OREMUS: 18 July 2008

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Thu Jul 17 17:00:02 GMT 2008

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OREMUS for Friday, July 18, 2008

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

Blessed are you, Lord of all creation;
in your love you made us for yourself.
When we turned away you did not reject us,
but came to meet us in your Son.
You embraced us as your children
and welcomed us to sit and eat with you.
In Christ you shared our life
that we might live in him and he in us.
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 138

I will give thanks to you, O Lord, with my whole heart;*
 before the gods I will sing your praise.
I will bow down towards your holy temple
   and praise your name,*
 because of your love and faithfulness;
For you have glorified your name*
 and your word above all things.
When I called, you answered me;*
 you increased my strength within me.
All the kings of the earth will praise you, O Lord,*
 when they have heard the words of your mouth.
They will sing of the ways of the Lord,*
 that great is the glory of the Lord.
Though the Lord be high, he cares for the lowly;*
 he perceives the haughty from afar.
Though I walk in the midst of trouble,
   you keep me safe;*
 you stretch forth your hand
   against the fury of my enemies;
   your right hand shall save me.
The Lord will make good his purpose for me;*
 O Lord, your love endures for ever;
   do not abandon the works of your hands.

A Song of Christ the Servant 1 Peter 2.21b-25 

Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example,  
that you should follow in his steps. 
He committed no sin, no guile was found on his lips,  
when he was reviled, he did not revile in turn. 
When he suffered, he did not threaten,  
but he trusted himself to God who judges justly. 
Christ himself bore our sins in his body on the tree,  
that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. 
By his wounds, you have been healed, 
for you were straying like sheep,  
but have now returned 
to the shepherd and guardian of your souls.

Psalm 149

   Sing to the Lord a new song;*
 sing his praise in the congregation of the faithful.
Let Israel rejoice in his maker;*
 let the children of Zion be joyful in their king.
Let them praise his name in the dance;*
 let them sing praise to him with timbrel and harp.
For the Lord takes pleasure in his people*
 and adorns the poor with victory.
Let the faithful rejoice in triumph;*
 let them be joyful on their beds.
Let the praises of God be in their throat*
 and a two-edged sword in their hand;
To wreak vengeance on the nations*
 and punishment on the peoples;
To bind their kings in chains*
 and their nobles with links of iron;
To inflict on them the judgement decreed;*
 this is glory for all his faithful people.

FIRST READING [Esther 3:1-12]:

After these things King Ahasuerus promoted Haman son of Hammedatha the Agagite,
and advanced him and set his seat above all the officials who were with him. And all
the king's servants who were at the king's gate bowed down and did obeisance to
Haman; for the king had so commanded concerning him. But Mordecai did not bow
down or do obeisance. Then the king's servants who were at the king's gate said to
Mordecai, 'Why do you disobey the king's command?' When they spoke to him day
after day and he would not listen to them, they told Haman, in order to see whether
Mordecai's words would avail; for he had told them that he was a Jew. When Haman
saw that Mordecai did not bow down or do obeisance to him, Haman was infuriated.
But he thought it beneath him to lay hands on Mordecai alone. So, having been told
who Mordecai's people were, Haman plotted to destroy all the Jews, the people of
Mordecai, throughout the whole kingdom of Ahasuerus.

In the first month, which is the month of Nisan, in the twelfth year of King Ahasuerus,
they cast Pur which means 'the lot' before Haman for the day and for the month,
and the lot fell on the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar.
Then Haman said to King Ahasuerus, 'There is a certain people scattered and
separated among the peoples in all the provinces of your kingdom; their laws are
different from those of every other people, and they do not keep the king's laws, so
that it is not appropriate for the king to tolerate them. If it pleases the king, let a
decree be issued for their destruction, and I will pay ten thousand talents of silver into
the hands of those who have charge of the king's business, so that they may put it into
the king's treasuries.' So the king took his signet ring from his hand and gave it to
Haman son of Hammedatha the Agagite, the enemy of the Jews. The king said to
Haman, 'The money is given to you, and the people as well, to do with them as it
seems good to you.'

