The Service may begin with a Chorale, an Introit, a Processional Hymn, or opening Sentences.

SENTENCES, one or more to be read by the Minister:

Behold, the former things are come to pass, And new things do I declare unto you. Isaiah XLII: 9.

Separate not thyself from the congregation and its concerns, nor postpone thought for thy spirit until the day of thy death. Say not, by and bye, when I have leisure, I will care for my soul, least perchance thou never find leisure. Hillel.

Let justice flow down as waters, And righteousness as an mighty stream. Amos V: 24.

By desiring what is perfectly good, even when we do not quite know what it is and cannot do what we would, we are part of the power against evil, widening the skirts of light and making the struggle with darkness narrower. George Eliot.

The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad;
And the desert shall rejoice and blossom as the rose.
And an highway shall be there, and a way,
And the ransomed shall return;
And everlasting joy shall be upon their heads:
They shall obtain joy and gladness,
And sorrow and sighing shall flee away. Isaiah XXXV: 1, 8, 10.

PRAYER OF ASPIRATION, by the Minister:

We are gathered together in this quiet house to seek strength and courage for the coming days. We would again possess our souls in patience and self-mastery, and be set free from inward turmoil, unworthy pleasures and low aims. Here the world’s tumultuous clamor falls into silence; here the troubled heart finds rest; here is cool water from living streams. And here once more we commit ourselves to the high tasks that await our hands; to the fulfillment of duties seen in moments of vision; to the building of a nobler life for all mankind. And in that consecration of ourselves we shall find strength and peace and joy. Amen.

We are grateful for the rest of the might and the light of a new day; for the spirit of fellowship and the joy of association; for all the wonder and delight of ventures undertaken and tasks accomplished. In this spirit of gladness and service we enter the day with confidence and hope. Amen.

Peace be with you.
And with all mankind.
Lift up your hearts.
We lift them up in joy and praise.

HYMN, or the following Song of Exaltation.

From all that dwell below the skies
Let faith and hope with love arise;
Let beauty, truth and good be sung
Through every land by every tongue.




CHANT, if desired.

SECOND LESSON, if desired.

Here may follow a period of silent meditation, after which the Minister may read the Litany, the people responding.


For the holiness of every place where light is found; for the healing of nature and the understanding of our fellow-men; for the insights of toil; for the sanctities of birth and death:
We lift up thankful hearts.
For this holy place and hour, where we leave behind old cares and pleasures, outgrown faiths and customs, where all things meet and change and are renewed:
We lift up thankful hearts.
For revival of zest in living; for the tides of life about us and within; for present happiness and strong desire; and for the song of our ascending way:
We lift up thankful hearts.
For the bright procession of memory and for new images of hope; for all our relations of privilege and duty; for those long gone and for those near whose virtues bless us; for school and church and state; for the noble concerns of all our days and years:
We lift up thankful hearts.
For the urgence in us to do and to dare, to alter and effect; for deep impulses of heart and hand to work in the earth and recreate ourselves and the common life of men and nations after the patterns of righteousness beheld in every mount of vision:
We lift up thankful hearts: let the work of our hands declare the purpose of our hearts, and kindly deeds show forth the light within.

OFFERTORY, during which an anthem may be sung.