Review: Prayer Book of Early Christians


The value in this text is its setting forth most of the key prayers of the early church.  McGuckin gives some commentary, such as noting that the lighting of candles symbolized the Spirit’s praying in and through us.  Most of the book, though, consists in different prayer settings of the early Christians (Matins, Vespers, etc.).

For example, a Vesper service would look something like this:

*Trisagion (Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us)

* Either Ps. 103/142 (here is where it gets tricky, since the LXX is off by a chapter, so you will have to consult 103/104 to get the feel of which is more “eveningy”).

* Prayer of Eventide
*Psalm 140/141

* Prayer over Incense

* Gladsome Light

*Litany of Intercession

Matins would look like:


Invatory prayers

Psalms 19-20

Song of the Cross

Morning cycle of 6 psalms

Other prayers included prayers for the sick, protection against the forces of darkness, etc., etc.  The book is somewhat pricey for its small size, but it offers a valuable service in getting the prayers together in one place.


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