OREMUS: 17 November 2005

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Wed Nov 16 22:44:05 GMT 2005

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OREMUS for Thursday, November 17, 2005 
Hugh, Bishop of Lincoln, 1200

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

Blessed are you, God our Father,
for you have enabled us to share 
in the inheritance of the saints in the light. 
You have rescued us from the power of darkness 
and transferred us into the kingdom of your beloved Son, 
in whom we have redemption and the forgiveness of sins. 
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; 
for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created.
He himself is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 
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 62

For God alone my soul in silence waits;*
 from him comes my salvation.
He alone is my rock and my salvation,*
 my stronghold, so that I shall not be greatly shaken.
How long will you assail me to crush me,
   all of you together,*
 as if you were a leaning fence, a toppling wall?
They seek only to bring me down
   from my place of honour;*
 lies are their chief delight.
They bless with their lips,*
 but in their hearts they curse.
For God alone my soul in silence waits;*
 truly, my hope is in him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation,*
 my stronghold, so that I shall not be shaken.
In God is my safety and my honour;*
 God is my strong rock and my refuge.
Put your trust in him always, O people,*
 pour out your hearts before him, for God is our refuge.
Those of high degree are but a fleeting breath,*
 even those of low estate cannot be trusted.
On the scales they are lighter than a breath,*
 all of them together.
Put no trust in extortion;
   in robbery take no empty pride;*
 though wealth increase, set not your heart upon it.
God has spoken once, twice have I heard it,*
 that power belongs to God.
Steadfast love is yours, O Lord,*
 for you repay everyone according to his deeds.

Psalm 82

God takes his stand in the council of heaven;*
 he gives judgement in the midst of the gods:
'How long will you judge unjustly,*
 and show favour to the wicked?
'Save the weak and the orphan;*
 defend the humble and needy;
'Rescue the weak and the poor;*
 deliver them from the power of the wicked.
'They do not know, neither do they understand;
   they go about in darkness;*
 all the foundations of the earth are shaken.
'Now I say to you, "You are gods,*
 and all of you children of the Most High;
'"Nevertheless, you shall die like mortals,*
 and fall like any prince."'
Arise, O God, and rule the earth,*
 for you shall take all nations for your own.

A Song of the Holy City (Revelation 21:1-5a)

I saw a new heaven and a new earth,
for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away
and the sea was no more.

And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem,
coming down out of heaven from God,
prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

And I heard a great voice from the throne saying,
'Behold, my dwelling is with my people.

'I will dwell with them and they shall be mine,
and I myself will be with them.

'I will wipe away every tear from their eyes,
and death shall be no more.

'Neither shall there be mourning,
nor crying, nor pain any more,
for the former things have passed away.'

And the One who sat upon the throne said,
'Behold, I make all things new.'

Psalm 148

   Praise the Lord from the heavens;*
 praise him in the heights.
Praise him, all you angels of his;*
 praise him, all his host.
Praise him, sun and moon;*
 praise him, all you shining stars.
Praise him, heaven of heavens,*
 and you waters above the heavens.
Let them praise the name of the Lord;*
 for he commanded and they were created.
He made them stand fast for ever and ever;*
 he gave them a law which shall not pass away.
Praise the Lord from the earth,*
 you sea-monsters and all deeps;
Fire and hail, snow and fog,*
 tempestuous wind, doing his will;
Mountains and all hills,*
 fruit trees and all cedars;
Wild beasts and all cattle,*
 creeping things and winged birds;
Kings of the earth and all peoples,*
 princes and all rulers of the world;
Young men and maidens,*
 old and young together.
Let them praise the name of the Lord,*
 for his name only is exalted,
   his splendour is over earth and heaven.
He has raised up strength for his people
   and praise for all his loyal servants,*
 the children of Israel, a people who are near him.

READING [Ezekiel 33:23-33]:

The word of the LORD came to me: Mortal, the inhabitants
of these waste places in the land of Israel keep saying,
'Abraham was only one man, yet he got possession of the
land; but we are many; the land is surely given to us to
possess.' Therefore say to them, Thus says the Lord GOD:
You eat flesh with the blood, and lift up your eyes to
your idols, and shed blood; shall you then possess the
land? You depend on your swords, you commit abominations,
and each of you defiles his neighbour's wife; shall you
then possess the land? Say this to them, Thus says the
Lord GOD: As I live, surely those who are in the waste
places shall fall by the sword; and those who are in the
open field I will give to the wild animals to be
devoured; and those who are in strongholds and in caves
shall die by pestilence. I will make the land a
desolation and a waste, and its proud might shall come to
an end; and the mountains of Israel shall be so desolate
that no one will pass through. Then they shall know that
I am the LORD, when I have made the land a desolation and
a waste because of all their abominations that they have
As for you, mortal, your people who talk together about
you by the walls, and at the doors of the houses, say to
one another, each to a neighbour, 'Come and hear what the
word is that comes from the LORD.' They come to you as
people come, and they sit before you as my people, and
they hear your words, but they will not obey them. For
flattery is on their lips, but their heart is set on
their gain. To them you are like a singer of love songs,
one who has a beautiful voice and plays well on an
instrument; they hear what you say, but they will not do
it. When this comes and come it will! then they shall
know that a prophet has been among them. 

For another Biblical reading,
James 1:1-11

Words: Carl P. Daw, Jr. (c)
Tune: Bridegroom
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Like the murmur of the dove's song,
like the challenge of her flight,
like the vigor of the wind's rush,
like the new flame's eager might:
come, Holy Spirit, come.

