For Divine Strength

O mightiest King,
co-eternal with the Father,
by your might you vanquished hell and trodden death under foot,
you have bound the strong man,
by your miraculous power
and the radiance of your unspeakable Godhead
you arose as the second Adam from the tomb.
Send forth your invisible right hand,
which is full of blessing,
and bless us all.

Pity us, O Lord,
and strengthen us with your divine power.
Take away the sinful and wicked influence of carnal desire.
Let the light shine into our souls
and dispel the surrounding darkness of sin.
Unite us to the all-blessed assembly that is pleasing to you;
for through you and with you,
all praise, honor, power, adoration, and thanksgiving are due
to the Father and the Holy Spirit, now and forever. Amen.

Source: Liturgy of St. Mark, third century.

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Early Church, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1953

“by your miraculous power and the radiance of your unspeakable Godhead you arose as the second Adam from the tomb.” …in Potts’ edition was, “…by Thy miraculous power and the enlightening radiance of Thy unspeakable Godhead hast raised Adam from the tomb.”

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For Ministers

O God,
you are great in power,
unsearchable in understanding,
and wonderful in your plans for us.
Fill your servant with the gift of the Holy Spirit
that he may stand before your holy altar blameless,
to announce the gospel of your kingdom,
to administer the Word of your truth,
to offer gifts and spiritual sacrifices to you,
and to renew your people in the font of rebirth,
that when your only Son,
our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, comes again,
by your mercies he will receive your reward;
for your holy and majestic name is blessed and glorified.

Source: Eastern Church Liturgy, third century

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Early Church, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1953

For Friends and Relatives

Have mercy, O Lord,
on all those tied with us in the bonds of friendship and family,
and grant that they, with us,
may be so perfectly conformed to your holy will,
that being cleansed from all sin,
we may be found worthy,
by the inspiration of your love,
to be partakers together of the blessedness of your heavenly kingdom;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Source: Old Gallican Sacramentary

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Early Church, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1953

For Light

O God of Light, Father of Life,
Author of grace, Creator of worlds,
Giver of Wisdom, Benefactor of our souls,
Treasure of holiness, Teacher of pure prayers,
you give the fainthearted who put their trust in you
things into which angels long to look.

O Sovereign Lord,
you have brought us up from the depths of darkness to light,
you have given us life from death,
you have graciously given us freedom from slavery,
and you have scattered the darkness of sin within us.

Enlighten the eyes of our understanding,
that we may partake of this heavenly and immortal food
without fear of condemnation,
and sanctify us completely in soul, body, and spirit,
that with your holy disciples and apostles
we may say this prayer to you:
Our Father… Amen.

Source: Liturgy of St. Mark, third century.

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Early Church, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1953

For Blessings

Lover of mankind,
bless all your people,
the flocks of your fold.
Send the peace of heaven into our hearts,
and grant us also peace in this life.
Give life to our souls,
and let no deadly sin prevail against us,
or any of your people.
Deliver all who are in trouble,
for you are our God.
You set the captives free,
you give hope to the hopeless,
and help to the helpless.
You lift up the fallen,
and you are the Haven of the shipwrecked.
Give your pity, pardon,
and refreshment to every Christian soul,
whether in affliction or error.
Preserve us in our pilgrimage through this life
from hurt and danger,
and grant that we may end our lives as Christians,
pleasing to you and free from sin,
and that we may have our portion and lot with all your saints. Amen.

Source: Liturgy of St. Mark, third century.

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Early Church, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1953

Your Words Are Channels of Grace into Our Hearts

Lord,
inspire us to read your Scriptures
and to meditate upon them day and night.
We beg you to give us real understanding of what we need,
that we in turn may put its precepts into practice.
Yet we know that understanding and good intentions are worthless,
unless rooted in your graceful love.
So we ask that the words of Scriptures
may also be not just signs on a page,
but channels of grace into our hearts.

Source: Origen (ca. 185-254)

Source of this version: https://shadowsofaugustine.blogspot.com/2008/11/prayer-before-reading-scripture.html

For the Gift of a New Day

We give you thanks
for the rest of the past night
and for the gift of a new day
with its opportunities to please you.
Grant that we may pass its hours
in the complete freedom of your service,
that at evening we may again give you thanks;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Source: The Eastern Church

Source of this version: Freely modified from  Prayers of the Early Church,  ed.  J. Manning Potts,  The Upper Room, Nashville, Tennessee, © 1953 (Public domain in the U.S.)

Variant:

We give you thanks,
Holy Lord, Father Almighty, everlasting God,
for you have been pleased to bring us through the night
to the hours of morning;
Grant us to pass this day without sin,
so that at evening we may again give you thanks;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Source: Gelasian

Source of this version: Modified from:  Ancient Collects, and Other Prayers, ed. William Bright, 1902, p. 6 #3

Also found here:  Prayers Ancient and Modern by Mary Wilder Tileston, Boston, Little Brown, 1914, p. 323 #2

 

For over 150 years, Bright’s Ancient Collects has been a standard resource for classic Christian prayers. The New Ancient Collects is a complete revision and refreshing of all the prayers in Bright’s Ancient Collects with updated language. It is available in paperback and for Amazon Kindle from Amazon.com.