Prayers for the 2nd Week after the Epiphany (January 14-20, 2018)

Watchword for the Week
How weighty to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Psalm 139:17

Gracious God, from the busyness of our day we pause to remember that we are yours.
We seek to make you a part of our every moment.
Magnificent are your ways, and gracious is your will.
May our lives be lived in response to your freely given love. 

Psalm 139:1-6,13-18

1 O Lord, you have searched me and known me.
2 You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from far away.
3 You search out my path and my lying down, and are acquainted with all my ways.
4 Even before a word is on my tongue, O Lord, you know it completely.
5 You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is so high that I cannot attain it. 13 For it was you who formed my inward parts; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; that I know very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes beheld my unformed substance. In your book were written all the days that were formed for me, when none of them as yet existed.
17 How weighty to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them!
18 I try to count them—they are more than the sand; I come to the end —I am still with you.

Confession of Sin (from the MBW Liturgy for Pentecost)

Interceding Spirit, we do not know how to pray as we ought; but you understand our deepest needs and present them with love to the Father. Lead us now to repentance and confession.

Spirit of holiness, we confess that we are a sinful people. In thought, word, and deed, we quench the fire of your love and dissipate the power of your presence. You long to restore us to the image of God, but we let it tarnish as we nurse selfish attitudes. You nurture unity, but we sow discord. You come to make our bodies your temples, but we desecrate them. You seek to have all your creations to live in peace, but we thrive on division. We dishonor your good intentions for us. Forgive us, merciful Spirit. 

My friends, God is faithful and just. God will not remember your sins. Rejoice, be glad, and give God praise.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. AMEN. 

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture. If you do not have access to the Daily Texts you can view the online version at http://www.moravian.org/todays-daily-text/daily-text/. As you read the texts pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today. Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world. When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

Lord God, Father, hear us as 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.
Save us from the time of trial and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and forever. Amen.

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 en-lighten the nations,
And the glory of your people Israel.
The work of the Creator is visible.
Let us respond with praise.
The example of Jesus’ love for all people is apparent.
Let us respond with obedience.
The wind of the Spirit is blowing
Let us respond by yielding to its leading.
The word of God is calling.
Let us worship in spirit and in truth.
Praise, glory, wisdom, thanksgiving, honor, power, and might,
Belong to our God forever and ever! Amen!

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Prayers for the 1st Week after the Epiphany of our Lord (January 7-13, 2018)

Ascribe to the Lord the glory of his name; worship the Lord in holy splendor. Psalm 29:2

Gracious God, from the busyness of our day we pause to remember that we are yours.
We seek to make you a part of our every moment.
Magnificent are your ways, and gracious is your will.
We come now to give you worship and praise. 

Psalm 29:1-11
1 Ascribe to the Lord, O heavenly beings,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength. 
2 Ascribe to the Lord the glory of his name;
worship the Lord in holy splendor.
3 The voice of the Lord is over the waters;
the God of glory thunders, the Lord, over mighty waters.
4 The voice of the Lord is powerful; 
the voice of the Lord is full of majesty.
5 The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars;
the Lord breaks the cedars of Lebanon. 
6 He makes Lebanon skip like a calf, and Sirion like a young wild ox.
7 The voice of the Lord flashes forth flames of fire.
8 The voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness;
the Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.
9 The voice of the Lord causes the oaks to whirl, and strips the forest bare;
and in his temple all say, “Glory!”

10 The Lord sits enthroned over the flood;
the Lord sits enthroned as king forever. 
11 May the Lord give strength to his people!
May the Lord bless his people with peace!

Confession of Sin

Let us in penitence and humility confess our sins before the throne of grace, praying together:
We confess to you, loving God, that our daily lives do not always honor you. You deserve our endless praise, but we often forget that you are there. You deserve our tithes, but we give you what is left over. You deserve our moral purity, but we forget your commandments. You deserve our undivided attention, but we give you a passing glance. You ask that we live lives of grace and righteousness, but we live by debt and obligation. Your will is that we live in peace with one another, but we live within emotional and physical barriers that separate us from those different than us. We want to be closer to you, so accept our humble confession of sin and our desire to begin a new life today. 

