Order of Service

Westminster Abbey

Friday, 2nd December 2022

17:00

Evensong

Please join in saying the words 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.


Order of Service


All stand as the choir and clergy enter


The choir sings the Introit

Prepare ye the way of the Lord,
   make straight in the desert a highway for our God.

All flesh is grass,
   and all the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field.

Words: Isaiah 40: 3b, 6b
Music: Humphrey Clucas (b 1941)


All remain standing as the officiant introduces the Confession

Beloved, we are come together in the presence of Almighty God and of the whole company of heaven to offer unto him through our Lord Jesus Christ our worship and praise and thanksgiving; to make confession of our sins; to pray, as well for others as for ourselves, that we may know more truly the greatness of God's love and show forth in our lives the fruits of his grace; and to ask on behalf of all people such things as their well-being doth require. Wherefore let us kneel and keep silence, and remember God's presence with us now.


All kneel or sit to say together

O God, our Father, we have sinned against thee in thought, word, and deed; we have not loved thee with all our heart; we have not loved our neighbour as ourselves. Have mercy upon us, we beseech thee; cleanse us from our sins; and help us to overcome our faults; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


The officiant gives the Absolution

May the almighty and merciful Lord grant unto you pardon and remission of all your sins, time for amendment of life, and the grace and comfort of the Holy Spirit. 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, and is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Praise ye the Lord.

Composer: Orlando Gibbons (1583–1625) Organist of Westminster Abbey 1623–25


All sit. The choir sings Psalm 78: 1–18, 66–end

Hear my law, O my people : incline your ears unto the words of my mouth.
I will open my mouth in a parable : I will declare hard sentences of old;
Which we have heard and known : and such as our fathers have told us;
That we should not hide them from the children of the generations to come : but to shew the honour of the Lord, his mighty and wonderful works that he hath done.
He made a covenant with Jacob, and gave Israel a law : which he commanded our forefathers to teach their children;
That their posterity might know it : and the children which were yet unborn;
To the intent that when they came up : they might shew their children the same;
That they might put their trust in God : and not to forget the works of God, but to keep his commandments;
And not to be as their forefathers, a faithless and stubborn generation : a generation that set not their heart aright, and whose spirit cleaveth not stedfastly unto God;
Like as the children of Ephraim : who being harnessed, and carrying bows, turned themselves back in the day of battle.
They kept not the covenant of God : and would not walk in his law;
But forgat what he had done : and the wonderful works that he had shewed for them.
Marvellous things did he in the sight of our forefathers, in the land of Egypt : even in the field of Zoan.
He divided the sea, and let them go through : he made the waters to stand on an heap.
In the day-time also he led them with a cloud : and all the night through with a light of fire.
He clave the hard rocks in the wilderness : and gave them drink thereof, as it had been out of the great depth.
He brought waters out of the stony rock : so that it gushed out like the rivers.
Yet for all this they sinned more against him : and provoked the most Highest in the wilderness.
So the Lord awaked as one out of sleep : and like a giant refreshed with wine.
He smote his enemies in the hinder parts : and put them to a perpetual shame.
He refused the tabernacle of Joseph : and chose not the tribe of Ephraim;
but chose the tribe of Judah : even the hill of Sion which he loved.
And there he built his temple on high : and laid the foundation of it like the ground which he hath made continually.
He chose David also his servant : and took him away from the sheep-folds.
As he was following the ewes great with young ones he took him : that he might feed Jacob his people, and Israel his inheritance.
So he fed them with a faithful and true heart : and ruled them prudently with all his power.

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.

