Morning Prayer for the Third Wednesday of Lent

First, a Few Notes

**For some thoughts on how to use this liturgy well, go here. 

♰ indicates an invitation to make the sign of the cross

✙ indicates an invitation to make the sign of the cross, followed by bow

☦ indicates an invitation to make the sign of the cross, followed by a prostration

Words that are in italic font are addressed to saints and others who Scripture tells us are in the heavenly throne room with the Triune God, most often Mary (the Theotokos). Our communion with them is real, and addressing them is no worse than pausing one’s prayer to talk to another person. If anything, it’s better. Nevertheless, I know some still have scruples concerning this practice, and so the use of italic font makes passing over these prayers easier for those wanting to do so.

Let Us Pray

Remembrance of Baptism

♰ In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Glory to You, our God. Glory to You.

We Call Upon Our Lord

O God, you are my God, I seek you,
My soul thirsts for you;
My flesh faints for you,
As in a dry and weary land where there is no water.

Trisagion Prayers

✙ Holy God! Holy Mighty! Holy Immortal! Have mercy on us.
✙ Holy God! Holy Mighty! Holy Immortal! Have mercy on us.
✙ Holy God! Holy Mighty! Holy Immortal! Have mercy on us.

♰ Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

O Most Holy Trinity, have mercy on us!
O Lord, cleanse us from our sins!
O Master, pardon our transgressions
O Holy One, visit and heal our infirmities for Your Name’s sake.

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

♰ Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

Our Father, Who art in heaven,
hallowed be Thy Name.
Thy Kingdom come.
Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
and forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.

For Thine is the Kingdom and the power and the glory,
of the ♰ Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

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

Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

We are Called to Prayer (From Ambrose, 4th cent)

We must flee like deer to the fountains of water.
The thirst which David felt, let our soul to feel.

Hymn – Horatius Bonar, 19th century.

I heard the voice of Jesus say,
“Come unto me and rest;
lay down, O weary one, lay down
you head upon my breast.”
I came to Jesus as I was,
so weary, worn, and sad;
I found in him a resting place,
and he has made me glad.

I heard the voice of Jesus say,
“Behold, I freely give
the living water; thirsty one,
stoop down and drink, and live.”
I came to Jesus, and I drank
of that life-giving stream;
my thirst was quenched, my soul revived,
and now I live in him.

I heard the voice of Jesus say,
“I am this dark world’s light;
look unto me, your morn shall rise,
and all your days be bright.”
I looked to Jesus, and I found
in him my Star, my Sun;
and in that light of life I’ll walk
till traveling days are done.

♰ Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Trisagion Prayers

✙ Holy God! Holy Mighty! Holy Immortal! Have mercy on us.
✙ Holy God! Holy Mighty! Holy Immortal! Have mercy on us.
✙ Holy God! Holy Mighty! Holy Immortal! Have mercy on us.

♰ Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

O Most Holy Trinity, have mercy on us!
O Lord, cleanse us from our sins!
O Master, pardon our transgressions
O Holy One, visit and heal our infirmities for Your Name’s sake.

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

♰ Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

Our Father, Who art in heaven,
hallowed be Thy Name.
Thy Kingdom come.
Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
and forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.

For Thine is the Kingdom and the power and the glory,
of the ♰ Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

Remembrance of the Holy and Life-giving Cross

O Lord, save Your people and bless Your inheritance.
Grant victory unto faithful Christians over their enemies,
and by the power of Your Cross preserve Your commonwealth.

♰ Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.

O You Who was lifted up willingly upon the Cross,
bestow Your mercies upon the new community named after You, O Christ God;
gladden with Your power all faithful Christians,
granting them victory over enemies;
may they have as Your help the weapon of peace, the invincible trophy.

Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

O Awesome intercession that cannot be put to shame,
O good one,
disdain not our prayer;
O all-hymned Theotokos,
establish the commonwealth of the Church,
save the faithful Christians,
and grant unto them victory from heaven,
for you did bring forth God, O only blessed one.

Lord have mercy. Lord have mercy. Lord have mercy.
Lord have mercy. Lord have mercy. Lord have mercy.
Lord have mercy. Lord have mercy. Lord have mercy.

♰ Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Keep me as the apple of your eye;
Hide me in the shadow of your wings.

Morning Psalm – Psalm 5

Listen to my words, Lord,
consider my lament.
Hear my cry for help,
my King and my God,
for to you I pray.

