Order of Service

Westminster Abbey

Sunday, 23rd June 2024

15:00

Fourth Sunday after Trinity

Evensong

Welcome to Westminster Abbey. Daily prayer has been offered in this place for over a thousand years, and your participation in today's service is warmly welcomed. At choral Evensong most of the service is sung by the choir on our behalf. We participate through our presence and our listening, that the words and the music might become a prayer within us and lift us to contemplate God's beauty and glory.

The service always includes one or more psalms. These ancient prayers, taken from the Old Testament, reflect the full range of human emotions and experiences; from the depths of anger, resentment, and abandonment to the heights of ecstatic joy and praise. They were used by Jesus, and have always been at the heart of the Church's daily prayer.

The canticles Magnificat (Luke 1: 46–55) and Nunc dimittis (Luke 2: 29–32) reflect two responses to the Incarnation (God becoming fully human in Jesus Christ). Both speak of the fulfilment of God's promises, not just to 'Abraham and his seed', but also 'to be a light to lighten the Gentiles' (all nations). With their themes of fulfilment and completion, these texts have been given central place for many centuries in the Church's prayers for the evening and at the end of the day.

Please join in saying the words and singing the hymns printed in bold type.

The church is served by a hearing loop. Users should turn their hearing aid to the setting marked T.

Photography, filming, and sound recording are not allowed in the Abbey during services. Please ensure that mobile telephones and other electronic devices are silent.

The service is sung by the Choir of Westminster Abbey.

During the final hymn, a collection will be takenthe money from today's services will be divided equally between Christian Aid and the work of the Abbey. Christian Aid exists to create a world where everyone can live a full life, free from poverty.


Order of Service


The choir sings the Introit

View me, Lord, a work of thine:
Shall I then lie drowned in night?
Might thy grace in me but shine,
I should seem made all of light.

Cleanse me, Lord, that I may kneel
At thine altar, pure and white;
They that once thy mercies feel,
Gaze no more on earth's delight.

Worldly joys, like shadows fade
When the heavenly light appears;
But the covenants thou hast made,
Endless, know nor days nor years.

In thy word, Lord, is my trust,
To thy mercies fast I fly.
Though I am but clay and dust,
Yet thy grace can lift me high.

Words: Thomas Campion (1567–1620)
Music: Richard Hey Lloyd (1933–2021)


All stand as the choir and clergy enter


The officiant welcomes the congregation


All remain standing as the officiant introduces a general Confession

Dearly beloved brethren, the Scripture moveth us in sundry places to acknowledge and confess our manifold sins and wickedness; and that we should not dissemble nor cloke them before the face of almighty God our heavenly Father; but confess them with an humble, lowly, penitent, and obedient heart; to the end that we may obtain forgiveness of the same, by his infinite goodness and mercy. And although we ought at all times humbly to acknowledge our sins before God; yet ought we most chiefly so to do, when we assemble and meet together to render thanks for the great benefits that we have received at his hands, to set forth his most worthy praise, to hear his most holy Word, and to ask those things which are requisite and necessary, as well for the body as the soul. Wherefore I pray and beseech you, as many as are here present, to accompany me with a pure heart, and humble voice, unto the throne of the heavenly grace, saying after me;


All kneel or sit

Almighty and most merciful Father,
we have erred, and strayed from thy ways like lost sheep.
We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts.
We have offended against thy holy laws.
We have left undone those things which we ought to have done;
and we have done those things which we ought not to have done;
and there is no health in us.
But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable offenders.
Spare thou them, O God, which confess their faults.
Restore thou them that are penitent;
according to thy promises declared unto mankind in Christ Jesu our Lord.
And grant, O most merciful Father, for his sake,
that we may hereafter live a godly, righteous, and sober life,
to the glory of thy holy name.
Amen.


The officiant gives the Absolution

Almighty God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who desireth not the death of a sinner, but rather that he may turn from his wickedness, and live; and hath given power and commandment to his ministers, to declare and pronounce to his people, being penitent, the absolution and remission of their sins: he pardoneth and absolveth all them that truly repent, and unfeignedly believe his holy gospel. Wherefore let us beseech him to grant us true repentance, and his Holy Spirit, that those things may please him, which we do at this present; and that the rest of our life hereafter may be pure, and holy; so that at the last we may come to his eternal joy; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


All say together the Lord's Prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done;
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever.
Amen.


All stand. The officiant and choir sing the Responses

O Lord, open thou our lips
and our mouth shall shew forth thy praise.

O God, make speed to save us.
O Lord, make haste to help us.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son,
and to the Holy Ghost;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
world without end. Amen.

