Compline 2020: The Sixth Sunday after Pentecost

Currently the Office of Compline at St. Mark’s Cathedral, Seattle, is sung by the director and three others in an empty cathedral. Those singing are observing very stringent procedures – for more information see complinechoir.org. Beginning in mid-March 2020, the Compline Underground posts texts of the music sung to accompany the live broadcast or podcast.

SPECIAL NOTE: A quartet of women’s voices will sing Compline on July 19 and 26. These two services will broadcast by live video streaming from the St. Mark’s website, and links to the live stream and archive will be provided. 

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 – 1-3 days after the service).

Compline for The Sixth Sunday after Pentecost

The READER offers a short passage of scripture:

(July 12, 2020) Oh, that I had wings like a dove! I would fly away and be at rest.
I would flee to a far-off place and make my lodging in the wilderness.   —  Psalm 55:7, 8

ORISON: The day thou gavest, Lord, is ended (Tune: Les Commandements) – mel. Louis Bourgeois (c. 1510-c. 1559); harm. Claude Goudimel (c. 1514-1572)

The day Thou gavest, Lord, is ended,
The darkness falls at Thy behest;
To Thee our morning hymns ascended,
Thy praise shall sanctify our rest.

We thank Thee that Thy church, unsleeping,
While earth rolls onward into light,
Through all the world her watch is keeping,
And rests not now by day or night.

As o’er each continent and island
The dawn leads on another day,
The voice of prayer is never silent,
Nor dies the strain of praise away.

So be it, Lord; Thy throne shall never,
Like earth’s proud empires, pass away:
Thy kingdom stands, and grows forever,
Till all Thy creatures own Thy sway.

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 65 – Peter R. Hallock (1924-2014)

ANTIPHON: Let the valleys shout for joy and sing!

You are to be praised, O God, in Zion; *
to you shall vows be performed in Jerusalem.

To you that hear prayer shall all flesh come, *
because of their transgressions.

Our sins are stronger than we are, *
but you will blot them out.

Happy are they whom you choose and draw to your courts to dwell there! *
they will be satisfied by the beauty of your house, by the holiness of your temple.

Awesome things will you show us in your righteousness, O God of our salvation, *
O Hope of all the ends of the earth and of the seas that are far away.

You make fast the mountains by your power; *
they are girded about with might.

You still the roaring of the seas, *
the roaring of their waves, and the clamor of the peoples.

Those who dwell at the ends of the earth will tremble at your marvelous signs; *
you make the dawn and the dusk to sing for joy.

You visit the earth and water it abundantly; you make it very plenteous; *
the river of God is full of water.

You prepare the grain, *
for so you provide for the earth.

You drench the furrows and smooth out the ridges; *
with heavy rain you soften the ground and bless its increase.

You crown the year with your goodness, *
and your paths overflow with plenty.

May the fields of the wilderness be rich for grazing, *
and the hills be clothed with joy.

May the meadows cover themselves with flocks, and the valleys cloak themselves with grain; *
let them shout for joy and sing.

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: Let the valleys shout for joy and sing!

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.

HYMN: Almighty God, your word is cast like seed (Tune: Walden) – Jane M. Marshall (1924-2019)

Almighty God, your word is cast like seed upon the ground,
now let the dew of heaven descend and righteous fruits abound.

Let not our selfishness and hate this holy seed remove,
but give it root in every heart to bring forth fruits of love.

Let not the world’s deceitful cares the rising plant destroy,
but let it yield a hundredfold the fruits of peace and joy.

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: Hear the voice and prayer – Thomas Tallis (c. 1505-1585)

Hear the voice and prayer
of thy servants,
that they make before thee this day.
That thine eyes may be open
toward this house night and day,
ever toward this place
of which thou hast said,
“My name shall be there.”
And when thou hear’st
have mercy on them.

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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