OREMUS: 17 March 2005

Steve Benner oremus at insight.rr.com
Thu Mar 17 01:22:01 GMT 2005

OREMUS for Thursday, March 17, 2005
Patrick, Bishop, Missionary, Patron of Ireland, c.460

O God, make speed to save us;
O Lord, make haste to help us.

Blessed are you, holy Father,
almighty and eternal God,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
For as the time of his passion and resurrection draws near
the whole world is called to acknowledge his hidden majesty.
The power of the life-giving cross
reveals the judgement that has come upon the world
and the triumph of Christ crucified.
He is the victim who dies no more,
the Lamb once slain, who lives for ever,
our advocate in heaven to plead our cause.
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 40
I waited patiently upon the Lord;*
  he stooped to me and heard my cry.
He lifted me out of the desolate pit,
    out of the mire and clay;*
  he set my feet upon a high cliff and made my footing sure.
He put a new song in my mouth,
    a song of praise to our God;*
  many shall see and stand in awe
    and put their trust in the Lord.
Happy are they who trust in the Lord!*
  they do not resort to evil spirits or turn to false gods.
Great things are they that you have done, O Lord my God!
    how great your wonders and your plans for us!*
  there is none who can be compared with you.
O that I could make them known and tell them!*
  but they are more than I can count.
In sacrifice and offering you take no pleasure*
  you have given me ears to hear you;
Burnt-offering and sin-offering you have not required,*
  and so I said, ‘Behold, I come.
‘In the roll of the book it is written concerning me:*
  "I love to do your will, O my God;  your law is deep in my heart."’
I proclaimed righteousness in the great congregation;*
  behold, I did not restrain my lips;  and that, O Lord, you know.
Your righteousness have I not hidden in my heart;
    I have spoken of your faithfulness and your deliverance;*
  I have not concealed your love and faithfulness
    from the great congregation.
You are the Lord;
    do not withhold your compassion from me;*
  let your love and your faithfulness keep me safe for ever,
For innumerable troubles have crowded upon me;
    my sins have overtaken me and I cannot see;*
  they are more in number than the hairs of my head,
    and my heart fails me.
Be pleased, O Lord, to deliver me;*
  O Lord, make haste to help me.
Let them be ashamed and altogether dismayed
    who seek after my life to destroy it;*
  let them draw back and be disgraced
    who take pleasure in my misfortune.
Let those who say ‘Aha!’ and gloat over me be confounded,*
  because they are ashamed.
Let all who seek you rejoice in you and be glad;*
  let those who love your salvation continually say,
    ‘Great is the Lord!’
Though I am poor and afflicted,*
  the Lord will have regard for me.
You are my helper and my deliverer;*
  do not tarry, O my God.

Psalm 54
Save me, O God, by your name;*
  in your might, defend my cause.
Hear my prayer, O God;*
  give ear to the words of my mouth.
For the arrogant have risen up against me,
    and the ruthless have sought my life,*
  those who have no regard for God.
Behold, God is my helper;*
  it is the Lord who sustains my life.
Render evil to those who spy on me;*
  in your faithfulness, destroy them.
I will offer you a freewill sacrifice*
  and praise your name, O Lord, for it is good.
For you have rescued me from every trouble,*
  and my eye has seen the ruin of my foes.

READING [Exodus 10:1-11]:

Then the LORD said to Moses, 'Go to Pharaoh; for I
have hardened his heart and the heart of his officials, in
order that I may show these signs of mine among them,
and that you may tell your children and grandchildren how
I have made fools of the Egyptians and what signs I have
done among them so that you may know that I am the LORD.'

So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh, and said to him, 'Thus
says the LORD, the God of the Hebrews, "How long will you
refuse to humble yourself before me? Let my people go, so
that they may worship me. For if you refuse to let my people
go, tomorrow I will bring locusts into your country. They shall
cover the surface of the land, so that no one will be able to
see the land. They shall devour the last remnant left you after
the hail, and they shall devour every tree of yours that grows
in the field. They shall fill your houses, and the houses of all
your officials and of all the Egyptians something that neither
your parents nor your grandparents have seen, from the day they
came on earth to this day." ' Then he turned and went out from

Pharaoh's officials said to him, 'How long shall this fellow be a
snare to us? Let the people go, so that they may worship the
LORD their God; do you not yet understand that Egypt is ruined?'
So Moses and Aaron were brought back to Pharaoh, and he said
to them, 'Go, worship the LORD your God! But which ones are to
go?' Moses said, 'We will go with our young and our old; we will go
with our sons and daughters and with our flocks and herds, because
we have the LORD's festival to celebrate.' He said to them, 'The
LORD indeed will be with you, if ever I let your little ones go with
you! Plainly you have some evil purpose in mind. No, never! Your
men may go and worship the LORD, for that is what you are asking.'
And they were driven out from Pharaoh's presence.

