The Divine Hours

The Vespers Office

To Be Observed on the Hour or Half Hour Between 5 and 8 p.m

The Call to Prayer
It is a good thing to give thanks to the LORD* and to sing praises to your Name, O Most High; To tell of your loving-kindness early in the morning* and of your faithfulness in the night season.
Psalm 92:1-2
The Request for Presence
Hear my prayer, O God;* give ear to the words of my mouth.
Psalm 54:2
The Greeting
I will thank you, O LORD my God, with all my heart,* and glorify your Name for evermore.
Psalm 86:12
The Hymn
Now let the earth with joy resound And heaven the chant re-echo round; Nor heaven nor earth too high can raise The great Apostles'-glorious praise! Sickness and health your voice obey, At your command they go or stay; From sin's disease my soul restore, In good confirm me more and more. So when the world is at its end And Christ to judgment shall descend, May I be called those joys to see Prepared from all eternity. Praise to the Father, with the Son And Paraclete for ever one: To You, O holy Trinity Be praise for all eternity.
The Refrain for the Vespers Lessons
I will bless the LORD who gives me counsel;* my heart teaches me, night after night.
Psalm 16:7
The Vespers Psalm Show Me the Road That I Must Walk
My spirit faints within me;* my heart within me is desolate. I remember the time past; I muse upon all your deeds;* I consider the works of your hands. I spread out my hands to you;* my soul gasps to you like a thirsty land. O LORD, make haste to answer me; my spirit fails me;* do not hide your face from me or I shall be like those who go down to the Pit. Let me hear of your loving-kindness in the morning, for I put my trust in you;* show me the road that I must walk, for I lift up my soul to you.
Psalm 143:4-8
The Refrain
I will bless the LORD who gives me counsel;* my heart teaches me, night after night.
The Small Verse
Happy are the people whose strength is in you!* whose hearts are set on the pilgrim's way, For one day in your courts is better than a thousand in my own room,* and to stand at the threshold of the house of my God than to dwell in the tents of the wicked.
Psalm 84:4, 9
The Lord's Prayer
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be your Name. May your kingdom come, and 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 yours are the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.
The Prayer Appointed for the Week
Most loving Father, whose will it is for us to give thanks for all things, to fear nothing but the loss of you, and to cast all our care on you who cares for us: Preserve me from faithless fears and worldly anxieties, that no clouds of this mortal life may hide from me the light of that love which is immortal, and which you have manifested to us in your Son Jesus Christ our Lord; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
The Concluding Prayer of the Church
Almighty God, by your Holy Spirit you have made us one with your saints in heaven and on earth: grant that in my earthly pilgrimage I may always be supported by this fellowship of love and prayer, and know myself to be surrounded by their witness to your power and mercy. I ask this for the sake of Jesus Christ, in whom all my intercessions are acceptable through the Spirit, and who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen. Save me, O Lord, while I am awake, And keep me while I sleep. That I may wake in Christ and rest in peace.

The Divine Hours™ Copyright 2003 Phyllis Tickle and reprinted here with permission of Doubleday and Phyllis Tickle. Not for distribution without permission from the author.
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