OREMUS: 18 September 2007

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Mon Sep 17 19:49:58 GMT 2007

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OREMUS for Tuesday, September 18, 2007 
Ninian, Bishop of Galloway, Apostle to the Picts

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

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 35

Fight those who fight me, O Lord;*
 attack those who are attacking me.
Take up shield and armour*
 and rise up to help me.
Draw the sword and bar the way
   against those who pursue me;*
 say to my soul, 'I am your salvation.'
Let those who seek after my life be shamed and humbled;*
 let those who plot my ruin fall back and be dismayed.
Then I will be joyful in the Lord;*
 I will glory in his victory.
My very bones will say, 'Lord, who is like you?*
 You deliver the poor
   from those who are too strong for them,
   the poor and needy from those who rob them.'
Malicious witnesses rise up against me;*
 they charge me with matters I know nothing about.
They pay me evil in exchange for good;*
 my soul is full of despair.
But when they were sick I dressed in sack-cloth*
 and humbled myself by fasting;
I prayed with my whole heart,
   as one would for a friend or a brother;*
 I behaved like one who mourns for his mother,
   bowed down and grieving.
But when I stumbled,
   they were glad and gathered together;
   they gathered against me;*
 strangers whom I did not know
   tore me to pieces and would not stop.
They put me to the test and mocked me;*
 they gnashed at me with their teeth.
O Lord, how long will you look on?*
 rescue me from the roaring beasts,
   and my life from the young lions.
I will give you thanks in the great congregation;*
 I will praise you in the mighty throng.
Do not let my treacherous foes rejoice over me,*
 nor let those who hate me without a cause
   wink at each other.
For they do not plan for peace,*
 but invent deceitful schemes
   against the quiet in the land.
They opened their mouths at me and said,*
 'Aha! we saw it with our own eyes.'
You saw it, O Lord; do not be silent;*
 O Lord, be not far from me.
Awake, arise, to my cause!*
 to my defence, my God and my Lord!
Give me justice, O Lord my God,
   according to your righteousness;*
 do not let them triumph over me.
Do not let them say in their hearts,
   'Aha! just what we want!'*
 Do not let them say, 'We have swallowed him up.'
Let all who rejoice at my ruin be ashamed and disgraced;*
 let those who boast against me
   be clothed with dismay and shame.
Let those who favour my cause
   sing out with joy and be glad;*
 let them say always, 'Great is the Lord,
   who desires the prosperity of his servant.'
And my tongue shall be talking of your righteousness*
 and of your praise all the day long.

A Song of the Lamb (from Revelation 19)

Salvation and glory and power belong to our God,
 whose judgements are true and just.

Praise our God, all you his servants,
 all who fear him, both small and great.

The Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns:
 let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory.

The marriage of the Lamb has come
 and his bride has made herself ready.

Blessed are those who are invited
 to the wedding banquet of the Lamb.

To the One who sits on the throne and to the Lamb
 be blessing and honour and glory and might,
 for ever and ever. Amen.

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 [1 Timothy 3:1-13]:

The saying is sure: whoever aspires to the office of
bishop desires a noble task. Now a bishop must be above
reproach, married only once, temperate, sensible,
respectable, hospitable, an apt teacher, not a drunkard,
not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, and not a lover
of money. He must manage his own household well, keeping
his children submissive and respectful in every way  for
if someone does not know how to manage his own household,
how can he take care of God's church? He must not be a
recent convert, or he may be puffed up with conceit and
fall into the condemnation of the devil. Moreover, he
must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not
fall into disgrace and the snare of the devil.
Deacons likewise must be serious, not double-tongued, not
indulging in much wine, not greedy for money; they must
hold fast to the mystery of the faith with a clear
conscience. And let them first be tested; then, if they
prove themselves blameless, let them serve as deacons.
Women likewise must be serious, not slanderers, but
temperate, faithful in all things. Let deacons be married
only once, and let them manage their children and their
households well; for those who serve well as deacons gain
a good standing for themselves and great boldness in the
faith that is in Christ Jesus. 

Words: James Montgomery, 1833
Tune: Ludborough

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Lord, pour thy Spirit from on high,
and thine ordainŠd servants bless;
graces and gifts to each supply,
and clothe thy priests with righteousness.

Within thy temple when they stand,
to teach the truth as taught by thee,
Savior, like stars in thy right hand,
let all thy Church's pastors be.