My friends, God is faithful and just. God will not remember your sins. Rejoice, be glad, and give God praise.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. AMEN.

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture. If you do not have access to the Daily Texts you can view the online version at http://www.moravian.org/todays-daily-text/daily-text/. As you read the texts pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today. Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world. When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

Lord God, Father, hear us as we pray:
Creator of all humanity, we call you Holy, and seek to worship you all the days of our lives. We pray that the ways of your heavenly kingdom may be made real in the world that surrounds us. May the bread that we need for today be made available for us and all who are hungry; and may you forgive us, just as we are able to forgive those who have sinned against us. In the time of moral testing, may we listen first for your voice calling to us, instead of the call of the world. This world, and all that is in it, always has been and always will be yours, help us to lose ourselves to you and your kingdom. Help us to find who we truly are as we walk in your light. Amen. 

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 en-lighten the nations,
And the glory of your people Israel.
The work of the Creator is visible.
Let us respond with praise.
The example of Jesus is apparent.
Let us respond with obedience.
The wind of the Spirit is blowing
Let us respond by yielding to its leading.
The word of God is calling.
Let us worship in spirit and in truth.
Praise, glory, wisdom, thanksgiving, honor, power, and might,
Belong to our God forever and ever! Amen!
Let us worship in spirit and in truth.
Praise, glory, wisdom, thanksgiving, honor, power, and might,
Belong to our God forever and ever! Amen!

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Prayers for the 1st week after Christmas (December 31, 2017-January 7, 2018)

Thank you so very much for using this blog for your prayer discipline.  I am honored that you are using it.  As I look to the new year, I continue to want to improve how these prayers can help you.  This blog can receive as few as 10 hits in a day, up to 130.  But I have no idea how they are used, and how frequently people come to the site.  I would very much appreciate hearing from you!  Where are you located, how do you use these prayers, and how often to you visit the site?  Please drop me an email at rtrevchris@gmail.com . I would very much appreciate your input.

Watchword for the Week – But when the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, in order to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as children. Galatians 4:4,5

Blessed be the Lord God of Israel.
For he has looked favorably on his people and redeemed them. 

Psalm 148
Praise God! Praise God from the heavens;
praise God in the heights!
Praise God, all you angels of God;
praise God, all you host of heaven!
Praise God, you sun and moon;
praise God, all you shining stars!
Praise God, you highest heavens,
and you waters above the heavens!
Let them praise the name of God,
for God commanded and they were created.
God established them forever and ever;
God fixed their bounds, which cannot be passed.
Praise God from the earth,
you sea monsters and all deeps,
fire and hail, snow and frost,
stormy wind fulfilling God’s command!
Mountains and all hills,
fruit trees and all cedars!
Beast of the forest and all cattle,
crawling things and flying birds!
Rulers of the earth and all peoples,
   nobles and all leaders of the earth!
Young men and women alike,
old and young together!
Let them praise the name of the Sovereign, whose name alone is exalted;
whose glory is above earth and heaven.
God has raised up a horn for the people,
   and praise for all the faithful,
for the people of Israel who are close to God.
Praise be to God!

Confession of Sin (from the MBW Liturgy for New Year page 143-144, used by permission of the Interprovincial Board of Communication)

Let us in penitence and humility confess our sins before the throne of grace, praying together:
God of mercy, as we begin this new year, we confess our weaknesses, failures, and transgressions:
Our broken vows,
Our slackness and misuse of time and opportunity,
Our selfishness and our love of ease,
Our unkindness and indifference,
Our self-indulgence and our pleasure taken at the expense of others,
Our moments when we have not be true to ourselves,
Our lack of faith in your providence.
For these sins of commission and omission, have mercy upon us. 

