Home > Worship Resources > Morning Prayer (Matins)

In many times and places, daybreak has been a time of prayer. Jews prayed in their synagogues at sunrise as well as at other times each day. This Jewish pattern of prayer formed the basis of the Christian monastic “Daily Office,” with its prayers or “hours” at seven times each day. Anglican and Lutheran revisions of the Daily Office reduced the number of services to two — one for morning (Matins) and one for evening (Evensong or vespers). Eventually, the morning service was given its present name, Morning Prayer.

Many elements of Morning Prayer come from the monastic hours of Matins (e.g., the Venite, or Psalm 95; and the Te Deum, a Latin hymn written in 387 A.D. attributed to St. Ambrose), Lauds (e.g., the Benedicte, omnia opera Domini, or Daniel 3:56-88; a “chapter” of scripture; the Benedictus Dominus Deus, or Luke 1:68-79; and the collect of the day), and Prime (e.g., a second “chapter” of scripture and the Apostles’ Creed). Psalms were recited at every one of the offices, with the whole Psalter recited once a week.

Morning Prayer once was the chief Sunday service in many Anglican and Lutheran churches on three out of four Sundays, the First Sunday usually being a celebration of Holy Communion. For most, this practice has not continued because a service of both Word and Sacrament has been recognized as the principal act of Christian worship on the Lord’s Day in most parishes. However, Morning Prayer is clearly designated as a daily service for the worship of the church. This usage reflects the ancient tradition of the Daily Office.

Below, you will find two versions of Morning Prayer, a spoken version and a sung version. The music for the sung version is found in the Lutheran Book of Worship (1978). This is a short service that can be used in the home. The L designates a Leader and the C designates the Congregation assembled to worship (which might simply be your family).

Opening Versicles

Stand
L    O Lord, open my lips,
C    and my mouth shall declare your praise.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen

The Alleluia is omitted during Lent.
Alleluia. Alleluia.

Psalmody

Psalm 95

L    Give glory to God, our light and our life.
C    Oh come let us worship him.

Oh come, let us sing to the Lord;
let us shout for joy to the rock of our salvation.
Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving
and raise a loud shout to him with psalms.
For the Lord is a great God
and a great king above all gods.
In his hand are the caverns of the earth;
the heights of the hills are also his.
The sea is his for he made it;
and his hands have molded the dry land.
Oh, come, let us bow down and bend the knee,
and kneel before the Lord, our maker.
For he is our God,
and we are the people of his pasture and the sheep of his hand.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen.

L    Give glory to God, our light and our life.
C    Oh come let us worship him.

Lenten Hymns

Traditional Hymns

Contemporary Blend

Sit

Scripture Readings

Find the Daily Readings here.

Silence for meditation

Response

L    In many and various ways God spoke to his people of old by the prophets.
C    But now in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son.

Stand

Gospel Canticle

Luke 1:68-79

C    Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel;
he has come to his people and set them free.
He has raised up for us a mighty Savior,
born of the house of his servant David.
Through his holy prophets he promised of old
that he would save us from our enemies,
from the hands of all who hate us.
He promised to show mercy to our fathers
and to remember his holy covenant.
This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham:
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
free to worship him without fear,
holy and righteous in his sight
all the days of our life.

L    You, my child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High,
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
to give his people knowledge of salvation
by the forgiveness of their sins.
In the tender compassion of our God,
the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death,
and to guide our feet into the way of peace.
C    Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen.

Prayers

Other prayers may be said by the leader, the congregation responding, Amen.
Or, members of the congregation may be invited to offer petitions and thanksgivings.
During this period of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-2019), consider using these Prayers in Time of Infectious Disease, provided by our friends in the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) or Prayers in a Time of Pandemic, written by Cathy Ammlung.

The prayers conclude:

L O Lord, almighty and everlasting God, you have brought us in safety to this new day; preserve us with your mighty power, that we may not fall into sin, nor be overcome in adversity; and in all we do, direct us to the fulfilling of your purpose; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
CAmen

L Lord, remember us in your kingdom, and teach us to pray:
COur Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name,
    thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
  Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses,
    as we forgive those who trespass against us;
  and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
  For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever. Amen

L    Let us bless the Lord.
C    Thanks be to God.

Sit

Sermon

Find a recent devotion or sermon here.

Stand

Benediction

L    The Lord almighty bless us, and direct our days and our deeds in his peace.
C    Amen

Opening Versicles

Stand

Psalmody

Psalm 95

Lenten Hymns

Traditional Hymns

Contemporary Blend

Sit

Scripture Readings

Find the Daily Readings here.

Silence for meditation

Response

L In many and various ways God spoke to his people of old by the prophets.
CBut now in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son.

Stand

Gospel Canticle

Prayers

Other prayers may be said by the leader, the congregation responding, Amen.
Or, members of the congregation may be invited to offer petitions and thanksgivings.
During this period of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-2019), consider using these Prayers in Time of Infectious Disease, provided by our friends in the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) or Prayers in a Time of Pandemic, written by Cathy Ammlung.

The prayers conclude:

L O Lord, almighty and everlasting God, you have brought us in safety to this new day; preserve us with your mighty power, that we may not fall into sin, nor be overcome in adversity; and in all we do, direct us to the fulfilling of your purpose; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
CAmen

L Lord, remember us in your kingdom, and teach us to pray:
COur Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name,
    thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
  Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses,
    as we forgive those who trespass against us;
  and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
  For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever. Amen

Sit

Sermon

Find a recent devotion or sermon here.

Stand

Benediction


A deacon or lay person using the preceding form substitutes “us” for “you.”


Resources compiled by the Rev. Andrew Ames Fuller, director of communications for the North American Lutheran Church and an ordained deacon in the Anglican Church in North America. Liturgies and music found in the Lutheran Book of Worship, ©1978 Augsburg Publishing House and Lutheran Church in America Publication Board.