Compline in time of coronavirus: 15. The Third Sunday after Pentecost

“Compline Corner” with the Hallock Window (picture courtesy of Katherine Crosier)

While strict measures are in place during the pandemic, The Office of Compline is sung currently by the director and three other singers in an otherwise empty cathedral. Those singing are observing very stringent procedures – for more information see complinechoir.org. Even though the live streaming of the service has ended, the Compline Underground (which originates from Seattle) will continue to post the texts of the music sung.

SPECIAL NOTE: A quartet of women’s voices will sing Compline on July 19 and 26. 

Clicking on the broadcast link below will open it automatically in a new tab. Then go back to this tab to continue with the text.

Live Broadcast            (The live broadcast has concluded).

Podcast                        (Link to the podcast when it is released on complinepodcast.org – 1 or 2 days after the service).

Compline for The Third Sunday after Pentecost

The READER offers a short passage of scripture:

Yours is the day, O God, yours also the night; you have established the moon and the sun.
You have fixed all the boundaries of the earth; you have made both summer and winter.
Psalm 74:15, 16

ORISON: Maker of all things, God most high – Thomas Tallis (c. 1505-1585)

Maker of all things, God most high,
Great Ruler of the starry sky,
Who rob’st the day in beauteous light,
In sweet repose the quiet night.

That sleep may weary limbs restore,
And fit for toil and use once more;
May gently soothe the careworn breast,
And lull our anxious griefs to rest.

We thank Thee for the day now gone,
We pray Thee that the night comes on;
Help us poor sinners as we raise
Our wonted offering of praise.

O Father, that we ask be done,
Through Jesus Christ, thine only Son,
Who with the Holy Ghost, and thee,
Doth live and reign eternally.

PREPARATION

READER: The Lord Almighty grant us a quiet night and a perfect end.
CHOIR: Amen.

READER: Belovéd in Christ, be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: whom resist, steadfast in the faith. [I Peter 5: 8, 9a]

READER: But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
CHOIR: Thanks be to God.

The following is chanted.

CANTOR: O God, make speed to save us;
CHOIR: O Lord, make haste to help us.

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

CANTOR: Praise ye the Lord;
CHOIR: The Lord’s name be praiséd.

The READER announces the Psalm to be sung. The appointed psalms for Compline are Psalm 4 (Cum invocarem), Psalm 31:1-6 (In te, Domine, speravi), Psalm 91 (Qui habitat), and Psalm 134 (Ecce nunc). Other psalms may be used as appropriate to the church year. Many of the psalm settings sung in the service have been composed by Peter Hallock or Jason Anderson.

PSALM 46 – Peter R. Hallock (1924-2014)

ANTIPHON: The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our stronghold.

God is our refuge and strength, *
a very present help in trouble.

Therefore we will not fear, though the earth be moved, *
and though the mountains be toppled into the depths of the sea;

Though its waters rage and foam, *
and though the mountains tremble at its tumult.

The LORD of hosts is with us; *
the God of Jacob is our stronghold.

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, *
the holy habitation of the Most High.

God is in the midst of her; she shall not be overthrown; *
God shall help her at the break of day.

The nations make much ado, and the kingdoms are shaken; *
God has spoken, and the earth shall melt away.

The LORD of hosts is with us; *
the God of Jacob is our stronghold.

Come now and look upon the works of the LORD, *
what awesome things he has done on earth.

It is he who makes war to cease in all the world; *
he breaks the bow, and shatters the spear, and burns the shields with fire.

“Be still, then, and know that I am God; *
I will be exalted among the nations; I will be exalted in the earth.”

The LORD of hosts is with us; *
the God of Jacob is our stronghold.

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

ANTIPHON: The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our stronghold.

The READER speaks the following lesson:

Thou, O Lord, art in the midst of us, and we are called by thy Name.
Leave us not, O Lord our God.  [from Jeremiah 14:9]

CHOIR: Thanks be to God.

The following Respond is chanted:

CANTOR: Into thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit.
CHOIR: Into thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit.

CANTOR: For thou hast redeeméd me, O Lord, thou God of truth;
CHOIR: I commend my spirit.

CANTOR: Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost;
CHOIR: Into thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit.

The READER announces the hymn to be sung. The hymn appointed for Compline is Te lucis ante terminum (Before the ending of the day). Other hymns may be sung as appropriate to the church year.

OFFICE HYMN: Te lucis ante terminum – Scandinavian melody, arr. Derek Curtis-Tilton

Te lucis ante terminum,
Rerum Creator poscimus,
Ut pro tua clementia
Sis praesul et custodia.

To you before the close of day,
Creator of all things we pray
That in your constant clemency
Our guard and keeper you would be.

Procul recedant somnia,
Et noctium phantasmata;
Hostemque nostrum comprime,
Ne polluantur corpora.

