Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Friday, October 30, 2015
For All the Saints (A Bit Early)
As I come to the end of the Lord’s Prayer, I’m also approaching the end of October. All Saints’ Day is celebrated in two days’ time.
The prayer for today from The Oxford Book of Prayer concerns “For Ever and Ever” (Prayer 558, page 168)  The prayer is in a section entitled The Virgin, Martyrs and Saints. The editor marks this selection as penned by “Anonymous.” I thought this prayer both elegant in tone, and comprehensive, for its brevity.
“We thank Thee, O God, for the saints of all ages; for those who in times of darkness kept the lamp of faith burning;” – I think of historical figures from various places who not only were faithful themselves, but were God’s lights in uncertain and dark times. God bless them.
“For the great souls who saw visions of larger truth and dared to declare it;” – I think of those courageous “great souls” who did not shrink from naming truth. I think of desperate situations where noble “great souls” stood up and cried out, like a voice crying in the actual or virtual wilderness. They were God’s lights in treacherous and dangerous times. God bless them.
“For the multitude of quiet and gracious souls whose presence has purified and sanctified the world;” – I think of countless Marthas and Stephens worldwide, unassuming, going about their quiet work in a quiet manner. Loving God and loving their neighbor. They were God’s lights in tranquil backwaters and placid times. God bless them.
“For those known and loved by us, who have passed from this earthly fellowship into the fuller light of life with Thee.” – I think of many dear ones I have known my life long, who have passed into God’s glorious presence. Bless each one. Bless their memory.
Gracious God, as we are surrounded by such a vast and varied cloud of witnesses, help us to continue to lift Your name high. As we praise Your name along with the mighty company of saints from all time, we say, Amen.
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 The Oxford Book of Prayer, edited by George Appleton. (New York: Oxford University Press, reissued 2009), 168.