In the Midst of Life We Are in Death

In the midst of life we are in death.
To whom may we look for help,
but from you, O Lord,
who for our sins
are justly displeased?

Yet, O Lord God most holy,
O Lord most mighty,
O holy and most merciful Savior,
deliver us not into the bitter pains of eternal death.

Source: Notker the Stammerer, battle song from the year A. D. 912, based on the English translation in the Book of Common Prayer.

Original in Latin:

Media vita in morte sumus
quem quaerimus adjutorem
nisi te, Domine,
qui pro peccatis nostris
juste irasceris?

Sancte Deus,
sancte fortis,
sancte et misericors Salvator:
amarae morti ne tradas nos.

Book of Common Prayer 1559 text in traditional English:

In the midst of life we be in death: of whom may we seek for succor but of thee, O Lord, which for our sins justly art displeased. Yet, O Lord God most holy, O Lord most mighty, O holy and most merciful savior, deliver us not into the bitter pains of eternal death.

Martin Luther expanded this prayer into a hymn, Mitten wir in leben sind.

1. In the midst of earthly life
Snares of death surround us;
Who shall help us in the strife
Lest the Foe confound us?
Thou only, Lord, Thou only.
We mourn that we have greatly erred,
That our sins Thy wrath have stirred.
Holy and righteous God!
Holy and mighty God!
Holy and all-merciful Savior!
Eternal Lord God!
Save us lest we perish
In the bitter pangs of death.
Have mercy, O Lord!

2. In the midst of death’s dark vale
Powers of hell o’ertake us.
Who will help when they assail,
Who secure will make us?
Thou only, Lord, Thou only.
Thy heart is moved with tenderness,
Pities us in our distress.
Holy and righteous God!
Holy and mighty God!
Holy and all-merciful Savior!
Eternal Lord God!
Save us lest we perish
In the bitter pangs of death.
Have mercy, O Lord!

3. In the midst of utter woe
All our sins oppress us,
Where shall we for refuge go,
Where for grace to bless us?
To Thee, Lord Jesus, only.
Thy precious blood was shed to win
Full atonement for our sin.
Holy and righteous God!
Holy and mighty God!
Holy and all-merciful Savior!
Eternal Lord God!
Save us lest we perish
In the bitter pangs of death.
Have mercy, O Lord!

This prayer has its own page on Wikipedia.

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The New Book of Collects in Two Parts

The New Book of Collects in Two Parts.png

A Book of Collects in Two Parts was a collection of short prayers compiled by John Wallace Suter (Pater) and his son, John Wallace Suter, Jr. (Filius). Since the book was published in 1919, it is now in the public domain.

John Wallace Suter was a priest and liturgist in the American Episcopal Church, and was the custodian of the American Standard Book of Common Prayer. At his death in 1942, his son, John Wallace Suter, Jr. succeeded him as custodian of the Standard Book of Common Prayer.

The original text was taken from Project Canterbury, a free, online library of Anglican and Episcopalian literature, and it may be read directly on Project Canterbury by clicking on this link:  http://anglicanhistory.org/liturgy/suter_collects1919.html

The first part is a collection of short prayers newly composed by the Suters. The second part is a collection of short prayers from the history of the ancient Christian church.

A revision (an updating and refreshing of the English) of A Book of Collects in Two Parts can be downloaded from A Collection of Prayers in the following formats: [pdf] [docx]

Two Wedding Prayers

Prayer Book Bible Reading Book Of Common Prayer

O eternal God,
creator and preserver of all mankind,
giver of all spiritual grace,
author of everlasting life,
send your blessing on
this man and this woman
whom we bless in your name.
Help and empower them
to live faithfully together,
and to keep the promises
made to each other and to you.
Keep them in your love and peace together,
and guide them with your holy Word;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.

O God,
you established and blessed marriage,
and you use it as a picture
of the spiritual marriage and unity
between Christ and his Church.
Look mercifully on this man and woman
that they may love, honor, and cherish each other,
and live together in faithfulness and patience,
in wisdom and true godliness,
that their home may be
a haven of blessing and of peace;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.
Amen.

Source: Modified and adapted from the 1928 U.S. Book of Common Prayer.  Both prayers are shortened from the 1662 Book of Common Prayer.

Stay with Us

Prayer Book Bible Reading Book Of Common Prayer

Lord Jesus,
stay with us, for it is toward evening
and the day is now far spent.
Be our companion on the way,
kindle our hearts
and awaken hope,
that we may know you
as you are revealed in Scripture
and the breaking of bread;
Grant this for the sake of your love.
Amen.

Source: Evensong, Collect for the Presence of Christ

Original in traditional English:

Lord Jesus, stay with us, for evening is at hand and the day is past; be our companion in the way, kindle our hearts, and awaken hope, that we may know thee as thou art revealed in Scripture and the breaking of bread. Grant this for the sake of thy love. Amen.

Also in the Book of Common Prayer (U.S., 1979) Evening Prayer 2.

Evensong Prayer

Prayer Book Bible Reading Book Of Common Prayer

Lord God,
your Son, our Savior Jesus Christ,
triumphed over the powers of death
and prepared for us our place in the new Jerusalem.
Grant that we who give thanks for his resurrection
may praise you in that city
of which he is the light;
and where he lives and reigns
for ever and ever.
Amen.

Source: Evensong, Collect for Sundays

Original in traditional English:

Lord God, whose Son our Savior Jesus Christ triumphed over the powers of death and prepared for us our place in the new Jerusalem: Grant that we, who have this day given thanks for his resurrection, may praise thee in that City of which he is the light; and where he liveth and reigneth for ever and ever. Amen.

Also in the Book of Common Prayer (U.S., 1979) Evening Prayer 2.

Protect Us that We May Serve You

6069369723_ee697728eb_z_dO Lord,
graciously receive
the prayers of your church,
that by your protection
from all adversity and error,
we may serve you in safety and freedom.
Grant us your peace all the days of our life;
through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Source: The Order of Complin, Sarum Rite, p. 38

Original in traditional English:

O Lord, graciously receive the prayers of Thy church, that by the destruction of all adversity and error, she may serve Thee in safety and freedom; and grant us Thy peace all the days of our life. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Cross before Glory

Prayer Book Bible Reading Book Of Common Prayer

Almighty God,
your dear Son did not ascend to joy
until he first suffered pain,
and did not enter into glory
before he was crucified.
Mercifully grant that we,
walking in the way of the cross,
may find it as the true way
of life and peace;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord.
Amen.

Source: Freely modified from Book of Common Prayer, Palm Sunday liturgy.

Source of this version: Freely modified from http://www.beliefnet.com/prayers/catholic/comfort/in-the-way-of-the-cross.aspx