Evening Prayer is Led by Members of the Chemin Neuf Community
This is a catholic community with an ecumenical vocation. Singing is led by members of the community that live in Chartres–students studying philosophy or theology, their professors, and other community members who live and work in the area. Their community also hosts pilgrims and offers programming at the nearby Centre Oecuménique et Artistique de Chartres, 13 rue du Dr. de Fourmestraux.
Vespers begins each night at 19h00 in the cathedral. During winter months or when the cathedral is in use, Evening Prayer is in the Crypt. Use the door on the north side of the cathedral to enter.
Order of Service: Vespers (explanation & translation)
An invitation to vespers is generally extended in English and French. The pages for the opening hymn, Psalm, and New Testament are given at the same time. Songbooks and Scripture songbooks (red) are usually placed on the chairs of the first three rows. If you need extras, they are kept in a wooden chest on the north side, not too far from the crossing.
Cantor: Dieu, Viens à mon aide. God, come help me! Congregation: Seigneur, viens vite à mon secours. Christ, come quickly and help!
Gloire Au Père Glory to the Father (standing while bowing)
Gloire au Père, au fils, et au Saint Esprit (pause) Glory to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit Pour des siècles et des siècles. Amen. For ever and ever. Amen. (This will be sung several times during the service.)
Opening Hymn (standing)
The refrain or first verse is sung by a cantor (the refrain is repeated by congregation). All sing the remaining stanzas together, returning to refrain in between each.
Psalm-Sung (seated, as indicated by day in the song book)
The daily refrain is sung by a cantor. The congregation then repeats it. The cantor sings a number of verses. The congregation sings the same number. This antiphonal cycle repeats itself until the psalm is finished. Then, Gloire au Père, au Fils, et au Saint Esprit, pour des siècles et des siècles. Amen. At the conclusion, the daily refrain is sung by a cantor. The congregation then repeats it.
New Testament Passage-Sung (seated, as indicated by day in the song book)
The daily refrain is sung by a cantor. The congregation then repeats it. The cantor sings a number of verses. The congregation sings the same number. This antiphonal cycle repeats itself until the New Testament passage is finished. Then, Gloire au Père, au Fils, et au Saint Esprit, pour des siècles et des siècles. Amen. At the conclusion, the daily refrain is sung by a cantor. The congregation then repeats it.
Scripture Reading/La Parole de Dieu
A passage from the Bible is read by a member of the Communauté de Chemin Neuf in French. A second reading of the same text, in a different language, often follows as a sign of communion with out brothers and sisters throughout the world.
The Canticle of Mary/Le Cantique de Marie (Luke 1:46-55)(Standing)
(You may wish to contemplate the Visitation image of Mary and Elizabeth in the central window above the choir)
The canticle is introduced by a cantor, using the short song listed in the booklet. The cantor sings the first two lines of the canticle, the congregation the next two. This antiphonal cycle repeats itself until the end of the canticle. Then, the cantor sings the phrase listed in the book. The congregation joins the second time.
Mon åme exulte le Seigneur, exulte mon esprit en Dieu mon Sauver. My soul magnifies God, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
Il s’est penché sur son humble servante, for God has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant. désormais tous les ages me diront bienheureuse. Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
Le Puissant fit pour moi de merveilles, Saint est son nom. for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is God’s name.
Son amour s’etand d’åge en åge sur ceux qui Le craignent. God’s mercy is for those who fear God from generation to generation.
Déployant la force de son bras, Il disperse les superbes. God has shown strength with God’s arm; God has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts.
Il renverse les puissants de leur trône, Il élève les humbles. God has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly;
Il comble de biens les affamés, renvoie les riches les mains vides. God has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty.
Il relève Israel, son serviteur, Il se souvient de son amour. God has helped God’s servant Israel, in remembrance of God’s mercy,
De la promesse faite à nos pères, en faveur d’Abraham et de sa race à jamais. according to the promise God made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.
Then, Gloire au Père, au Fils, et au Saint Esprit, pour des siècles et des siècles. Amen.
The cantor sings the same phrase that was sung at the beginning. The congregation joins in the second time.
One of the members of the Community offers intercessions in French. A cantor introduces the congregation response. After each intercession, the congregation responds with the sung phrase (Such as exauce nous, “Hear us”…).
Prayer for the Unity of All Christians/Prière pour l’unité des chrétiens (Prayed standing, in unison)
Seigneur Jesus, qui as prié pour que tous soient un. Lord Jesus, who prayed that all would be one, Nous te prions pour l’unité des chrétiens, We pray for the unity of all Christians, telle que tu la veux, par les moyes que tu veux. according to Your will, in whatever ways that You desire.
Que ton Esprit nous donne d’éprouver la souffrance de la séparation, May Your Spirit give us the experience of the suffering caused by separation, de voir notre péché, et d’espérer au-delà de toute espérance. Amen. to see our sin, and to hope beyond it with Your hope. Amen.
The Lord’s Prayer/Notre Père (prayed standing, in unison with open hands)
Notre Père, Our Father qui es aux cieux, who art in heaven, que ton nom soit sanctifié, hallowed be Thy name. que ton règne vienne, Thy kingdom come, que ta volonté soit faite Thy will be done sur la terre comme au ciel. On earth, as it is in heaven. Donne-nous au’jourd’hui Give us this day notre pain de ce jour. our daily bread. Pardonne-nous nos offenses, Forgive us our sins comme nous pardonnons aussi as we forgive à ceux qui nous ont offensés. those who sin against us. Et ne nous soumets pas à la tentation Do not lead us into temptation, mais deliver-nous du mal. But deliver us from evil. Car c’est a toi qu’appartiennent For Thine is le règne, la puissance, et la gloire the kingdom, the power and the glory pour les siècles des siècles. Amen. Forever and ever. Amen.
A short prayer offered by one of the members of the Communité de Chemin Neuf. Congregation: Amen.
Conclusion de l’office/Conclusion
Cantor: Bennisons le Seigneur. Bless God Congregation: Nour rendons grace à Dieu. We give thanks to God. (During Easter season) Alléluia, alleluia, alleluia (twice).
Feel free to greet members of the Community of Chemin Neuf after the service. They will be happy to answer any questions you might have about the service or their ministries. They enjoy interacting with visitors to the cathedral.