Compline 2021: The First Sunday after the Epiphany: The Baptism of Jesus

This archived service of Compline was originally recorded January 12, 2020

Due to current health restrictions, only two members of the choir – a solo singer and a reader – will be praying the office of Compline at St. Mark’s Cathedral, Seattle, at 9:30 p.m. Sunday evenings, beginning on November 29, 2020. This will continue until further notice – for the latest information, visit complinechoir.org.

The service broadcasts on KING-FM (king.org) will be archived recordings of the whole choir from previous years, appropriate to the liturgical season.

This post, for The First Sunday after the Epiphany: The Baptism of Jesus, is an archived recording of Compline from  January 12, 2020 — Jason Anderson, director • Gregory Bloch, reader • Thomas Adams, cantor • Tyler Morse, anthem soloist

Live Broadcast  (The live broadcast has concluded).

Podcast                (link to the podcast on complinepodcast.org)

Compline for The First Sunday after the Epiphany: The Baptism of Jesus

READER: As Jesus came up from the water, suddenly the heavens were open to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, the Beloved, with whom I am well pleased.” – [Mark 1:9-11]

ORISON: ‘I come,’ the great Redeemer cries (Tune: This Endris Nyght) – English melody; harm. Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958) and Martin Fallas Shaw (1875-1958)

“I come,” the great Redeemer cries,
“To do thy will, O Lord!”
At Jordan’s stream, behold!
He seals the sure prophetic word.

“Thus it becomes us to fulfill
all righteousness,” he said.
Then, faithful to the Lord’s commands,
through Jordan’s flood was led.

Hark, a glad voice! The Father speaks
from heaven’s exalted height:
“This is my Son, my well-beloved
in whom I take delight.”

The Savior Jesus, well-beloved!
His Name we will profess,
like him desirous to fulfill
God’s will in righteousness.

No more we’ll count ourselves our own
but his in bonds of love.
Oh, may such bonds for ever draw
our souls to things above!

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 29: Peter R. Hallock (1924–2014)

[ANTIPHON:] Jesus comes to the waters, our nature is renewed. Corruption is clothed with incorruption; humanity is young again. Halleluah!

Ascribe to the LORD, you gods, *
ascribe to the LORD glory and strength.

Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his Name; *
worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.

The voice of the LORD is upon the waters;
the God of glory thunders; *
the LORD is upon the mighty waters.

The voice of the LORD is a powerful voice; *
the voice of the LORD is a voice of splendor.

The voice of the LORD breaks the cedar trees; *
the LORD breaks the cedars of Lebanon;

He makes Lebanon skip like a calf, *
and Mount Hermon like a young wild ox.

The voice of the LORD splits the flames of fire;
the voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness; *
the LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.

The voice of the LORD makes the oak trees writhe *
and strips the forests bare.

And in the temple of the LORD *
all are crying, “Glory!”

The LORD sits enthroned above the flood; *
the LORD sits enthroned as King for evermore.

The LORD shall give strength to his people; *
the LORD shall give his people the blessing of peace.

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 READER speaks the following lesson:

READER: Thou, O Lord, art in the midst of us, and we are called by thy Name.
Leave us not, O Lord our God.  – [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: When Christ’s appearing was made known (Tune: Erhalt uns, Herr) – melody from Geistliche Lieder, 1543; harm. Hans Leo Hassler (1564-1612), alt.

When Christ’s appearing was made known,
King Herod trembled for his throne;
But He Who offers heavenly birth
Sought not the kingdoms of this earth.

(omitted) The eastern sages saw from far
And followed on His guiding star;
By light their way to Light they trod,
And by their gifts confessed their God.

Within the Jordan’s sacred flood
The heavenly Lamb in meekness stood,
That He, to Whom no sin was known,
Might cleanse His people from their own.

Oh, what a miracle divine,
When water reddened into wine!
He spoke the word, and forth it flowed
In streams that nature ne’er bestowed.

All glory, Jesus, be to Thee
For this Thy glad epiphany:
Whom with the Father we adore
And Holy Ghost forevermore.

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 II; harm. John Holmes (d. 1629)

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 asleep 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 to be the glory of thy people Israel.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Spirit;
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be * world without end.  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 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 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 most 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:

FIRST SUNDAY AFTER THE EPIPHANY (January 10)
Father in heaven, who at the baptism of Jesus in the River Jordan didst proclaim him thy beloved Son and anoint him with the Holy Spirit: Grant that all who are baptized into his Name may keep the covenant they have made, and boldly confess him as Lord and Savior; who with thee and the same Holy Spirit liveth and reigneth, one God, in glory everlasting.

Other collects offered address the needs and concerns of the choir, or local or global community. The final collect is chosen from the following:

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 Savior, Jesus Christ.

—and/or—

Look down, O Lord from thy heavenly throne, illuminate the darkness of this night with thy celestial brightness, and from the sons of light banish the deeds of darkness; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

CHOIR: Amen.

The READER announces the anthem to be sung. 

ANTHEM: The Baptism of Christ – Peter R. Hallock

Jesus autem hodie regressus est a Jordanae (Jesus now returns today to the Jordan.)

When Jesus Christ baptised was, the Holy Ghost descended with grace; the Father voice was heard in the place: Hic est filius meus, ipsum intende (This is my beloved Son).

There were Three Persons and one Lord, the Son baptised with one accord, the Father said this blessed word: Hic est filius meus, ipsum intende.

Now, Jesu, as thou art both God and man, and were baptised in from Jordan, at our last end, we pray thee, say then: Hic est filius meus, ipsum intende.

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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