Chants: Arthur Mann (1850–1929), John Nares (1715–83), Charles Villiers Stanford (1852–1924), and Joseph Pring (1776–1842)


All sit for the first Lesson, Isaiah 66: 18–end

I know their works and their thoughts, and I am coming to gather all nations and tongues; and they shall come and shall see my glory, and I will set a sign among them. From them I will send survivors to the nations, to Tarshish, Put, and Lud—which draw the bow—to Tubal and Javan, to the coastlands far away that have not heard of my fame or seen my glory; and they shall declare my glory among the nations. They shall bring all your kindred from all the nations as an offering to the Lord, on horses, and in chariots, and in litters, and on mules, and on dromedaries, to my holy mountain Jerusalem, says the Lord, just as the Israelites bring a grain-offering in a clean vessel to the house of the Lord. And I will also take some of them as priests and as Levites, says the Lord.

For as the new heavens and the new earth,
   which I will make,
shall remain before me, says the Lord,
   so shall your descendants and your name remain.
From new moon to new moon,
   and from sabbath to sabbath,
all flesh shall come to worship before me,
says the Lord.

And they shall go out and look at the dead bodies of the people who have rebelled against me; for their worm shall not die, their fire shall not be quenched, and they shall be an abhorrence to all flesh.

Here ends the first lesson.


All stand. The choir sings Magnificat

My soul doth magnify the Lord : and my spirit rejoiceth 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 forefather Abraham, and to his seed, for ever.

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

Short Service, Edmund Hooper (c 1553–1621) Organist of Westminster Abbey 1588–1621


All sit for the second Lesson, Luke 13: 22–30

Jesus went through one town and village after another, teaching as he made his way to Jerusalem. Someone asked him, 'Lord, will only a few be saved?' He said to them, 'Strive to enter through the narrow door; for many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able. When once the owner of the house has got up and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and to knock at the door, saying, "Lord, open to us", then in reply he will say to you, "I do not know where you come from." Then you will begin to say, "We ate and drank with you, and you taught in our streets." But he will say, "I do not know where you come from; go away from me, all you evildoers!" There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, and you yourselves thrown out. Then people will come from east and west, from north and south, and will eat in the kingdom of God. Indeed, some are last who will be first, and some are first who will be last.'

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, and is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Short Service, Edmund Hooper


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

Almighty God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life, in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal, through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, now and ever. 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.

John Barnard (fl 1648)


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, Camilla the Queen Consort, 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 sit. The choir sings the Anthem

Rorate caeli desuper, et nubes pluant justum: aperiatur terra, et germinet salvatorem. Benedixisti, Domine, terram tuam: avertisti captivitatem Jacob.

Gloria Patri et Filio et Spiritui Sancto: sicut erat in principio, et nunc et semper et in saecula saeculorum. Amen.

Drop down you heavens from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open, and bring forth salvation. Gracious you have been, Lord, to your land: you have turned away the captivity of Jacob.

Glory to the Father and the Son and to the Holy Spirit: as it was in the beginning, is now and shall be for ever. Amen.

Words: Introit, Masses of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Advent (Isaiah 45: 8; Psalm 85: 1)
Music: William Byrd (c 1540–1623) Gradualia 1605


All kneel or remain seated for the Intercessions, at the end of which 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 as the choir and clergy depart


CHORISTERSHIPS AT WESTMINSTER ABBEY

Enquiries are welcomed at any time. If you have a son who enjoys singing, and would like further details of the world-renowned Abbey Choir and its unique choir school, please visit www.abbeychoirschool.org

Mr Peter Roberts, Headmaster, Westminster Abbey Choir School, Dean's Yard, London, SW1P 3NY, Tel 020 7222 6151 [email protected]
Mr James O'Donnell, Organist and Master of the Choristers, The Chapter Office, 20 Dean's Yard, London, SW1P 3PA, Tel 020 7654 4854 [email protected]


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Today's Services

Tuesday, 31st January 2023
John Bosco, priest, founder of the Salesian Teaching Order, 1888
7.30am Morning Prayer Quire
said
8.00am Holy Communion Shrine
said
12.30pm Holy Communion Nave
said
5.00pm Evensong Quire
attended by the Honorary Consul for Nauru; sung by the Choir of Westminster Abbey

Bruckner Locus iste a Deo factus est
Ayleward Responses
Wood in E flat No 2
Wood Hail, gladdening light

View Order of Service