In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice;
in the morning I lay my requests before you
and wait expectantly.
For you are not a God who is pleased with wickedness;
with you, evil people are not welcome.
The arrogant cannot stand
in your presence.
You hate all who do wrong;
you destroy those who tell lies.
The bloodthirsty and deceitful
you, Lord, detest.
But I, by your great love,
can come into your house;
in reverence I bow down
toward your holy temple.

Lead me, Lord, in your righteousness
because of my enemies—
make your way straight before me.
Not a word from their mouth can be trusted;
their heart is filled with malice.
Their throat is an open grave;
with their tongues they tell lies.
Declare them guilty, O God!
Let their intrigues be their downfall.
Banish them for their many sins,
for they have rebelled against you.
But let all who take refuge in you be glad;
let them ever sing for joy.
Spread your protection over them,
that those who love your name may rejoice in you.

Surely, Lord, you bless the righteous;
you surround them with your favor as with a shield.

♰ Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

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

♰ Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Encountering the Risen Christ

God is the Lord and has revealed Himself to us!
Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord!

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, and His steadfast love endures forever.
God is the Lord and has revealed Himself to us!
Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord!

All nations surrounded me; in the Name of the Lord, I withstood them.
God is the Lord and has revealed Himself to us!
Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord!

I shall not die, but live, and recount the deeds of the Lord.
God is the Lord and has revealed Himself to us!
Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord!

The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone.
This is the Lord’s doing and is marvelous in marvelous in our eyes.
God is the Lord and has revealed Himself to us!
Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord!

Remembrance for Wednesday – The Holy and Life-giving Cross

O Lord, save Your people,
And bless Your inheritance.
Grant victories to all Christians
Over their adversaries.
And by virtue of Your Cross,
Preserve Your habitation.

Having thy protection, O immaculate one, and being delivered from afflictions by thy prayers, we who are in every way guarded by the cross of they son do all magnify thee reverently as is due.

(Additional Psalms May be Read Here)

Short Verse – Monday (From The Magnificat)

My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.
For He has regarded the lowly state of His handmaiden; for behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed.

Preparing to Read the Scriptures

If today you hear God’s voice, do not harden your hearts.

Old Testament Reading

Jeremiah 8:4-7, 18-9:6

Epistle Reading

Romans 5:1-11

Gospel Reading

John 8:12-20

Prayer of Penitence: Psalm 51

Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Your lovingkindness; according to the multitude of Your tender mercies, blot out my transgressions.

Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.

For I acknowledge my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.

Against You, You only, have I sinned, and done this evil in Your sight that You may be found just when You speak, and blameless when You judge.

Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin my mother conceived me.

Behold, You desire truth in the inward parts, and in the hidden part You will make me to know wisdom.

Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

Make me to hear joy and gladness, that the bones which You have broken may rejoice.

Hide Your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities.

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

Do not cast me away from Your presence, and do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.

Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and uphold me with Your generous Spirit.

Then I will teach transgressors Your ways, and sinners shall be converted to You.

Deliver me from blood-guiltiness, O God, the God of my salvation, and my tongue shall sing aloud of Your righteousness.

O Lord, open my lips, and my mouth shall show forth Your praise.

For You do not desire sacrifice, or else I would give it; You do not delight in burnt offering.

The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, a broken and a contrite heart –– these, O God, You will not despise,

Do good in Your good pleasure to Zion; build the walls of Jerusalem.

Then You shall be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and

whole burnt offering; then they shall offer bulls on Your altar.

♰ Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

Prayer For Our Lenten Disciplines (From the Rural Life Prayerbook)

Dear, Lord, we are now in the holy season of Lent. We begin to realize anew that these are the days of salvation, these are the acceptable days. We know that we are all sinners. We know that sin destroys your life in us as a drought withers the leaves and chokes the life from the land, leaving an arid, dusty desert. Every day we are so often reminded in field and wood, in sky and stream, of your own boundless generosity to us. Help us to realize that you are never outdone in generosity, and that the least thing we do for you will be rewarded, full measure, pressed down, shaken together, and flowing over. Then we shall see how the desert can blossom, and the dry and wasted land can bring forth the rich, useful fruit that was expected of it from the beginning.

