Almighty and everlasting God,
who stooped to raise fallen humanity
through the child-bearing of blessèd Mary;
grant that we, who have seen your glory
revealed in our human nature
and your love made perfect in our weakness,
may daily be renewed in your image
and conformed to the pattern of your Son
Jesus Christ our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
God Most High,
whose handmaid bore the Word made flesh:
we thank you that in this sacrament of our redemption
you visit us with your Holy Spirit
and overshadow us by your power;
strengthen us to walk with Mary the joyful path of obedience
and so to bring forth the fruits of holiness;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
A reading from the book Genesis.
The man and the woman heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden at the time of the evening breeze, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man, and said to him, Where are you? He said, I heard the sound of you in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. God said, Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you not to eat? The man said, The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit from the tree, and I ate. Then the Lord God said to the woman, What is this that you have done? The woman said, The serpent tricked me, and I ate. The Lord God said to the serpent, Because you have done this, cursed are you among all animals and among all wild creatures; upon your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life. I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will strike your head, and you will strike his heel. The man named his wife Eve, because she was the mother of all living.
This is the word of the Lord. Genesis 3. 815, 20
A reading from the prophecy of Isaiah.
The Lord spoke to Ahaz, saying, Ask a sign of the Lord your God; let it be deep as Sheol or high as heaven. But Ahaz said, I will not ask, and I will not put the Lord to the test. Then Isaiah said: Hear then, O house of David! Is it too little for you to weary mortals, that you weary my God also? Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Look, the young woman is with child and shall bear a son, and shall name him Immanuel.
This is the word of the Lord. Isaiah 7. 1014
A reading from the prophecy of Micah.
You are walled around with a wall; siege is laid against us; with a rod they strike the ruler of Israel upon the cheek. But you, O Bethlehem of Ephrathah, who are one of the little clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to rule in Israel, whose origin is from of old, from ancient days.
Therefore he shall give them up until the time when she who is in labour has brought forth; then the rest of his kindred shall return to the people of Israel. And he shall stand and feed his flock in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God. And they shall live secure, for now he shall be great to the ends of the earth.
This is the word of the Lord. Micah 5. 14
|R||The Holy Spirit will come upon you|
[for you have found favour with God].
Hear, O daughter; consider and listen closely;
forget your people and your familys house.
The king will have pleasure in your beauty;
he is your master; therefore do him honour. R
The people of Tyre are here with a gift;
the rich among the people seek your favour.
All glorious is the princess as she enters;
her gown is cloth-of-gold. R
In embroidered apparel she is brought to the king;
after her the bridesmaids follow in procession.
With joy and gladness they are brought,
and enter into the palace of the king. R
In place of fathers, O king, you shall have sons;
you shall make them princes over all the earth.
I will make your name to be remembered
from one generation to another;
therefore nations will praise you for ever and ever. R From Psalm 45
|R||Let the name of the Lord be praised|
[who sits enthroned on high].
Give praise, you servants of the Lord;
praise the name of the Lord.
Let the name of the Lord be blessed,
from this time forth for evermore. R
From the rising of the sun to its going down
let the name of the Lord be praised.
The Lord is high above all nations,
and his glory above the heavens. R
Who is like the Lord our God, who sits enthroned on high,
but stoops to behold the heavens and the earth?
He takes up the weak out of the dust
and lifts up the poor from the ashes. R
He sets them with the princes,
with the princes of his people.
He makes the woman of a childless house
to be a joyful mother of children. R Psalm 113
|R||Christ came in our poor flesh|
[to share a mothers care].
O Lord, I am not proud;
I have no haughty looks.
I do not occupy myself with great matters,
or with things that are too hard for me. R
But I still my soul and make it quiet,
like a child upon its mothers breast;
my soul is quieted within me. R
O Israel, wait upon the Lord,
from this time forth for evermore. R Psalm 131
A reading from the Acts of the Apostles.
Then the apostles returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a sabbath days journey away. When they had entered the city, they went to the room upstairs where they were staying, Peter, and John, and James, and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James son of Alphaeus, and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James. All these were constantly devoting themselves to prayer, together with certain women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, as well as his brothers.
This is the word of the Lord. Acts 1. 1214
A reading from the Letter of Paul to the Romans.
I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory about to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the children of God; for the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning in labour pains until now; and not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly while we wait for adoption, the redemption of our bodies. For in hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what is seen? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. And God, who searches the heart, knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn within a large family. And those whom he predestined he also called; and those whom he called he also justified; and those whom he justified he also glorified.
This is the word of the Lord. Romans 8. 1830
A reading from the Letter of Paul to the Galatians.
When the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, in order to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as children. And because you are children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, Abba! Father! So you are no longer a slave but a child, and if a child then also an heir, through God.
This is the word of the Lord. Galatians 4. 47
Hear the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke.
In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgins name was Mary. And he came to her and said, Greetings, favoured one! The Lord is with you. But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. The angel said to her, Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God. And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his ancestor David. He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.
Mary said to the angel, How can this be, since I am a virgin? The angel said to her, The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God. And now, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month for her who was said to be barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.
Then Mary said, Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word. Then the angel departed from her.
This is the gospel of the Lord. Luke 1. 2638
Hear the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke.
Mary set out and went with haste to a Judean town in the hill country, where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Marys greeting, the child leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and exclaimed with a loud cry, Blessèd are you among women, and blessèd is the fruit of your womb. And why has this happened to me, that the mother of my Lord comes to me? For as soon as I heard the sound of your greeting, the child in my womb leaped for joy. And blessèd is she who believed that there would be a fulfilment of what was spoken to her by the Lord. And Mary said, My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour.
This is the gospel of the Lord. Luke 1. 3947
Hear the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John.
Standing near the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mothers sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing beside her, he said to his mother, Woman, here is your son. Then he said to the disciple, Here is your mother. And from that hour the disciple took her into his own home.
This is the gospel of the Lord. John 19. 25b-27