OREMUS: 21 April 2008

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Sun Apr 20 17:00:01 GMT 2008

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OREMUS for Monday, April 21, 2008
Anselm, Abbot of Le Bec, Archbishop of Canterbury, Teacher of the Faith, 1109

Alleluia! Christ is risen!
The Lord is risen indeed! Alleluia!

Blessed are you, almighty God,
for you have raised from the dead
your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.
You are the ineffable sea of love,
the fountain of blessings,
and you water us with plenteous streams
from the riches of your grace
and the most sweet springs of your kindness.
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 111

   I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart,*
 in the assembly of the upright, in the congregation.
Great are the deeds of the Lord!*
 they are studied by all who delight in them.
His work is full of majesty and splendour,*
 and his righteousness endures for ever.
He makes his marvellous works to be remembered;*
 the Lord is gracious and full of compassion.
He gives food to those who fear him;*
 he is ever mindful of his covenant.
He has shown his people the power of his works*
 in giving them the lands of the nations.
The works of his hands are faithfulness and justice;*
 all his commandments are sure.
They stand fast for ever and ever,*
 because they are done in truth and equity.
He sent redemption to his people;
   he commanded his covenant for ever;*
 holy and awesome is his name.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;*
 those who act accordingly have a good understanding;
   his praise endures for ever.

Psalm 113

   Give praise, you servants of the Lord;*
 praise the name of the Lord.
Let the name of the Lord be blessed,*
 from this time forth for evermore.
>From the rising of the sun to its going down*
 let the name of the Lord be praised.
The Lord is high above all nations,*
 and his glory above the heavens.
Who is like the Lord our God,
   who sits enthroned on high,*
 but stoops to behold the heavens and the earth?
He takes up the weak out of the dust*
 and lifts up the poor from the ashes.
He sets them with the princes,*
 with the princes of his people.
He makes the woman of a childless house*
 to be a joyful mother of children.

A Song of the Heavenly City (Revelation 21.22-26; 22.1,2b,d,3b,4)

I saw no temple in the city, 
for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty 
and the Lamb. 
And the city has no need of sun or moon 
to shine upon it, . 
for the glory of God is its light, 
and its lamp is the Lamb. 
By its light the nations shall walk, . 
and the rulers of the earth 
shall bring their glory into it. 
Its gates shall never be shut by day, 
nor shall there be any night; . 
they shall bring into it 
the glory and honour of the nations. 
I saw the river of the water of life, 
bright as crystal, . 
flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb. 
And either side of the river stood the tree of life, 
yielding its fruit each month, . 
and the leaves of the tree 
were for the healing of the nations. 
The throne of God and of the Lamb shall be there, 
and his servants shall worship him; . 
and they shall see his face 
and his name shall be on their foreheads.
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 [Isaiah 51:1-11]:

Listen to me, you that pursue righteousness,
   you that seek the Lord.
Look to the rock from which you were hewn,
   and to the quarry from which you were dug.
Look to Abraham your father
   and to Sarah who bore you;
for he was but one when I called him,
   but I blessed him and made him many.
For the Lord will comfort Zion;
   he will comfort all her waste places,
and will make her wilderness like Eden,
   her desert like the garden of the Lord;
joy and gladness will be found in her,
   thanksgiving and the voice of song.

Listen to me, my people,
   and give heed to me, my nation;
for a teaching will go out from me,
   and my justice for a light to the peoples.
I will bring near my deliverance swiftly,
   my salvation has gone out
   and my arms will rule the peoples;
the coastlands wait for me,
   and for my arm they hope.
Lift up your eyes to the heavens,
   and look at the earth beneath;
for the heavens will vanish like smoke,
   the earth will wear out like a garment,
   and those who live on it will die like gnats;
but my salvation will be for ever,
   and my deliverance will never be ended.

