OREMUS: 20 September 2006

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Tue Sep 19 22:32:22 GMT 2006

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OREMUS for Wednesday, September 20, 2006 
John Coleridge Patteson, First Bishop of Melanesia,
and his Companions, Martyrs, 1871

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

Blessed are you, Shepherding God,
undaunted you seek the lost,
exultant you bring home the found.
You touch our hearts with grateful wonder
at the tenderness of your forbearing love,
revealed in your Son, Jesus Christ. 
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit:
Blessed be God for ever.

An opening canticle may be sung. 


Psalm 45

My heart is stirring with a noble song;
   let me recite what I have fashioned for the king;*
 my tongue shall be the pen of a skilled writer.
You are the fairest of men;*
 grace flows from your lips,
   because God has blessed you for ever.
Strap your sword upon your thigh, O mighty warrior,*
 in your pride and in your majesty.
Ride out and conquer in the cause of truth*
 and for the sake of justice.
Your right hand will show you marvellous things;*
 your arrows are very sharp, O mighty warrior.
The peoples are falling at your feet,*
 and the king's enemies are losing heart.
Your throne, O God, endures for ever and ever,*
 a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of your kingdom;
   you love righteousness and hate iniquity;
Therefore God, your God, has anointed you*
 with the oil of gladness above your fellows.
All your garments are fragrant with myrrh, aloes and cassia,*
 and the music of strings from ivory palaces makes you glad.
Kings' daughters stand among the ladies of the court;*
 on your right hand is the queen,
   adorned with the gold of Ophir.
'Hear, O daughter; consider and listen closely;*
 forget your people and your family's house.
'The king will have pleasure in your beauty;*
 he is your master; therefore do him honour.
'The people of Tyre are here with a gift;*
 the rich among the people seek your favour.'
All glorious is the princess as she enters;*
 her gown is cloth-of-gold.
In embroidered apparel she is brought to the king;*
 after her the bridesmaids follow in procession.
With joy and gladness they are brought,*
 and enter into the palace of the king.
'In place of fathers, O king, you shall have sons;*
 you shall make them princes over all the earth.
'I will make your name to be remembered
   from one generation to another;*
 therefore nations will praise you for ever and ever.'

A Song of the Lord's Anointed (Isaiah 61.1-3,11,6a)

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me
 because he has anointed me.

He has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed,
 to bind up the broken-hearted,

To proclaim liberty to the captives,
 and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;

To proclaim the year of the Lord's favour,
 to comfort all who mourn,

To give them a garland instead of ashes,
 the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
 the mantle of praise instead of a faint spirit,

That they may be called oaks of righteousness,
 the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.

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

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

You shall be called priests of the Lord
 they shall speak of you as ministers of our 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.

FIRST READING [Proverbs 29:1-27]:

One who is often reproved, yet remains stubborn,
   will suddenly be broken beyond healing.
When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice;
   but when the wicked rule, the people groan.
A child who loves wisdom makes a parent glad,
   but to keep company with prostitutes is to squander one's
By justice a king gives stability to the land,
   but one who makes heavy exactions ruins it.
Whoever flatters a neighbour
   is spreading a net for the neighbour's feet.
In the transgression of the evil there is a snare,
   but the righteous sing and rejoice.
The righteous know the rights of the poor;
   the wicked have no such understanding.
Scoffers set a city aflame,
   but the wise turn away wrath.
If the wise go to law with fools,
   there is ranting and ridicule without relief.
The bloodthirsty hate the blameless,
   and they seek the life of the upright.
A fool gives full vent to anger,
   but the wise quietly holds it back.
If a ruler listens to falsehood,
   all his officials will be wicked.
The poor and the oppressor have this in common:
   the Lord gives light to the eyes of both.
If a king judges the poor with equity,
   his throne will be established for ever.
The rod and reproof give wisdom,
   but a mother is disgraced by a neglected child.
When the wicked are in authority, transgression increases,
   but the righteous will look upon their downfall.
Discipline your children, and they will give you rest;
   they will give delight to your heart.
Where there is no prophecy, the people cast off restraint,
   but happy are those who keep the law.
By mere words servants are not disciplined,
   for though they understand, they will not give heed.
Do you see someone who is hasty in speech?
   There is more hope for a fool than for anyone like that.
A slave pampered from childhood
   will come to a bad end.
One given to anger stirs up strife,
   and the hothead causes much transgression.
A person's pride will bring humiliation,
   but one who is lowly in spirit will obtain honour.
To be a partner of a thief is to hate one's own life;
   one hears the victim's curse, but discloses nothing.

The fear of others lays a snare,
   but one who trusts in the Lord is secure.
Many seek the favour of a ruler,
   but it is from the Lord that one gets justice.
The unjust are an abomination to the righteous,
   but the upright are an abomination to the wicked. 

Words: Thomas Aquinas, 1263
Tune: Verbum supernum prodiens, Das walt' Gott, O salutaris hostia, Melcombe,
St. Vincent

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The heavenly Word proceeding forth,
yet leaving not the Father's side,
accomplishing his work on earth
and reached at length life's eventide.

