Evening Prayers Friday, 22 May 2020

Good evening, Cornerstone People,
on this first day after Ascension:
the day when those early Christians had to begin living
without the physical presence of Jesus.
As darkness approaches,
we gather up today’s events and activities
and hand them over into God’s keeping.

We begin with Psalm 103 verses 1-4 and 19-22.

Bless the Lord my soul,
with all my being I bless his holy name.
Bless the Lord, my soul,
and forget none of his benefits.
He pardons all my wrongdoing
and heals all my ills.
He rescues me from the pit of death
and crowns me with love and compassion.

The Lord has established his throne in heaven,
his kingly power over the whole world.

Bless the Lord, you his angels,
mighty in power, who do his bidding
and obey his command.
Bless the Lord all you his hosts,
his ministers who do his will.
Bless the Lord all created things
everywhere in his dominion.

Bless the Lord, my soul.

Psalm 103: 1–4 & 19–22

O Lord, our lonely world slips seamlessly from spring into summer
with our fragmented lives taking on separate rhythms of their own.
We praise and thank you for your gracious companionship,
your gift of forgiveness, we thank you for your abiding love.
Keep us mindful of each other as we hold our fellowship to you in prayer.
We especially pray for those in lockdown who carry the terrible burden of fear and loneliness.
We pray for the people who have no one to meet for a walk in the park.

God of Compassion, hear our prayer.

O Lord, bless with strength and stamina the people who work to maintain our community,
who work to keep us informed, connected and supplied with our daily needs.
Guard and keep safe the people of the NHS and Social Care
who work to restore the health of our nation.
Bring them safely through the night so they may greet the morning with hope.

God of Compassion, hear our prayer.

A reading from John 14: 1–3:

‘Set your troubled hearts at rest. Trust in God always; trust also in me. There are many dwelling places in my Father’s house; if it were not so I should have told you; for I am going to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I shall come again and take you to myself, so that where I am you may be also.’

John 14: 1–3

O Lord, you assured us of a well-planned future, suited for a life of praise.
Give discernment and wisdom to leaders and decision makers
that a successful path out of isolation may be made.
Show them the vision of community renewed
where care for the environment and relief for the poor are commonplace,
where foreigners are welcomed and where its people are known for their justness and fair play.

God of Hope hear our prayer.

O Lord, we remember your promise that we would not be left in loneliness.
As we look forward to Pentecost fill us with the gifts of your Spirit
so we may look beyond the narrow boundaries of our present life
to the day when we can again live out your love through holy action in Central Milton Keynes.

God of Hope hear our prayer.

A reading from I Timothy 3: 16:

This is the mystery of our religion:

manifest in flesh,
vindicated in Spirit,
seen by angels;
He was proclaimed among the nations,
believed in throughout the world,
raised to heavenly glory.

I Timothy 3: 16

Risen and ascended Lord,
grant us the balm of rest
for we believe in your power to save us from despair.
Grant us the comfort of a peaceful night
as we place all our care on you.
By your mercy lead us safely into darkness
and return us tomorrow to the light.

With confidence we pray.