OREMUS: 17 November 2008

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Sun Nov 16 17:00:00 GMT 2008

Visit our website at http://www.oremus.org

OREMUS for Monday, November 17, 2008
Hugh, Bishop of Lincoln, 1200

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

Blessed are you, O God of all gods.
that you gave your beloved Son
in covenant for us.
He lived as we must live;
he died as we must die.
You raised him from death's dark domain,
and set us free to live for ever.
He speaks for us before your throne,
and brings us grace to help in time of need.
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 105

Give thanks to the Lord and call upon his name;*
 make known his deeds among the peoples.
Sing to him, sing praises to him,*
 and speak of all his marvellous works.
Glory in his holy name;*
 let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice.
Search for the Lord and his strength;*
 continually seek his face.
Remember the marvels he has done,*
 his wonders and the judgements of his mouth,
O offspring of Abraham his servant,*
 O children of Jacob his chosen.
He is the Lord our God;*
 his judgements prevail in all the world.
He has always been mindful of his covenant,*
 the promise he made for a thousand generations:
The covenant he made with Abraham,*
 the oath that he swore to Isaac,
Which he established as a statute for Jacob,*
 an everlasting covenant for Israel,
Saying, 'To you will I give the land of Canaan*
 to be your allotted inheritance.'
When they were few in number,*
 of little account and sojourners in the land,
Wandering from nation to nation*
 and from one kingdom to another,
He let no one oppress them*
 and rebuked kings for their sake,
Saying, 'Do not touch my anointed*
 and do my prophets no harm.'
Then he called for a famine in the land*
 and destroyed the supply of bread.
He sent a man before them,*
 Joseph, who was sold as a slave.
They bruised his feet in fetters;*
 his neck they put in an iron collar.
Until his prediction came to pass,*
 the word of the Lord tested him.
The king sent and released him;*
 the ruler of the peoples set him free.
He set him as master over his household,*
 as a ruler over all his possessions,
To instruct his princes according to his will*
 and to teach his elders wisdom.
Israel came into Egypt,*
 and Jacob became a sojourner in the land of Ham.
The Lord made his people exceedingly fruitful;*
 he made them stronger than their enemies;
Whose heart he turned, so that they hated his people,*
 and dealt unjustly with his servants.
He sent Moses his servant,*
 and Aaron whom he had chosen.
They worked his signs among them,*
 and portents in the land of Ham.
He sent darkness and it grew dark;*
 but the Egyptians rebelled against his words.
He turned their waters into blood*
 and caused their fish to die.
Their land was overrun by frogs,*
 in the very chambers of their kings.
He spoke and there came swarms of insects*
 and gnats within all their borders.
He gave them hailstones instead of rain,*
 and flames of fire throughout their land.
He blasted their vines and their fig trees*
 and shattered every tree in their country.
He spoke and the locust came,*
 and young locusts without number,
Which ate up all the green plants in their land*
 and devoured the fruit of their soil.
He struck down the first-born of their land,*
 the first-fruits of all their strength.
He led out his people with silver and gold;*
 in all their tribes there was not one that stumbled.
Egypt was glad of their going,*
 because they were afraid of them.
He spread out a cloud for a covering*
 and a fire to give light in the night season.
They asked and quails appeared,*
 and he satisfied them with bread from heaven.
He opened the rock and water flowed,*
 so the river ran in the dry places.
For God remembered his holy word*
 and Abraham his servant.
So he led forth his people with gladness,*
 his chosen with shouts of joy.
He gave his people the lands of the nations,*
 and they took the fruit of others' toil,
That they might keep his statutes*
 and observe his laws.

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 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 [Wisdom 1:1-7]:

Love righteousness, you rulers of the earth,
think of the Lord in goodness
and seek him with sincerity of heart;
because he is found by those who do not put him to the test,
and manifests himself to those who do not distrust him.
For perverse thoughts separate people from God,
and when his power is tested, it exposes the foolish;
because wisdom will not enter a deceitful soul,
or dwell in a body enslaved to sin.
For a holy and disciplined spirit will flee from deceit,
and will leave foolish thoughts behind,
and will be ashamed at the approach of unrighteousness.

For wisdom is a kindly spirit,
but will not free blasphemers from the guilt of their words;
because God is witness of their inmost feelings,
and a true observer of their hearts, and a hearer of their tongues.
Because the spirit of the Lord has filled the world,
and that which holds all things together knows what is said.

Words: Brian Wren; (c) used with permission
Tune: University College

Hit "Back" in your browser to return to Oremus.             

There's a spirit in the air,
telling Christians everywhere:
"Praise the love that Christ revealed,
living, working in our world."

Lose your shyness, find your tongue;
tell the world what God has done:
God in Christ has come to stay,
we can see his power today.

When believers break the bread
when a hungry child is fed:
praise the love that Christ revealed
living, working in our world.

Still his Spirit leads the fight,
seeing wrong and setting right:
God in Christ has come to stay,
we can see his power today.

When a stranger's not alone,
where the homeless find a home,
praise the love that Christ revealed,
living, working in our world.

May the Spirit fill our praise,
guide our thoughts and change our ways:
God in Christ has come to stay,
we can see his power today.

There's a Spirit in the air,
calling people everywhere:
praise the love that Christ revealed,
living, working in our world.