By false disciple to be given
to foemen for his life athirst,
himself, the very Bread from heaven,
he gave to his disciples first.

He gave himself in either kind,
his precious Flesh, his precious Blood:
in love's own fullness thus designed
of the whole man to be the Food.

By birth our fellow man was he,
our Food, when sitting at the board;
he died, our ransomer to be;
he ever reigns, our great reward.

O saving Victim, opening wide
the gate of heaven to man below:
our foes press on from every side;
thine aid supply, thy strength bestow.

All praise and thanks to thee ascend
for evermore, blest One in three;
O grant us life that shall not end
in our true native land with thee.

SECOND READING [John 7:25-36]:

Now some of the people of Jerusalem were saying, 'Is not this the man whom they are
trying to kill? And here he is, speaking openly, but they say nothing to him! Can it be
that the authorities really know that this is the Messiah? Yet we know where this man
is from; but when the Messiah comes, no one will know where he is from.' Then Jesus
cried out as he was teaching in the temple, 'You know me, and you know where I am
from. I have not come on my own. But the one who sent me is true, and you do not
know him. I know him, because I am from him, and he sent me.' Then they tried to
arrest him, but no one laid hands on him, because his hour had not yet come. Yet many
in the crowd believed in him and were saying, 'When the Messiah comes, will he do
more signs than this man has done?'
The Pharisees heard the crowd muttering such things about him, and the chief priests
and Pharisees sent temple police to arrest him. Jesus then said, 'I will be with you a
little while longer, and then I am going to him who sent me. You will search for me,
but you will not find me; and where I am, you cannot come.' The Jews said to one
another, 'Where does this man intend to go that we will not find him? Does he intend
to go to the Dispersion among the Greeks and teach the Greeks? What does he mean
by saying, "You will search for me and you will not find me" and, "Where I am, you
cannot come"?' 

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

God our Father,
you give us gifts that we may work together
in the service of your Son.

Bless those who lead,
that they may be firm in faith,
yet humble before you.
Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy hear us.

Bless Archbishop Rowan, 
preparing for his new ministry, 
that he may know the grace of the Spirit;
and for his family, preparing to move to a new home.
Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy hear us.

Bless those who teach,
that they may increase our understanding,
and be open to your word for them:
Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy hear us.

Bless those who minister healing,
that they may bring wholeness to others,
yet know your healing in themselves:
Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy hear us.

Bless those who work for 
the renewal of communion among Christians 
and for the healing of our divisions, that the world may believe:
Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy hear us.

Bless those through whom you speak,
that they may proclaim your word in power,
yet open their ears to your gentle whisper:
Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy hear us.

Bless those who work in your world today
that in the complexity of their daily lives
they may live for you, fulfill your purposes
and seek your kingdom first.
Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy hear us.

Bless those who feel they have no gifts or value
and those who are powerless in this world's eyes,
that they may share their experience
of the work of your Spirit.
Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy hear us.

O God of unchangeable power and eternal light,
look favourably on your whole Church,
that wonderful and sacred mystery.
By the effectual working of your providence,
carry out in tranquillity the plan of salvation.
Let the whole world see and know
that things which were cast down are being raised up,
and things which had grown old are being made new,
and that all things are being brought to their perfection
by him through whom all things were made,
your Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

God of all tribes and peoples and tongues,
who called your servant John Coleridge Patteson
to witness in life and death to the gospel of Christ
amongst the peoples of Melanesia:
grant us to hear your call to service
and to respond trustfully and joyfully
to Jesus Christ our Redeemer,
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

Grant us delight in the mercy that has found us
and bring all to rejoice at the feast of forgiveness. Amen.

The psalms 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 and the closing prayer use phrases from a
prayer in _Opening Prayers: Collects in Contemporary Language_.
Canterbury Press, Norwich, 1999.
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.

John Coleridge Patteson was born in London in 1827. He attended Balliol
College, Oxford, and graduated in 1849. After a tour of Europe and a study of
languages, he became a fellow of Merton College, Oxford, in 1852. In 1855,
he heard Bishop George Selwyn of New Zealand (11 Apr) call for volunteers
to go the South Pacific to preach the Gospel. He went there, and founded a
school for the education of native Christian workers. He was adept at
languages, and learned twenty-three of the languages spoken in the Polynesian
and Melanesian Islands of the South Pacific. In 1861 he was consecrated
Bishop of Melanesia.
The slave-trade was technically illegal in the South Pacific at that time, but the
laws were only laxly enforced and in fact slave-raiding was a flourishing
business. Patteson was actively engaged in the effort to stamp it out. However,
injured men do not always distinguish friends from foes. After slave-raiders had
attacked the island of Nakapu, in the Santa Cruz group, Patteson and several
companions visited the area. They were assumed to be connected with the
raiders, and Patteson's body was floated back to his ship with five hatchet
wounds in the chest, one for each native who had been killed in the earlier raid.
The death of Bishop Patteson caused an uproar back in England, and
stimulated the government there to take firm measures to stamp out slavery
and the slave trade in its Pacific territories. It was also the seed of a strong and
vigorous Church in Melanesia today. Patteson and his companions died on 20
September 1871.

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