Praise ye the Lord.
The Lord's name be praised.

Music: Thomas Tomkins (1572–1656)


All sit. The choir sings Psalm 115

Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but unto thy name give the praise : for thy loving mercy, and for thy truth's sake.
Wherefore shall the heathen say : Where is now their God?
As for our God, he is in heaven : he hath done whatsoever pleased him.
Their idols are silver and gold : even the work of men's hands.
They have mouths, and speak not : eyes have they, and see not.
They have ears, and hear not : noses have they, and smell not.
They have hands, and handle not; feet have they, and walk not : neither speak they through their throat.
They that make them are like unto them : and so are all such as put their trust in them.
But thou, house of Israel, trust thou in the Lord : he is their succour and defence.
Ye house of Aaron, put your trust in the Lord : he is their helper and defender.
Ye that fear the Lord, put your trust in the Lord : he is their helper and defender.
The Lord hath been mindful of us, and he shall bless us : even he shall bless the house of Israel, he shall bless the house of Aaron.
He shall bless them that fear the Lord : both small and great.
The Lord shall increase you more and more : you and your children.
Ye are the blessed of the Lord : who made heaven and earth.
All the whole heavens are the Lord's : the earth hath he given to the children of men.
The dead praise not thee, O Lord : neither all they that go down into silence.
But we will praise the Lord : from this time forth for evermore. Praise the Lord.

All stand

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son,
and to the Holy Ghost;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
world without end. Amen.

Chant: Charles South (1850–1916)


All sit for the first Lesson, Jeremiah 10: 1–16

Hear the word that the Lord speaks to you, O house of Israel. Thus says the Lord:
Do not learn the way of the nations,
   or be dismayed at the signs of the heavens;
   for the nations are dismayed at them.
For the customs of the peoples are false:
a tree from the forest is cut down,
   and worked with an axe by the hands of an artisan;
people deck it with silver and gold;
   they fasten it with hammer and nails
   so that it cannot move.
Their idols are like scarecrows in a cucumber field,
   and they cannot speak;
they have to be carried,
   for they cannot walk.
Do not be afraid of them,
   for they cannot do evil,
   nor is it in them to do good.

There is none like you, O Lord;
   you are great, and your name is great in might.
Who would not fear you, O King of the nations?
   For that is your due;
among all the wise ones of the nations
   and in all their kingdoms
   there is no one like you.
They are both stupid and foolish;
   the instruction given by idols
   is no better than wood!
Beaten silver is brought from Tarshish,
   and gold from Uphaz.
They are the work of the artisan and of the hands of the goldsmith;
   their clothing is blue and purple;
   they are all the product of skilled workers.
But the Lord is the true God;
   he is the living God and the everlasting King.
At his wrath the earth quakes,
   and the nations cannot endure his indignation.

Thus shall you say to them: The gods who did not make the heavens and the earth shall perish from the earth and from under the heavens.

It is he who made the earth by his power,
   who established the world by his wisdom,
   and by his understanding stretched out the heavens.
When he utters his voice, there is a tumult of waters in the heavens,
   and he makes the mist rise from the ends of the earth.
He makes lightnings for the rain,
   and he brings out the wind from his storehouses.
Everyone is stupid and without knowledge;
   goldsmiths are all put to shame by their idols;
for their images are false,
   and there is no breath in them.
They are worthless, a work of delusion;
   at the time of their punishment they shall perish.
Not like these is the Lord, the portion of Jacob,
   for he is the one who formed all things,
and Israel is the tribe of his inheritance;
   the Lord of hosts is his name.

Here ends the first lesson.


All stand. The choir sings Magnificat

My soul doth magnify the Lord,
   and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour,
for he hath regarded the lowliness of his hand-maiden.
   For behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed;
for he that is mighty hath magnified me,
   and holy is his name.
And his mercy is on them that fear him
   throughout all generations.
He hath shewed strength with his arm;
   he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
He hath put down the mighty from their seat,
   and hath exalted the humble and meek;
he hath filled the hungry with good things,
   and the rich he hath sent empty away.
   He remembering his mercy
hath holpen his servant Israel,
as he promised to our forefathers,
   Abraham and his seed, for ever.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son,
and to the Holy Ghost;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
world without end. Amen.