SECOND READING [1 Thessalonians 5:12-end]:

But we appeal to you, brothers and sisters, to respect those who labour among you,
and have charge of you in the Lord and admonish you; esteem them very highly in love
because of their work. Be at peace among yourselves. And we urge you, beloved, to
admonish the idlers, encourage the faint-hearted, help the weak, be patient with all of
them. See that none of you repays evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one
another and to all. Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all
circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the
Spirit. Do not despise the words of prophets, but test everything; hold fast to what is
good; abstain from every form of evil.

May the God of peace himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and
body be kept sound and blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one
who calls you is faithful, and he will do this.

Beloved, pray for us.

Greet all the brothers and sisters with a holy kiss. I solemnly command you by the
Lord that this letter be read to all of them.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

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

Almighty God,
maker of all good things and Father of all;
you have shown us in Christ the purpose of your creation
and call us to be responsible in the world.

We pray for the world
all the nations....
our own country....
those in authority....
the peace of the world....
racial harmony....
those who maintain order....

Almighty God, we give you thanks
for the order of created things
the resources of the earth
and the gift of human life....

for the continuing work of creation,
man's share in it,
and for creative vision and inventive skill....

for your faithfulness to man in patience and in love,
and for every human response of obedience
and humble achievement....

May we delight in your purpose
and work to bring all things to their true end;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Merciful God,
you brought your people out of slavery
and led them to freedom in the promised land;
feed us on our journey with the bread of heaven
that we may hunger and thirst for righteousness
until your kingdom comes;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

O God,
who endowed your servant Hugh
with a wise and cheerful boldness
and taught him to commend to earthly rulers
the discipline of a holy life:
give us grace like him to be bold in the service of the gospel,
putting our confidence in Christ alone,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Gathering our prayers and praises into one,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us.

- The Lord's Prayer

Send your Holy Spirit upon your Church
that in all our words and works
we may serve you better and love you more. 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 prayer are adapted from material found in Book of
Common Order, 1994, The Church of Scotland.

As a sign of his remorse for his role in the murder of the Archbishop Thomas a
Becket, King Henry II founded the first house in England of the strict monastic
order called the Carthusians. Difficulties arose with the first two priors, and a
French noble recommended Hugh de Avalon, who at that time had been a
monk at the mother house of the order for 17 years.
On his arrival in England in 1176, Hugh found that the building of the
monastery had not begun. Worse, no compensation had been paid to those
who would have to lose their lands and property to make room for it. Hugh
refused to take office until these persons had been paid "to the last penny." He
intervened again on behalf of the builders, whose pay was not forthcoming.
Henry loved him for his plain speaking. "I do not despair of you," Hugh said to
him at their first interview; "I know how much your many occupations interfere
with the health of your soul." Henry, impressed by his frankness, swore that
while he lived he should not leave his kingdom, and took so much pleasure in
his conversation, and paid so much heed to his counsels, that a rumor arose
that Hugh was his son. Hugh's biographer wrote that "of all men only Hugh
could bend that rhinosceros to his will." When Henry was in danger of
shipwreck, he cried out, "If only my Carthusian Hugh were awake and at
prayer, God would not forget me."
This affection never diminished, though Hugh dared to oppose the king,
particularly in the matter of keeping bishoprics vacant in order that their
revenues might fall to the king's treasury. One of the worst examples was
Lincoln, which, except for a few months, had been without a bishop for
eighteen years. Hugh was elected to the post in 1186, and his monastic
superiors ordered him to accept. After so long a period of neglect, there was
great need of reform. Hugh employed priests of great piety and learning, and
made the fullest use of his authority in disciplining his clergy. He took a stern
view of the ill-treatment of the poor by the royal foresters, and when a subject
of the church of Lincoln suffered at their hands he excommunicated their chief.
He also refused to appoint a royal favorite to a meaningless but lucrative
post. Henry was furious, and summoned him to his presence. He came, and
Henry turned away his face and would not speak, but by way of ignoring his
presence took out a torn glove and began to sew it. At last Hugh said, "How
like you are to your relations at Falaise." The king might have resented this
allusion to the humble birth of William the Conqueror's mother, the daughter of
a glove-maker, but he only laughed, and the quarrel was made up.
Riots against the Jews broke out in England at the time of the Third Crusade.
In defence of the persecuted, Hugh faced armed mobs in Lincoln, Stamford
and Northampton and compelled their submission.
Hugh refused to raise money for the foreign wars of King Richard the
Lion-Heart, calmed the king's rage with a kiss, and persisted in his refusal: this
was the first clear example on record of the refusal of a money-grant demanded
directly by the crown, and an important legal precedent. Richard said, "If all
bishops were like my lord of Lincoln, not a prince among us could raise his
head against them."
His relations with King John were less happy. John showed him an amulet,
which he said was sacred and would preserve him. Hugh replied, "Do not put
your trust in lifeless stone, but only in the living and heavenly stone, our Lord
Jesus Christ." The following Easter he preached at length on the duties of
kings, and the king slipped out partway through.
Devout, tireless, and forgetful of self, Hugh also had wit, a temper that he
described as "more biting than pepper," and a great love and concern for
children and the defenceless. He visited leper-houses and washed the ulcerous
limbs of their inmates.
He was fond of animals, and they of him. Birds and squirrels came readily to
his hand. He had a swan that would feed from his hand, follow him about, and
keep guard over his bed, so that no one could approach it without being
In 1200 the king sent him on an embassy to France. His mission was a success,
but he took ill and returned to England to die on 16 November 1200. John
Ruskin called him "the most beautiful sacerdotal (priestly) figure known to me
in history."

More information about the oremus mailing list