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Bishop. Will you be obedient to those who are over you in the Lord, cheerfully and faithfully performing the service that shall be appointed to you?
Answer. I will by the help of God.
Bishop. Inasmuch as this office is not to be lightly undertaken, is it your desire to give yourself to the work of the Lord as a Deaconess in singleness of heart? Answer. I desire to do so by the help of God.
Then shall the Candidate kneel, and the Bishop shall say:
Almighty God, who hath called you to serve Him in this holy life, give you the power to fulfil this your service acceptably, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Then shall the Bishop lay his hands upon the head of the person to be made Deaconess, saying:
God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Ghost, bless, preserve, and sanctify you; and so endow you with all faith, wisdom, and humility, that you may serve before Him to the glory of His great Name, and to the benefit of His Church and people; and make you faithful unto death, and give you the crown of everlasting life. Amen.
N. or M., I admit thee to the office of Deaconess, in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.
Let us pray.
O God, who didst teach the hearts of Thy faithful people, by sending to them the light of Thy Holy Spirit; Grant unto this Thy servant by the same Spirit to perceive and know what things she ought to do, and to have grace and strength evermore to do the same; direct her in all times of doubt and perplexity;
strengthen her to bear the trial of her faith and patience; comfort her in times of sorrow; cheer her when faint and weary in the way. May Thy love, abounding towards her more and more, stir up her heart to greater deeds of love to Thee, and to all who need her service. And upon all those called to the office of Deaconess in Thy Church bestow Thy grace and heavenly benediction; enable them to bear each other's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ. Make them to know and feel their oneness in the mystical Body of Thy dear Son, so that their fellowship here in works of love may prove to them a blessed discipline, and thus prepare them at last for the society of Thy redeemed in heaven; through Jesus Christ our most blessed Lord and Saviour. Amen.
O God, who in Thy holy Word dost commend above all goodly apparel the ornament of a quiet spirit; Adorn, we beseech Thee, these Thy servants with the meekness and the gentleness of Christ, that in all humility and singleness of heart they may run the way of Thy Commandments, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
It is desirable that the Service of the Holy Communion should follow, the newly set apart Deaconesses communicating.
At the Communion.
O God, who hast prepared for those who love Thee such good things as pass man's understanding; Pour into our hearts such love toward Thee, that we, loving
Thee above all things, may obtain Thy promises, which exceed all that we can desire; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Epistle. Rom. xv. 1-6.
THE BENEDICTION OF A HOLY TABLE OR ALTAR
The Bishop and Clergy having taken their places in the Sanctuary, the Bishop standing in the midst shall say:'
V. O send out Thy light and Thy truth, that they may lead me:
R. And bring me unto Thy holy hill and to Thy dwelling.
V. I will go unto the Altar of God;
R. Even the God of my joy and gladness.
V. I will wash my hands in innocency, O Lord:
Let us pray.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
The Cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the Communion of the Blood of Christ? The Bread which we break, is it not the Communion of the Body of Christ?
V. This is the bread which cometh down from heaven:
R. That a man may eat thereof and not die.
Let us pray.
Almighty God, give ear to the prayers which we humbly present before Thee; hallow this Altar [or
Table] and the vessels thereof through the invocation of Thy holy Name; and grant that the offerings there made may be acceptable and well-pleasing unto Thee, through the grace and power of Thy Holy Spirit. Hearken evermore to the supplications of Thy household in this place, lighten their load of trouble and heal their diseases, grant their petitions and accept their resolutions, strengthen their good hopes and fulfil their holy desires; that we may ever draw nigh to the gift of Thy grace with conscience sound and undefiled; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Almighty God, our heavenly Father, who hast given Thy Son our Saviour Jesus Christ not only to die for us but also to be our spiritual food and sustenance in the Holy Sacrament of His Body and Blood; Grant that the memorial of His death may here be made with reverence and godly fear, and the sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving be offered with holiness and joy, to the honor of Thy glorious Name, the benefit of Thy holy Church, and the comfort of souls that shall live by feeding upon Him; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom with Thee and the Holy Ghost be all honor and glory, world without end. Amen.
Grant, O Lord, that they who shall receive in this place the blessed Sacrament of the Body and Blood of Christ, may come to that holy Mystery with faith, charity, and true repentance; and being filled with Thy grace and heavenly benediction, may, to their great and endless comfort, obtain remission of their sins, and all other benefits of His passion. Amen.
1 Cor. xi. 23-26.
Psalm 84, or a Eucharistic Hymn, may be sung.