Evening Service in G minor, Henry Purcell (1659–95) Organist of Westminster Abbey 1679–95


All sit for the second Lesson, Romans 11: 25–36

So that you may not claim to be wiser than you are, brothers and sisters, I want you to understand this mystery: a hardening has come upon part of Israel, until the full number of the Gentiles has come in. And so all Israel will be saved; as it is written,
'Out of Zion will come the Deliverer;
   he will banish ungodliness from Jacob.'
'And this is my covenant with them,
   when I take away their sins.'
As regards the gospel they are enemies of God for your sake; but as regards election they are beloved, for the sake of their ancestors; for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. Just as you were once disobedient to God but have now received mercy because of their disobedience, so they have now been disobedient in order that, by the mercy shown to you, they too may now receive mercy. For God has imprisoned all in disobedience so that he may be merciful to all.

O the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgements and how inscrutable his ways!
'For who has known the mind of the Lord?
   Or who has been his counsellor?'
'Or who has given a gift to him,
   to receive a gift in return?'
For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory for ever. Amen.

Here ends the second lesson.


All stand. The choir sings Nunc dimittis

Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace,
   according to thy word;
for mine eyes have seen thy salvation,
   which thou hast prepared before the face of all people,
to be a light to lighten the Gentiles
   and to be the glory of thy people Israel.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son,
and to the Holy Ghost;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
world without end. Amen.

Evening Service in G minor, Henry Purcell


All face east to say together the Apostles' Creed

I believe in God the Father almighty,
maker of heaven and earth:
and in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Ghost,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, dead, and buried.
He descended into hell;
the third day he rose again from the dead;
he ascended into heaven,
and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father almighty;
from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Ghost;
the holy catholic Church;
the communion of saints;
the forgiveness of sins;
the resurrection of the body;
and the life everlasting.
Amen.


The Lord be with you.
And with thy spirit.

Let us pray.

All kneel or sit. The officiant and choir sing the Lesser Litany; the Lord's Prayer and the Responses

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

Our Father, which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done, in earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them that trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil. Amen.

O Lord, shew thy mercy upon us.
And grant us thy salvation.

O Lord, save The King.
And mercifully hear us when we call upon thee.

Endue thy ministers with righteousness.
And make thy chosen people joyful.

O Lord, save thy people.
And bless thine inheritance.

Give peace in our time, O Lord.
Because there is none other that fighteth for us, but only thou, O God.

O God, make clean our hearts within us.
And take not thy Holy Spirit from us.


The officiant sings the Collects; of the day, for peace, and for aid against all perils

O God, the protector of all that trust in thee, without whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy; increase and multiply upon us thy mercy; that, thou being our ruler and guide, we may so pass through things temporal, that we finally lose not the things eternal: grant this, O heavenly Father, for Jesus Christ's sake our Lord. Amen.

O God, from whom all holy desires, all good counsels and all just works do proceed: Give unto thy servants that peace which the world cannot give; that both our hearts may be set to obey thy commandments, and also that by thee we being defended from the fear of our enemies may pass our time in rest and quietness; through the merits of Jesus Christ our Saviour. Amen.

Lighten our darkness we beseech thee, O Lord; and by thy great mercy defend us from all perils and dangers of this night; for the love of thy only Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Music: Thomas Tomkins


All sit. The choir sings the Anthem

See, see the Word is incarnate; God is made man in the womb of a Virgin. Shepherds rejoice, wise men adore and angels sing, Glory be to God on high: peace on earth, good will towards men. The law is cancelled, Jews and Gentiles all converted by the preaching of glad tidings of salvation, the blind have sight and cripples have their motion: diseases cured, the dead are raised, and miracles are wrought. Let us welcome such a guest with Hosanna. The Paschal Lamb is offered, Christ Jesus made a sacrifice for sin. The earth quakes, the sun is darkened, the powers of hell are shaken; and lo, he is risen up in victory. Sing Alleluia! See, O see the fresh wounds, the gored blood, the pricks of thorns, the print of nails and in the sight of multitudes a glorious ascension; where now he sits on God's right hand where all the choir of heaven all jointly sing: Glory be to the Lamb that sitteth on the throne. Let us continue our wonted note with Hosanna: Blessed be he that cometh in the name of the Lord; with Alleluia, we triumph in victory, the serpent's head bruised, Christ's kingdom exalted, and heaven laid open to sinners. Amen.

Words: attributed to Godfrey Goodman (1583–1656) Canon of Westminster 1607–25
Music: Orlando Gibbons (1583–1625) Organist of Westminster Abbey 1623–25


All kneel or remain seated for the Intercessions


The officiant says the Prayers; for the Royal Family, and for the Members of the Order of the Bath

Almighty God, the fountain of all goodness, we humbly beseech thee to bless our most gracious Sovereign Lord King Charles, Queen Camilla, William Prince of Wales, the Princess of Wales, and all the Royal Family: endue them with thy Holy Spirit; enrich them with thy heavenly grace; prosper them with all happiness; and bring them to thine everlasting kingdom, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

God save our Gracious Sovereign, and all the Members of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath living and departed. Amen.


