OREMUS: 6 February 2008

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Tue Feb 5 22:54:31 GMT 2008


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OREMUS for Wednesday, February 6, 2008
Ash Wednesday

O God, make speed to save us;
O Lord, make haste to help us.

Righteous God,
in humility and repentance
we bring our failures in caring, helping, and loving,
we bring the pain we have caused others,
we bring the injustice in society of which we are a part,
to the transforming power of your grace.
Grant us the courage to accept the healing you offer
and to turn again toward the sunrise of your reign,
that we may walk with you in the promise of the peace
you have willed for all the children of the earth,
and have made known to us in Christ Jesus. Amen.

Psalm 6

Lord, do not rebuke me in your anger;*
 do not punish me in your wrath.
Have pity on me, Lord, for I am weak;*
 heal me, Lord, for my bones are racked.
My spirit shakes with terror;*
 how long, O Lord, how long?
Turn, O Lord, and deliver me;*
 save me for your mercy's sake.
For in death no one remembers you;*
 and who will give you thanks in the grave?
I grow weary because of my groaning;*
 every night I drench my bed
   and flood my couch with tears.
My eyes are wasted with grief*
 and worn away because of all my enemies.
Depart from me, all evildoers,*
 for the Lord has heard the sound of my weeping.
The Lord has heard my supplication;*
 the Lord accepts my prayer.
All my enemies shall be confounded and quake with fear;*
 they shall turn back and suddenly be put to shame.

Psalm 32

Happy are they whose transgressions are forgiven,*
 and whose sin is put away!
Happy are they to whom the Lord imputes no guilt,*
 and in whose spirit there is no guile!
While I held my tongue, my bones withered away,*
 because of my groaning all day long.
For your hand was heavy upon me day and night;*
 my moisture was dried up as in the heat of summer.
Then I acknowledged my sin to you,*
 and did not conceal my guilt.
I said, 'I will confess my transgressions to the Lord';*
 then you forgave me the guilt of my sin.
Therefore all the faithful will make their prayers to you
   in time of trouble;*
 when the great waters overflow, they shall not reach them.
You are my hiding-place;
   you preserve me from trouble;*
 you surround me with shouts of deliverance.
'I will instruct you and teach you
   in the way that you should go;*
 I will guide you with my eye.
'Do not be like horse or mule,
   which have no understanding;*
 who must be fitted with bit and bridle,
   or else they will not stay near you.'
Great are the tribulations of the wicked;*
 but mercy embraces those who trust in the Lord.
Be glad, you righteous, and rejoice in the Lord;*
 shout for joy, all who are true of heart.

Psalm 38

O Lord, do not rebuke me in your anger;*
 do not punish me in your wrath.
For your arrows have already pierced me,*
 and your hand presses hard upon me.
There is no health in my flesh,
   because of your indignation;*
 there is no soundness in my body, because of my sin.
For my iniquities overwhelm me;*
 like a heavy burden they are too much for me to bear.
My wounds stink and fester*
 by reason of my foolishness.
I am utterly bowed down and prostrate;*
 I go about in mourning all the day long.
My loins are filled with searing pain;*
 there is no health in my body.
I am utterly numb and crushed;*
 I wail, because of the groaning of my heart.
O Lord, you know all my desires,*
 and my sighing is not hidden from you.
My heart is pounding, my strength has failed me,*
 and the brightness of my eyes is gone from me.
My friends and companions draw back from my affliction;*
 my neighbours stand afar off.
Those who seek after my life lay snares for me;*
 those who strive to hurt me speak of my ruin
   and plot treachery all the day long.
But I am like the deaf who do not hear,*
 like those who are mute and do not open their mouth.
I have become like one who does not hear*
 and from whose mouth comes no defence.
For in you, O Lord, have I fixed my hope;*
 you will answer me, O Lord my God.
For I said, 'Do not let them rejoice at my expense,*
 those who gloat over me when my foot slips.'
Truly, I am on the verge of falling,*
 and my pain is always with me.
I will confess my iniquity*
 and be sorry for my sin.
Those who are my enemies without cause are mighty,*
 and many in number are those who wrongfully hate me.
Those who repay evil for good slander me,*
 because I follow the course that is right.
O Lord, do not forsake me;*
 be not far from me, O my God.
Make haste to help me,*
 O Lord of my salvation.

FIRST READING [Isaiah 1:10-18]:

Hear the word of the Lord,
   you rulers of Sodom!
Listen to the teaching of our God,
   you people of Gomorrah!
What to me is the multitude of your sacrifices?
   says the Lord;
I have had enough of burnt-offerings of rams
   and the fat of fed beasts;
I do not delight in the blood of bulls,
   or of lambs, or of goats.

When you come to appear before me,
   who asked this from your hand?
   Trample my courts no more;
bringing offerings is futile;
   incense is an abomination to me.
New moon and sabbath and calling of convocation 
   I cannot endure solemn assemblies with iniquity.
Your new moons and your appointed festivals
   my soul hates;
they have become a burden to me,
   I am weary of bearing them.
When you stretch out your hands,
   I will hide my eyes from you;
even though you make many prayers,
   I will not listen;
   your hands are full of blood.
Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean;
   remove the evil of your doings
   from before my eyes;
cease to do evil,
   learn to do good;
seek justice,
   rescue the oppressed,
defend the orphan,
   plead for the widow.

