OREMUS: 20 November 2007

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Mon Nov 19 17:00:01 GMT 2007

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OREMUS for Tuesday, November 20, 2007 
Edmund, King of the East Angles, Martyr, 870

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

Blessed are you, ever-living God,
the hope of the nations,
the builder of the city that is to come.
our love made visible in Jesus Christ
brings home the lost,
restores the sinner
and gives dignity to the despised.
In his face your light shines out,
flooding lives with goodness and truth,
gathering into one in your kingdom
a divided and broken humanity.
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 120

When I was in trouble I called to the Lord,*
 I called to the Lord and he answered me.
Deliver me, O Lord, from lying lips*
 and from the deceitful tongue.
What shall be done to you and what more besides,*
 O you deceitful tongue?
The sharpened arrows of a warrior,*
 along with hot glowing coals.
How hateful it is that I must lodge in Meshech*
 and dwell among the tents of Kedar!
Too long have I had to live*
 among the enemies of peace.
I am on the side of peace,*
 but when I speak of it, they are for war.

Psalm 121

I lift up my eyes to the hills;*
 from where is my help to come?
My help comes from the Lord,*
 the maker of heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot be moved*
 and he who watches over you will not fall asleep.
Behold, he who keeps watch over Israel*
 shall neither slumber nor sleep;
The Lord himself watches over you;*
 the Lord is your shade at your right hand,
So that the sun shall not strike you by day,*
 nor the moon by night.
The Lord shall preserve you from all evil;*
 it is he who shall keep you safe.
The Lord shall watch over your going out
   and your coming in,*
 from this time forth for evermore.

Psalm 122

I was glad when they said to me,*
 'Let us go to the house of the Lord.'
Now our feet are standing*
 within your gates, O Jerusalem.
Jerusalem is built as a city*
 that is at unity with itself.
To which the tribes go up, the tribes of the Lord,*
 the assembly of Israel, to praise the name of the Lord.
For there are the thrones of judgement,*
 the thrones of the house of David.
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:*
 'May they prosper who love you.
'Peace be within your walls*
 and quietness within your towers.
'For my family and companions' sake,*
 I pray for your prosperity.
'Because of the house of the Lord our God,*
 I will seek to do you good.'

A Song of the Redeemed (Revelation 7.9,10,14b-17)

Behold, a great multitude
which no one could number, 
>From every nation, 
from all tribes and peoples and tongues,
standing before the throne and the Lamb. 
They were clothed in white robes 
and had palms in their hands, 
and they cried with a loud voice, saying, 
'Salvation belongs to our God 
who sits on the throne,  
and to the Lamb.' 
These are they 
who have come out of the great tribulation, 
they have washed their robes 
and made them white in the blood of the Lamb; 
Therefore they stand before the throne of God,
whom they serve day and night within the temple. 
And the One who sits upon the throne . 
will shelter them with his presence. 
They shall never again feel hunger or thirst, . 
the sun shall not strike them, 
nor any scorching heat. 
For the Lamb at the heart of the throne 
will be their Shepherd, 
He will guide them to springs of living water, 
and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes. 

Psalm 146

   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.

FIRST READING [2 Maccabees 6:18-31]:

Eleazar, one of the scribes in high position, a man now advanced in age and of noble
presence, was being forced to open his mouth to eat swine's flesh. But he, welcoming
death with honour rather than life with pollution, went up to the rack of his own
accord, spitting out the flesh, as all ought to go who have the courage to refuse things
that it is not right to taste, even for the natural love of life.
Those who were in charge of that unlawful sacrifice took the man aside because of
their long acquaintance with him, and privately urged him to bring meat of his own
providing, proper for him to use, and to pretend that he was eating the flesh of the
sacrificial meal that had been commanded by the king, so that by doing this he might
be saved from death, and be treated kindly on account of his old friendship with them.
But making a high resolve, worthy of his years and the dignity of his old age and the
grey hairs that he had reached with distinction and his excellent life even from
childhood, and moreover according to the holy God-given law, he declared himself
quickly, telling them to send him to Hades.
'Such pretence is not worthy of our time of life,' he said, 'for many of the young might
suppose that Eleazar in his ninetieth year had gone over to an alien religion, and
through my pretence, for the sake of living a brief moment longer, they would be led
astray because of me, while I defile and disgrace my old age. Even if for the present I
would avoid the punishment of mortals, yet whether I live or die I will not escape the
hands of the Almighty. Therefore, by bravely giving up my life now, I will show myself
worthy of my old age and leave to the young a noble example of how to die a good
death willingly and nobly for the revered and holy laws.'
When he had said this, he went at once to the rack. Those who a little before had acted
towards him with goodwill now changed to ill will, because the words he had uttered
were in their opinion sheer madness. When he was about to die under the blows, he
groaned aloud and said: 'It is clear to the Lord in his holy knowledge that, though I
might have been saved from death, I am enduring terrible sufferings in my body under
this beating, but in my soul I am glad to suffer these things because I fear him.'
So in this way he died, leaving in his death an example of nobility and a memorial of
courage, not only to the young but to the great body of his nation. 

