OREMUS: 23 April 2008

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Tue Apr 22 18:05:50 GMT 2008


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OREMUS for Wednesday, April 23, 2008
George, Martyr, Patron of England, c.304

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. 

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

Psalm 135

Alleluia!  Praise the name of the Lord;*
 give praise, you servants of the Lord,
You who stand in the house of the Lord,*
 in the courts of the house of our God.
Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good;*
 sing praises to his name, for it is lovely.
For the Lord has chosen Jacob for himself*
 and Israel for his own possession.
For I know that the Lord is great,*
 and that our Lord is above all gods.
The Lord does whatever pleases him,
   in heaven and on earth,*
 in the seas and all the deeps.
He brings up rain clouds from the ends of the earth;*
 he sends out lightning with the rain,
   and brings the winds out of his storehouse.
It was he who struck down the first-born of Egypt,*
 the first-born both of human and beast.
He sent signs and wonders
   into the midst of you, O Egypt,*
 against Pharaoh and all his servants.
He overthrew many nations*
 and put mighty kings to death:
Sihon, king of the Amorites,
   and Og, the king of Bashan,*
 and all the kingdoms of Canaan.
He gave their land to be an inheritance,*
 an inheritance for Israel his people.
O Lord, your name is everlasting;*
 your renown, O Lord, endures from age to age.
For the Lord gives his people justice*
 and shows compassion to his servants.
The idols of the heathen are silver and gold,*
 the work of human hands.
They have mouths, but they cannot speak;*
 eyes have they, but they cannot see.
They have ears, but they cannot hear;*
 neither is there any breath in their mouth.
Those who make them are like them,*
 and so are all who put their trust in them.
Bless the Lord, O house of Israel;*
 O house of Aaron, bless the Lord.
Bless the Lord, O house of Levi;*
 you who fear the Lord, bless the Lord.
Blessed be the Lord out of Zion,*
 who dwells in Jerusalem. Alleluia!

A Song of the New Creation (Isaiah 43.15,16,18,19,20c,21)

'I am the Lord, your Holy One,  
the Creator of Israel, your King.' 
Thus says the Lord, who makes a way in the sea,  
a path in the mighty waters, 
'Remember not the former things,  
nor consider the things of old. 
'Behold, I am doing a new thing;  
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? 
'I will make a way in the wilderness 
and rivers in the desert,  
to give drink to my chosen people, 
'The people whom I formed for myself,  
that they might declare my praise.' 

Psalm 147:13-end

Alleluia!
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.
   Alleluia!

FIRST READING [Isaiah 52:1-2, 7-12]:

Awake, awake,
   put on your strength, O Zion!
Put on your beautiful garments,
   O Jerusalem, the holy city;
for the uncircumcised and the unclean
   shall enter you no more.
Shake yourself from the dust, rise up,
   O captive Jerusalem;
loose the bonds from your neck,
   O captive daughter Zion!

How beautiful upon the mountains
   are the feet of the messenger who announces peace,
who brings good news,
   who announces salvation,
   who says to Zion, 'Your God reigns.'
Listen! Your sentinels lift up their voices,
   together they sing for joy;
for in plain sight they see
   the return of the Lord to Zion.
Break forth together into singing,
   you ruins of Jerusalem;
for the Lord has comforted his people,
   he has redeemed Jerusalem.
The Lord has bared his holy arm
   before the eyes of all the nations;
and all the ends of the earth shall see
   the salvation of our God.

Depart, depart, go out from there!
   Touch no unclean thing;
go out from the midst of it, purify yourselves,
   you who carry the vessels of the Lord.
For you shall not go out in haste,
   and you shall not go in flight;
for the Lord will go before you,
   and the God of Israel will be your rearguard. 

HYMN 
Words: Edward Denny, 1842
Tune: Dunfermline

http://www.oremus.org/hymnal/l/l144.html
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Light of the lonely pilgrim's heart,
Star of the coming day,
arise, and with thy morning beams
chase all our griefs away.

Come, blessŠd Lord, bid every shore
and answering island sing
the praises of thy royal Name,
and own thee as their King.

Bid the whole earth, responsive now
to the bright world above,
break forth in rapturous strains of joy
in memory of thy love.