All say

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,
and the love of God,
and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit,
be with us all evermore.
Amen.


All stand to sing the Hymn

My God, how wonderful thou art,
   thy majesty how bright,
how beautiful thy mercy-seat,
   in depths of burning light!

How wonderful, how beautiful,
   the sight of thee must be,
thine endless wisdom, boundless power,
   and aweful purity!

O how I fear thee, living God,
   with deepest, tenderest fears,
and worship thee with trembling hope,
   and penitential tears!

Yet I may love thee too, O Lord,
   almighty as thou art,
for thou hast stooped to ask of me
   the love of my poor heart.

No earthly father loves like thee,
   no mother, e'er so mild,
bears and forbears as thou hast done
   with me thy sinful child.

Father of Jesus, love's reward,
   what rapture will it be
prostrate before thy throne to lie
   and gaze and gaze on thee.

Words: Frederick Faber (1814–63)
Tune: 'Westminster' 410 NEH, James Turle (1802–82) Organist of Westminster Abbey 1831–82


The Sermon by The Reverend Dr James Hawkey, Canon in Residence


All stand to sing the Hymn during which a collection will be taken. Alternatively, cash and contactless donations may be given as you leave via the Great West Door

Praise to the Holiest in the height,
   and in the depth be praise,
in all his words most wonderful,
   most sure in all his ways.

O loving wisdom of our God!
   when all was sin and shame,
a second Adam to the fight
   and to the rescue came.

O generous love! that he who smote
   in Man for man the foe,
the double agony in Man
   for man should undergo;

and in the garden secretly,
   and on the cross on high,
should teach his brethren, and inspire
   to suffer and to die.

Praise to the Holiest in the height,
   and in the depth be praise,
in all his words most wonderful,
   most sure in all his ways.

Words: John Henry Newman (1801–90) from 'The Dream of Gerontius'
Tune: 'Gerontius' 439i NEH, John Bacchus Dykes (1823–76)


The Blessing. All respond Amen.


All remain standing as the clergy depart


Music after the service

Cornet Voluntary in A minor, John Blow (1649–1708) Organist of Westminster Abbey 1668–79, 1695–1708


Those who wish to may sit for the remainder of the organ voluntary


CHORISTERSHIPS AT WESTMINSTER ABBEY

Enquiries are welcomed at any time. 

If you have a daughter aged 10 or 11 who would like to sing with the St Margaret's Choristers, please contact the Director of Music at St Margaret's, Greg Morris (email). Further details can be found here.

If you have a son who enjoys singing and you would like further details of the world-renowned Abbey Choir and its unique choir school, please click here.

Dr Emma Margrett, Head, Westminster Abbey Choir School, Dean's Yard, London, SW1P 3NY, 020 7222 6151 email

Mr Andrew Nethsingha, Organist and Master of the Choristers, The Chapter Office, 20 Dean's Yard, London, SW1P 3PA, 020 7654 4854 email


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Today's Services

Sunday, 23rd June 2024
Fourth Sunday after Trinity
8.00am Holy Communion Nave
The Book of Common Prayer; said
10.00am Morning Prayer St Margaret's Church
said with hymns
View Order of Service
11.15am Sung Eucharist with Confirmation Quire
sung by the Choir of Westminster Abbey, St Margaret's Choristers, and members of St Margaret's Consort

Vaughan Williams Mass in G minor
Elgar The Spirit of the Lord
Elgar arr Holder Variation XIV (Enigma Variations)

Preacher: The Right Reverend Graeme Knowles CVO Honorary Assistant Bishop, Diocese of Ely

View Order of Service
3.00pm Evensong Quire
sung by the Choir of Westminster Abbey

Lloyd View me, Lord, a work of thine
Tomkins Responses
Purcell in G minor
Gibbons See, see the Word is incarnate
Blow Cornet Voluntary in A minor

Preacher: The Reverend Dr James Hawkey Canon in Residence

View Order of Service
5.00pm Organ Recital Nave
given by Matthew Jorysz, Assistant Organist

Liszt Fantasy and Fugue on the chorale 'Ad nos, ad salutarem undam'

6.00pm Holy Communion St Margaret's Church
said with hymns

Preacher: The Reverend Helena Bickley-Percival Chaplain

View Order of Service