Choral Evensong

Sunday 21st July 2024 – 15:15

God has been worshipped in this place through the prayers and praises of countless generations. Worship lies at the heart of our life as Christians and we express our theology and belief through our liturgy. It is through these liturgical patterns of words and actions that we are formed and transformed.

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Choral Evensong at Saint Patrick’s Cathedral is a tiny fragment of something else: it is part of the worship which is offered to God by people every hour of the day and night, in every corner of the world. When you come to Evensong here, it is as if you are dropping in on a conversation already in progress – a conversation between God and his people. So do not be surprised or concerned if there are some parts that you do not understand straight away.

Evensong is drawn almost entirely from the Bible. Much of the language spoken and sung in this service is that spoken by worshippers more than four hundred years ago. It may sound old-fashioned, but its meaning is not out of date. We invite you to allow the music and words to speak to you in the beauty and peace of this place.

You are invited to say the text in bold in English.

Please stand as the Minister, at the West End of the Cathedral, sings

Let us pray. 

Please remain standing to sing the


1. Let saints on earth in concert sing
    With those whose work is done;
    For all the servants of our King
    In heaven and earth are one

2. One family, we dwell in him,
    One Church, above, beneath;
    Though now divided by the stream,
    The narrow stream of death.

3. One army of the living God,
    To his command we bow:
    Part of his host has crossed the flood,
    And part is crossing now.

4. E’en now to their eternal home
    There pass some spirits blest;
    While others to the margin come,
    Waiting their call to rest.

5. Jesu, be thou our constant Guide;
    Then, when the word is given,
    Bid Jordan’s narrow stream divide,
    And bring us safe to heaven.

Charles Wesley (1707–88)

Thomas Ravenscroft’s Psalmes (1621)


Please remain standing whilst the Minister and Choir sing the

Preces & Responses

O Lord, open thou our lips.

And our mouth shall show forth thy praise.

O God, make speed to save us.

O Lord, make haste to help us.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost;

As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Praise ye the Lord.

The Lord’s Name be praised.

Richard Ayleward (1626–69)

Please sit as the Choir sings the 

PSALM 106 vv 1–12
Confitemini Domino.
O give thanks unto the Lord, for he is gracious: and his mercy endureth for ever. Who can express the noble acts of the Lord: or shew forth all his praise? Blessed are they that alway keep judgement: and do righteousness. Remember me, O Lord, according to the favour that thou bearest unto thy people: O visit me with thy salvation; That I may see the felicity of thy chosen: and rejoice in the gladness of thy people, and give thanks with thine inheritance. We have sinned with our fathers: we have done amiss, and dealt wickedly. Our fathers regarded not thy wonders in Egypt, neither kept they thy great goodness in remembrance: but were disobedient at the sea, even at the Red sea. Nevertheless, he helped them for his Name’s sake: that he might make his power to be known. He rebuked the Red sea also, and it was dried up: so he led them through the deep, as through a wilderness. And he saved them from the adversary’s hand: and delivered them from the hand of the enemy. As for those that troubled them, the waters overwhelmed them: there was not one of them left. Then believed they his words: and sang praise unto him.

Please stand for

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost; as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Please sit for the

Job 13: 13 – 14: 6
‘Let me have silence, and I will speak,
and let come on me what may.
I will take my flesh in my teeth,
and put my life in my hand.
See, he will kill me; I have no hope;
but I will defend my ways to his face.
This will be my salvation,
that the godless shall not come before him.
Listen carefully to my words,
and let my declaration be in your ears.
I have indeed prepared my case;
I know that I shall be vindicated.
Who is there that will contend with me?
For then I would be silent and die.

Only grant two things to me,
then I will not hide myself from your face:
withdraw your hand far from me,
and do not let dread of you terrify me.
Then call, and I will answer;
or let me speak, and you reply to me.
How many are my iniquities and my sins?
Make me know my transgression and my sin.
Why do you hide your face,
and count me as your enemy?
Will you frighten a windblown leaf
and pursue dry chaff?
For you write bitter things against me,
and make me reap the iniquities of my youth.
You put my feet in the stocks,
and watch all my paths;
you set a bound to the soles of my feet.
One wastes away like a rotten thing,
like a garment that is moth-eaten.

‘A mortal, born of woman, few of days and full of trouble,
comes up like a flower and withers,
flees like a shadow and does not last.
Do you fix your eyes on such a one?
Do you bring me into judgement with you?
Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean?
No one can.
Since their days are determined,
and the number of their months is known to you,
and you have appointed the bounds that they cannot pass,
look away from them, and desist,
that they may enjoy, like labourers, their days.

