OREMUS: 3 April 2006

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Sun Apr 2 22:32:41 GMT 2006

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OREMUS for Monday, April 3, 2006 
Richard, Bishop of Chichester, 1253

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 73

Truly, God is good to Israel,*
 to those who are pure in heart.
But as for me, my feet had nearly slipped;*
 I had almost tripped and fallen;
Because I envied the proud*
 and saw the prosperity of the wicked:
For they suffer no pain,*
 and their bodies are sleek and sound;
In the misfortunes of others they have no share;*
 they are not afflicted as others are;
Therefore they wear their pride like a necklace*
 and wrap their violence about them like a cloak.
Their iniquity comes from gross minds,*
 and their hearts overflow with wicked thoughts.
They scoff and speak maliciously;*
 out of their haughtiness they plan oppression.
They set their mouths against the heavens,*
 and their evil speech runs through the world.
And so the people turn to them*
 and find in them no fault.
They say, 'How should God know?*
 is there knowledge in the Most High?'
So then, these are the wicked;*
 always at ease, they increase their wealth.
In vain have I kept my heart clean,*
 and washed my hands in innocence.
I have been afflicted all day long,*
 and punished every morning.
Had I gone on speaking this way,*
 I should have betrayed the generation of your children.
When I tried to understand these things,*
 it was too hard for me;
Until I entered the sanctuary of God*
 and discerned the end of the wicked.
Surely, you set them in slippery places;*
 you cast them down in ruin.
O how suddenly do they come to destruction,*
 come to an end and perish from terror!
Like a dream when one awakens, O Lord,*
 when you arise you will make their image vanish.
When my mind became embittered,*
 I was sorely wounded in my heart.
I was stupid and had no understanding;*
 I was like a brute beast in your presence.
Yet I am always with you;*
 you hold me by my right hand.
You will guide me by your counsel,*
 and afterwards receive me with glory.
Whom have I in heaven but you?*
 and having you I desire nothing upon earth.
Though my flesh and my heart should waste away,*
 God is the strength of my heart and my portion for ever.
Truly, those who forsake you will perish;*
 you destroy all who are unfaithful.
But it is good for me to be near God;*
 I have made the Lord God my refuge.
I will speak of all your works*
 in the gates of the city of Zion.

READING [Hebrews 9:1-10]:

Now even the first covenant had regulations for worship
and an earthly sanctuary. For a tent was constructed, the
first one, in which were the lampstand, the table, and
the bread of the Presence; this is called the Holy Place.
Behind the second curtain was a tent called the Holy of
Holies. In it stood the golden altar of incense and the
ark of the covenant overlaid on all sides with gold, in
which there were a golden urn holding the manna, and
Aaron's rod that budded, and the tablets of the covenant;
above it were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the
mercy-seat. Of these things we cannot speak now in
Such preparations having been made, the priests go
continually into the first tent to carry out their ritual
duties; but only the high priest goes into the second,
and he but once a year, and not without taking the blood
that he offers for himself and for the sins committed
unintentionally by the people. By this the Holy Spirit
indicates that the way into the sanctuary has not yet
been disclosed as long as the first tent is still
standing. This is a symbol of the present time, during
which gifts and sacrifices are offered that cannot
perfect the conscience of the worshipper, but deal only
with food and drink and various baptisms, regulations for
the body imposed until the time comes to set things

For another Biblical reading,
Job 31:1-8,16-23

Words: John Bowring, 1825
Tune: Rathbun, Cross of Jesus  
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In the cross of Christ I glory,
towering o'er the wrecks of time;
all the light of sacred story
gathers round its head sublime.

When the woes of life o'ertake me,
hopes deceive, and fears annoy,
never shall the cross forsake me:
lo, it glows with peace and joy.

When the sun of bliss is beaming
light and love upon my way,
from the cross the radiance streaming
adds new luster to the day.

Bane and blessing, pain and pleasure,
by the cross are sanctified;
peace is there that knows no measure,
joys that through all time abide.

