OREMUS: 4 December 2007

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Mon Dec 3 17:00:01 GMT 2007


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OREMUS for Tuesday, December 4, 2007 
Nicholas Ferrar, Deacon, Founder of the Little Gidding Community, 1637

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

Blessed are you, loving God,
ever faithful to your promises
and ever close to your church.
The earth rejoices in hope of the Savior's coming
and looks forward with longing
to his return at the end of time.
You call us to prepare our hearts
and remove that which hinders us
from the joy and hope his presence will bestow.
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. 

http://www.oremus.org/ocan.html

Psalm 3

Lord, how many adversaries I have!*
 how many there are who rise up against me!
How many there are who say of me,*
 'There is no help for him in his God.'
But you, O Lord, are a shield about me;*
 you are my glory, the one who lifts up my head.
I call aloud upon the Lord*
 and he answers me from his holy hill;
I lie down and go to sleep;*
 I wake again, because the Lord sustains me.
I do not fear the multitudes of people*
 who set themselves against me all around.
Rise up, O Lord; set me free, O my God;*
 surely, you will strike all my enemies across the face,
   you will break the teeth of the wicked.
Deliverance belongs to the Lord.*
 Your blessing be upon your people!

Psalm 9

I will give thanks to you, O Lord, with my whole heart;*
 I will tell of all your marvellous works.
I will be glad and rejoice in you;*
 I will sing to your name, O Most High.
When my enemies are driven back,*
 they will stumble and perish at your presence.
For you have maintained my right and my cause;*
 you sit upon your throne judging right.
You have rebuked the ungodly and destroyed the wicked;*
 you have blotted out their name for ever and ever.
As for the enemy, they are finished, in perpetual ruin,*
 their cities ploughed under,
   the memory of them perished;
But the Lord is enthroned for ever;*
 he has set up his throne for judgement.
It is he who rules the world with righteousness;*
 he judges the peoples with equity.
The Lord will be a refuge for the oppressed,*
 a refuge in time of trouble.
Those who know your name will put their trust in you,*
 for you never forsake those who seek you, O Lord.
Sing praise to the Lord who dwells in Zion;*
 proclaim to the peoples the things he has done.
The avenger of blood will remember them;*
 he will not forget the cry of the afflicted.
Have pity on me, O Lord;*
 see the misery I suffer from those who hate me,
   O you who lift me up from the gate of death;
So that I may tell of all your praises
   and rejoice in your salvation*
 in the gates of the city of Zion.
The ungodly have fallen into the pit they dug,*
 and in the snare they set is their own foot caught.
The Lord is known by his acts of justice;*
 the wicked are trapped in the works of their own hands.
The wicked shall be given over to the grave,*
 and also all the peoples that forget God.
For the needy shall not always be forgotten,*
 and the hope of the poor shall not perish for ever.
Rise up, O Lord,
   let not the ungodly have the upper hand;*
 let them be judged before you.
Put fear upon them, O Lord;*
 let the ungodly know they are but mortal.

A Song of Trust (Isaiah 26.1-4,7-9,12)

We have a strong city; he sets up salvation as walls and bulwarks.  
Open the gates, that the righteous nation which keeps faith 
may enter in. 
You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on you,  
because he trusts in you. 
Trust in the Lord for ever,  
for the Lord God is an everlasting rock. 
The way of the righteous is level;  
you who are upright make smooth the path of the righteous. 
In the path of your judgements, O Lord, we wait for you;  
your name and renown is the desire of our soul. 
My soul yearns for you in the night,  
my spirit within me earnestly seeks you. 
For when your judgements are in the earth,  
the inhabitants of the world learn righteousness. 
O Lord, you will ordain peace for us,  
for indeed all that we have done you have done for us. 

Psalm 146

Alleluia!
   Praise the Lord, O my soul!*
 I will praise the Lord as long as I live;
   I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.
Put not your trust in rulers,
   nor in any child of earth,*
 for there is no help in them.
When they breathe their last, they return to earth,*
 and in that day their thoughts perish.
Happy are they who have the God of Jacob
   for their help!*
 whose hope is in the Lord their God;
Who made heaven and earth, the seas,
   and all that is in them;*
 who keeps his promise for ever;
Who gives justice to those who are oppressed,*
 and food to those who hunger.
The Lord sets the prisoners free;
   the Lord opens the eyes of the blind;*
 the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down;
The Lord loves the righteous;
   the Lord cares for the stranger;*
 he sustains the orphan and widow,
   but frustrates the way of the wicked.
The Lord shall reign for ever,*
 your God, O Zion, throughout all generations.
   Alleluia!

FIRST READING [Isaiah 11.1 10]:

A shoot shall come out from the stock of Jesse,
   and a branch shall grow out of his roots.
The spirit of the Lord shall rest on him,
   the spirit of wisdom and understanding,
   the spirit of counsel and might,
   the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.
His delight shall be in the fear of the Lord.

He shall not judge by what his eyes see,
   or decide by what his ears hear;
but with righteousness he shall judge the poor,
   and decide with equity for the meek of the earth;
he shall strike the earth with the rod of his mouth,
   and with the breath of his lips he shall kill the wicked.
Righteousness shall be the belt around his waist,
   and faithfulness the belt around his loins.

