2023 Prayer Vigil
A prayer vigil is a sacred time of prayer and contemplation. It involves spending an extended period of time in focused prayer and meditation, usually in a quiet and contemplative setting. The purpose of the vigil intended to deepen one's spiritual connection with the divine, seek guidance and strength, and offer gratitude and praise.
During a prayer vigil, participants may engage in various forms of prayer, including recitation of sacred texts, silent meditation, or communal prayer. Below is a selection of Canticles, Psalms, verses, and prayers to read and meditate over.
A Meditation for the All-Night Vigil
Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsem’ane, and he said to them, “Sit here, while I go yonder and pray.” And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zeb’edee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.” And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt.”
And he came to the disciples and found them sleeping; and he said to Peter, “So, could you not watch with me one hour? Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation; the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Again, for the second time, he went away and prayed, “My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, thy will be done.” And again he came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were heavy. So, leaving them again, he went away and prayed for the third time, saying the same words. Then he came to the disciples and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and taking your rest? Behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Rise, let us be going; see, my betrayer is at hand.” Matthew 26: 36-46
Here, O my Lord, I see thee face to face;
here would I touch and handle things unseen;
here grasp with firmer hand eternal grace,
and all my weariness upon thee lean.
Here would I feed upon the Bread of God;
here drink with thee the royal Wine of heaven;
here would I lay aside each earthly load,
here taste afresh the calm of sin forgiven.
I have no help but thine; nor do I need
another arm save thine to lean upon;
it is enough, my Lord, enough indeed;
my strength is in thy might, thy might alone.
Mine is the sin, but thine the righteousness;
mine is the guilt, but thine the cleansing Blood.
Here is my robe, my refuge, and my peace;
thy Blood, thy righteousness, O Lord, my God.
Horatius Bonar (1808-1889)
A Song of Hosea - Hosea 6:1-3
Come, let us return to our God, *
who has torn us and will heal us.
God has struck us and will bind up our wounds, *
after two days revive us,
On the third day restore us, *
that in God's presence we may live.
Let us humble ourselves, let us strive to know the Lord, *
whose justice dawns like morning light,
its dawning as sure as the sunrise.
God's justice will come to us like a shower, *
like spring rains that water the earth.
The First Song of Isaiah Ecce Deus Isaiah 12:2-6
Surely, it is God who saves me; *
I will trust in him and not be afraid.
For the Lord is my stronghold and my sure defense, *
and he will be my Savior.
Therefore you shall draw water with rejoicing *
from the springs of salvation.
And on that day you shall say, *
Give thanks to the Lord and call upon his Name;
Make his deeds known among the peoples; *
see that they remember that his Name is exalted.
Sing praises of the Lord, for he has done great things, *
and this is known in all the world.
Cry aloud, inhabitants of Zion, ring out your joy, *
for the great one in the midst of you is the Holy One of Israel.
The Third Song of Isaiah Surge, illuminare - Isaiah 60:1-3, 11a, 14c, 18-19
Arise, shine, for your light has come, *
and the glory of the Lord has dawned upon you.
For behold, darkness covers the land; *
deep gloom enshrouds the peoples.
But over you the Lord will rise, *
and his glory will appear upon you.
Nations will stream to your light, *
and kings to the brightness of your dawning.
Your gates will always be open; *
by day or night they will never be shut.
They will call you, The City of the Lord, * The Zion of the Holy One of Israel.
Violence will no more be heard in your land, *
ruin or destruction within your borders.
You will call your walls, Salvation, *
and all your portals, Praise.
The sun will no more be your light by day; *
by night you will not need the brightness of the moon.
The Lord will be your everlasting light, *
and your God will be your glory.
David's Song of Thanks - 1 Chronicles 16:8-14, 23-27,36
Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name; *
make known his deeds among the peoples!
Sing to him, sing praises to him; *
tell of all his wondrous works!
Glory in his holy name; *
let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice!
Seek the Lord and his strength; *
seek his presence continually!
Remember the wondrous works that he has done, *
his miracles and the judgments he uttered,
O offspring of Israel his servant, *
children of Jacob, his chosen ones!
He is the Lord our God; *
his judgments are in all the earth.
Sing to the Lord, all the earth! *
Tell of his salvation from day to day.
Declare his glory among the nations, *
his marvelous works among all the peoples!
For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised, *
and he is to be feared above all gods.
For all the gods of the peoples are worthless idols, *
but the Lord made the heavens.
Splendor and majesty are before him; *
strength and joy are in his place.
Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, *
from everlasting to everlasting!”
A Song of Jonah - Jonah 2:2-7,9
I called to you, O God, out of my distress, and you answered me; *
out of the belly of Sheol I cried, and you heard my voice.