In the cross of Christ I glory,
towering o'er the wrecks of time;
all the light of sacred story
gathers round its head sublime.

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.

For your Church, O Lord, we pray, especially:
the Diocese of Melbourne, Australia, The Most Revd Peter Robert Watson, Bishop.

Be gracious to your people, 
we entreat you, O Lord, 
that they, repenting day by day 
of the things that displease you, 
may be more and more filled with love of you 
and of your commandments; 
and, being supported by your grace in this life, 
may come to the full enjoyment of eternal life 
in your everlasting kingdom; 
through Jesus Christ our Lord, 
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, 
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

We thank you, Lord God, 
for all the benefits you have given us 
in your Son Jesus Christ, 
our most merciful Redeemer, Friend, and Brother, 
and for all the pains and insults 
which he has borne for us; 
and like your holy bishop Richard, 
we pray that day by day we may see Christ more clearly, 
love him more dearly, and follow him more nearly;
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Standing at the foot of the cross, BR>
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),
(c) The Society of Saint Francis 1992, which is used with permission.

The canticle, the opening thanksgiving and the invitation to the Lord's Prayer
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 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
(c) The Archbishops' Council, 2000.

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

The first collect is from _The Proper for the Lesser Feasts and
Fasts_, 3rd edition, (c) 1980 The Church Pension Fund.

The second collect is from _For All the Saints_, (c) General
Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada, 1994.

Richard of Wyche was born in 1197 at Droitwyche, the son of a prosperous
yeoman farmer. He and his brother were orphaned at an early age, and an
incompetent guardian wasted the inheritance. Richard worked long and hard to
restore the family property, and when he had succeeded, he turned it over to
his brother and went off to Oxford to become a scholar. He was too poor to
afford a gown or a fire in winter, but he did very well at his studies, with
Robert Grosseteste among his teachers, and he established what would be a
lifelong friendship with his tutor, Edmund Rich (Edmund of Abingdon). He
studied canon law at Oxford (and probably also at Paris and Bologna) and,
having acquired a doctorate, he became Chancellor of Oxford in 1235.
Meanwhile, his tutor had become Archbishop of Canterbury, and soon asked
Richard to become his Chancellor. When the Archbishop rebuked King Henry
III for keeping various bishoprics vacant as long as possible (because as long
as they were vacant their revenues went to the Crown), Henry forced him into
exile, and Richard accompanied him to France and nursed him in his final
illness. After the Archbishop's death in 1240, Richard studied at the Dominican
house in Orleans, and was ordained priest in 1243.
In 1244 he was elected Bishop of Chichester, but Henry would not recognize
the election, locked him out of the bishop's residence, and pocketed the
revenues. Richard accepted shelter with a village priest, and spent the next two
years walking barefoot through his diocese, preaching to fishermen and
farmers, and correcting abuses. He held synods to legislate, and insisted that
the sacraments must be administered without payment, and the Liturgy
celebrated with reverence and order. The clergy were required to be celibate,
to wear clerical dress, and to live in the parishes they were assigned to and
carry out their duties in person. The laity were required to attend services on
all Sundays and holy days, and to know by heart the Lord's Prayer, the Hail
Mary, and the Apostles' Creed. After two years, Henry was pressured into
recognizing Richard as Bishop, but Richard continued to live as he had

One of his concerns was that the moslems then in control of Jerusalem would
not admit Christian pilgrims. In 1253 he travelled about appealing for a new
Crusade, aimed solely at pressuring the moslems into permitting pilgrimages.
He caught a fever and died in 1253. A well-known prayer written by him reads
in part as follows:
Thanks be to thee, my Lord Jesus Christ, for all the benefits thou hast given
me, for all the pains and insults thou hast borne for me. O most merciful
redeemer, friend and brother, may I know thee more clearly, love thee more
dearly and follow thee more nearly, day by day. [James Kiefer]

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