Come now, let us argue it out,
   says the Lord:
though your sins are like scarlet,
   they shall be like snow;
though they are red like crimson,
   they shall become like wool. 

HYMN 
Words: Carl P. Daw, Jr. (c)
Tune: Southwell (Damon)
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Restore in us, O God,
the splendor of your love;
renew your image in our hearts,
and all our sins remove.

O Spirit, wake in us
the wonder of your power;
from fruitless fear unfurl our lives
like springtime bud and flower.

Bring us, O Christ, to share
the fullness of your joy;
baptize us in the risen life
that death cannot destroy.

Three-personed God, fulfill
the promise of your grace,
that we, when our searching ends,
may see you face to face.

SECOND READING [Luke 15:11-32]:

Jesus said, 'There was a man who had two sons. The younger of them said to his father, "Father,
give me the share of the property that will belong to me." So he divided his property between
them. A few days later the younger son gathered all he had and travelled to a distant country, and
there he squandered his property in dissolute living. When he had spent everything, a severe
famine took place throughout that country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired
himself out to one of the citizens of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed the pigs. He
would gladly have filled himself with the pods that the pigs were eating; and no one gave him
anything. But when he came to himself he said, "How many of my father's hired hands have bread
enough and to spare, but here I am dying of hunger! I will get up and go to my father, and I will
say to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be
called your son; treat me like one of your hired hands.' " So he set off and went to his father. But
while he was still far off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion; he ran and put his
arms around him and kissed him. Then the son said to him, "Father, I have sinned against heaven
and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son." But the father said to his slaves,
"Quickly, bring out a robe the best one and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and sandals
on his feet. And get the fatted calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate; for this son of mine was
dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found!" And they began to celebrate.
'Now his elder son was in the field; and when he came and approached the house, he heard music
and dancing. He called one of the slaves and asked what was going on. He replied, "Your brother
has come, and your father has killed the fatted calf, because he has got him back safe and sound."
Then he became angry and refused to go in. His father came out and began to plead with him. But
he answered his father, "Listen! For all these years I have been working like a slave for you, and I
have never disobeyed your command; yet you have never given me even a young goat so that I
might celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours came back, who has devoured your
property with prostitutes, you killed the fatted calf for him!" Then the father said to him, "Son,
you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. But we had to celebrate and rejoice, because
this brother of yours was dead and has come to life; he was lost and has been found." ' 

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

Prayer:
Let us bow before God, our Creator and Redeemer,
and confess our sin.

* Silence may be kept for reflection and self-examination.

Almighty God, you alone are good and holy.
Purify our lives and make us brave disciples.
We do not ask you to keep us safe,
but to keep us loyal,
so we may serve Jesus Christ,
who, tempted in every way as we are,
was faithful to you. Amen.

>From lack of reverence for truth and beauty;
from a calculating or sentimental mind;
from going along with mean and ugly things:
O God, deliver us.

>From cowardice that dares not face truth;
laziness content with half-truth;
or arrogance that thinks we know it all:
O God, deliver us.

>From artificial life and worship;
from all that is hollow or insincere: 
O God, deliver us.

>From trite ideals and cheap pleasures;
from mistaking hard vulgarity for humor:
O God, deliver us.

>From being dull, pompous, or rude;
from putting down our neighbors:
O God, deliver us.

>From cynicism about others;
from intolerance or cruel indifference:
O God, deliver us.

>From being satisfied with things as they are,
in the church or in the world;
from failing to share you indignation about injustice:
O God, deliver us.

>From selfishness, self-indulgence, or self-pity: 
O God, deliver us.

>From token concern for the poor,
for lonely or loveless people;
from confusing faith with good feeling,
or love with wanting to be loved:
O God, deliver us.

For everything in us that may hide your light: 
O God, deliver us.

Almighty and everlasting God, 
you hate nothing you have made 
and forgive the sins of all who are penitent:
Create and make in us new and contrite hearts, 
that we, worthily lamenting our sins 
and acknowledging our wretchedness, 
may obtain of you, 
the God of all mercy,
perfect remission and forgiveness; 
through Jesus Christ our Lord, 
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Trusting in the compassion of God,
let us pray as our Savior taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

May the God of peace
make us holy in every way
and keep our whole being--
spirit, soul, and body--
free from every fault
at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

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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 invitation to the Lord's Prayer 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 is reprinted from _Revised Common Lectionary
Prayers_, copyright (c) 2002 Consultation on Common Texts

Hymn (c) 1989 Hope Publishing Co., Carol Stream, IL  60188.
All rights reserved.  Used by permission.
For permission to reproduce this hymn, contact: 
Hope Publishing Company, 
www.hopepublishing.com

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

The collect is from The Book of Common Prayer According to the Use
of The Episcopal Church_.

The closing sentence is 1 Thessalonians 5:23, adapted.



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