Lord Jesus Christ, we remember in your presence our losses and griefs, our hopes and treasures which the departing year has carried away, the disappointments we have known, the friends who are no longer with us and whose steps we shall hear no more. We pray for grace to cherish the spirit which brings good out of evil, and which prevents adversities and sorrows from embittering our hearts. Give us comfort and a deep sense of your goodness in every circumstance of life, and when, despite our good intensions, we fail, be our strength and stay.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be.  World without end, AMEN. 

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture.  Pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today.  Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world.  When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

Lord God, Father, hear us as we pray the prayer that you taught your disciples:
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is 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 forever. Amen. 

The message of the Christmas season is that God has shown his love for us in that while we were yet sinners he sent us his Son, Jesus Christ, to be the forgiveness of our sins.
May our thanks for this most precious gift be shown in the conduct of our lives this coming year.
God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life. Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.
We give thanks and praise for this most precious gift.
As we look forward to the year that is ahead, we have faith that God will supply every need of ours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.
God will fail us never. In our dwelling place God will endure forever. In our mission to serve, God will sustain us always. Amen.

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Prayers for Christmas (December 25-30, 2017)

(Portions of this prayer contain excerpts from the
Moravian Book of Worship Liturgy for Christmas, pages 59-63.
Used by permission of the Interprovincial Board of Communication.)

The Watchword for the Week:

The Mighty One has done great things for me,
and holy is his name. Luke 1:49

God so loved the world that he gave his only Son,
so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.
Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world,
but in order that the world might be saved through him.

Luke 1:46-55
46 And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord,
47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant. Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
49 for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name.
50 His mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation.
51 He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts.
52 He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly;
53 he has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty.
54 He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy,
55 according to the promise he made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.”

Invitation to Confession

God has done marvelous things for us, but often the conduct of our lives does not reflect the acceptance of those gifts. Let us acknowledge our sin and our need for a Savior.

Confession of Sin:
Saving God, we confess to you our sinfulness. Greed and selfishness often influence our decisions instead of loving you as we ought. Too often we are indifferent to those for whom this season is not a time of joy. You call us to a simple life, but we engage in extravagance, which directs our hearts away from you and from those in need. Forgive us and renew us, gracious Savior. 

God has reached into the darkness of our lives to give us hope for living a new life. Accept the gift of God’s grace today and be transformed.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end, AMEN. 

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture.  Pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today.  Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world.  When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, hear us.
Holy Child of Mary, Savior of the World,
reveal yourself to us.
Help us and save us through the totality of your life:

By your holy incarnation,
By your human birth,
By your pure and blameless childhood,
By your obedience and diligence,
By your humility, meekness, and patience,
By your extreme poverty,
By your grief and sorrows,
By your prayers and tears,
By your having been despised and rejected,
By your cross and suffering,
By your death and burial,
By your triumphant resurrection and ascension.

We marvel, Gracious God, at the mystery of your incarnation.
Why would you choose to be born into poverty, with a family far from home, and seemingly ill prepared for your arrival?
Why would you choose a forgotten village in a forgotten corner of the world?
Why would you choose to be born in a cave full of cattle, and take a manger for your crib?
Could it be that through this unlikely birth you would reach out and choose even us to be your children?
Could it be that you would reach out and choose even me?
God has brought down the powerful from their thrones,
and lifted up the lowly.
The Mighty One has done great things for me,
and holy is his name. Thanks be to God! Amen.

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Prayers for the 4th Week of Advent and Christmas (December 24-30, 2017)

(Portions of this prayer contain excerpts from the
Moravian Book of Worship Liturgy for Christmas, pages 59-63.
Used by permission of the Interprovincial Board of Communication.)

The Watchword for the Week:

The Mighty One has done great things for me,
and holy is his name. Luke 1:49

God so loved the world that he gave his only Son,
so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.
Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world,
but in order that the world might be saved through him.

Luke 1:46-55
46 And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord,
47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant. Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
49 for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name.
50 His mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation.
51 He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts.
52 He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly;
53 he has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty.
54 He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy,
55 according to the promise he made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.”

