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Night Prayer

INTRODUCTION

God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

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

Examination of Conscience

A brief examination of conscience may be made. In the communal celebration of the Office, a Penitential Rite using the formulas of the Mass may be inserted here.

[I confess to almighty God
and to you, my brothers and sisters,
that I have greatly sinned,
in my thoughts and in my words,
in what I have done and in what I have failed to do,

And, striking their breast, they say:

through my fault, through my fault,
through my most grievous fault;

Then they continue:

therefore I ask blessed Mary ever-Virgin,
all the Angels and Saints,
and you, my brothers and sisters,
to pray for me to the Lord our God.

The absolution by the Priest follows:

May almighty God have mercy on us,
forgive us our sins,
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.]

HYMN

God who made the earth and heaven,
    Darkness and light;
You the day for work have giv’n
    For rest the night.
May your angel guards defend us,
Slumber sweet your mercy send us,
Holy dreams and hope attend us,
    All through the night.

And when morn again shall call us
    To run life’s way,
May we still whate’er befall us,
    Your will obey.
From the pow’r of evil hide us,
In the narrow pathway guide us,
Never be your smile denied us
    All through the day.

Guard us waking, guard us sleeping,
    And, when we die,
May we in your mighty keeping
    All peaceful lie.
When the last dread call shall wake us,
Then O Lord, do not forsake us,
But to reign in glory take us
  With you on high.

Tune: Ar Hyd Y Nos 84.84.88.84
Music: Welsh Carol
Text: Stanza 1 Reginald Heber, 1783-1826; stanza 2 William Mercer, 1811-1876; stanza 3 Richard Whately, 1787-1863


PSALMODY

Ant. Night holds no terrors for me sleeping under God’s wings.

Psalm 91
Safe in God’s sheltering care


I have given you the power to tread upon serpents and scorpions (Luke 10:19).

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High *
and abides in the shade of the Almighty
says to the Lord: “My refuge, *
my stronghold, my God in whom I trust!”

It is he who will free you from the snare *
of the fowler who seeks to destroy you;
he will conceal you with his pinions *
and under his wings you will find refuge.

You will not fear the terror of the night *
nor the arrow that flies by day,
nor the plague that prowls in the darkness *
nor the scourge that lays waste at noon.

A thousand may fall at your side, *
ten thousand fall at your right,
you, it will never approach; *
his faithfulness is buckler and shield.

Your eyes have only to look *
to see how the wicked are repaid,
you who have said: “Lord, my refuge!” *
and have made the Most High your dwelling.

Upon you no evil shall fall, *
no plague approach where you dwell.
For you has he commanded his angels, *
to keep you in all your ways.

They shall bear you upon their hands *
lest you strike your foot against a stone.
On the lion and the viper you will tread *
and trample the young lion and the dragon.

Since he clings to me in love, I will free him; *
protect him for he knows my name.
When he calls I shall answer: “I am with you,” *
I will save him in distress and give him glory.

With length of life I will content him; *
I shall let him see my saving power.

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

Ant. Night holds no terrors for me sleeping under God’s wings.

READING
Revelation 22:4-5

They shall see the Lord face to face and bear his name on their foreheads. The night shall be no more. They will need no light from lamps or the sun, for the Lord God shall give them light, and they shall reign forever.

RESPONSORY

Into your hands, Lord, I commend my spirit.
Into your hands, Lord, I commend my spirit.

You have redeemed us, Lord God of truth.
I commend my spirit.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
Into your hands, Lord, I commend my spirit.

GOSPEL CANTICLE

Ant. Protect us, Lord, as we stay awake; watch over us as we sleep, that awake, we may keep watch with Christ, and asleep, rest in his peace.

Canticle of Simeon
Luke 2:29-32
Christ is the light of the nations and the glory of Israel


Lord, + now you let your servant go in peace; *
your word has been fulfilled:

my own eyes have seen the salvation *
which you have prepared in the sight of every people:

a light to reveal you to the nations *
and the glory of your people Israel.

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

Ant. Protect us, Lord, as we stay awake; watch over us as we sleep, that awake, we may keep watch with Christ, and asleep, rest in his peace.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Let us pray.

Lord,
we have celebrated today
the mystery of the rising of Christ to new life.
May we now rest in your peace,
safe from all that could harm us,
and rise refreshed and joyful,
to praise you throughout another day.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

BLESSING

May the all-powerful Lord
grant us a restful night
and a peaceful death.
Amen.

Antiphon or song in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Hail, holy Queen, mother of mercy,
our life, our sweetness, and our hope.
To you do we cry,
poor banished children of Eve.
To you do we send up our sighs
mourning and weeping in this vale of tears.
Turn then, most gracious advocate,
your eyes of mercy toward us,
and after this exile
show us the blessed fruit of your womb, Jesus.
O clement, O loving,
O sweet Virgin Mary.

Or:

Hail Mary, full of grace,
the Lord is with you!
Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
pray for us sinners,
now and at the hour of our death.

Or:

Salve, Regina, mater misericordiae;
 vita, dulcedo et spes nostra, salve,
Ad te clamamus, exsules filii Evae.
Ad te suspiramus, gementes et flentes
 in hac lacrimarum valle.

Eia ergo, advocata nostra,
 illos tuos misericordes occulos
 ad nos converte.
Et Iesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui,
 nobis post hoc exilium ostende.
O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Virgo Maria.

Or:

Loving mother of the Redeemer,
gate of heaven, star of the sea,
assist your people who have fallen yet strive to rise again.
To the wonderment of nature you bore your Creator,
yet remained a virgin after as before.
You who received Gabriel’s joyful greeting,
have pity on us poor sinners.

******

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