Wisdom and zeal and faith impart,
firmness with meekness, from above,
to bear thy people in their heart,
and love the souls whom thou dost love.

To watch and pray and never faint,
by day and night their guard to keep,
to warn the sinner, cheer the saint,
to feed thy lambs and tend thy sheep

So, when their work is finished here,
may they in hope their charge resign:
so, when their Master shall appear,
may they with crown of glory shine.

SECOND READING [Luke 7:11-17]:

Soon afterwards Jesus went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd
went with him. As he approached the gate of the town, a man who had died was being
carried out. He was his mother's only son, and she was a widow; and with her was a
large crowd from the town. When the Lord saw her, he had compassion for her and
said to her, 'Do not weep.' Then he came forward and touched the bier, and the
bearers stood still. And he said, 'Young man, I say to you, rise!' The dead man sat up
and began to speak, and Jesus gave him to his mother. Fear seized all of them; and
they glorified God, saying, 'A great prophet has risen among us!' and 'God has looked
favourably on his people!' This word about him spread throughout Judea and all the
surrounding country.

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

We seek you daily, O Father,
and you are there daily to be found.

Wherever we seek you,
at home, at work, on the highway,
you are there, O Lord.

Whatever we do,
eating and drinking,
writing or working,
readings, meditating or praying,
you are there, O Lord.

If we are oppressed,
you defend us, O Lord.

If we hunger,
you feed us, O Lord.

Whatever we need,
you give us, O Lord.

Grant to us, O Lord,
the royalty of inward happiness
and the serenity which comes from living close to you.
Daily renew in us the sense of joy
and fill our whole life with your light and grace;
and in all things
let us give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Almighty and everlasting God,
who called your servant Ninian to preach the gospel
to the people of northern Britain:
raise up in this and every land
heralds and evangelists of your kingdom,
that your Church may make know the immeasurable riches
of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ,
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 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 prayer use phrases from a
prayer in _Opening Prayers: Collects in Contemporary Language_.
Canterbury Press, Norwich, 1999.

The first collect is by Robert Louis Stevenson.

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.

Ninian is also called Nynia, Ninias, Rigna, Trignan, Ninnidh, Ringan, Ninus, or Dinan. He
was a Celt, born in southern Scotland in about 360, and is regarded as the first major
preacher of the Gospel to the people living in Britain north of the Wall--that is, living
outside the territory that had been under Roman rule. He is said to have studied in Rome
(note that he is contemporary with Ambrose, Jerome, and Augustine), but was chiefly
influenced by his friendship with Martin of Tours, with whom he spent some considerable
time when he was returning from Italy to Britain. It is probable that he named his
headquarters in Galloway after Martin's foundation in Gall. Martin had a monastery known
as LOCO TEIAC, a Latinized form of the Celtic LEUG TIGIAC. LEUG means "white,
shining," and TIG means "house" (a shanty, or SHAN-TIG, is an old house). The suffix
-AC means "little." Thus, Martin's monastery had a name which in Celtic means "little
white house." At about the time of Martin's death in 397, Ninian built a church at
Galloway, in southwest Scotland. It was built of stone and plastered white, an unusual
construction in a land where almost all buildings were wood. He called it Candida Casa
(White House) or Whithorn, presumably after Martin's foundation at Tours.
Archaeologists have excavated and partially restored his church in this century. From his
base at Galloway, Ninian preached throughout southern Scotland, south of the Grampian
Mountains, and conducted preaching missions among the Picts of Scotland, as far north as
the Moray Firth, He also preached in the Solway Plains and the Lake District of England.
Like Patrick (a generation later) and Columba (a century and a half later), he was a
principal agent in preserving the tradition of the old Romano-British Church and forming
the character of Celtic Christianity. Some historians think that the number and extent of
his conversions has been exaggerated, but throughout southern Scotland there are many
and widespread churches that bear his name, and have traditionally been assumed to be
congregations originally founded by him.
Our information about him comes chiefly from Bede's History (Book 3, chapter 4), an
anonymous eighth century account, and a 12th century account by Aelred. Aelred is
writing 700 years after the event, and is for that reason rejected as untrustworthy by many
critics. However, he claims to rely on an earlier account, "written by a barbarian." This
suggests that he may have had an authentic record by a member of Ninian's community in
Galloway. [James Kiefer]

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