A circle of friends on pilgrimage for the love of God

Instructed Eucharist Part 1

Instructed Eucharist Part 1 of 4

1. Orienting ourselves to worship. 

Terms for those who help with worship:

Celebrant: A priest or bishop who presides at the liturgy 

Deacon: A person ordained to the diaconate can help with reading the gospel, leading the Prayers of the People, leading the Confession, setting the Altar at Offertory, distributing Communion, cleaning up after Communion, 

the Dismissal Crucifer: Someone who carries the processional cross 

Acolyte: Literally this means “torch-bearer” 

Lay Eucharistic Ministers: Lay people who have been authorized by the Bishop and the Rector to help distribute Communion, usually by being chalice-bearers 

Book-bearer: The person who carries the Gospel Book in procession and holds it during the Gospel Reading 

Preacher: A person who gives a sermon or homily 

Lector: A person who reads a lesson from the Bible.

Intercessor: A person who leads the Prayers of the People.

Oblation-bearers: Those who bring up the gifts of bread and wine at Offertory 

Ushers: Those who help people find their seat and the bulletin, who collect the offering and present it, and who help direct people during Communion.

Altar Guild: The team of people who help prepare the Altar area and are responsible for cleaning the vessels and linens

Standard Rite and Renewed Ancient Text

We follow one of two principal services for the Sunday morning Eucharist. There is room to try other liturgies at other times, but one of these two services should normally be followed for our principal service. If there is no priest present, we have the option of following the Morning Office or stopping after the Liturgy of the Word. If a deacon is present, he can lead a Deacon’s Mass. In this case, he follows the liturgy but use elements that have been blessed by a priest prior to service. 

Order of Service

(1) The Liturgy of the Word

– The Gathering Rite

– The Lessons & Sermon

– The Creed

– The Intercessions and Confession

– The Peace

(2) The Liturgy of the Table

– The Offertory

– The Eucharistic Prayer

– The Lord’s Prayer

– The Fraction

– Holy Communion

– The Post-Communion Prayer

– Blessing and Dismissal

Remembering baptism (delivered from slavery and into righteousness)

You can dip your fingers in the water and cross yourself as a way of remembering your own baptism and deliverance from sin and death. 

A Form for Blessing Holy Water

(Water is poured into a container and, traditionally, a little salt is added to it.) The priest says: Almighty God, who through the water of baptism has raised us from sin into new life, and by the power of your life-giving Spirit ever cleanses and sanctifies your people: + Bless, we pray you, this water for the service of your holy Church; and grant that it may be a sign of the cleansing and refreshment of your grace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

This Antiphon may be added: Cleanse me from my sin, and I shall be pure; wash me, and I shall be clean indeed. 

During the Fifty Days of Easter, in place of the above antiphon, this may be added: I saw water proceeding out of the temple, from the right side it flowed; and all those to whom that water came shall be saved. Alleluia.


Instrumental piece. Time to pray for service and prepare our hearts.

2. Gathering of the People

The opening moments of the service are focused on gathering the hearts of the people before the Lord. This includes the opening procession, the Acclamation, the Prayer for Purity, the rehearsal of the Law, and the Song of Ascents.

Processional Hymn (in the prayer, we find rubrics that help direct us)

We normally sing a hymn, but we could also read/sing a psalm o anthem together or antiphonally. This formal entrance emerged around the fifth century and follows a pattern of other legal meetings in the Roman world. The procession can grow to include a thurifer (incense), candlebearers, the acolytes carrying the cross, sometimes a choir, the deacon bearing Gospel book, other priests, and the celebrant. 

The congregation may bow to reference the cross as it moves past. At the alter, the ministers may bow or kiss the altar. The deacon places the gospel on the altar and may kiss the gospel at that time. 


The primary Acclamation is in Trinitarian form. 

Blessed be God: the Father, the Son, and the
Holy Spirit.

And blessed be His kingdom, now and forever. Amen.

This pattern is similar to the Jewish Benedictions. 

Blessed are you, O Lord, the God of Israel our father, forever and ever. 11 Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is yours.

 The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), 1 Ch 29:10–11.

7 Benedictions in a Jewish wedding. For example, “Blessed art Thou, O L-rd our G‑d, King of the universe who hast created the fruit of the vine.”

This acclamation pattern dates back to as early as 200 AD. Our 2019 Book of Common Prayer offers additional greetings on pages 145-146.

Note: This is one common place where people cross themselves during the liturgy. 

Prayer of Preparation

St Gregory, Abbot of Canterbury is credited with composing this prayer in 780 AD. It appears in the Sarum 

Thomas Cranmer translated it into English and it has been used in the Anglican service since 1549. It is an excellent prayer for personal meditation for before the service or anytime during week.  

A collect is a prayer that gathers us, focuses us on a single theme. It has five elements:

  1. The Address/Invocation
  2. The Acknowledgement – focusing on some quality of God in relation to the petition.
  3. The Petition – A request is made to God.
  4. The Aspiration – Points to a higher purpose in the request.
  5. The Pleading – The requests offered in and through Jesus Christ.

This structure is similar an ancient court prayer, dating all the way back to the second millennium BC.

It is a prayer that introduces the Liturgy of the Word and in that sense seeks to have hearts that are open to hear the reading and proclamation of God’s Word. In this sense, the prayer might be used before the reading of Scripture. 

Summary of the Law

The Decalogue, the Lord’s Prayer, and the Creed have been recited in the church across the generations. The Reformers emphasized these three key texts in meditation for spiritual formation. These three play a key role in our weekly worship. Reading the Decalogue each week was a way of reminding God’s people of God’s expectations, and thus it played a primary role in the church and service. Starting in the early eighteenth century the Scottish church began the pattern of substituting the “Summary of the Law” on occasion. We normally read the Decalogue during Lent and sometimes during Advent. 

The Summary of the Law and the Decalogue are excellent for personal examine. Luther offered the pattern of reading a command, giving thanks for that command, meditating on what that command looks like in day to day life, and finally offering a prayer of penitence for the ways he violated that command.

Song of Ascents

In our prayer book, we read the following instructions: The Gloria or some other song of praise may be sung or said, all standing. It is appropriate to omit the song of praise during penitential seasons and days appointed for fasting.

We normally sing a song of praise, but the Gloria in Excelsis is also worth singing or reciting from time to time. It is an ancient hymn of the church that comes from the Eastern church. The West began to use in weekly worship in the fifth century and eventually it became a standard part of the service. 

Glory to God in the highest, and peace to his people on earth. Lord God, heavenly King, almighty God and Father,

we worship you, we give you thanks, we praise you for your glory. Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of the Father, Lord God, Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world:

have mercy on us; you are seated at the right hand of the Father: receive our prayer. For you alone are the Holy One, you alone are the Lord, you alone are the Most High,

Jesus Christ,

with the Holy Spirit,

in the glory of God the Father. Amen.


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