The wolf shall live with the lamb,
   the leopard shall lie down with the kid,
the calf and the lion and the fatling together,
   and a little child shall lead them.
The cow and the bear shall graze,
   their young shall lie down together;
   and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.
The nursing child shall play over the hole of the asp,
   and the weaned child shall put its hand on the adder's den.
They will not hurt or destroy
   on all my holy mountain;
for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord
   as the waters cover the sea.

On that day the root of Jesse shall stand as a signal to the peoples; the nations shall
inquire of him, and his dwelling shall be glorious. 

HYMN 
Words: Edward Perronet (1725-1792), 1780
Tune: Miles Lane, Coronation, Ladywell, Diadem

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All hail the power of Jesus' name!
Let angels prostrate fall;
bring forth the royal diadem,
to crown him, crown him, crown him Lord of all!

Crown him, ye morning stars of light,
who fixed this floating ball;
now hail the Strength of Israel's might,
and crown him, crown him, crown him Lord of all!

Crown him ye martyrs of your God,
who from his altar call:
extol the stem of Jesse's rod,
and crown him, crown him, crown him Lord of all!

Ye seed of Israel's chosen race,
ye ransomed of the fall,
hail him who saves you by his grace.
and crown him, crown him, crown him Lord of all!

Hail him, ye heirs of David's line,
whom David Lord did call,
the God incarnate, Man divine,
and crown him, crown him, crown him Lord of all!

Sinners, whose love can ne'er forget
the wormwood and the gall,
go spread your trophies at his feet,
and crown him, crown him, crown him Lord of all!

Let every tribe and every tongue
that bound creation's call,
now shout in universal song
the crowned, the crowned, the crowned Lord of all!

SECOND READING [Luke 10.21 24]:

At that same hour Jesus rejoiced in the Holy Spirit and said, 'I thank you, Father, Lord
of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the
intelligent and have revealed them to infants; yes, Father, for such was your gracious
will. All things have been handed over to me by my Father; and no one knows who the
Son is except the Father, or who the Father is except the Son and anyone to whom the
Son chooses to reveal him.'
Then turning to the disciples, Jesus said to them privately, 'Blessed are the eyes that
see what you see! For I tell you that many prophets and kings desired to see what you
see, but did not see it, and to hear what you hear, but did not hear it.' 

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

Prayer:
Let us turn our eyes to the Lord of glory
and enthrone him on our praises, saying: 
Lord, have mercy.

Jesus, servant of God,
you bring justice to the peoples: 
Lord, have mercy.

You love your people
with a faithful love:
Lord, have mercy.

You were lifted up on the cross
that you might draw all people to yourself:
Lord, have mercy.

You bring hope and joy
to those who walk in the valley and shadow of death:
Lord, have mercy.

You have liberated us
so that we might be free for ever:
Lord, have mercy.

You, O Christ, are our justice,
our peace and our redemption:
Lord, have mercy.

Lord God, ruler of the universe,
you rescue your people from adversity
even as you delivered your own Son from the grasp of death.
Shield us from danger
and raise us up on the last day with all your saints
to dwell with you in your eternal kingdom,
through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen. 
God of peace, 
make us worthy of your perfect love 
that, with your servant Nicholas Ferrar and his household, 
we may rule ourselves after your Word 
and serve you with our whole heart; 
through Jesus Christ our Lord, 
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, 
one God, now and for ever. Amen. 
       
Awaiting his coming in glory,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

O Son of God, our Savior,
today we await your coming,
and tomorrow we shall see your glory.
Reveal the good news to all of us
who long for your arrival.
Come, Love incarnate, do not delay.
Come, Lord Jesus! Amen.

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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 and the closing sentence are adapted from
_Chalice Worship_, (c) Chalice Press, 1997. Reproduced with
permission.

Nicholas Ferrar, born in 1592, was the founder of a religious community that
lasted from 1626 to 1646.
After Nicholas had been ordained as a deacon, he and his family and a few
friends retired to Little Gidding, Huntingdonshire, England, to devote
themselves to a life of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving (Matthew 6:2,5,16).
They restored the abandoned church building, and became responsible for
regular services there. They taught the neighborhood children, and looked after
the health and well-being of the people of the district. They read the regular
daily offices of the Book of Common Prayer, including the recital every day of
the complete Psalter. (Day and night, there was always at least one member of
the community kneeling in prayer before the altar, that they might keep the
word, "Pray without ceasing.") They wrote books and stories dealing with
various aspects of Christian faith and practice. They fasted with great rigor,
and in other ways embraced voluntary poverty, so that they might have as
much money as possible for the relief of the poor.
The community was founded in 1626 (when Nicholas was 34). He died in 1637
(aged 45), and in 1646 the community was forcibly broken up by the Puritans
of Cromwell's army. The memory of the community survived to inspire and
influence later undertakings in Christian communal living, and one of T.S.
Eliot's Four Quartets is called "Little Gidding."



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