Listen to me, you who know righteousness,
   you people who have my teaching in your hearts;
do not fear the reproach of others,
   and do not be dismayed when they revile you.
For the moth will eat them up like a garment,
   and the worm will eat them like wool;
but my deliverance will be for ever,
   and my salvation to all generations.

Awake, awake, put on strength,
   O arm of the Lord!
Awake, as in days of old,
   the generations of long ago!
Was it not you who cut Rahab in pieces,
   who pierced the dragon?
Was it not you who dried up the sea,
   the waters of the great deep;
who made the depths of the sea a way
   for the redeemed to cross over?
So the ransomed of the Lord shall return,
   and come to Zion with singing;
everlasting joy shall be upon their heads;
   they shall obtain joy and gladness,
   and sorrow and sighing shall flee away. 

Words: Herzliebster Jesu, was hast du verbrochen? Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109) and
Johann Heerman (1585-1647) tr Francis E Cox (1812-1897)
Tune: Herzliebster Jesu

O wondrous love, all earthly love exceeding!
The Shepherd for his wandering sheep is bleeding;
I taste all peace and joy that life can offer,
Whilst thou must suffer.

Eternal King! in power and love excelling,
Fain would my heart and mouth thy praise be telling;
But how can man's weak powers at all come nigh thee,
How magnify thee?

Such wondrous love would baffle my endeavour
To find its equal, should I strive for ever:
How should my works, could I in all obey thee,
Ever repay thee!

Yet this shall please thee, if devoutly trying
To keep thy laws, mine own wrong will denying,
I watch my heart, lest sin again ensnare it
And from thee tear it.

But since I have not strength to flee temptation
And crucify each sinful inclination,
O let thy Spirit grace and strength provide me,
And gently guide me.

Then shall I see thy grace and duly prize it;
For thee renounce the world, for thee despise it;
Then of my life thy laws shall be the measure,
Thy will my pleasure.

SECOND READING [Ephesians 4:1-16]:

I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling to which
you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one
another in love, making every effort to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of
peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to the one hope of your
calling, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all
and through all and in all.
But each of us was given grace according to the measure of Christ's gift. Therefore it is
'When he ascended on high he made captivity itself a captive;
   he gave gifts to his people.'
(When it says, 'He ascended', what does it mean but that he had also descended into the
lower parts of the earth? He who descended is the same one who ascended far above all
the heavens, so that he might fill all things.) The gifts he gave were that some would be
apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, to equip the
saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until all of us come to
the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to maturity, to the
measure of the full stature of Christ. We must no longer be children, tossed to and fro
and blown about by every wind of doctrine, by people's trickery, by their craftiness in
deceitful scheming. But speaking the truth in love, we must grow up in every way into
him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and knitted
together by every ligament with which it is equipped, as each part is working properly,
promotes the body's growth in building itself up in love. 

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

O Sun of righteousness, 
you came forth from the dark night of death.  
May you rise also in our hearts,
and enable us to contemplate the glories 
of this sacred mystery, 
that we may praise and glorify you for ever.  
Lord of life, hear our prayer.

O Prince of Life, 
you take away the old leaven of malice and evil 
that we may always walk with you and serve you:
Abide continually with us, 
that in everything we do we may not forget the joy of your resurrection.
Lord of life, hear our prayer.

O Paschal Lamb, offered for all, 
you have taken away the sin of the world 
and by rising again you have restored to us everlasting life.
Send laborers into the harvest
to proclaim the life you offer to those who believe. 
We pray especially for 
Lord of life, hear our prayer.

O Conqueror of death and captain of our salvation, 
you overcame the darkness of death
and opened the kingdom of heaven for all believers.  
We thank you for those saints whom you have already led
through death to life in the glory of heaven.
Lord of life, hear our prayer.

