Thursday, March 28, 2019

The Pastor's Prayers -- Prayer before entering the sanctuary

I recently discovered a treasure trove of prayers which represent many nationalities, eras, and saints from the Christian Church.  These have been compiled by Rev. Paul Stratman, with whom I had attended both college and seminary.  (Rev. Stratman was a few years ahead of me.)  Rev. Stratman has assembled many prayers from many sources and, when it was necessary, cleaned up some phrases which did not faithfully confess the Scriptures.

This source for prayers, A Collection of Prayers, can be accessed by anyone and proves very valuable for Christians.  What I especially like about this collection is that it demonstrates the catholicity of the Christian Church.  Each of us is not his own entity; we are the body of Christ which is connected despite borders, languages, race, or even time.

A quick perusal through the prayers has unveiled a prayer by St. John Chrysostom (ca. 349 - September 14, 407), archbishop of Constantinople, which I will now be using after vesting and just before entering the sanctuary to conduct the service.  Here is the pastor's prayer for that occasion:

God of inconceivable power,
incomprehensible glory,
immeasurable mercy,
unspeakable kindness,
look on us in your tender love
and show your rich mercy and compassion 
to us and those who pray with us.

Source: Liturgy of St. Chrysostom, fourth century

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Early Church, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1953

Further acknowledgement: Pastor Stratman's website was first made known to me through Gene E. Veith's blog: Cranach: The Blog of Veith.

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