Invitation to Confession

God has done marvelous things for us, but often the conduct of our lives does not reflect the acceptance of those gifts. Let us acknowledge our sin and our need for a Savior.

Confession of Sin:
Saving God, we confess to you our sinfulness. Greed and selfishness often influence our decisions instead of loving you as we ought. Too often we are indifferent to those for whom this season is not a time of joy. You call us to a simple life, but we engage in extravagance, which directs our hearts away from you and from those in need. Forgive us and renew us, gracious Savior. 

God has reached into the darkness of our lives to give us hope for living a new life. Accept the gift of God’s grace today and be transformed.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end, AMEN. 

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture.  Pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today.  Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world.  When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, hear us.
Holy Child of Mary, Savior of the World,
reveal yourself to us.
Help us and save us through the totality of your life:

By your holy incarnation,
By your human birth,
By your pure and blameless childhood,
By your obedience and diligence,
By your humility, meekness, and patience,
By your extreme poverty,
By your grief and sorrows,
By your prayers and tears,
By your having been despised and rejected,
By your cross and suffering,
By your death and burial,
By your triumphant resurrection and ascension.

We marvel, Gracious God, at the mystery of your incarnation.
Why would you choose to be born into poverty, with a family far from home, and seemingly ill prepared for your arrival?
Why would you choose a forgotten village in a forgotten corner of the world?
Why would you choose to be born in a cave full of cattle, and take a manger for your crib?
Could it be that through this unlikely birth you would reach out and choose even us to be your children?
Could it be that you would reach out and choose even me?
God has brought down the powerful from their thrones,
and lifted up the lowly.
The Mighty One has done great things for me,
and holy is his name. Thanks be to God! Amen.

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Prayers for the 3rd Week of Advent (December 17-23, 2017)

Special Note: I have started a daily prayer and meditation service called “Wake Up With God.”  I am using a text message to send out a brief thought and prayer guide most often times based on the Daily Text for the day.  I generally send this out each night between 9 and 10 p.m. to be used the next morning as you get the day going. This is a service that can be used in conjunction with the prayer form found on this blog.  If you are interested in receiving this “daily text”, please just send me a text at 484-221-5489.  Please include your name with your text and a brief note indicating that you are interested in subscribing to this service.

The Watchword for the week:
M
ay the God of peace sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be kept sound and blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Thessalonians 5:23

Stir up our hearts, O Lord,
to prepare the paths for your Only-begotten Son:
that we may worthily serve you
with hearts purified by His coming.

Psalm 126

1 When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion,
we were like those who dream.
2 Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy;
then it was said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.”
3 The Lord has done great things for us,
and we rejoiced.
4 Restore our fortunes, O Lord,
like the watercourses in the Negeb.
5 May those who sow in tears
reap with shouts of joy.
6 Those who go out weeping, bearing the seed for sowing,
shall come home with shouts of joy, carrying their sheaves. 

Invitation to Confession

Preparing for the coming Savior means that we need to acknowledge our need for one. Let us prepare the way for the arrival of Jesus Christ by confessing our sins:

Forgive us loving God for the winding path upon which you have to travel to find us. As we bend to the selfish influences of our culture we lose sight of your intended will for us. Too often we live by fear rather than by faith because we underestimate your power to heal the parts of us that are broken and to correct the parts of us that have drifted from your influence. We confess that we have separated ourselves from you and our spirit, soul, and body.  Bring us back to you so that we might respond to your grace by sharing it with others. Give us the courage to give you unhindered access to all of who we are and in so doing find ourselves blameless at your coming. 

Comfort, comfort my people says your God. Speak tenderly to them and proclaim that they have suffered long enough, that their penalty is paid, and their sins are forgiven.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. AMEN. 

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture.  Pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today.  Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world.  When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, hear us. 

Creator of all humanity, we call you Holy, and seek to worship you all the days of our lives. We pray that the ways of your heavenly kingdom may be made real in the world that surrounds us. May the bread that we need for today be made available for us and all who are hungry; and may you forgive us, just as we are able to forgive those who have sinned against us. In the time of moral testing, may we listen first for your voice calling to us, instead of the call of the world; take from us the self-centeredness of our society. This world, and all that is in it, always has been and always will be yours, Amen. 