Save us from troubled, restless sleep,
From all ill dreams your children keep;
So calm our minds that fears may cease
And rested bodies wake in peace.

Praesta Pater omnipotens
Per Jesum Christum Dominum
Qui tecum in perpetuum
Regnat cum Sancto Spiritu.

Almighty Father, hear our cry
Through Jesus Christ, our Lord Most High,
Whom with the Spirit we adore
For ever and for evermore.

The following is chanted:

CANTOR: Keep me as the apple of an eye;
CHOIR: Hide me under the shadow of thy wings.

NUNC DIMITTIS – Plainsong setting, Tone III.6

A setting of the Nunc dimittis (from Luke 2:29-32, with Gloria Patri) is sung. The text may be from the King James version or from one of several modern translations. An antiphon precedes and follows it:

ANTIPHON: Preserve us, * O Lord, while waking, and guard us while sleeping, that awake we may watch with Christ, and a-sleep we may rest in peace.

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 the glory of thy people Israel.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Spirit;
As it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen.

The Apostles Creed is intoned by the choir. The Assembly rises.

CANTOR: I believe in God,
CHOIR: 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 at 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 PRAYERS

CANTOR: Lord, have mercy upon us.
CHOIR: Christ, have mercy upon us.
CANTOR: Lord, have mercy upon us.

The Lord’s Prayer and the following versicles and responses are intoned:

CANTOR: Our Father,
CHOIR: 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. Amen.

CANTOR: Blessed art thou, Lord God of our fathers;
CHOIR: To be praised and glorified above all for ever.

CANTOR: Let us bless the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost;
CHOIR: Let us praise and magnify him for ever.

CANTOR: Blessed art thou, O Lord, in the firmament of heaven;
CHOIR: To be praised and glorified above all for ever.

CANTOR: The Almighty and merciful Lord guard us and give us his blessing.
CHOIR: Amen.

The Confession and Absolution are spoken:

READER: Let us humbly confess our sins unto Almighty God.
CHOIR: We confess to God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, that we have sinned in thought, word, and deed, through our own grievous fault. Wherefore we pray God to have mercy upon us.

CHOIR: Almighty God, have mercy upon us, forgive us all our sins and deliver us from all evil, confirm and strengthen us in all goodness, and bring us to life everlasting. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

READER: May the almighty and merciful Lord grant unto us pardon and remission of all our sins, time for amendment of life, and the grace and comfort of the Holy Spirit.
CHOIR: Amen.

The following versicles and responses are chanted:

CANTOR: Wilt thou not turn again and quicken us;
CHOIR: That thy people may rejoice in thee?

CANTOR: O Lord, shew thy mercy upon us;
CHOIR: And grant us thy salvation.

CANTOR: Vouchsafe, O Lord, to keep us this night without sin;
CHOIR: O Lord, have mercy upon us, have mercy upon us.

CANTOR: O Lord, hear our prayer;
CHOIR: And let our cry come unto thee.

CANTOR: Let us pray.

At least three but not more than five prayers (or collects) are intoned by the CANTOR. The first collect is proper to the day. Other collects offered address the needs and concerns of the choir, or local or global community. The final collect is chosen from the following:

Visit, we beseech thee, O Lord, this place, and drive from it all the snares of the enemy;
let thy holy angels dwell herein to preserve us in peace; and may thy blessing be upon us
evermore; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

—or—

O God of peace, who hast taught us that in returning and rest we shall be saved, in
quietness and confidence shall be our strength: By the might of thy Spirit lift us, we pray
thee, to thy presence, where we may be still and know that thou art God; through Jesus
Christ our Lord. Amen.

CHOIR: Amen.

The READER announces the anthem to be sung. 

ANTHEM: Exultate justi in Domino – Lodovico Grossi da Viadana (ca. 1560 – 1627)

Exultate, justi, in Domino;
rectos decet collaudatio.

Confitemini Domino in cithara;
in psalterio decem chordarum psallite illi.

Cantate ei canticum novum;
bene psallite ei in vociferatione.

[English translation]

Rejoice in the Lord, you just; praise befits the upright.

Praise the Lord upon the harp; sing to him with the psaltery, the instrument of ten strings.

Sing to him a new song, sing well unto him with a loud noise.

FINAL RESPONSES and BLESSING

The CHOIR sings the final versicles and responses, using a setting composed by Peter Hallock in 1956, the year of the Compline Choir’s founding:

CANTOR: We will lay us down in peace and take our rest:
CHOIR: For it is thou, Lord, only that makest us to dwell in safety.

CANTOR: The Lord be with you:
CHOIR: And with thy spirit.

CANTOR: Let us bless the Lord:
CHOIR: Thanks be to God.

The closing blessing is spoken:

READER: The Almighty and merciful Lord, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, bless and preserve us.
CHOIR: Amen.

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