Lord, Lord, thy fair creation groans,
the air, the earth, the sea,
in unison with all our hearts,
and calls aloud for thee.

Come, then, with all thy quickening power
with one awakening smile,
and bid the serpent's trail no more
thy beauteous realms defile.

Thine was the cross, with all its fruits,
of grace and peace divine;
be thine the crown of glory now,
the palm of victory thine.

SECOND READING [Ephesians 5:1-14]:

Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love, as Christ loved us
and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
But fornication and impurity of any kind, or greed, must not even be mentioned among
you, as is proper among saints. Entirely out of place is obscene, silly, and vulgar talk;
but instead, let there be thanksgiving. Be sure of this, that no fornicator or impure
person, or one who is greedy (that is, an idolater), has any inheritance in the kingdom
of Christ and of God.
Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of
God comes on those who are disobedient. Therefore do not be associated with them.
For once you were darkness, but now in the Lord you are light. Live as children of
light  for the fruit of the light is found in all that is good and right and true. Try to
find out what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness,
but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to mention what such people do
secretly; but everything exposed by the light becomes visible, for everything that
becomes visible is light. Therefore it says,
'Sleeper, awake!
   Rise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you.'

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

Prayer:
To Christ, the Lamb who was slain,
and who now lives in the glory of the Father,
let us raise the voice of praise, saying: 
Lord, have mercy.

Lord Jesus, you are the Amen, the faithful witness,
the first of God's creation:
Lord, have mercy

You are Alpha and Omega,
the one who is, and was, and who is to come:
Lord, have mercy

You search into the thoughts and affections
of all people:
Lord, have mercy

You reprove and chasten
those whom you love:
Lord, have mercy

You open the eyes of the blind
and set the prisoners free:
Lord, have mercy

In your paschal victory,
you have proclaimed the coming of the kingdom: 
Lord, have mercy

Remember us, Lord, as you have in ages past.
You made the world and our human race;
you shaped its history,
correcting your people with judgement yet with love.
Your mercy endures for ever
and we give you thanks, for you alone are good.
Blessed be God for ever! Amen.

God our Redeemer,
whose Church was strengthened
by the blood of your martyr George:
so bind us, in life and death, to Christ's sacrifice
that our lives, broken and offered with his,
may carry his death and proclaim his resurrection in the world;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. 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.

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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 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 closing sentence is from a prayer in _Opening Prayers: Collects in
Contemporary Language_. Canterbury Press, Norwich, 1999.

George is a soldier and martyr who suffered around 303 at Lydda (Diospolis)
in Palestine. The earliest surviving record of him is a church inscription in
Syria, dated about 346. Commemorations of him are numerous, early, and
widespread. However, no details of his life are known. In 495 his name appears
on a list of "good men, justly remembered, whose good deeds are known only
to God." The best-known story about him is that he rescued a beautiful
princess in Libya by killing a dragon. It should be noted that this story is
unknown before the appearance in 1265 of a romance called the Golden
Legend (Legendum Aureum), translated into English in 1483.
When the soldiers of the First Crusade were besieging Antioch in 1098, they
had a vision of George and Demetrius (a deacon of Sirmium in Serbia,
martyred under Maximian, and referred to as a "soldier of Christ," from which
he was often understood to be a literal soldier) encouraging them to maintain
the siege, which ultimately proved successful. Richard I ("the Lion-Heart") of
England, who fought in the Holy Land in 1191-1192, placed himself and his
army under George's protection, and with the return home of the Crusaders,
the popularity of George in England increased greatly. Edward III founded the
Order of the Garter in 1348 under his patronage, his banner (a red cross on a
white field) began to be used as the English national flag in 1284, and in 1415
Henry V spoke of him to rally the troops before the battle of Agincourt ("Once
more unto the breach, dear friends, once more, or close the wall up with our
English dead!"), and in the years following George was regarded as the special
patron of England, of soldiers, and of the Boy Scouts, as well as of Venice,
Genoa, Portugal, and Catalonia. He is also remembered with enthusiasm in
many parts of the East Orthodox Church. He is a principal character in
Edmund Spenser's allegorical poem The Faerie Queene, written in the late
1500's. [James Kiefer]



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