Saint Stephen’s Day.
WHY boastest thou thyself, thou tyrant : that thou canst do mischief;
2. Whereas the goodness of God : endureth yet daily?
3. Thy tongue imagineth wickedness : and with lies thou cuttest like a sharp rasor.
4. Thou hast loved unrighteousness more then goodness : and to talk of lies more than righteousness.
5. Thou hast loved to speak all words that may do hurt : O thou false tongue.
6. Therefore shall God destroy thee for ever : he shall take thee, and pluck thee out of thy dwelling, and root thee out of the land of the living.
7. The righteous also shall see this, and fear : and shall laugh him to scorn;
8. Lo, this is the man that took not God for his strength : but trusted unto the multitude of his riches, and strengthened himself in his wickedness.
9. As for me, I am like a green olive-tree in the house of God : my trust is in the tender mercy of God for ever and ever.
10. I will always give thanks unto thee for that thou hast done : and I will hope in thy Name, for thy saints like it well.
Grant, O Lord, that in all our sufferings here upon earth for the testimony of thy truth, we may stedfastly look up to heaven, and by faith behold the glory that shall be revealed; and, being filled with the Holy Ghost, may learn to love and bless our persecutors by the example of thy first Martyr Saint Stephen, who prayed for his murderers to thee, O blessed Jesus, who standest at the right hand of God to succour all those that suffer for thee, our only Mediator and Advocate. Amen.
Then shall follow the Collect of the Nativity, which shall be said continually unto New-year’s Eve.
ALMIGHTY God, who hast given us thy only-begotten Son to take our nature upon him, and as at this time to be born of a pure Virgin: Grant that we, being regenerate and made thy children by adoption and grace, may daily be renewed by thy Holy Spirit; through the same our Lord Jesus Christ, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the same Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.
Epistle Reading: Acts (6.8-7.53) 7.54-60
Gospel Reading: St. Matthew 23.34-39