OREMUS: 5 August 2009

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Tue Aug 4 21:24:36 GMT 2009


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OREMUS for Wedneday, August 5, 2009
Oswald, King of Northumbria, Martyr, 642

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

Blessed are you, O God,
beyond all seeing and knowing,
yet we meet you in the night of change and crisis,
and wrestle with you in the darkness of doubt.
You renew us with your your heavenly grace,
and in all our weakness
sustain us by your true and living bread,
Jesus Christ our Lord.
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. 
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Psalm 119:97-112

O how I love your law!*
 all the day long it is in my mind.
Your commandment has made me wiser
   than my enemies,*
 and it is always with me.
I have more understanding than all my teachers,*
 for your decrees are my study.
I am wiser than the elders,*
 because I observe your commandments.

I restrain my feet from every evil way,*
 that I may keep your word.
I do not shrink from your judgements,*
 because you yourself have taught me.
How sweet are your words to my taste!*
 they are sweeter than honey to my mouth.
Through your commandments I gain understanding;*
 therefore I hate every lying way.
Your word is a lantern to my feet*
 and a light upon my path.
I have sworn and am determined*
 to keep your righteous judgements.
I am deeply troubled;*
 preserve my life, O Lord, according to your word.
Accept, O Lord, the willing tribute of my lips,*
 and teach me your judgements.
My life is always in my hand,*
 yet I do not forget your law.
The wicked have set a trap for me,*
 but I have not strayed from your commandments.
Your decrees are my inheritance for ever;*
 truly, they are the joy of my heart.
I have applied my heart to fulfil your statutes*
 for ever and to the end.

A Song of Redemption (Colossians 1.1318a,19,20a)

The Father has delivered us from the dominion of darkness,  
and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son; 
In whom we have redemption,  
the forgiveness of our sins. 
He is the image of the invisible God,  
the firstborn of all creation. 
For in him all things were created,  
in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible. 
All things were created through him and for him,  
he is before all things and in him all things hold together. 
He is the head of the body, the Church,  
he is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead. 
In him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell;  
and through him God was pleased to reconcile all things. 

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 [1 Samuel 12:19-end]:

All the people said to Samuel, 'Pray to the Lord your God for your servants, so that we may not die; for we have added to all our sins the evil of demanding a king for ourselves.' 20And Samuel said to the people, 'Do not be afraid; you have done all this evil, yet do not turn aside from following the Lord, but serve the Lord with all your heart; 21and do not turn aside after useless things that cannot profit or save, for they are useless. 22For the Lord will not cast away his people, for his great name's sake, because it has pleased the Lord to make you a people for himself. 23Moreover as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by ceasing to pray for you; and I will instruct you in the good and the right way. 24Only fear the Lord, and serve him faithfully with all your heart; for consider what great things he has done for you. 25But if you still do wickedly, you shall be swept away, both you and your king.'

HYMN 
Words: Darley Terry (1848-1934)
Tune: Church Triumphant, Deus tuorum militum

The Lord is King! I own his power,
his right to rule each day and hour;
I own his claim on heart and will,
and his demands I would fulfil.

He claims my heart, to keep it clean,
from all the stains of human sin;
he claims my will, that I may prove
how swift obedience answers love.

He claims my hand for active life
in noble deeds and worthy strife;
he claims my feet, that in his ways
I may walk boldly all my days.

He claims my lips, that purest word
in all my speaking may be heard;
my motives, feelings, thoughts, that these,
my inner life, my King may please.

He claims the brightness of my youth,
my earnest strivings after truth,
my joys, my toil, my craftsman's skill;
all have their place, and serve his will.

To you, O Lord my King, I turn,
your holy purpose to discern.
My daily task your name to own,
for heart and will are yours alone.