Words: Peter Abelard, twelfth century;
trans. John Mason Neale, 1854
Tune: O quanta qualia

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O what their joy and their glory must be,
those endless Sabbaths the blessŠd ones see;
crown for the valiant, to weary ones rest:
God shall be All, and in all ever blest.

What are the Monarch, his court and his throne?
What are the peace and the joy that they own?
O that the blest ones, who in it have share,
all that they feel could as fully declare!

Truly, "Jerusalem" name we that shore,
city of peace that brings joy evermore;
wish and fulfillment are not severed there,
nor do things prayed for come short of the prayer.

There, where no troubles distraction can bring,
we the sweet anthems of Zion shall sing;
while for thy grace, Lord, their voices of praise
thy blessŠd people eternally raise.

Now, in the meantime, with hearts raised on high,
we for that country must yearn and must sigh,
seeking Jerusalem, dear native land,
through our long exile on Babylon's strand.

Low before him with our praises we fall,
of whom and in whom and through whom are all;
of whom, the Father; and in whom, the Son;
and through whom, the Spirit, with them ever One.

SECOND READING [Luke 19:1-10]:

Jesus entered Jericho and was passing through it. A man was there named Zacchaeus;
he was a chief tax-collector and was rich. He was trying to see who Jesus was, but on
account of the crowd he could not, because he was short in stature. So he ran ahead
and climbed a sycomore tree to see him, because he was going to pass that way. When
Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, 'Zacchaeus, hurry and come
down; for I must stay at your house today.' So he hurried down and was happy to
welcome him. All who saw it began to grumble and said, 'He has gone to be the guest
of one who is a sinner.' Zacchaeus stood there and said to the Lord, 'Look, half of my
possessions, Lord, I will give to the poor; and if I have defrauded anyone of anything,
I will pay back four times as much.' Then Jesus said to him, 'Today salvation has
come to this house, because he too is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to
seek out and to save the lost.'

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

Jesus our exalted Lord has been given all authority.  
Let us seek his intercession that our prayers may be perfected by his prayer.

Jesus Christ, great high priest, living for ever to intercede for us:
pray for your Church, your broken body in the world 
Lord, hear us.
Lord, graciously hear us.

Jesus Christ, king of righteousness,
enthroned at the right hand of the majesty on high:
pray for the world, and make it subject to your gentle rule 
Lord, hear us.
Lord, graciously hear us.

Jesus Christ, Son of Man, drawing humanity into the life of God:
pray for your bothers and sisters in need, distress or sorrow 
Lord, hear us.
Lord, graciously hear us.

Jesus Christ, pioneer of our salvation,
bringing us to your glory through your death and resurrection:
receive into your kingdom those who have died trusting in your promises 
Lord, hear us.
Lord, graciously hear us.

Jesus Christ, Lord of all things,
ascended far above from the heavens and filling the universe:
pray for us who receive the gifts you give us for work in your service 
Lord, hear us.
Lord, graciously hear us.

Jesus Christ, 
keep the Church in the unity of the Spirit 
and in the bond of peace,
and bring the whole created order to worship at your feet;
for you are alive and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Lord God of all the ages, 
the One who is, who was, and who is to come: 
stir up within us a longing for your kingdom, 
steady our hearts in time of trial, 
and grant us patient endurance until the Sun of justice dawns. 
We make our prayer through your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, 
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, 
one God, forever and ever. Amen.

Eternal God,
whose servant Edmund kept faith to the end,
both with you and with his people,
and glorified you by his death:
grant us such steadfastness of faith
that, with the noble army of martyrs,
we may come to enjoy the fullness of the resurrection 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.
Uniting our prayers with the whole company of heaven,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us.

- The Lord's Prayer

May Christ who makes saints of sinners,
and who has transformed those who have gone before us,
raise and strengthen us that we may transform the world. 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

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
_Common Worship: Times and Seasons (draft)_, material from which is
included in this service is copyright (c) The Archbishops' Council, 2004.

The intercession is from _Common Worship: Times and Seasons (draft)_,
material from which is included in this service is copyright (c) The Archbishops'
Council, 2004.

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

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.

When the heathen Anglo-Saxons invaded Christian Britain in the 400's, they
eventually established seven kingdoms: Essex, Wessex, Sussex (East Saxons,
West Saxons, and South Saxons), Mercia, Northumbria, and East Anglia (three
kingdoms of the Angles), and the Jute kingdom of Kent. (The borders between
these ancient kingdoms are still borders between regions speaking English with
different accents today.) Under the influence of missionaries from the Celts and
from continental Europe, these peoples bcame Christian, only to be faced
themselves by a wave of heathen invaders.
Edmund was born about 840, became King of East Anglia in about 855, and in
870 faced a horde of marauding Danes, who moved through the countryside,
burning churches and slaughtering villages wholesale. On reaching East Anglia,
their leaders confronted Edmund and offered him peace on condition that he
would rule as their vassal and forbid the practice of the Christian faith. Edmund
refused this last condition, fought, and was captured. He was ill-treated and
killed. His burial place is the town of Bury St. Edmunds.

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