11 November 2015

A Prayer from Prime in the Coptic Agpeya

The Agpeya is the breviary or book of the seven canonical hours of prayer in the Coptic Orthodox Church of Egypt.  The Coptic root word is ti apt which means 'the hour', so a good translation of Agpeia would be 'The Book of Hours'.   Also transliterated as Agbeia, this breviary would be the equivalent to the Byzantine Horologion or the current Roman Catholic Liturgy of the Hours.

If one may have a favourite 'hour' within the Hours of the Agpeia, mine would be Prime because of its exquisite prayers and praises at daybreak.

O Lord, God of hosts, who exists before all ages and abides forever, who created the sun for daylight, and the night as rest for all men; we thank You, O King of ages, for You have let us pass through the night in peace, and brought us to the daybreak. Therefore, we ask You, O our Master, the King of all ages, to let Your face shine upon us, and the light of Your divine knowledge enlighten us. Grant us, O our Master, to be sons of light and sons of day, to pass this day in righteousness, chastity and good conduct, that we may complete all the rest of the days of our life without offence; through the grace, the compassion and the love of mankind of Your Only-Begotten Son Jesus Christ, and the gift of Your Holy Spirit, now and at all times and forever. Amen.

Prime, the first absolution 
The Agpeya
Coptic Orthodox Christian Church