SECOND READING [Luke 16:1-18]:

Jesus said to the disciples, 'There was a rich man who had a manager, and charges were brought to him that this man was squandering his property. So he summoned him and said to him, “What is this that I hear about you? Give me an account of your management, because you cannot be my manager any longer.” Then the manager said to himself, “What will I do, now that my master is taking the position away from me? I am not strong enough to dig, and I am ashamed to beg. I have decided what to do so that, when I am dismissed as manager, people may welcome me into their homes.” So, summoning his master's debtors one by one, he asked the first, “How much do you owe my master?” He answered, “A hundred jugs of olive oil.” He said to him, “Take your bill, sit down quickly, and make it fifty.” Then he asked another, “And how much do you owe?” He replied, “A hundred containers of wheat.” He said to him, “Take your bill and make it eighty.” And his master commended the dishonest manager because he had acted shrewdly; for the children of this age are more shrewd in dealing with their own generation than are the children of light. And I tell you, make friends for yourselves by means of dishonest wealth so that when it is gone, they may welcome you into the eternal homes. 

 'Whoever is faithful in a very little is faithful also in much; and whoever is dishonest in a very little is dishonest also in much. If then you have not been faithful with the dishonest wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches? And if you have not been faithful with what belongs to another, who will give you what is your own? No slave can serve two masters; for a slave will either hate the one and love the other, or be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.' 

The Pharisees, who were lovers of money, heard all this, and they ridiculed him. So he said to them, 'You are those who justify yourselves in the sight of others; but God knows your hearts; for what is prized by human beings is an abomination in the sight of God. 

'The law and the prophets were in effect until John came; since then the good news of the kingdom of God is proclaimed, and everyone tries to enter it by force. But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away, than for one stroke of a letter in the law to be dropped. 

'Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and whoever marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery. '

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

Prayer:
We pray for the use of God's gifts to his Church, saying
Jesus, Lord of your Church:
in your mercy, hear us

God our Father,
you give us gifts that we may work together
in the service of your Son:
Bless those who lead,
that they may be firm in faith, 
yet humble before you.
We pray especially for the people of the Diocese
Jesus, Lord of your Church:
in your mercy hear us.

Bless those who teach,
that they may increase our understanding,    

and be open to your word for them:
Jesus, Lord of your Church:
in your mercy hear us. 

Bless those who minister healing,
that they may bring wholeness to other, 
yet know your healing in themselves:
Jesus, Lord of your Church:
in your mercy hear us. 

Bless those through whom you speak,
that they may proclaim your word in power,
yet have their ears open to your gentle whisper:
Jesus, Lord of your Church:
in your mercy hear us. 

Bless those who work in your world today
that they may live for you, fulfil your purposes,
and seek your kingdom first
in the complexity of their daily lives.
Jesus, Lord of your Church:
in your mercy hear us. 

Bless those who feel they have no gifts and are not valued,
and those who are powerless by the world's standards,
that they may share their experience
of the work of your Spirit.
Jesus, Lord of your Church:
in your mercy hear us. 

Merciful God,
as we contemplate the life of your Son, 
may we grow in wisdom and stature
not just for our own spiritual awareness, 
but that his teaching, healing and life-giving power
may possess us and work through us, 
that we may lose our own lives and find his Life, 
being conformed to his pattern and to his Cross. 
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Lord God almighty, 
who so kindled the faith of Oswald with your Spirit 
that he set up the sign of the cross in his kingdom
and turned his people to the light of Christ: 
grant that we, being fired by the same Spirit,
may always bear our cross before the world
and be found faithful servants of the gospel; 
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
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

Refresh us with your grace,
that we may not be weary in well-doing,
for the sake of him who has called us
to hunger and thirst to see right prevail,
Jesus Christ our Lord. 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 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 prayers by Alan Griffiths..

Born around the year 605, the son of King Ælfrith of Northumbria, Oswald was forced to leave home after his father's death and move to Iona where, influenced by the monks of St Columba, he was baptised. Returning to Northumbria in 634, Oswald defeated the British king, setting up a cross as his standard and gathering his men around it to pray the night before the battle. A man of humility and generosity, Oswald worked closely with his friend St Aidan, travelling with him on his missionary journeys and acting as his interpreter. He died in battle on this day in 642 defending his kingdom from the Mercians.


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