To begin, a story:
When I planning to leave Boston for Salt Lake City, the Church was in the season of Advent. The senior pastor I served with suggested we needed to have a weeknight party for my "friends from ministerium and anyone else - like any of your classmates - who can't be here on Sunday." Then he asked what I wanted to do for the worship portion that'd happen before the food and drink fest, suggesting, "we can celebrate Eucharist and you can preach." I replied, "No, I want to lead vespers!" I particularly love the opening Service of Light, so here's Marty Haugen's version of the ancient liturgical text:
- Joyous light of heavenly glory, loving glow of God's own face,
you who sing creation's story, shine on every land and race.
Now as evening falls around us, we shall raise our songs to you,
God of daybreak, God of shadows, come and light our hearts anew.
- In the stars that grace the darkness, in the blazing sun of dawn,
of the light of peace and wisdom, we can hear your quiet song.
Love that fills the night with wonder, love that warms the weary soul,
Love that bursts all chains asunder, set us free and make us whole.
- You who made the heaven's splendor, every dancing star of night,
make us shine with gentle justice, let us each reflect your light.
Mighty God of all creation, gentle Christ who lights our way,
Loving Spirit of salvation, lead us on to endless day.
© 1990 GIA Publications, Inc.