Project Canterbury

The Lord's Service for the Lord's Children.

London: Church Union, 1953.


When the acts and prayers in this little book are used, it is necessary that there should be an instructor, by preference a priest. A faldstool may be placed in a convenient place in the Nave, among the children, where the Instructor may best be seen and heard by all. He should give out a few words at a time—as many as are between the short lines—the children saying them after the Instructor. It is also advisable that he should give out the number of each hymn and the words of the first line. Priests generally, by their experience or by some special local circumstance, find out when the children may best kneel or stand: but it is recommended for the sake of reverence and singing that the children stand rather than kneel, except from the Sanctus until the Consecration. Kneeling for long is fatiguing, especially for children, and is apt to make them lose attention and regard the Service as tedious. In some country churches, also, the pews are so high that small children cannot see the Altar. It is a good plan to place a movable Altar at the steps of the Chancel so as to be near the children, that they may see the priest and the ceremonies. In order to make the singing thoroughly congregational it is better to have no choir; if there is a choir let them occupy the front seats of the church, and merely lead the singing.

The prayers at the commencement should be said a few minutes before the Service begins: and the prayers at the end, after the Ministers have retired to the Sacristy.


To be said by the Instructor and the children.

Let us offer this holy and immortal Sacrifice to Almighty God for the four ends.

My God—I offer to thee—this Holy Sacrifice—to adore thee—because thou art my Creator—my first beginning—my last end.

O my God—I offer to thee—the Holy Sacrifice—to thank thee—that thou didst give me—my body and my soul—thou givest me—the bread which I eat—thou givest me—the holy Sacraments—my God, I thank thee.

O my God—wash away my sins—with the precious Blood—of Jesus Christ.

O God—give me all blessings—for my body—and my soul—through Jesus Christ our Lord—Amen.

Let us make an Act of contrition.

O my God—I am sorry—that I have sinned against thee—who art so good—forgive me for the sake of Jesus Christ—and make me to be so sorry—for my sins—that I may fear to sin again.

Let us offer a Prayer for the conversion of sinners.

Lord, we pray—for all poor sinners—that they may repent this day.


When the Priest arrives at the Altar, sing the following hymn:

Send out, O Lord, thy truth and light,
That they may lead me still
Unto thy heavenly dwelling bright,
And to thy holy hill.

Then to the Altar of my God,
Who makes my youth rejoice,
I will go up with songs of laud,
And lift in thanks my voice.

Why art thou downcast, O my soul,
And wherefore sad within?
O praise thy God, who makes thee whole,
Thy Lord, who frees from sin.

Unto the Father glory be,
And to his only Son,
And Holy Spirit unto thee,
While endless ages run. Amen.

The Priest says:

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

Almighty God, unto whom all hearts be open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid; Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of thy Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love thee, and worthily magnify thy holy Name. Through Christ our Lord. R. Amen.

Then is sung:

Lord, have mercy upon us, or Kyrie eleison. Three times.
Christ, have mercy upon us, or Christe eleison. Three times.
Lord, have mercy upon us, or Kyrie eleison. Three times.



Priest. God spake these words and said: I am the Lord thy God:

I. Thou shalt have none other gods but me.
Answer. Lord, have mercy upon us, and incline our hearts to keep this law. After the first nine.

II. Thou shalt not make to thyself any graven image, nor the likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or in the earth beneath, or in the water under the earth. Thou shalt not bow down to them, nor worship them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, and visit the sins of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me, and shew mercy unto thousands in them that love me, and keep my commandments.
Thou shalt not take the Name of the Lord thy God in vain: for the Lord will not hold him guiltless, that taketh his Name in vain.
Remember that thou keep holy the Sabbath-day. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all that thou hast to do; but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God. In it thou shalt do no manner of work, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, thy man-servant, and thy maidservant, thy cattle, and the stranger that is within thy gates. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the seventh day, and hallowed it.
V. Honour thy father and thy mother; that thy days may be long in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.
VI. Thou shalt do no murder.
VII. Thou shalt not commit adultery.
VIII. Thou shalt not steal.
IX. Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.
X. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his servant, nor his maid, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor anything that is his.
Answer. Lord, have mercy upon us, and write all these thy laws in our hearts, we beseech thee.

Here follows the Prayer for the Queen.

The Priest then goes to the south side of the Altar, first saying:

V. The Lord be with you,
R. And with thy spirit.

Then he says the Collects and Epistle.

After the Epistle say: Thanks be to God.