(At this point, time may be taken to remember saints of the Church or to read other devotional material.)

Honoring her with hymns, Let us magnify the Theotokos, the Mother of Light:
More honorable than the cherubim
And more glorious beyond compare than the seraphim!
Without corruption you gave birth to God the Word.
True Theotokos, we magnify you!

We Sing with Mary

My soul magnifies the Lord,
and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior.
For He has regarded the lowly state of His maidservant;
for behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed.

For He who is mighty has done great things for me,
and holy is His name.
And His mercy is on those who fear Him
from generation to generation.

He has shown strength with His arm;
he has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.

He has put down the mighty from their thrones,
and exalted the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich He has sent away empty.

He has helped His servant Israel,
in remembrance of His mercy,
as He spoke to our fathers,
to Abraham and to his seed forever.

Psalm of Praise: Psalm 147:1-11

Praise the Lord.

How good it is to sing praises to our God,
how pleasant and fitting to praise him!

The Lord builds up Jerusalem;
he gathers the exiles of Israel.
He heals the brokenhearted
and binds up their wounds.
He determines the number of the stars
and calls them each by name.
Great is our Lord and mighty in power;
his understanding has no limit.
The Lord sustains the humble
but casts the wicked to the ground.

Sing to the Lord with grateful praise;
make music to our God on the harp.

He covers the sky with clouds;
he supplies the earth with rain
and makes grass grow on the hills.
He provides food for the cattle
and for the young ravens when they call.

His pleasure is not in the strength of the horse,
nor his delight in the legs of the warrior;
the Lord delights in those who fear him,
who put their hope in his unfailing love.

♰ Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

Canticle: Te Deum

We praise you, O God,
We acclaim you as Lord,
All creation worships you,
Father everlasting

To you, all angels, all the powers of heaven,
The cherubim and seraphim, sing in endless praise:
“Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might,
Heaven and earth are full of your glory.”

The glorious company of apostles praise you.
The noble fellowship of prophets praise you.
The white-robed army of martyrs praise you.

Throughout the world the holy church acclaims you;
Father, of majesty unbounded,
Your true and only Son, worthy of all praise,
The Holy Spirit, advocate and guide.

You, Christ, are the King of glory,
The eternal Son of the Father.
When you took our flesh to set us free
You humbly chose the Virgin’s womb.

You overcame the sting of death
And opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers.

You are seated at God’s right and in glory.
We believe that you will come, and be our judge.

Come then, Lord, and help your people,
Bought with the price of your own blood,
And bring us with your saints
To glory everlasting

I will give thanks to You every day and praise Your Name forever and ever.
Lord, You have been our refuge from generation to generation!
I said, “Lord, have mercy on me. Heal my Soul, for I have sinned against You!”
Lord, I flee to You. Teach me to do Your will, for You are my God. For with You is the fountain of Life, and In Your light shall we see light. Continue Your lovingkindness to those who know You.

Vouchsafe, O Lord, to keep us this day without sin.
Blessed are You, O Lord, the God of our fathers, and praised and glorified is Your Name for ever. Amen.

Let Your mercy be upon us, O Lord, even as we have set our hope on You.
Blessed are You, O Lord; teach me Your statutes.
Blessed are You, O Master; make me to understand Your commandments.
Blessed are You, O Holy One; enlighten me with Your precepts.
Your mercy endures for ever, O Lord! Do not despise the works of Your hands!
To You belongs worship, to You belongs praise, to You belongs glory: to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

Lenten Prayer of St. Ephrem

O Lord and Master of my life,
Keep from me the spirit if indifference
And discouragement,
Lust of power, and idle chatter.

Instead, grant to me, Your servant,
The spirit of wholeness of being,
Humble-mindedness, patience, and love.

O Lord and King,
Grant me the grace to be aware of my sins
And not to judge my brother and sister,
For You are blessed,
Now and ever and forever. Amen.

Dismissal

Confirm, O God, the holy Christian Faith unto ages of ages! Amen.
Glory to You, O Christ, our God and our hope, glory to You!

Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

Lord, have mercy! Lord, have mercy! Lord, have mercy!

My soul is satisfied as with a rich feast,
And my mouth praises you with joyful lips
When I think of you on my bed,
And meditate on you in the watches of the night;
For you have been my help,
And in the shadow of your wings I sing for joy.

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