Jesus, as a mother you gather your people to you:
  You are gentle with us as a mother with her children;
Often you weep over our sins and our pride:
  tenderly you draw us from hatred and judgement.
You comfort us in sorrow and bind up our wounds:
  in sickness you nurse us,
  and with pure milk you feed us.
Jesus, by your dying we are born to new life:
  by your anguish and labour we come forth in joy.
Despair turns to hope through your sweet goodness:
  through your gentleness we find comfort in fear.
Your warmth gives life to the dead:
  your touch makes sinners righteous.
Lord Jesus, in your mercy heal us:
  in your love and tenderness remake us.
In your compassion bring grace and forgiveness:
  for the beauty of heaven may your love prepare us. Amen.

O God, 
who raised up your servant Anselm 
to be a guide and teacher of faith
in its quest for understanding,
provide your Church in every age
with godliness and sound learning, 
that we may have power to speak 
the reason for the hope that is in us;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Rejoicing in the God's new creation,
let us pray as our Redeemer has taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

Increase our love for one another,
that both in name and in truth
we may be disciples of the risen Lord Jesus,
and so reflect by our lives
the glory that is yours. 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 is by Stephen T. Benner, 2001, and is
based on phrases from a Syrian Clementine liturgy, found in _Chalice
Worship_, (c) Chalice Press, 1997. Reproduced with permission.

The first collect is by St. Anselm.
The closing sentence is from a prayer in _Opening Prayers: Collects in
Contemporary Language_. Canterbury Press, Norwich, 1999.

Anselm is the most important Christian theologian in the West between Augustine and
Thomas Aquinas. His two great accomplishments are his Proslogium (in which he
undertakes to show that Reason requires that men should believe in God), and his Cur
Deus Homo? (in which he undertakes to show that Divine Love responding to human
rebelliousness requires that God should become a man).
He was born in Italy about 1033, and in 1060 he entered the monastery of Bec in
Normandy to study under Stephen Lanfranc, whom he succeeded in office, first as prior of
Bec, and later as Archbishop of Canterbury.
In 1078 he was elected abbot of Bec. The previous year, he completed a work called the
Monologium, in which he argues for the existence of God from the existence of degrees of
perfection (Aquinas's Fourth Way is a variation of this argument).
In 1087, while still at Bec, he produced his Proslogium, an outline of his "ontological
argument" for the existence of God. Taking as his text the opening of Psalm 14 ("The fool
hath said in his heart: There is no God."), Anselm undertakes to show that the fool is
contradicting himself -- that the concept of God is unique in that anyone who understands
what is meant by the question, "Does God exist?" will see that the answer must be "Yes."

King William II of England had no fondness for the Church, and at the death of Lanfranc
he kept the See of Canterbury vacant until he was gravely ill, whereon he promised to let
Anselm be made Archbishop. Anselm was made Archbishop (4 December 1093), the King
recovered, and the two began to dispute the extent of the King's right to intervene in
Church matters. Anselm went into exile in 1097 and remained in Italy for three years until
the King died in 1100.
During that time Anselm was instrumental in settling the doubts of the Greek bishops of
southern Italy about the doctrine of the Filioque.
He also devoted the time to writing a book known as Cur Deus Homo? (meaning "Why
Did God Become Man?"). In it he puts forward the "satisfaction theory" of the
Atonement. Man's offence of rebellion against God is one that demands a payment or
satisfaction. Fallen man is incapable of making adequate satisfaction, and so God took
human nature upon Him, in order that a perfect man might make perfect satisfaction and
so restore the human race. The success of his work may be gauged by the fact that many
Christians today not only accept his way of explaining the Atonement, but are simply
unaware that there is any other way.
After the death of King William II in 1100, Anselm returned to England at the invitation of
the new king Henry I, only to quarrel with Henry about the lawful extent of the king's
control over the selection of bishops and abbots (it must be remembered that these
officials had civil as well as religious authority). Anselm was again in exile from 1103 to
1106. In 1107 a compromise was reached, and Anselm returned home to Canterbury,
where he lived his last few years in peace, dying 21 April 1109. [James Kiefer, abridged]

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