You cast me into the deep, into the heart of the seas, *
and the flood surrounded me;
all your waves and billows passed over me.
Then I said, "I am driven away from your sight; *
how shall I ever look again upon your holy temple?"
The waters closed in over me, the deep was round about me; *
weeds were wrapped around my head at the roots of the mountains.
I went down to the land beneath the earth, *
yet you brought up my life from the depths, O God.
As my life was ebbing away, I remembered you, O God, *
and my prayer came to you, into your holy temple.
With the voice of thanksgiving, I will sacrifice to you; *
what I have vowed I will pay, for deliverance belongs to the Lord!
The Second Song of Isaiah Quaerite Dominum - Isaiah 55:6-11
Seek the Lord while he wills to be found; *
call upon him when he draws near.
Let the wicked forsake their ways *
and the evil ones their thoughts;
And let them turn to the Lord, and he will have compassion, *
and to our God, for he will richly pardon.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, *
nor your ways my ways, says the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth, *
so are my ways higher than your ways,
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
For as rain and snow fall from the heavens *
and return not again, but water the earth,
Bringing forth life and giving growth, *
seed for sowing and bread for eating,
So is my word that goes forth from my mouth; *
it will not return to me empty;
But it will accomplish that which I have purposed, *
and prosper in that for which I sent it.
A Song of Penitence Kyrie Pantokrator - Prayer of Manasseh 1-2, 4, 6-7, 11-15
O Lord and Ruler of the hosts of heaven, *
God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob,
and of all their righteous offspring:
You made the heavens and the earth, *
with all their vast array.
All things quake with fear at your presence; *
they tremble because of your power.
But your merciful promise is beyond all measure; *
it surpasses all that our minds can fathom.
O Lord, you are full of compassion, *
long-suffering, and abounding in mercy.
You hold back your hand; *
you do not punish as we deserve.
In your great goodness, Lord,
you have promised forgiveness to sinners, *
that they may repent of their sin and be saved.
And now, O Lord, I bend the knee of my heart, *
and make my appeal, sure of your gracious goodness.
I have sinned, O Lord, I have sinned, *
and I know my wickedness only too well.
Therefore I make this prayer to you: *
Forgive me, Lord, forgive me.
Do not let me perish in my sin, *
nor condemn me to the depths of the earth.
For you, O Lord, are the God of those who repent, *
and in me you will show forth your goodness.
Unworthy as I am, you will save me,
in accordance with your great mercy, *
and I will praise you without ceasing all the days of my life.
For all the powers of heaven sing your praises, *
and yours is the glory to ages of ages. Amen.
The Beatitudes - Matthew 5:3-10
Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn,
for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek,
for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger
and thirst after righteousness,
for they shall be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful,
for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart,
for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they shall be called children of God.
Blessed are those who suffer persecution
for righteousness' sake,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Rejoice and be glad
for great is your reward in heaven.
1 The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.
1 Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.[a]
2 I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.”
3 Surely he will save you
from the fowler’s snare
and from the deadly pestilence.
4 He will cover you with his feathers,
and under his wings you will find refuge;
his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
5 You will not fear the terror of night,
nor the arrow that flies by day,
6 nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,
nor the plague that destroys at midday.
7 A thousand may fall at your side,
ten thousand at your right hand,
but it will not come near you.
8 You will only observe with your eyes
and see the punishment of the wicked.
9 If you say, “The LORD is my refuge,”
and you make the Most High your dwelling,
10 no harm will overtake you,
no disaster will come near your tent.
11 For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways;
12 they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
13 You will tread on the lion and the cobra;
you will trample the great lion and the serpent.
14 “Because he[b] loves me,” says the LORD, “I will rescue him;
I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.
15 He will call on me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble,
I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With long life I will satisfy him
and show him my salvation.”
1 Come, let us sing for joy to the LORD;
let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
2 Let us come before him with thanksgiving
and extol him with music and song.
3 For the LORD is the great God,
the great King above all gods.
4 In his hand are the depths of the earth,
and the mountain peaks belong to him.
5 The sea is his, for he made it,
and his hands formed the dry land.
6 Come, let us bow down in worship,
let us kneel before the LORD our Maker;
7 for he is our God
and we are the people of his pasture,
the flock under his care.
Today, if only you would hear his voice,
8 “Do not harden your hearts as you did at Meribah,
as you did that day at Massah in the wilderness,
9 where your ancestors tested me;
they tried me, though they had seen what I did.
10 For forty years I was angry with that generation;
I said, ‘They are a people whose hearts go astray,
and they have not known my ways.’
