OREMUS: 15 June 2005

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Tue Jun 14 17:00:01 GMT 2005

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OREMUS for Wednesday, June 15, 2005 
Evelyn Underhill, Spiritual Writer, 1941

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

Blessed are you, merciful God;
in you we live and move and have our being.
Each day we encounter the signs of your tender care.
Possessing the firstfruits of the Spirit,
who raised Jesus from the dead,
we live in the hope that the mystery of his dying and rising
will be for us also an eternal Easter.
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 125

Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion,*
 which cannot be moved, but stands fast for ever.
The hills stand about Jerusalem;*
 so does the Lord stand round about his people,
   from this time forth for evermore.
The sceptre of the wicked shall not hold sway
   over the land allotted to the just,*
 so that the just shall not put their hands to evil.
Show your goodness, O Lord, to those who are good*
 and to those who are true of heart.
As for those who turn aside to crooked ways,
   the Lord will lead them away with the evildoers;*
 but peace be upon Israel.

Psalm 126

When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion,*
 then were we like those who dream.
Then was our mouth filled with laughter,*
 and our tongue with shouts of joy.
Then they said among the nations,*
 'The Lord has done great things for them.'
The Lord has done great things for us,*
 and we are glad indeed.
Restore our fortunes, O Lord,*
 like the watercourses of the Negev.
Those who sowed with tears*
 will reap with songs of joy.
Those who go out weeping, carrying the seed,*
 will come again with joy, shouldering their sheaves.

Psalm 127

Unless the Lord builds the house,*
 their labour is in vain who build it.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,*
 in vain the guard keeps vigil.
It is in vain that you rise so early
   and go to bed so late;*
 vain, too, to eat the bread of toil,
   for he gives to his beloved sleep.
Children are a heritage from the Lord,*
 and the fruit of the womb is a gift.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior*
 are the children of one's youth.
Happy are they who have their quiver full of them!*
 they shall not be put to shame
   when they contend with their enemies in the gate.

A Song of the Bride (Isaiah 61.10,11; 62.1-3)

I will greatly rejoice in the Lord,
my soul shall exult in my God;

Who has clothed me with the garments of salvation,
and has covered me with the cloak of integrity,

As a bridegroom decks himself with a garland,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

For as the earth puts forth her blossom,
and as seeds in the garden spring up,

So shall God make righteousness and praise
blossom before all the nations.

For Zion's sake, I will not keep silent,
and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest,

Until her deliverance shines out like the dawn,
and her salvation as a burning torch.

The nations shall see your deliverance,
and all rulers shall see your glory;

Then you shall be called by a new name
which the mouth of God will give.

You shall be a crown of glory in the hand of the Lord,
a royal diadem in the hand of your God.

Psalm 147:13-end

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.

READING [John 6:25-34]:

When they found Jesus on the other side of the lake, they
said to him, 'Rabbi, when did you come here?' Jesus
answered them, 'Very truly, I tell you, you are looking
for me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate
your fill of the loaves. Do not work for the food that
perishes, but for the food that endures for eternal life,
which the Son of Man will give you. For it is on him that
God the Father has set his seal.' Then they said to him,
'What must we do to perform the works of God?' Jesus
answered them, 'This is the work of God, that you believe
in him whom he has sent.' So they said to him, 'What sign
are you going to give us then, so that we may see it and
believe you? What work are you performing? Our ancestors
ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, "He
gave them bread from heaven to eat." ' Then Jesus said to
them, 'Very truly, I tell you, it was not Moses who gave
you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives
you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is
that which comes down from heaven and gives life to the
world.' They said to him, 'Sir, give us this bread

For another Biblical reading,
Job 29:1; 31:24-40

Words: Latin, ca. 1661; trans. Athelstan Riley, 1906
Tune: In allen meinen Taten, O Esca Viatorum, O Welt, ich muss dich lassen  
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O Food of men wayfaring,
the bread of angels sharing,
O Manna from on high!
We hunger; Lord, supply us,
nor thy delights deny us,
whose hearts to thee draw nigh.

O stream of love past telling,
O purest fountain, welling
from out the Savior's side!
We faint with thirst; revive us,
of thine abundance give us,
and all we need provide.

O Jesus, by thee bidden,
we here adore thee, hidden
'neath forms of bread and wine.
Grant when the veil is riven,
we may behold, in heaven,
thy countenance divine.

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

Under your holy wings, you gather us, O God,
and you shelter us by your grace.

Together in faith communities, 
you call us share your love and mercy.
Gather us in, O God.

We give you thanks for all that gives shape to life in community:
devotion to apostolic teaching,
sharing in fellowship around your Word and Table,
continuous prayer for the world and the Church.
Gather us in, O God.

We pray for your Church in the Diocese of
 Norwich, England, The Rt Revd Graham James, Bishop.
Gather us in, O God.

Save your Church from formless piety.
Gather us in, O God.

Help families and the leaders of households to pattern faith.
Gather us in, O God.

Choose and renew our leaders for disciple-making.
Gather us in, O God.

Uphold those who seek peace with justice.
Gather us in, O God.

Give light to all who strive to discern what is right.
Gather us in, O God.

Comfort the dying.
Gather us in, O God.

Heal the broken and suffering.
Gather us in, O God.

The windows of Christ's Mysteries 
split the Light up into Many-coloured loveliness, 
disclose all of its hidden richness
and make its beauty more accessible to us. Amen.

O God, 
Origin, Sustainer, and End of all your creatures: 
Grant that your Church,
taught by your servant Evelyn Underhill, 
guarded evermore by your power, 
and guided by your Spirit into the light of truth, 
may continually offer to you all glory and thanksgiving, 
and attain with your saints 
to the blessed hope of everlasting life, 
which you have promised us by our Savior Jesus Christ; 
who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, 
one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Gathering our prayers and praises into one,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us.

- The Lord's Prayer

Compassionate God,
grant that our experience of your pardon
may increase our love
until it reflects your own immeasurable forgiveness;
through Jesus Christ our 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 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
_We Give You Thanks and Praise: The Ambrosian Eucharistic
Prefaces_, translated by Alan Griffiths, (c) The Canterbury Press
Norwich, 1999.

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 first collect is a quotation from the writings of Evelyn Underhill.

The second collect is from _The Proper for the Lesser Feasts and
Fasts_, Church Publishing.

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

Evelyn Underhill was born in 1850 and grew up in London. Her friends
included Laurence Housman (poet and brother of the poet A E Housman) and
Sarah Bernhardt (actress), and Baron Friedrich von Huegel, a writer on
theology and mysticism. Largely under his guidance, she embarked on a life of
reading, writing, meditation, and prayer. From her studies and experience she
produced a series of books on contemplative prayer. The list includes the
1902 The Bar-lamb's Ballad (poetry)
1911 Mysticism
1913 The Mystic Way
1913 Immanence (poetry)
1927 Man and the Supernatural
1936 Worship
1938 The Mystery of Sacrifice
Miss Underhill (Mrs. Hubert Stuart Moore) taught that the life of
contemplative prayer is not just for monks and nuns, but can be the life of any
Christian who is willing to undertake it. She also taught that modern
psychological theory, far from being a threat to contemplation, can fruitfully be
used to enhance it. In her later years, she spent a great deal of time as a
lecturer and retreat director. She died on June 15, 1941. [James Kiefer]

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