Please stand as the Choir sings 


My soul doth magnify the Lord: and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. For he hath regarded: the lowliness of his hand-maiden. For behold, from henceforth: all generations shall call me blessed. For he that is mighty hath magnified me: and holy is his name. And his mercy is on them that fear him: throughout all generations. He hath shewed strength with his arm: he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. He hath put down the mighty from their seat: and hath exalted the humble and meek. He hath filled the hungry with good things: and the rich he hath sent empty away. He remembering his mercy hath holpen his servant Israel: as he promised to our forefathers, Abraham and his seed, for ever.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost; as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Service in B-flat; Charles Villiers Stanford (1852–1924)

Please sit for the 

Luke 10: 38–42
Now as they went on their way, he entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying. But Martha was distracted by her many tasks; so she came to him and asked, ‘Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.’ But the Lord answered her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her.’

Please stand as the Choir sings 

Nunc Dimittis

Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace: according to thy word. For mine eyes have seen: thy salvation, which thou hast prepared: before the face of all people; to be a light to lighten the Gentiles: and to be the glory of thy people Israel.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost; as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Service in B-flat; Charles Villiers Stanford (1852–1924)

Please remain standing to say the 

Apostles’ Creed

I believe in God  the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth: and in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord: who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary: suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried: He descended into hell; the third day he rose again from the dead: He ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty: from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead. I believe in the Holy Ghost: the holy catholic Church; the communion of saints: the forgiveness of sins: the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.

The Minister and Choir sing the 

Suffrages & Responses

The Lord be with you.

And with thy spirit.

Let us pray.

Please kneel or sit, according to your custom

Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.

Our Father, who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy Name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

O Lord, shew thy mercy upon us.

And grant us thy salvation.

O Lord, guide and defend our rulers.

And mercifully hear us when we call upon thee.

Endue thy Ministers with righteousness.

And make thy chosen people joyful.

O Lord, save thy people.

And bless thine inheritance.

Give peace in our time, O Lord.

Because there is none other that fighteth for us, but only thou, O God.

O God, make clean our hearts within us.

And take not thy Holy Spirit from us.

The Minister intones the 

O God, whose never-failing providence ordereth all things both in heaven and earth; We humbly beseech thee to put away from us all hurtful things, and to give us those things which be profitable for us; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

O God, from whom all holy desires, all good counsels, and all just works do proceed; give unto thy servants that peace which the world cannot give; that both our hearts may be set to obey thy commandments, and also that by thee we being defended from the fear of our enemies may pass our time in rest and quietness; through the merits of Jesus Christ our Saviour. Amen.

Lighten our darkness, we beseech thee, O Lord; and by thy great mercy defend us from all perils and dangers of this night; for the love of thy only Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Richard Ayleward (1626–69)

Remain seated whilst the Choir sings the


Beati quorum via integra est, qui ambulant in lege Domini.

(Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord.)

Janet Wheeler (2019)

Please stand whilst the Preacher moves to the Pulpit for the


Please be seated for the Sermon. At the end, the Preacher will conclude with a prayer, during which the congregation will stand.

The Minister says 

Let us pray.

Please kneel or be seated for the 


At the end, all say

The grace  of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with us all, evermore. Amen.

Please stand to sing the


During the hymn, a collection of money is made. You can donate online by tapping the Support Us button in the bottom right.

1. Ye watchers and ye holy ones,
    Bright seraphs, cherubim and thrones,
    Raise the glad strain, Alleluia!
    Cry out Dominions, Princedoms, Powers
    Virtues, Archangels, Angels’ choirs,

2. O higher than the cherubim,
    More glorious than the seraphim,
    Lead their praises, Alleluia!
    Thou Bearer of the eternal Word,
    Most gracious, magnify the Lord,

3. Respond, ye souls in endless rest,
    Ye patriarchs and prophets blest, 
    Alleluia, Alleluia!
    Ye holy Twelve, ye martyrs strong,
    All saints triumphant, raise the song,

4. O friends, in gladness let us sing,
    Supernal anthems, echoing,
    Alleluia, Alleluia!
    To God the Father, God the Son,
    And God the Spirit, Three in One,

Athelstan Riley (1858–1945)

Geistliche Kirchegesäng, Cologne (1623)


Please remain standing as the Choir and Clergy depart.

Please remain at your seat for the duration of the

Organ Voluntary

Developed by the Saint Patrick’s Cathedral Education Department: Clark Brydon (Education & Safeguarding Officer).

Material in this service is reproduced from The Book of Common Prayer, © RCB 2004.

Translations are provided automatically by Google Translate. Saint Patrick’s Cathedral is not responsible for automatically generated content or for content on external websites.

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