11 So I declared on oath in my anger,
‘They shall never enter my rest.’”
1 I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
where does my help come from?
2 My help comes from the LORD,
the Maker of heaven and earth.
3 He will not let your foot slip—
he who watches over you will not slumber;
4 indeed, he who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
5 The LORD watches over you—
the LORD is your shade at your right hand;
6 the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.
7 The LORD will keep you from all harm—
he will watch over your life;
8 the LORD will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.
Seek the Lord
Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.
“I revealed myself to those who did not ask for me; I was found by those who did not seek me. To a nation that did not call on my name, I said, ‘Here am I, here am I.
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
Do Not Fear
(Did you know this, or a variation appears in the bible 365 times)
After this, the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.”
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again.
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?
Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The Lord, the Lord himself, is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation.”
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
1 Samuel 12:16
“Now then, stand still and see this great thing the Lord is about to do before your eyes!
Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.
He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it
was completely calm.
Trust in the Lord
2 Samuel 7:28
Sovereign Lord, you are God! Your covenant is trustworthy, and you have promised these good things to your servant.
Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.
4 In you our ancestors put their trust;
they trusted and you delivered them.
5 To you they cried out and were saved;
in you they trusted and were not put to shame.
But I trust in you, Lord; I say, “You are my God.”
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Prayers from Book of Common Prayer
Keep watch, dear Lord, with those who work, or watch, or weep this night, and give your angels charge over those who sleep. Tend the sick, Lord Christ; give rest to the weary, bless the dying, soothe the suffering, pity the afflicted, shield the joyous; and all for your love's sake.
Eternal God, in whose perfect kingdom no sword is drawn but the sword of righteousness, no strength known but the strength of love: So mightily spread abroad your Spirit, that all peoples may be gathered under the banner of the Prince of Peace, as children of one Father; to whom be dominion and glory, now and forever. Amen
For Peace Among the Nations
Almighty God our heavenly Father, guide the nations of the world into the way of justice and truth, and establish among them that peace which is the fruit of righteousness, that they may become the kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
For the Future of the Human Race
O God our heavenly Father, you have blessed us and given us dominion over all the earth: Increase our reverence before the mystery of life; and give us new insight into your purposes for the human race, and new wisdom and determination in making provision for its future in accordance with your will; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
In Times of Conflict
O God, you have bound us together in a common life. Help us, in the midst of our struggles for justice and truth, to confront one another without hatred or bitterness, and to work together with mutual forbearance and respect; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Prayers for Ukraine
God of peace and justice,
we pray for the people of Ukraine today.
We pray for peace and the laying down of weapons.
We pray for all those who fear for tomorrow,
that your Spirit of comfort would draw near to them.
We pray for those with power over war or peace,
for wisdom, discernment and compassion to guide their decisions.
Above all, we pray for all your precious children, at risk and in fear,
that you would hold and protect them.
We pray in the name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace.
With dismay and concern we bring before you the military intervention in Ukraine.
In a world you made for peace and flourishing, we lament the use of armed force.
We mourn every casualty of this conflict, every precious life extinguished by war.
We pray comfort for those who grieve and those who are fearful.
Hear our longing that leaders and nations will honor the worth of all people
by having the courage to resolve conflict through dialogue.
May all our human failings be transformed by your wonderful grace and goodness.
We ask this in the name of Christ, the author of peace and sustainer of Creation.
Prayers for Sri Lanka
Pray for the people of Sri Lanka who have been stretched beyond their capacity to cope in the past few weeks, who are tired, frustrated, and bitter.
Pray for the current situation as it has become increasingly volatile with public unrest that has led to these protests.
Pray for protection for those who are protesting silently with the right intentions and with more protests happening around the country in the next couple of days, continue to pray for them.
Pray that the powers that be will hear these important voices of the common man. Pray that it’s not used for political gain by those with malicious intentions.
Pray for economic improvement and for resilience for Sri Lankan people, so that they may continue to push through the next few months/years as the government seeks answers for these losses.
Pray for God to pour out His mercy on the people of this country and to bless Sri Lanka with the resources they need to help the country recover.
Pray for the Church in Sri Lanka to understand her role and rise above the situation to be a beacon of hope to the people who continue to look for hope in these dark times.
We cry out to God trusting that He will deliver His people in Sri Lanka from the depths of darkness for where can we go from his light?
Psalm 139: 7- 12
Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there.
If I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.
If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me
and the light become night around me,”
even the darkness will not be dark to you.
The night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to you.
The Serenity Prayer by the American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr
God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.
A Prayer attributed to St. Francis
Lord, make us instruments of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let us sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is discord, union;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.
Grant that we may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.