The Sunday next before Advent.
1. EXCEPT the Lord build the house : their labour is but lost that build it.
2. Except the Lord keep the city : the watchman waketh but in vain.
3. It is but lost labour that ye haste to rise up early, and so late take rest, and eat the bread of carefulness : for so he giveth his beloved sleep.
4. Lo, children and the fruit of the womb : are an heritage and gift that cometh of the Lord.
5. Like as the arrows in the hand of the giant : even so are the young children.
6. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them : they shall not be ashamed when they speak with their enemies in the gate.
STIR up, we beseech thee, O Lord, the wills of thy faithful people; that they, plenteously bringing forth the fruit of good works, may of thee be plenteously rewarded; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Old Testament Reading: Jeremiah 23.5-8
Psalter: Psalm 146, 147 | 148, 149, 150
Epistle Reading: (Ephesians 2.1-10)
Gospel Reading: St. John 6.1-14
Barbee and Zahl: “This famous Collect, ( . . . ) is a memorable summary of all that has gone before. ( . . . ) The will needs to be stirred. I need to be animated! Something needs to fire up my desire to act. I need inspiration. God, here, is implored to give our wills inspiration. Once inspired, we shall bring forth “the fruit of good works.” ( . . . ) Stirred by the apprehension of being loved, the will brings forth the works of love. The consequence of such love that creates love is “plenteous rewarded.” This is the Gospel order: the love of Christ to needy sinners; the animating (or better, reanimating) effect of that love; the fruit of ethical loving which springs from the reanimated will; and the reward of that love-from-love, which is partial here and now and total in heaven” (119).
Saint Andrew the Apostle
ALMIGHTY God, who didst give such grace unto thy holy Apostle Saint Andrew, that he readily obeyed the calling of thy Son Jesus Christ, and followed him without delay; Grant unto us all, that we, being called by thy holy Word, may forthwith give up ourselves obediently to fulfil thy holy commandments; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Old Testament Reading: Isaiah 55.1-5
Psalter: Psalm 34
Epistle Reading: Romans 10.9-21
Gospel Reading: St. Matthew 4.18-22