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Ordinary 24

Let us pray (in silence) [that we may love God in our hearts and in our actions]

Pause

Lord, [or God of compassion]
direct our hearts
by the action of your mercy,
for without your help
we cannot please you;
through Jesus Christ
who is alive with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
Amen.

The above is part of my attempt to provide a set of collects with history and commentary. It is a prayer prayed by Roman Catholics, Anglicans/Episcopalians, and others (even though they may pray this on different days).

This collect is for the fourteenth of the sixteen Sunday masses in the Gelasian sacramentary (#1230). For the Gregorian (effectively) (#1183), Sarum and 1549-1928 Prayer Books it is the collect for the nineteenth Sunday after Trinity.

Dirigat corda nostra quaesumus Domine tuae miserationis operatio, quia tibi sine te placere non possumus. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum filium tuum, qui tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus sancti Deus. Per omnia secula seculorum, Amen.

Literally: Direct our hearts, Lord, we beseech you, by the working of your mercy, for without you we are not able to please you.

Cranmer 1549:
O GOD, for asmuche as without thee, we are not able to please thee; Graunte that the workyng of thy mercie maye in all thynges directe and rule our heartes; Through Jesus Christ our Lorde.

The 1662 BCP revisers altered the collect to include the action of the Holy Spirit. This revision has affected contemporary Anglican revisions of this prayer:

O God, forasmuch as without thee we are
not able to please thee; Mercifully grant,
that thy Holy Spirit may in all things direct
and rule our hearts; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.

A New Zealand Prayer Book He Karakia Mihinare o Aotearoa page 612:

Almighty God,
you have called us to serve you,
yet without your grace
we are not able to please you;
mercifully grant that your Holy Spirit
may in all things direct and rule our hearts;
through Jesus Christ our Lord

BCP (USA) p.233 Proper 19; Sunday closest to September 14:

O God,
because without you we are not able to please you,
mercifully grant that your Holy Spirit may in all things
direct and rule our hearts;
through Jesus Chrsit our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Common Worship (CofE) Nineteenth Sunday after Trinity:

O God, forasmuch as without you
we are not able to please you;
mercifully grant that your Holy Spirit
may in all things direct and rule our hearts;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

ICEL’s earlier translation (1973) had:

Lord, guide us in your gentle mercy, for left to ourselves we cannot do your will.

In the failed 1998 English Missal translation:

Almighty God,
let the working of your gentle mercy direct the movement of our hearts, for without your grace
we cannot find favour in your sight.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever.

(Saturday, 4th Week of Lent)

Current ICEL (2011):

May the working of your mercy, O Lord, we pray, direct our hearts aright, for without your grace we cannot find favor in your sight.

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About This Site Welcome to this ecumenical website of resources and reflections on liturgy, spirituality, and worship for individuals and communities. It is run by Rev. Bosco Peters.

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