OREMUS: 21 December 2008

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Sat Dec 20 17:00:00 GMT 2008


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OREMUS for Sunday, December 21, 2008
The Fourth Sunday of Advent
O Oriens

Lord, open our lips,
and our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Blessed are you, O radiant Dawn,
splendor of eternal light.
Like the sun, the world's Savior, the Sun of justice, will rise
and the Lord shall down to the Virgin's womb
like gentle rain upon the grass.
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 139

Lord, you have searched me out and known me;*
 you know my sitting down and my rising up;
   you discern my thoughts from afar.
You trace my journeys and my resting-places*
 and are acquainted with all my ways.
Indeed, there is not a word on my lips,*
 but you, O Lord, know it altogether.
You press upon me behind and before*
 and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;*
 it is so high that I cannot attain to it.
Where can I go then from your Spirit?*
 where can I flee from your presence?
If I climb up to heaven, you are there;*
 if I make the grave my bed, you are there also.
If I take the wings of the morning*
 and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
Even there your hand will lead me*
 and your right hand hold me fast.
If I say, 'Surely the darkness will cover me,*
 and the light around me turn to night',
Darkness is not dark to you;
   the night is as bright as the day;*
 darkness and light to you are both alike.
For you yourself created my inmost parts;*
 you knit me together in my mother's womb.
I will thank you because I am marvellously made;*
 your works are wonderful and I know it well.
My body was not hidden from you,*
 while I was being made in secret
   and woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes beheld my limbs, yet unfinished in the womb;
   all of them were written in your book;*
 they were fashioned day by day,
   when as yet there was none of them.
How deep I find your thoughts, O God!*
 how great is the sum of them!
If I were to count them,
   they would be more in number than the sand;*
 to count them all,
   my life span would need to be like yours.
Search me out, O God, and know my heart;*
 try me and know my restless thoughts.
Look well whether there be any wickedness in me*
 and lead me in the way that is everlasting.

A Song of the New Jerusalem (Isaiah 60.1-3,11a,18,19,14b

Arise, shine out, for your light has come,  
the glory of the Lord is rising upon you.

Though night still covers the earth,
and darkness the peoples;

Above you the Holy One arises,
and above you God's glory appears.

The nations will come to your light,
and kings to your dawning brightness.

Your gates will lie open continually,
shut neither by day nor by night.

The sound of violence shall be heard no longer in your land,
or ruin and devastation within your borders.

You will call your walls, Salvation,
and your gates, Praise.

No more will the sun give you daylight,
nor moonlight shine upon you;

But the Lord will be your everlasting light,
your God will be your splendour.

For you shall be called the city of God,
the dwelling of the Holy One of Israel.

Psalm 117

Alleluia!
Praise the Lord, all you nations;*
 laud him, all you peoples.
For his loving-kindness towards us is great,*
 and the faithfulness of the Lord endures for ever.
   Alleluia!

FIRST READING [Zechariah 8:1-8, 20-23]:

The word of the Lord of hosts came to me, saying: Thus says the Lord of hosts: I am
jealous for Zion with great jealousy, and I am jealous for her with great wrath. Thus
says the Lord: I will return to Zion, and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem; Jerusalem
shall be called the faithful city, and the mountain of the Lord of hosts shall be called
the holy mountain. Thus says the Lord of hosts: Old men and old women shall again
sit in the streets of Jerusalem, each with staff in hand because of their great age. And
the streets of the city shall be full of boys and girls playing in its streets. Thus says the
Lord of hosts: Even though it seems impossible to the remnant of this people in these
days, should it also seem impossible to me, says the Lord of hosts? Thus says the Lord
of hosts: I will save my people from the east country and from the west country; and I
will bring them to live in Jerusalem. They shall be my people and I will be their God, in
faithfulness and in righteousness.

Thus says the Lord of hosts: Peoples shall yet come, the inhabitants of many cities; the
inhabitants of one city shall go to another, saying, 'Come, let us go to entreat the
favour of the Lord, and to seek the Lord of hosts; I myself am going.' Many peoples
and strong nations shall come to seek the Lord of hosts in Jerusalem, and to entreat
the favour of the Lord. Thus says the Lord of hosts: In those days ten men from
nations of every language shall take hold of a Jew, grasping his garment and saying,
'Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you.'

HYMN 
Words: Harriet Auber (1773-1862)
Tune: Maos Zur

Praise our great and gracious Lord,
call upon his holy name;
raising hymns in glad accord,
all his mighty acts proclaim:
how he leads his chosen
unto Canaan's promised land,
how the word we have heard
firm and changeless still shall stand.

God has given the cloud by day,
given the moving fire by night;
guides his Israel on their way
from the darkness into light.
God it is who grants us
sure retreat and refuge nigh;
light of dawn leads us on:
'tis the Dayspring from on high.

SECOND READING [Luke 1:39-45]:

In those days Mary set out and went with haste to a Judean town in the hill country,
where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard
Mary's greeting, the child leapt in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy
Spirit and exclaimed with a loud cry, 'Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the
fruit of your womb. And why has this happened to me, that the mother of my Lord
comes to me? For as soon as I heard the sound of your greeting, the child in my womb
leapt for joy. And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfilment of what
was spoken to her by the Lord.' 

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

Prayer:
Gracious God, 
out of chaos and darkness
you brought forth the splendor of the universe
and the world in all its beauty:
Light of the world, come!

You sent your Son
at the proper time
to be the Light of the world,
to lead us out of darkness
into the brightness of your truth.
Light of the world, come!

Beyond all the noise and excitement
surrounding this season,
we look for the coming of the new heaven and new earth.
Light of the world, come!

Lord Jesus,
you are coming again in great glory;
send your Spirit upon us 
to prepare for this great event.
Light of the world, come!

Lord God,
we await the dawning of the new day
when the earth shall be filled with your glory.
Light of the world, come!

God of all wisdom,
our hearts yearn for the warmth of your love,
and our minds search for the light of your Word:
Increase our longing for Christ our Savior,
and strengthen us to grow in love,
that at the dawn of his coming
we may rejoice in his presence
and welcome the light of his truth;
this we ask in the Name of Jesus Christ. Amen. 

Awaiting his coming in glory,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

Music may be found <a
href="http://www.oremus.org/hymnal/mid/veniemma.mid">here

O come, thou Dayspring from on high,
and cheer us by thy drawing nigh;
disperse the gloomy clouds of night,
and death's dark shadow put to flight.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
shall come to thee, O Israel!

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The psalms 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.



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