Harvey Hurricane

I’d like to shamelessly plug the need for your support, donations, and prayer for the hurricane relief efforts in Texas, throughout the Gulf Coast, Caribbean, and now in Florida. The Anglican Relief and Development Fund is on the ground helping relief efforts.

Forms of Prayer for a Storm

I’d also like to offer the following prayers adapted (and slightly modified as indicated by asterisks) from the “PRAYERS TO BE USED AT SEA” from the 1789 American Book of Common Prayer. This was the first American Book of Common Prayer and was published following the Revolutionary War for the newly formed “Protestant Episcopal Church of the U.S.A.”

  1. O ETERNAL Lord God, who alone spreadest out the heavens, and rulest the raging of the sea; who hast compassed the waters with bounds, until day and night come to an end; Be pleased to receive into thy Almighty and most gracious protection, the persons of us thy servants, and their homes, churches, and earthly possessions*. Preserve us from the dangers of these storms*, and from the violence of the enemy;* that the inhabitants of our land may in peace and quietness serve thee our God; and that those evacuated* may return in safety to enjoy the blessings of the land, with the fruits of our labour; and, with a thankful remembrance of thy mercies, to praise and glorify thy holy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
  2. O MOST powerful and glorious Lord God, at whose command the winds blow, and lift up the waves of the sea, and who stillest the rage thereof; We, thy creatures, but miserable sinners, do in this our great distress cry unto thee for help; Save, Lord, or else we perish. We confess, when we have been safe, and seen all things quiet about us, we have forgotten thee our God, and refused to hearken to the still voice of thy word, and to obey thy commandments: But now we see how terrible thou art in all thy works of wonder; the great God to be feared above all: And therefore we adore thy Divine Majesty, acknowledging thy power, and imploring thy goodness. Help, Lord, and save us for thy mercy’s sake, in Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord. Amen.
  3. O MOST glorious and gracious Lord God, who dwellest in heaven, but beholdest all things below; Look down, we beseech thee, and hear us, calling out of the depth of misery, and out of the jaws of this death, which is now ready to swallow us up: Save, Lord, or else we perish. The living, the living shall praise thee. O send thy word of command to rebuke the raging winds and the roaring sea; that we, being delivered from this distress, may live to serve thee, and to glorify thy Name all the days of our life. Hear, Lord, and save us, for the infinite merits of our blessed Saviour, thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
  4. O blessed Saviour, who didst save thy disciples ready to perish in a storm, hear us, and save us, we beseech thee.
  5. THOU O Lord, who stillest the raging of the sea, hear; hear us, and save us, that we perish not.
  6. Thou art the great God, who hast made and rulest all things: O deliver us for thy Name’s sake.
  7. O MOST mighty and gracious good God, thy mercy is over thy works, but in special manner bath been extended towards us, whom thou hast so powerfully and wonderfully defended. Thou hast showed us terrible things, and wonders in the deep, that we might see how powerful and gracious a God thou art; how able and ready to help those who trust in thee. Thou hast showed us how both winds and seas obey thy command; that we may learn, even from them, hereafter to obey thy voice, and to do thy will. We therefore bless and glorify thy Name, for this thy mercy in saving us, when we were ready to perish. And, we beseech thee, make us as truly sensible now of thy mercy, as we were then of the danger. And give us hearts always ready to express our thankfulness, not only by words, but also by our lives, in being more obedient to thy holy commandments. Continue, we beseech thee, this thy goodness to us; that we, whom thou hast saved, may serve thee in holiness and righteousness all the days of our life; through Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour. Amen.

The 1789 Prayerbook is available online by the The Society of Archbishop Justus. 

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Steve is a seminarian at Trinity School for Ministry and an Anglican catechist in Sacramento, CA. His professional work consulting with political campaigns, leading nonprofit organizations, and in the California State Capitol has been recognized by The Los Angeles Times, National Review Magazine, and Our Sunday Visitor. Steve is a postulant in the Diocese of Churches for the Sake of Others (ACNA) and leads communications for the Sacramento Valley Deanery.