OREMUS: 22 December 2004

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Tue Dec 21 17:00:00 GMT 2004


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OREMUS for Wednesday, December 22, 2004
O Rex gentium

O Lord, open our lips.
And our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Blessed are you, O Promised One,
Ruler of the nations,
the only desire of every human heart.
The world is waiting from the beginning,
waiting and expecting its God.
Desire of the world
and your mother's desire,
from whom you took the mortal dust you made.
For these and all your mercies, we praise you:
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
Blessed be God for ever!

An opening canticle may be sung. 

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Psalm 48

Great is the Lord and highly to be praised;*
 in the city of our God is his holy hill.
Beautiful and lofty, the joy of all the earth,
   is the hill of Zion,*
 the very centre of the world
   and the city of the great king.
God is in her citadels;*
 he is known to be her sure refuge.
Behold, the kings of the earth assembled*
 and marched forward together.
They looked and were astounded;*
 they retreated and fled in terror.
Trembling seized them there;*
 they writhed like a woman in childbirth,
   like ships of the sea when the east wind shatters them.
As we have heard, so have we seen,
   in the city of the Lord of hosts, in the city of our God;*
 God has established her for ever.
We have waited in silence
   on your loving-kindness, O God,*
 in the midst of your temple.
Your praise, like your name, O God,
   reaches to the world's end;*
 your right hand is full of justice.
Let Mount Zion be glad
   and the cities of Judah rejoice,*
 because of your judgements.
Make the circuit of Zion; walk round about her;*
 count the number of her towers.
Consider well her bulwarks; examine her strongholds;*
 that you may tell those who come after.
This God is our God for ever and ever;*
 he shall be our guide for evermore.

Psalm 131

O Lord, I am not proud;*
 I have no haughty looks.
I do not occupy myself with great matters,*
 or with things that are too hard for me.
But I still my soul and make it quiet,
   like a child upon its mother's breast;*
 my soul is quieted within me.
O Israel, wait upon the Lord,*
 from this time forth for evermore.

A Song of Hannah (1 Samuel 2.1-2,3b-5,7-8)

My soul exults in the Lord;
my strength is exalted in my God.

My mouth derides my enemies,
because I rejoice in your salvation.

There is no Holy One like you, O Lord,
nor any Rock like you, our God.

For you are a God of knowledge
and by you our actions are weighed.

The bows of the mighty are broken,
but the feeble gird on strength.

Those who were full now hire themselves out for bread,
but those who were hungry are well fed.

The barren woman has borne sevenfold,
but she who has many children is forlorn.

Both the poor and the rich are of your making;
you bring low and you also exalt.

You raise up the poor from the dust,
and lift the needy from the ash heap.

You make them sit with the rulers
and inherit a place of honour.

For the pillars of the earth are yours
and on them you have set the world.

Psalm 147:13-end

Alleluia!
Worship the Lord, O Jerusalem;*
 praise your God, O Zion;
For he has strengthened the bars of your gates;*
 he has blessed your children within you.
He has established peace on your borders;*
 he satisfies you with the finest wheat.
He sends out his command to the earth,*
 and his word runs very swiftly.
He gives snow like wool;*
 he scatters hoarfrost like ashes.
He scatters his hail like bread crumbs;*
 who can stand against his cold?
He sends forth his word and melts them;*
 he blows with his wind and the waters flow.
He declares his word to Jacob,*
 his statutes and his judgements to Israel.
He has not done so to any other nation;*
 to them he has not revealed his judgements.
   Alleluia!

READING [Jeremiah 30:7-11a]:

Alas! that day is so great
   there is none like it;
it is a time of distress for Jacob;
   yet he shall be rescued from it.

On that day, says the LORD of hosts, I will break the
yoke from off his neck, and I will burst his bonds, and
strangers shall no more make a servant of him. But they
shall serve the LORD their God and David their king, whom
I will raise up for them.

But as for you, have no fear, my servant Jacob, 
says the LORD,
   and do not be dismayed, O Israel;
for I am going to save you from far away,
   and your offspring from the land of their captivity.
Jacob shall return and have quiet and ease,
   and no one shall make him afraid.
For I am with you, says the LORD, to save you.

For another Biblical reading,
Philippians 1:3-11

HYMN 
Words: Charles Wesley (1707-1788), 1744
Tune: Stuttgart, Cross of Jesus, Halton Holgate
http://www.oremus.org/hymnal/c/c307.html
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Come, thou long-expected Jesus,
born to set thy people free;
from our fears and sins release us,
let us find our rest in thee.

Israel's strength and consolation,
hope of all the earth thou art:
dear desire of every nation,
joy of every longing heart.

Born thy people to deliver,
born a child, and yet a king,
born to reign in us for ever,
now thy gracious kingdom bring.

By thine own eternal Spirit
rule in all our hearts alone;
by thine all-sufficient merit
raise us to thy glorious throne.

The Benedictus (Morning), the 
Magnificat (Evening), or 
Nunc dimittis (Night) may follow.

Prayer:
The world is waiting restlessly for you, Lord, to come.
Reward us who wait for you
with surprises we cannot anticipate.
As Mary was astounded by Gabriel's announcement,
so also amaze us with promises beyond our comprehension,
even with responsibilities we fear to accept.
Come, Lord Jesus, come!

Speak the word to us
that the power of the Holy Spirit will come upon us
that we may fulfill all you have called us to be.
We pray especially for the Diocese of Kurunagala, Ceylon,
The Rt Revd Kumara Illangasinghe, Bishop.
Come, Lord Jesus, come!

In these final hours of waiting,
prepare us to plumb the depths
of your incarnation's mystery.
Come, Lord Jesus, come!

Enable us to bear the fruits of repentance,
lest the outward celebrations of Christmas
not be enacted with the inward reality of faith each day.
Come, Lord Jesus, come!

Inhabit us continually with your Living Word,
as for centuries you have filled your people with transforming love.
Come, Lord Jesus, come!

So satisfy the cravings of the human heart,
that, having seen the great things come to pass,
your people may glorify you and give you praise.
Come, Lord Jesus, come!

God of grace, 
your eternal Word took flesh among us 
when Mary placed her life at the service of your will: 
Prepare our hearts for his coming again; 
keep us steadfast in hope and faithful in service, 
that we may receive the coming of his kingdom, 
for the sake of Jesus Christ the ruler of all, 
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, 
one God, now and forever. Amen.

Awaiting his coming in glory,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

Music may be found here

O come, Desire of nations, bind
in one the hearts of all mankind;
bid thou our sad divisions cease,
and be thyself our King of Peace.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
shall come to thee, O Israel!

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The psalms are from _Celebrating Common Prayer_ (Mowbray),
(c) The Society of Saint Francis 1992, which is used with permission.

The canticle is from _Common Worship: Daily Prayer, Preliminary
Edition_, copyright (c) The Archbishops' Council, 2002.

The biblical passage is from The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized
Edition), copyright (c) 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education
of  the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA. Used by
permission. All rights reserved.

The opening prayer of thanksgiving is adapted by Stephen Benner from the
antiphon O Rex gentium, a sentence from the Maronite liturgy and a sentence
from _THE DAILY OFFICE: A Book of Hours of Daily Prayer after the
Use of the Order of Saint Luke_, (c) 1997 by The Order of Saint
Luke. Used by permission.

The intercession is adapted from a prayer reprinted from _THE DAILY
OFFICE: A Book of Hours of Daily Prayer after the Use of the Order of Saint
Luke_, (c) 1997 by The Order of Saint Luke. Used by permission.

The collect is from _Book of Common Worship_, (c) 1993
Westminster / John Knox Press. 



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