All stand up and sing:

Thy Gospel, Jesus, we believe,
And for thy help we pray,
That we, in thought, and word, and deed.
Thy Gospel may obey.

The Priest then says:

V. The Lord be with you.
R. And with thy spirit.


When the Gospel is given out:
+ Glory be to thee, O Lord.

After the Gospel:
Praise be to thee, O Christ.

Then follows the Creed, if it is to be said.

Priest. I believe in one God:
All sing. The Father Almighty: Maker of heaven and earth, And of all things visible and invisible.
And in one Lord (here all bow) Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God; Begotten of his Father, before all worlds.
God of God, Light of Light, Very God of very God, Begotten, not made.
Being of one substance with the Father; By whom all things were made.
Who for us men, and for our salvation came down from heaven:
Here kneel in memory of Jesus Christ’s great humility in taking our flesh upon him and becoming Man.
And was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary.
And was made Man. Stand.
And was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate. He suffered and was buried.
And the third day he rose again according to the Scriptures.
And ascended into heaven, And sitteth on the right hand of the Father.
And he shall come again with glory to judge both the quick and the dead: whose kingdom shall have no end.
And I believe in the Holy Ghost the Lord, and Giver of life, who proceedeth from the Father and the Son.
Who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified: who spake by the Prophets.
And I believe one holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins.
And I look for the Resurrection of the dead, And the + life of the world to come. Amen.


V. The Lord be with you.
R. And with thy spirit.
Let us pray.

Then follows the Offertory.

This part of the Service is called the Offertory. (1) Because it is the offertory of bread and wine. (2) Because it is the custom for the congregation to make an offering here to God. On the Altar there is a small plate called the Paten: on this are placed breads made of the best and purest wheat. The priest then takes with him to the side of the Altar a cup called the Chalice. He pours some wine into the Chalice and mixes a few drops of water with the wine, because there was water mixed with the wine at the Institution of the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper. Then the priest goes to the middle of the Altar and offers the bread and wine to God, because by the power of God they are to become verily and indeed the Body and Blood of Christ. Then the priest washes his hands before proceeding with the service. This is called the Lavabo.

During the Offertory this hymn may be sung:

We give thee thanks, most holy Lord,
That thou to man hast given
An entrance by the living Way,
To mysteries of heaven

We here present before thy throne
Our gifts of bread and wine;
Beseeching thee to take of ours,
And make it wholly thine.

Send down thy Spirit from above
To bless this heavenly Food,
That we, by faith, may here discern
Christ’s Body and his Blood.

And grant that we, who here partake
Of Christ, the Living Bread,
May worship him in heaven above,
With all thy holy dead. Amen.

Then the children may make the usual Acts of Faith, Hope, and Charity, saying with the Instructor:

Act of Faith.—My God, I believe in thee—and all thy Church doth teach—because thou hast said it—and thy Word is true.

Act of Hope.—My God, I hope in thee—for grace and for glory—because of thy promises thy mercy and thy power.

Act of Charity.—My God, because thou art so good—I love thee with all my heart—and for thy sake—I will love my neighbour as myself.


After the Offertory the Priest says:

Let us pray: for the whole state of Christ’s Church militant here in earth.

Almighty and everliving God, who by thy holy Apostle hast taught us to make prayers and k supplications, and to give thanks, for all men; We humbly beseech thee most mercifully to accept our alms and oblations, and to receive these our prayers, which we offer unto thy divine Majesty; beseeching thee to inspire continually the universal Church with the spirit of truth, unity, and concord.

And grant, that all they that do confess thy holy Name may agree in the truth of thy holy Word, and live in unity, and godly love.

We beseech thee also to save and defend all Christian Kings, Princes, and Governors; and specially thy Servant Elizabeth, our Queen; that under her we may be godly and quietly governed: And grant unto her whole Council, and to all that are put in authority under her, that they may truly and indifferently minister justice, to the punishment of wickedness and vice. and to the maintenance of thy true religion and virtue.

Give grace, O heavenly Father, to all Bishops and Curates, that they may both by their life and doctrine set forth thy true and lively Word, and rightly and duly administer thy holy Sacraments.

And to all thy people give thy heavenly grace; and specially to this congregation here present; that, with meek heart and due reverence, they may hear, and receive thy holy Word; truly serving thee in holiness and righteousness all the days of their life.

And we most humbly beseech thee of thy goodness, O Lord, to comfort and succour all them, who in this transitory life are in trouble, sorrow, need, sickness, or any other adversity.

