Christ Deesis Hagia Sophia

Let us pray (in silence) [that God’s coming casts light into our hearts]

Incline your ear, O Lord,                        [or Incline your ear, O God,]
to our pleading,
and by the grace of your coming to us
enlighten the darkness of our hearts,
through Jesus Christ, our Saviour,
who is alive with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
Amen.

This is a collect shared by Anglicans, Roman Catholics, and others. Advent 3 has John the Baptist as a strong thread, the one who was not the light, but came to testify to the light. We cannot of ourselves, darkness cannot of itself, eliminate darkness, but light shining, by the very act of shining, removes darkness.

You can read more of the history and my reflection on this collect here.

This collect forms part of my ongoing project The Book of Prayers in Common. And, of course, I’m always open to improvements.

image: 13th century Mosaic of the Deesis (δέησις, “prayer” or “supplication”) in Hagia Sophia, Istanbul. Mary and John face towards Christ suplicating on behalf of humanity.

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