A Prayer for New Beginnings

Lord our God, we give you thanks, for you have gathered us by your gracious mercy.  Now waken our minds to righteousness for your sake. O Lord, that our eyes may see your salvation. We are your servants; may your divinity come to dwell in us; may your mercy shelter and protect us. May we who serve you meditate day and night on the love of your commandments, give you constant thanks, and glorify you: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, now and ever and to the ages of ages. Amen.

St. John Mantakuni (Armenian, 420-490)

Una Oración por Nuevos Comienzos

Señor nuestro Dios: Te agradecemos porque nos has reunido por tu santa misericordia. Ahora, despierta nuestras mentes hacia lo recto por amor de tu nombre. O Señor, que nuestros ojos vean tu salvación. Somos tus siervos y siervas; haz que tu divinidad more en nosotros y nosotras; que tu misericordia nos envuelva y nos proteja. Que nosotros que meditamos día y noche en tus mandamientos, te demos gracias constantemente, y te glorifiquemos: Padre, Hijo, y Espíritu Santo, hoy y siempre, y por los siglos de los siglos. Amén.

A Beautiful Prayer of the Early Christians

I first heard this prayer one day while visiting a local Orthodox church in Waco, Saint Nicholas, for a vespers service. I had become good friends with the woman who assisted the priest with the chanting during the service. I thought that she chanted the prayers so beautifully!

But the words of this ancient Trinitarian hymn, a lamp-lighting prayer, at the end of the service captivated my ears and my heart:

O Gladsome Light of the holy glory, of the immortal Father:
Heavenly blessed, Jesus Christ.
Now, that we have come to the setting of the sun,
And we behold the light of the evening.
We praise the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit;
It is right, at all times, to worship Thee with songs of praise:
O Son of God, and giver of life.
Therefore, all the world glorifies Thee.

I later wrote this musical setting, and we have used it for many services around our beloved university and our community many times. I hope that you will listen in the hope of Christ, the Light of the World.

And that our God will illuminate our imaginations with the expectation that we shall gather again in a not too distant future; and we shall praise Father, Son, and Holy Spirit together!

By the way… I am married now to the cantor I mentioned at the beginning of this note: my sweet wife, Susan. And, this is a prayer dear to our family.
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all!