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A Prayer that may be used in Meetings on Charitable Occasions.

A Prayer that may be used in Meetings on Charitable Occasions, after a Sermon and Contribution.

ADORABLE and everliving God, who, by thy righteous providence, orderest all things in heaven and on earth, and whose mercies are, like thy years, unnumbered, we desire humbly to adore thee for thy infinite perfections; we bless thy holy name for thy manifold favors daily bestowed upon us and upon all mankind, both spiritual and temporal; and chiefly we adore thee for thy mercy in Jesus Christ. Praised be thy name, that thou hast been pleased to call us to the knowledge of thy grace and faith in thee; that we live in a land where the gospel is preached; and that we are permitted still to hear it. We bless thee especially for this opportunity of uniting in prayer and praise before thee, and of hearing the counsels of thy word. May thy truth be grafted inwardly in our hearts, and bring forth in us the fruit of good living.

Thou hast taught us that all our doings without charity are nothing worth; send thy Holy Spirit, and pour into our hearts that most excellent gift of Christian love, which is the bond of peace and of all virtues, and without which whosoever liveth is counted as dead before thee. Accept, O Lord, the alms and oblations and the prayers which we have offered before thee, not weighing our merits, but pardoning our offences. Inspire us with that love which is the fulfilling of the whole law. May we, through thy grace, be ready to every good work, and never be weary in well doing.

Behold, we beseech thee, with thy compassionate mercy, all the sons and daughters of sorrow. Provide for the fatherless children and widows, and all who are poor and needy; and dispose us to be bountiful according to our means, and to pity those

Another, more general.

who need the comforts which, through thy goodness, we enjoy. And when we shall have served thee in our generation, may we be found acceptable in thy sight, and receive that blessing which thy well beloved Son shall pronounce to all who love and serve thee, saying, Come, ye blessed of my Father, receive the kingdom prepared for you from the beginning of the world. Grant this, we beseech thee, O, merciful God, through Jesus Christ, our Mediator and Redeemer. Amen.

Another, more general.

O LORD, our heavenly Father, whose blessed Son, Jesus Christ, in tender love to mankind, did take our nature upon him, and did spend his life in works of mercy, and went about doing good; grant that the spirit may be in us which was in him, the like benevolence and tender love for mankind. Make us pitiful, inclined to mercy and good works. According to our means and opportunities, make us ready to give and glad to distribute, desiring through thy mercy and our Savior's merits to lay up treasures in heaven, where moth and rust cannot corrupt them. May we love our neighbors as we love ourselves, and do to all men as we would have them do to us. May we be ready and disposed to extend to the destitute and needy such charitable aid as, in a like situation, we should reasonably desire to receive. May we be merciful as we hope to obtain mercy, and freely give, from the consideration that we freely receive.

Behold us, O Lord, with thy favor and blessing on this present occasion, and prosper the work which our hands now find to do. Favorably, with mercy, hear our prayer, and graciously accept what

Another Prayer for the Meeting of a Charitable Society.

we contribute to honor thy name, and to benefit our fellow-men. May all our offerings be made with pure hearts and charitable affections; may they be blest to the promotion of the objects for which they are given, and be accepted of thee, O thou God of all mercy and grace, as a sacrifice with which thou art well pleased.

We are sensible, O God, and may we never forget, that our best deeds are without merit before thee; we would not put our trust in any thing that we do. We are unworthy, through our manifold sins, to offer unto thee any sacrifice; yet we beseech thee to accept this our bounden duty and service, not weighing our merits, but pardoning our offences, and receiving our humble offerings, through the merits and mediation of thy Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Another Prayer for the Meeting of a Charitable Society.

O LORD and merciful God, who hast taught us in thy holy word that the end of the commandment is charity, and hast promised that the merciful shall obtain mercy; we beseech thee favorably to behold and bless thy servants, the members of the society here present, who have associated for the benevolent purpose of benefiting their fellow-creatures. [The particular object of the society may here be expressed.] We beseech thee, O Lord, to strengthen, direct and prosper them in this, their pious work and labor of love. Enlarge still more their hearts and their means for doing good. Direct them in all they do with thy most gracious favor; prosper them with thy continual help, and pour upon them the abundance of thy grace, that their benevolent labors may be extensively useful, to the glory and

For Improvement in Sickness.

praise of thy great name, and to the relief and comfort of those who need. Wilt thou, O blessed Lord, remunerate their kindness and remember them for good. Bless them in their houses and their stores. The Lord deliver them in the time of trouble: the Lord preserve and keep them, that they may be blest upon the earth, and be prepared to dwell with thee in life everlasting, through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

For Improvement in Sickness.*

O GOD and merciful Father, who despisest no the sighing of a contrite heart, nor the desires of those who are afflicted or distressed, mercifully assist us in the prayers which we would now make before thee. Thou knowest, Lord, our necessities before we ask, and the imperfection of our sincerest prayers. We beseech thee to cleanse our hearts from the defilement of sin, and to sanctify our thoughts by the inspiration of thy Holy Spirit. With pity behold our infirmities and sorrows, and assist us in the supplications and prayers which we desire, with all due reverence and humility, to offer before thee. Turn from us the evils that we have justly deserved; and help us, in all dangers and afflictions, to put our whole trust and confidence in thy mercy, and patiently submit to thy holy will. Remember not, Lord, our offences, but thy mercy to us in Jesus Christ. Grant us that peace which

*In the English "Clergyman's Companion," is a great variety of prayers for the sick, collected from many eminent divines of the English church; which, with extracts on other subjects, were republished in New York in 1806, by the Rev. J. H. Hobart, D. D.; and in 1828, being then bishop of that diocese, he published another edition, with alterations and additions. As those excellent compilations are probably in the hands of most of our clergy, I have inserted in this work fewer prayers for the use of the sick.

For Improvement in Sickness.

the world cannot give, and that comfort of hope which we are not worthy to ask, but in his most holy name.

Trusting not in ourselves, but in his merits, and in thy gracious promise to hear our prayers for the sick and afflicted, we humbly beseech thee to look down, with favor and compassion, upon [this family visited with affliction. With pity behold their fears and their sorrows, and support and comfort and bless them, according as they have need. Prepare them, we beseech thee, for every event of thy providence. And wilt thou, O merciful God, visit with the consolations of thy comfort and peace] this thy servant, visited with sickness. [Here the particular case may be named.] Look upon him with the eyes of thy mercy. If it be consistent with thy goodness, preserve him, we beseech thee, from bodily pains and distress, and from all needless doubts and fears and faithless apprehensions. May his reason be clear, his mind composed, and his thoughts occupied with spiritual things; and whatever trials and sufferings it may seem good to thee to inflict, grant him, we beseech thee, patience to bear the rod, and grace to know who hath appointed it. According to his day, so may his strength be. May his soul, being awakened to righteousness and renewed by grace, rely upon thy mercy, confident that thou art wise and good in all thy dealings, and that thou lovest those whom thy hand correcteth. Give him a deep sense of thy power and authority over all the works of thy hand. Knowing that the Lord is just, may every murmuring thought be suppressed, and patience have its perfect work in a cheerful resignation to thy unerring will. May he wait thy pleasure with humble submission, knowing that thou art patient with a returning sinner, and that all things work for good to those who love and fear thee.

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