And we also bless thy holy Name for all thy servants departed this life in thy faith and fear; beseeching thee to give us grace so to follow their good examples, that with them we may be partakers of thy heavenly kingdom. Grant this, O Father, for Jesus Christ’s sake; our only Mediator and Advocate. R. Amen.

The Priest turns and says: Ye that do truly, etc.

Then this confession is made:

Almighty God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Maker of all things, Judge of all men; We acknowledge and bewail our manifold sins and wickedness, Which we, from time to time, most grievously have committed, By thought, word, and deed, Against thy divine Majesty, Provoking most justly thy wrath and indignation against us. We do earnestly repent, And are heartily sorry for these our misdoings; The remembrance of them is grievous unto us; The burden of them is intolerable. Have mercy upon us, Have mercy upon us, most merciful Father; For thy Son our Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, Forgive us all that is past; And grant that we may ever hereafter Serve and please thee in newness of life, to the honour and glory of thy Name. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Priest says:

Almighty God, our heavenly Father, who of his great mercy hath promised forgiveness of sins to all them that with hearty repentance and true faith turn unto him; Have mercy upon you; pardon + and deliver you from all your sins; confirm and strengthen you in all goodness; and bring you to everlasting life. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. R. Amen.

Here follow the Comfortable Words.


The Priest then begins the Preface:

V. The Lord be with you.
R. And with thy spirit.
V. Lift up your hearts.
R. We lift them up unto the Lord.
V. Let us give thanks unto our Lord God.
R. It is meet and right so to do.

It is very meet, right, and our bounden duty, that, we should at all times and in all places, give thanks unto thee, O Lord holy, Father Almighty, Everlasting God.

Then follows the proper Preface if there is one; if not, is said at once:

Therefore with Angels and Archangels, and with all the company of heaven, we laud and magnify thy glorious Name, evermore praising thee, and saying:


All kneel and sing:
Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God of hosts,
Heaven and earth are full of thy glory.
Glory be to thee, O Lord most High.
Blessed + is he that cometh in the Name of the Lord.
Hosanna in the highest.


This is the most solemn part of the Service. Listen very reverently, and be careful not to let your thoughts wander; remember Jesus Christ is coming, and you are here to worship God by offering him; you may make this short prayer with the Instructor.

Let us pray for the Living.

We pray to thee—O merciful Father—Take care of thy Holy Church—our Bishop—our Clergy—have mercy on our fathers and mothers—brothers and sisters—and all who are dear to us—O God—have mercy upon our own poor souls—through Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord.

The Priest says:

We do not presume to come to this thy Table, O merciful Lord, trusting in our own righteousness, but in thy manifold and great mercies. We are not worthy so much as to gather up the crumbs under thy Table. But thou art the same Lord, whose property is always to have mercy: Grant us therefore, gracious Lord, so to eat the Flesh of thy dear Son Jesus Christ, and to drink his Blood, that our sinful bodies may be made clean by his Body, and our souls washed through his most precious Blood, and that we may evermore dwell in him, and he in us. Amen.


Almighty God, our heavenly Father, who of thy tender mercy didst give thine only Son Jesus Christ to suffer death upon the Cross for our redemption; Who made there (by his one oblation of himself once offered) a full, perfect, and sufficient sacrifice, oblation, and satisfaction, for the sins of the whole world; and did institute, and in his holy Gospel command us to continue, a perpetual memory of that his precious death, until his coming again;

Hear us, O merciful Father, we most humbly beseech thee; and grant that we receiving these thy creatures of bread and wine, according to thy Son our Saviour Jesus Christ’s holy institution, in remembrance of his death and passion, may be partakers of his most blessed Body and Blood:

Who, in the same night that he was betrayed, took Bread; and, when he had given thanks, he brake it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, Take, eat,
This is my body which is given for you:
Do this in remembrance of me.

Likewise after supper, he took the Cup; and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying,
Drink ye all of this:
For this is my Blood of the New Testament, which is shed for you and for many for the remission of sins:

Do this, as oft as ye shall drink it in remembrance of me. Amen.


Our Lord Jesus Christ is now verily and indeed present; keep very still, and say this prayer with the Instructor.

O Jesus—because thou hast said it—we believe that the bread and wine—are now thy Body and Blood—O Jesus Christ—our God—we adore thee.
O eternal Father—we offer to thee—the holy Sacrifice—for our sins—and for the wants of thy Holy Church.
Let us pray for the faithful departed. Have mercy, O Lord God, upon the souls of the faithful dead—especially on those—who were dear to us on earth—give them rest—and take us all one day to heaven.