To the members of Christ's Body,
to the branches of the Vine,
to the Church in faith assembled,
to her midst as gift and sign:
come, Holy Spirit, come.

With the healing of division,
with the ceaseless voice of prayer,
with the power of love and witness,
with the peace beyond compare:
come, Holy Spirit, come.

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

O Lord, answer us in the day of trouble,
Send us help from your holy place.

Show us the path of life,
For in your presence is joy.

Give justice to the orphan and oppressed
And break the power of wickedness and evil.

Look upon the hungry and sorrowful
And grant them the help for which they long.

Let the heavens rejoice and the earth be glad;
May your glory endure for ever.

Your kingship has dominion over all
And with you is our redemption.

We pray for your Church, especially
 the Diocese of Toamasina, Madagascar, The Rt Revd Jean Paul Solo, Bishop.
Lord, have mercy.

Strength of the weak,
Defender of the needy,
Rescuer of the poor,
deliver us from the power of wickedness,
that we may rejoice in your justice now and for ever,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

O God,
who endowed your servant Hugh
with a wise and cheerful boldness
and taught him to commend to earthly rulers
the discipline of a holy life:
give us grace like him to be bold in the service of the gospel,
putting our confidence in Christ alone,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
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

Awaken us to the power and gifts
you pour into us and make us worthy of your trust,
working abundantly to build your kingdom. 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 from Colossians 1:12-17

Hymn (c) 1982 by Hope Publishing Co. 
All rights reserved.  Used by permission.
For permission to reproduce this text, contact:  Hope Publishing Company, 

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 adapted from a prayer reprinted from _Revised
Common Lectionary Prayers_, copyright (c) 2002 Consultation on
Common Texts

As a sign of his remorse for his role in the murder of the Archbishop Thomas a
Becket, King Henry II founded the first house in England of the strict monastic
order called the Carthusians. Difficulties arose with the first two priors, and a
French noble recommended Hugh de Avalon, who at that time had been a
monk at the mother house of the order for 17 years.
On his arrival in England in 1176, Hugh found that the building of the
monastery had not begun. Worse, no compensation had been paid to those
who would have to lose their lands and property to make room for it. Hugh
refused to take office until these persons had been paid "to the last penny." He
intervened again on behalf of the builders, whose pay was not forthcoming.
Henry loved him for his plain speaking. "I do not despair of you," Hugh said to
him at their first interview; "I know how much your many occupations interfere
with the health of your soul." Henry, impressed by his frankness, swore that
while he lived he should not leave his kingdom, and took so much pleasure in
his conversation, and paid so much heed to his counsels, that a rumor arose
that Hugh was his son. Hugh's biographer wrote that "of all men only Hugh
could bend that rhinosceros to his will." When Henry was in danger of
shipwreck, he cried out, "If only my Carthusian Hugh were awake and at
prayer, God would not forget me."
This affection never diminished, though Hugh dared to oppose the king,
particularly in the matter of keeping bishoprics vacant in order that their
revenues might fall to the king's treasury. One of the worst examples was
Lincoln, which, except for a few months, had been without a bishop for
eighteen years. Hugh was elected to the post in 1186, and his monastic
superiors ordered him to accept. After so long a period of neglect, there was
great need of reform. Hugh employed priests of great piety and learning, and
made the fullest use of his authority in disciplining his clergy. He took a stern
view of the ill-treatment of the poor by the royal foresters, and when a subject
of the church of Lincoln suffered at their hands he excommunicated their chief.
He also refused to appoint a royal favorite to a meaningless but lucrative
post. Henry was furious, and summoned him to his presence. He came, and
Henry turned away his face and would not speak, but by way of ignoring his
presence took out a torn glove and began to sew it. At last Hugh said, "How
like you are to your relations at Falaise." The king might have resented this
allusion to the humble birth of William the Conqueror's mother, the daughter of
a glove-maker, but he only laughed, and the quarrel was made up.
Riots against the Jews broke out in England at the time of the Third Crusade.
In defence of the persecuted, Hugh faced armed mobs in Lincoln, Stamford
and Northampton and compelled their submission.
Hugh refused to raise money for the foreign wars of King Richard the
Lion-Heart, calmed the king's rage with a kiss, and persisted in his refusal: this
was the first clear example on record of the refusal of a money-grant demanded
directly by the crown, and an important legal precedent. Richard said, "If all
bishops were like my lord of Lincoln, not a prince among us could raise his
head against them."
His relations with King John were less happy. John showed him an amulet,
which he said was sacred and would preserve him. Hugh replied, "Do not put
your trust in lifeless stone, but only in the living and heavenly stone, our Lord
Jesus Christ." The following Easter he preached at length on the duties of
kings, and the king slipped out partway through.
Devout, tireless, and forgetful of self, Hugh also had wit, a temper that he
described as "more biting than pepper," and a great love and concern for
children and the defenceless. He visited leper-houses and washed the ulcerous
limbs of their inmates.
He was fond of animals, and they of him. Birds and squirrels came readily to
his hand. He had a swan that would feed from his hand, follow him about, and
keep guard over his bed, so that no one could approach it without being
In 1200 the king sent him on an embassy to France. His mission was a success,
but he took ill and returned to England to die on 16 November 1200. John
Ruskin called him "the most beautiful sacerdotal (priestly) figure known to me
in history."

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