Week of 2 Advent: The word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness. He went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins, as it is written in the book of the words of the prophet Isaiah, “The voice of one crying out in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways made smooth; and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.’”
A Collect for the Second Sunday of Advent
Merciful God, who sent your messengers the prophets to preach repentance and prepare the way for our salvation: Give us grace to heed their warnings and forsake our sins, that we may greet with joy the coming of Jesus Christ our Redeemer; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Each night when lighting the candle or candles for the week, the reading above can be read out loud with the collect, or alternatively, a family or household may use the Forward Movement website for daily readings from the Bible for the season of Advent to inspire and inform your spirits: https://prayer.forwardmovement.org/daily-devotions. Remember, the lessons from the BCP are anticipatory, like the season of Lent. By and large, the stories assigned do not have the name of Jesus, Mary, Elizabeth, or Joseph until just before December 24, but they do talk about the Jewish longing for God, a savior, and a restoring of creation. For the very ambitious, An Order for Evening Worship is available in the BCP from page 109-113 with notations for Collects and Prayers to be used in Advent—it is a short form.
Weekly readings in Advent with Collects for use in Lighting of the Advent Candles, to be used independently or with An Order of Worship for the Evening: