OREMUS: 23 April 2005

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Fri Apr 22 17:00:00 GMT 2005

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OREMUS for Saturday, April 23, 2005
George, Martyr, Patron of England, c.304

Alleluia! Christ is risen!
The Lord is risen indeed! Alleluia!

Blessed are you, God of peace, 
who brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, 
the great shepherd of the sheep, 
by the blood of the eternal covenant, 
making us complete in everything good 
so that we may do his will, 
and working among us that which is pleasing in his sight.
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. 


Psalm 113

   Give praise, you servants of the Lord;*
 praise the name of the Lord.
Let the name of the Lord be blessed,*
 from this time forth for evermore.
>From the rising of the sun to its going down*
 let the name of the Lord be praised.
The Lord is high above all nations,*
 and his glory above the heavens.
Who is like the Lord our God,
   who sits enthroned on high,*
 but stoops to behold the heavens and the earth?
He takes up the weak out of the dust*
 and lifts up the poor from the ashes.
He sets them with the princes,*
 with the princes of his people.
He makes the woman of a childless house*
 to be a joyful mother of children.

Psalm 114

   When Israel came out of Egypt,*
 the house of Jacob from a people of strange speech,
Judah became God's sanctuary*
 and Israel his dominion.
The sea beheld it and fled;*
 Jordan turned and went back.
The mountains skipped like rams,*
 and the little hills like young sheep.
What ailed you, O sea, that you fled?*
 O Jordan, that you turned back?
You mountains, that you skipped like rams?*
 you little hills like young sheep?
Tremble, O earth, at the presence of the Lord,*
 at the presence of the God of Jacob,
Who turned the hard rock into a pool of water*
 and flint-stone into a flowing spring.

A Song of God's Grace (Ephesians 1:3-10)

Blessed are you, 
the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
for you have blest us in Christ Jesus
with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.

You chose us to be yours in Christ
before the foundation of the world,
that we should be holy and blameless before you.

In love you destined us for adoption as your children,
through Jesus Christ,
according to the purpose of your will,

To the praise of your glorious grace,
which you freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.

In you, we have redemption
through the blood of Christ,
the forgiveness of our sins,

According to the riches of your grace,
which you have lavished upon us.

You have made known to us, in all wisdom and insight,
the mystery of your will,

According to your purpose 
which you set forth in Christ,
as a plan for the fullness of time,

To unite all things in Christ,
things in heaven and things on earth.

Psalm 149

   Sing to the Lord a new song;*
 sing his praise in the congregation of the faithful.
Let Israel rejoice in his maker;*
 let the children of Zion be joyful in their king.
Let them praise his name in the dance;*
 let them sing praise to him with timbrel and harp.
For the Lord takes pleasure in his people*
 and adorns the poor with victory.
Let the faithful rejoice in triumph;*
 let them be joyful on their beds.
Let the praises of God be in their throat*
 and a two-edged sword in their hand;
To wreak vengeance on the nations*
 and punishment on the peoples;
To bind their kings in chains*
 and their nobles with links of iron;
To inflict on them the judgement decreed;*
 this is glory for all his faithful people.

READING [Zechariah 4:1-10]:

The angel who talked with me came again, and wakened me,
as one is wakened from sleep. He said to me, 'What do you
see?' And I said, 'I see a lampstand all of gold, with a
bowl on the top of it; there are seven lamps on it, with
seven lips on each of the lamps that are on the top of
it. And by it there are two olive trees, one on the right
of the bowl and the other on its left.' I said to the
angel who talked with me, 'What are these, my lord?' Then
the angel who talked with me answered me, 'Do you not
know what these are?' I said, 'No, my lord.' He said to
me, 'This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: Not by
might, nor by power, but by my spirit, says the LORD of
hosts. What are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel
you shall become a plain; and he shall bring out the top
stone amid shouts of "Grace, grace to it!" '
Moreover, the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 'The
hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this
house; his hands shall also complete it. Then you will
know that the LORD of hosts has sent me to you. For
whoever has despised the day of small things shall
rejoice, and shall see the plummet in the hand of
'These seven are the eyes of the LORD, which range
through the whole earth.' 

For another Biblical reading,
Revelation 21:1-14

Words: Charles Wesley (1707-1788), 1739
Tune: St. George's Windsor
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Christ, the Lord, is risen today, Alleluia!
Sons of men and angels say, Alleluia!
Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia!
Sing, ye heavens, and earth, reply, Alleluia!

Love's redeeming work is done, Alleluia!
Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia!
Lo! the Sun's eclipse is over, Alleluia!
Lo! He sets in blood no more, Alleluia!

Vain the stone, the watch, the seal, Alleluia!
Christ hath burst the gates of hell, Alleluia!
Death in vain forbids his rise, Alleluia!
Christ hath opened Paradise, Alleluia!

Lives again our glorious King, Alleluia!
Where, O death, is now thy sting? Alleluia!
Once he died our souls to save, Alleluia!
Where thy victory, O grave? Alleluia!

Soar we now where Christ hath led, Alleluia!
Following our exalted Head, Alleluia!
Made like Him, like Him we rise, Alleluia!
Ours the cross, the grave, the skies, Alleluia!

Hail, the Lord of earth and heaven, Alleluia!
Praise to thee by both be given, Alleluia!
Thee we greet triumphant now, Alleluia!
Hail, the resurrection day, Alleluia!

King of glory, Soul of bliss, Alleluia!
Everlasting life is this, Alleluia!
Thee to know, thy power to prove, Alleluia!
Thus to sing and thus to love, Alleluia!

Hymns of praise then let us sing, Alleluia!
Unto Christ, our heavenly King, Alleluia!
Who endured the cross and grave, Alleluia!
Sinners to redeem and save. Alleluia!

But the pains that he endured, Alleluia!
Our salvation have procured, Alleluia!
Now above the sky He's King, Alleluia!
Where the angels ever sing. Alleluia!

Jesus Christ is risen today, Alleluia!
Our triumphant holy day, Alleluia!
Who did once upon the cross, Alleluia!
Suffer to redeem our loss. Alleluia!

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

Jesus, Light of the world,
bring the light and peace of your Gospel
to the nations.
We pray for the Diocese of Nakuru, Kenya,
The Rt Revd Stephen Njihia Mwangi, Bishop.
Lord of life,
hear our prayer.

Jesus, Bread of life,
give food to the hungry
and nourish us all with your Word.
Lord of life,
hear our prayer.

Jesus, our Way, our Truth, our Life,
be with us and all who follow in the way.
Deepen our appreciation of your truth
and fill us with your life.
Lord of life,
hear our prayer.

Jesus, Good Shepherd,
who gave your life for the sheep,
recover the straggler,
bind up the injured,
strengthen the sick
and lead the healthy and strong to new pastures.
Lord of life,
hear our prayer.

Jesus, the Resurrection and the Life,
we give you thanks for all who have lived and believed in you.
Raise us with them to eternal life.
Lord of life,
hear our prayer.

You brought your people out of captivity, O Lord,
and give us fresh springs from the barren rock.
Deliver us from the slavery of our sins
and bring us through the waters of redemption
to find new life in your Son,
our Saviour, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

God our Redeemer,
whose Church was strengthened
by the blood of your martyr George:
so bind us, in life and death, to Christ's sacrifice
that our lives, broken and offered with his,
may carry his death and proclaim his resurrection in the world;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Rejoicing in God's new creation,
let us pray as our Redeemer has taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

Lead us always to the living waters
where you promise respite and refreshment,
that we may be counted among those
who know and follow you, O Lord. Amen.

The psalms and the invitation to the Lord's Prayer are from _Celebrating
Common Prayer_ (Mowbray), (c) The Society of Saint Francis
1992, which is used with permission.

The canticle and the first collect are 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 from Hebrews 13:20-21

The intercession is from _New Patterns for Worship_, copyright
(c) The Archbishops' Council, 2002.

The second collect is from _Common Worship: Services and Prayers for
the Church of England_, material from which is included in this service is
copyright (c) The Archbishops' Council, 2000.

The closing sentence is from a prayer in _Opening Prayers: Collects in
Contemporary Language_. Canterbury Press, Norwich, 1999.

George is a soldier and martyr who suffered around 303 at Lydda (Diospolis)
in Palestine. The earliest surviving record of him is a church inscription in
Syria, dated about 346. Commemorations of him are numerous, early, and
widespread. However, no details of his life are known. In 495 his name appears
on a list of "good men, justly remembered, whose good deeds are known only
to God." The best-known story about him is that he rescued a beautiful
princess in Libya by killing a dragon. It should be noted that this story is
unknown before the appearance in 1265 of a romance called the Golden
Legend (Legendum Aureum), translated into English in 1483.
When the soldiers of the First Crusade were besieging Antioch in 1098, they
had a vision of George and Demetrius (a deacon of Sirmium in Serbia,
martyred under Maximian, and referred to as a "soldier of Christ," from which
he was often understood to be a literal soldier) encouraging them to maintain
the siege, which ultimately proved successful. Richard I ("the Lion-Heart") of
England, who fought in the Holy Land in 1191-1192, placed himself and his
army under George's protection, and with the return home of the Crusaders,
the popularity of George in England increased greatly. Edward III founded the
Order of the Garter in 1348 under his patronage, his banner (a red cross on a
white field) began to be used as the English national flag in 1284, and in 1415
Henry V spoke of him to rally the troops before the battle of Agincourt ("Once
more unto the breach, dear friends, once more, or close the wall up with our
English dead!"), and in the years following George was regarded as the special
patron of England, of soldiers, and of the Boy Scouts, as well as of Venice,
Genoa, Portugal, and Catalonia. He is also remembered with enthusiasm in
many parts of the East Orthodox Church. He is a principal character in
Edmund Spenser's allegorical poem The Faerie Queene, written in the late
1500's. [James Kiefer]

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