Then the king's secretaries were summoned on the thirteenth day of the first month,
and an edict, according to all that Haman commanded, was written to the king's
satraps and to the governors over all the provinces and to the officials of all the
peoples, to every province in its own script and every people in its own language; it
was written in the name of King Ahasuerus and sealed with the king's ring. 

Words: John Masefield, 1911

Music: Lledrod

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O Christ, who holds the open gate,
O Christ who drives the furrow straight,
O Christ, the plow, O Christ, the laughter
of holy white birds flying after.

Lo, all my heart's field red and torn,
and thou wilt bring the young green corn,
the young green corn divinely springing,
the young green corn for ever singing.

And when the field is fresh and fair
thy blessŠd feet shall glitter there,
and we will walk the weeded field,
and tell the golden harvest's yield.

The corn that makes the holy bread
by which the soul of man is fed,
the holy bread, the food unpriced,
thy everlasting mercy, O Christ.

SECOND READING [Acts 28:1-15]:

After we had reached safety, we then learned that the island was called Malta. The
natives showed us unusual kindness. Since it had begun to rain and was cold, they
kindled a fire and welcomed all of us round it. Paul had gathered a bundle of
brushwood and was putting it on the fire, when a viper, driven out by the heat,
fastened itself on his hand. When the natives saw the creature hanging from his hand,
they said to one another, 'This man must be a murderer; though he has escaped from
the sea, justice has not allowed him to live.' He, however, shook off the creature into
the fire and suffered no harm. They were expecting him to swell up or drop dead, but
after they had waited a long time and saw that nothing unusual had happened to him,
they changed their minds and began to say that he was a god.

Now in the neighbourhood of that place were lands belonging to the leading man of
the island, named Publius, who received us and entertained us hospitably for three
days. It so happened that the father of Publius lay sick in bed with fever and dysentery.
Paul visited him and cured him by praying and putting his hands on him. After this
happened, the rest of the people on the island who had diseases also came and were
cured. They bestowed many honours on us, and when we were about to sail, they put
on board all the provisions we needed.

Three months later we set sail on a ship that had wintered at the island, an Alexandrian
ship with the Twin Brothers as its figurehead. We put in at Syracuse and stayed there
for three days; then we weighed anchor and came to Rhegium. After one day there a
south wind sprang up, and on the second day we came to Puteoli. There we found
believers and were invited to stay with them for seven days. And so we came to Rome.
The believers from there, when they heard of us, came as far as the Forum of Appius
and Three Taverns to meet us. On seeing them, Paul thanked God and took courage. 

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

Beginning and End of all things,
we bless you for the present that is ever yielding
to your new heaven and new earth.

For all the means of grace,
we praise you, O Lord.

For every prompting of your Spirit
we praise you, O Lord.

We yield our cares to your unceasing mercy:
Attend the sick and the suffering,
In your mercy, Lord, hear us.

Touch the dying:
In your mercy, Lord, hear us.

Claim the newborn:
In your mercy, Lord, hear us.

Shelter the homeless:
In your mercy, Lord, hear us.

Sing in the fearful:
In your mercy, Lord, hear us.

Chasten the arrogant and powerful:
In your mercy, Lord, hear us.

Lift up the lowly:
In your mercy, Lord, hear us.

Center the Church
In your mercy, Lord, hear us.

Grant peace to Jerusalem and every people:
In your mercy, Lord, hear us.

Shape our lives by the mystery 
of Christ crucified, risen and interceding for us:
In your mercy, Lord, hear us.

Lord our God, supreme over all things,
we ask you to look upon the humble and lowly,
to put new strength into our souls
and to complete your purpose for us,
in Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.
Gathering our prayers and praises into one,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us.

- The Lord's Prayer

You have opened to us the Scriptures, O Christ.
Abide with us, we pray,
that, blessed by your royal presence,
we may walk with you
all the days of our life,
and at its end behold you
in the glory of the eternal Trinity,
one God for ever and ever. Amen.

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.

The opening prayer and closing sentence are adapted 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.

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