Then sing the


O Lamb of God, that takest away the sins of the world: have mercy upon us.
O Lamb of God, that takest away the sins of the world: have mercy upon us.
O Lamb of God, that takest away the sins of the world: grant us thy peace.

In Masses for the Dead, instead of Have mercy upon us, is said twice, Grant them rest, and lastly, Grant them rest eternal.

When the Priest receives the Holy Communion it is customary to ring a bell here to inform those who desire to communicate with him, that they should now go to the Altar, and those who do not, to make an Act of Spiritual Communion, that is to say, to ask Jesus to come into their souls and give them his Flesh to eat and his Blood to drink. You can do this in the following hymn:


I worship thee, Lord Jesu,
As children did of old,
Who sang, within thy temple,
Hosannas manifold.

I worship thee, Lord Jesu,
Who, on thy Altar laid,
In this most awful service,
Our food and drink art made.

I worship thee, Lord Jesu,
Who, in thy love divine,
Art hiding here thy Godhead,
In forms of bread and wine.

I worship thee, Lord Jesu,
And kneeling unto thee,
As thou didst come to Mary,
I pray thee + come to me.

I worship thee, Lord Jesu,
My King and Saviour mild.
Thou hast blest other children.
Bless also me, thy child.

Here follows the Our Father, and after it:

V. The Lord be with you.
R. And with thy spirit.
Let us pray.

The Priest then says:


O Lord and heavenly Father, we thy humble servants entirely desire thy Fatherly goodness mercifully to accept this our sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving; most humbly beseeching thee to grant, that by the merits and death of thy Son Jesus Christ, and through faith in his Blood, we and all thy whole Church may obtain remission of our sins, and all other benefits of his Passion.

And here we offer and present unto thee, O Lord, ourselves, our souls, and bodies, to be a reasonable, holy, and lively sacrifice unto thee; humbly beseeching thee, that all we, who are partakers of this Holy Communion, may be fulfilled with thy grace and heavenly benediction.

And although we be 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, through Jesus Christ our Lord;

By whom, and with whom, in the unity of the Holy Ghost; all honour and glory be unto thee, O Father Almighty, world without end. R. Amen.

Or this:

Almighty and everlasting God, we most heartily thank thee, for that thou dost vouchsafe to feed us, who have duly received these holy mysteries, with the spiritual food of the most precious Body and Blood of thy Son our Saviour Jesus Christ;

And dost assure us thereby of thy favour and goodness towards us; and that we are very members incorporate in the mystical Body of thy Son, which is the blessed company of all faithful people; and are also heirs through hope of thy everlasting kingdom, by the merits of the most precious death and passion of thy dear Son.

And we most humbly beseech thee, O heavenly Father, so to assist us with thy grace that we may continue in that holy fellowship, and do all such good works as thou hast prepared for us to walk in: through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be all honour and glory, world without end. R. Amen.

Here sing, if it is appointed,


Priest. Glory be to God on high.
All. And in earth peace, goodwill towards men.
We praise thee, we bless thee: we worship thee, we glorify thee.
We give thanks to thee for thy great glory. O Lord God, heavenly King, God the Father Almighty.
O Lord, the only-begotten Son Jesu Christ: O Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father,
That takest away the sins of the world, have mercy upon us.
Thou that takest away the sins of the world, have mercy upon us.
Thou that takest away the sins of the world, receive our prayer.
Thou that sittest at the right hand of God the Father, have mercy upon us.
For thou only art holy: thou only art the Lord. Thou only, O Jesu Christ, with the Holy + Ghost, art most high in the glory of God the Father. Amen.

The Priest says: The Lord be with you, etc. Then all kneel and keep quite still for the Blessing.


The peace of God which passeth all understanding, keep your hearts and minds in the knowledge and love of God and of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.
And the blessing of God Almighty, the Father +, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, be amongst you and remain with you always. R. Amen.

After the Blessing, as an Act of Thanksgiving may be sung this Hymn.

Ere we leave thine Altar, Lord,
Where thy Son we have adored,
Let our thanks again arise
For this Holy Sacrifice.

And if thoughts have entered in,
Which have mixed our prayers with sin,
Let thy Son’s pure Blood and grace,
All the sinfulness efface.

Sweet it is to worship here!
Soon may that bright day appear
When thy glory we shall see,
And unhindered worship thee.

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