THANKSGIVING AFTER CHILD-BIRTH
COMMONLY CALLED THE CHURCHING OF WOMEN
It is fitting that after giving birth to a child the mother, accompanied by her husband, should come into the Church to render thanks to Almighty God.
She shall kneel in some convenient place, and the Priest shall say:
FORASMUCH as it hath pleased Almighty God of his goodness to bestow upon you the gift of a child, and to preserve you in child-birth, I call upon you to give hearty thanks to God, and to say with me:
MY delight is in the LORD, / because he hath heard the voice of my prayer;
Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, / therefore will I call upon him as long as I live.
Gracious is the LORD, and righteous; / yea, our God is merciful.
The LORD preserveth the simple: / I was in misery and he helped me.
Turn again then unto thy rest, O my soul; / for the LORD hath dealt bountifully with thee.
For thou hast delivered my soul from death, / mine eyes from tears, and my feet from falling.
I will walk before the LORD / in the land of the living.
I trusted even when I spake; / but I was sore troubled.
What reward shall I give unto the LORD / for all the benefits that he hath done unto me?
I will take the cup of salvation, / and call upon the Name of the LORD.
I will pay my vows unto the LORD / in the presence of all his people;
Even in the courts of the LORD’s house, / and in the midst of thee, O Jerusalem. Praise the LORD.
Part of Psalm 116.
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, / world without end. Amen.
Or Psalm 127.
Then the Minister shall say:
Let us pray.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
OUR 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 them that trespass against us; And lead us not into temptation, But deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, For ever and ever. Amen.
Minister. O Lord, save this woman thy servant;
Answer. Who putteth her trust in thee.
Minister. Be thou to her a strong tower;
Answer. From the face of her enemy.
Minister. Lord, hear our prayer.
Answer. And let our cry come unto thee.
Then the Minister may say:
O GOD, our heavenly Father, we thank thee and praise thy glorious Name, that thou hast been pleased to bless this thy servant, and to bestow upon her the gift of a child: Grant, we beseech thee, most merciful Father, that she and her husband may diligently lead this child In the way of righteousness, to their own great blessing and the glory of thy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Or the Minister may say:
O GOD whose ways are hidden and thy works most wonderful, who makest nothing in vain and lovest all that thou hast made: Comfort thou thy servants, whose hearts are sore smitten and oppressed; and grant that they may so love and serve thee in this life, that they may obtain the fulness of thy promises in the world to come; through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
There may also be said the Prayer for the Home on page 570 and the General Thanksgiving.
It is fitting that the woman and her husband should make a thankoffering, and also receive the holy Communion; but if there be no Communion at the time of the Churching, the Minister shall say:
UNTO God’s gracious mercy and protection we commit you. The LORD bless you, and keep you. The LORD make his face to shine upon you, and be gracious unto you. The LORD lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace, both now and evermore. Amen.