ISAIAH 40:30-31

Even those who are young grow weak;
the young can fall exhausted.
But those who wait on the Lord for help
will find their strength renewed.
They will rise on wings like eagles;
they will run and not get weary; they will walk and not grow weak.

Christ, the Light of the world, empower us to shine as lights in this dark world of sin. Christ, lead us into good stewardship of creation that we and our children may preserve and enjoy the world entrusted to us.
Come Lord Jesus, come,
come and dwell within our hearts and lives.
We praise you, for you are good,
And your mercy endures forever. Amen.

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Prayers for the 2nd Week of Advent (December 10-16, 2017)

The Watchword for the Week:
He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom.Isaiah 40:11

Come, all who labor and are heavy laden.
Come, all who are lost and in need of a home.
Come, all who have faced their weakness and sins.
Rejoice greatly, shout for joy! See, your king is coming to you. He is righteous and brings salvation. 

Psalm 85:1-13

1 Lord, you were favorable to your land; you restored the fortunes of Jacob.
2 You forgave the iniquity of your people; you pardoned all their sin.
3 You withdrew all your wrath; you turned from your hot anger.
4 Restore us again, O God of our salvation, and put away your indignation toward us.
5 Will you be angry with us forever? Will you prolong your anger to all generations?
6 Will you not revive us again, so that your people may rejoice in you?
7 Show us your steadfast love, O Lord, and grant us your salvation.
8 Let me hear what God the Lord will speak, for he will speak peace to his people, to his faithful, to those who turn to him in their hearts.
9 Surely his salvation is at hand for those who fear him, that his glory may dwell in our land.
10 Steadfast love and faithfulness will meet; righteousness and peace will kiss each other.
11 Faithfulness will spring up from the ground, and righteousness will look down from the sky.
12 The Lord will give what is good, and our land will yield its increase. 13 Righteousness will go before him, and will make a path for his steps. 

Hear the voice of John the Baptist calling to us from the wilderness, challenging us to prepare the way for the coming Messiah, to repent and to make the pathway to our heart a straight one.

Holy God, we know that you want to come and walk with us through the journey of our lives. You send to us a Savior who seeks to offer us an eternal home in the life to come as well the pattern for the living of our daily lives. Forgive us for the times when we have turned our back on your invitation and have chosen to walk our own way. Forgive us for the times when we make the path into our hearts a steep one, making it hard for you to enter. Forgive us when treat even our loved ones with an unforgiving spirit. Forgive us when we busy our lives with diversions that deflect our attention from you. We invite your Holy Spirit to dwell within us and to bring us close to you this day. 

Comfort, comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to them and proclaim that they have suffered long enough, that their penalty is paid, and their sins are forgiven.

We give thanks to the one who creates us, we give thanks to the one who redeems us, we give thanks to the one who brings the spirit of holiness to us today. Amen. 

Take time now for reading the Daily Texts or a passage of Scripture.  Pause to ponder words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit today.  Then spend some time praying for the needs of our hurting world.  When you are ready, please continue with the prayer as follows:

O Lord, Hear our Prayer:

Giver of life and grace who dwells in the heavens, we lift our praise to you. We pray that the ways of heaven might be made real in our earthly lives as we, your children, seek to do your will. Give us today the food that we need. Forgive us as we seek to forgive those around us, and as we fix our eyes on you, keep us from temptation, and deliver us from evil influences. For this is your world, and to you is due all honor, and glory, and praise forever and ever. Amen. 

O Emmanuel, God with Us, Jesus Christ, desire of every nation,
come to earth we pray.
Shepherd of all humanity, and Savior of our souls
give us rest in your arms today.
Glory to God in the highest, and peace to God’s people on earth.
You alone are the most high, Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father. Amen.
Come Lord Jesus,
Open our hearts to welcome you, let the Word become flesh in our hearts and in our lives. Amen.

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