For another Biblical reading, 2 Corinthians 4:1-12

Words: attributed to St. Patrick (372-466);
trans. Cecil Frances Alexander (1818-1895), 1889
Tune: St. Patrick's Breastplate

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I bind unto myself today
the strong Name of the Trinity,
by invocation of the same,
the Three in One, and One in Three.

I bind this day to me for ever,
by power of faith, Christ's Incarnation;
his baptism in Jordan river;
his death on cross for my salvation;
his bursting from the spicŠd tomb;
his riding up the heavenly way;
his coming at the day of doom:
I bind unto myself today.

I bind unto myself the power
of the great love of cherubim;
the sweet "Well done" in judgment hour;
the service of the seraphim;
confessors' faith, apostles' word,
the patriarchs' prayers, the prophets' scrolls;
all good deeds done unto the Lord,
and purity of virgin souls.

I bind unto myself today
the virtues of the starlit heaven
the glorious sun's life-giving ray,
the whiteness of the moon at even,
the flashing of the lightning free,
the whirling wind's tempestuous shocks,
the stable earth, the deep salt sea,
around the old eternal rocks.

I bind unto myself today
the power of God to hold and lead,
his eye to watch, his might to stay,
his ear to hearken, to my need;
the wisdom of my God to teach,
his hand to guide, his shield to ward;
the word of God to give me speech,
his heavenly host to be my guard.

Christ be with me,
Christ within me,
Christ behind me,
Christ before me,
Christ beside me,
Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort
and restore me.
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ in quiet,
Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of
all that love me,
Christ in mouth of
friend and stranger.

I bind unto myself today
the strong Name of the Trinity,
by invocation of the same,
the Three in One, and One in Three.
Of whom all nature hath creation,
eternal Father, Spirit, Word:
praise to the Lord of my salvation,
salvation is of Christ the Lord.

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

O Christ,
out of your fullness we have received grace upon grace.
You are our eternal hope;
you are patient and full of mercy;
you are generous to all who call upon you.
Save us, O Lord.

O Christ, fountain of life and holiness,
you have taken away our sins.
On the cross you were wounded for our transgressions
and were bruised for our iniquities.
Save us, O Lord.

O Christ, obedient unto death,
source of all comfort,
our life and our resurrection,
our peace and reconciliation:
Save us, O Lord.

O Christ, Savior of all who trust you,
hope of all who die for yo,
and joy of all the saints:
Save us, O Lord.

Free us from our sins, O God,
and may we never be ashamed
to confess you to all the nations,
through your Son, our Redeemer,
Jesus Christ, the Lord of all. Amen.

Almighty God,
who in your providence chose your servant Patrick
to be the apostle of the Irish people:
keep alive in us the fire of the faith he kindled
and strengthen us in our pilgrimage
towards the light of everlasting life;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Standing at the foot of the cross,
let us pray as our Savior taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

Christ crucified draw us to himself,
to find in him a sure ground for faith,
a firm support for hope,
and the assurance of sins forgiven. Amen.

The psalms are from Celebrating Common Prayer
  (Mowbray), © The Society of Saint Francis 1992, which is used with 

The canticle and the invitation to the Lord's Prayer
(adapted) are from Common Worship: Daily Prayer,
Preliminary Edition, copyright © The Archbishops' Council, 2002.

The biblical passage is from The New Revised Standard
Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright © 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 and the closing sentence
are adapted from prayers in Common Worship: Services and
Prayers for the Church of England, material from which is
included in this service is copyright © The Archbishops'
Council, 2000.

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 © The Archbishops'
Council, 2000.

Patrick was born about 390, in southwest Britain, somewhere
between the Severn and the Clyde rivers, son of a deacon and
grandson of a priest. When about sixteen years old, he was
kidnapped by Irish pirates and sold into slavery in Ireland. Until
this time, he had, by his own account, cared nothing for God,
but now he turned to God for help. After six years, he either
escaped or was freed, made his way to a port 200 miles away,
and there persuaded some sailors to take him onto their ship.
He returned to his family much changed, and began to prepare
for the priesthood, and to study the Bible.

Around 435, Patrick was commissioned, perhaps by bishops in
Gaul and perhaps by the Pope, to go to Ireland as a bishop and
missionary. Four years earlier another bishop, Palladius, had
gone to Ireland to preach, but he was no longer there (my sources
disagree on whether he had died, or had become discouraged
and left Ireland to preach in Scotland). Patrick made his headquarters
at Armagh in the North, where he built a school, and had the
protection of the local monarch. From this base he made extensive
missionary journeys, with considerable success. To say that he
single-handedly turned Ireland from a pagan to a Christian country
is an exaggeration, but is not far from the truth.

Almost everything we know about him comes from his own writings,
available in English in the Ancient Christian Writers series. He has
left us an autobiography (called the Confession), a Letter to Coroticus
  in which he denounces the slave trade and rebukes the British
chieftain Coroticus for taking part in it, and the Lorica (or "Breastplate"
a poem of disputed authorship traditionally attributed to Patrick),
a work that has been called "part prayer, part anthem, and part incantation."
[James Kiefer, abridged]

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