles Wesley) – Maranatha Music, 2011

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