OREMUS: 23 February 2010

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Mon Feb 22 17:00:00 GMT 2010


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OREMUS for Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Polycarp, Bishop of Smyrna, Martyr, c.155

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

Blessed are you, God, rich in mercy,
you so loved the world 
that when we were dead in our sins,
you sent your only Son for our deliverance.
Lifted up from the earth,
he is light and life;
exalted upon the cross,
he is truth and salvation.
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/lentocan.html
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Psalm 114

Alleluia!
   When Israel came out of Egypt,*
 the house of Jacob from a people of strange speech,
Judah became God's sanctuary*
 and Israel his dominion.
The sea beheld it and fled;*
 Jordan turned and went back.
The mountains skipped like rams,*
 and the little hills like young sheep.
What ailed you, O sea, that you fled?*
 O Jordan, that you turned back?
You mountains, that you skipped like rams?*
 you little hills like young sheep?
Tremble, O earth, at the presence of the Lord,*
 at the presence of the God of Jacob,
Who turned the hard rock into a pool of water*
 and flintstone into a flowing spring.

Psalm 115

Not to us, O Lord, not to us,
   but to your name give glory;*
 because of your love and because of your faithfulness.
Why should the heathen say,*
 'Where then is their God?'
Our God is in heaven;*
 whatever he wills to do he does.
Their idols are silver and gold,*
 the work of human hands.
They have mouths, but they cannot speak;*
 eyes have they, but they cannot see;
They have ears, but they cannot hear;*
 noses, but they cannot smell;
They have hands, but they cannot feel;
   feet, but they cannot walk;*
 they make no sound with their throat.
Those who make them are like them,*
 and so are all who put their trust in them.
O Israel, trust in the Lord;*
 he is their help and their shield.
O house of Aaron, trust in the Lord;*
 he is their help and their shield.
You who fear the Lord, trust in the Lord;*
 he is their help and their shield.
The Lord has been mindful of us and he will bless us;*
 he will bless the house of Israel;
   he will bless the house of Aaron;
He will bless those who fear the Lord,*
 both small and great together.
May the Lord increase you more and more,*
 you and your children after you.
May you be blessed by the Lord,*
 the maker of heaven and earth.
The heaven of heavens is the Lord's,*
 but he entrusted the earth to its peoples.
The dead do not praise the Lord,*
 nor all those who go down into silence;
But we will bless the Lord,*
 from this time forth for evermore.
   Alleluia!

FIRST READING [Gen. 24:28-38, 49-51, 58-67]:

Then the girl ran and told her mother's household about these things. Rebekah had a brother whose name was Laban; and Laban ran out to the man, to the spring. As soon as he had seen the nose-ring, and the bracelets on his sister's arms, and when he heard the words of his sister Rebekah, 'Thus the man spoke to me', he went to the man; and there he was, standing by the camels at the spring. He said, 'Come in, O blessed of the Lord. Why do you stand outside when I have prepared the house and a place for the camels?' So the man came into the house; and Laban unloaded the camels, and gave him straw and fodder for the camels, and water to wash his feet and the feet of the men who were with him. Then food was set before him to eat; but he said, 'I will not eat until I have told my errand.' He said, 'Speak on.' 

So he said, 'I am Abraham's servant. The Lord has greatly blessed my master, and he has become wealthy; he has given him flocks and herds, silver and gold, male and female slaves, camels and donkeys. And Sarah my master's wife bore a son to my master when she was old; and he has given him all that he has. My master made me swear, saying, "You shall not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, in whose land I live; but you shall go to my father's house, to my kindred, and get a wife for my son." Now then, if you will deal loyally and truly with my master, tell me; and if not, tell me, so that I may turn either to the right hand or to the left.' 

Then Laban and Bethuel answered, 'The thing comes from the Lord; we cannot speak to you anything bad or good. Look, Rebekah is before you; take her and go, and let her be the wife of your master's son, as the Lord has spoken.' And they called Rebekah, and said to her, 'Will you go with this man?' She said, 'I will.' So they sent away their sister Rebekah and her nurse along with Abraham's servant and his men. And they blessed Rebekah and said to her,
'May you, our sister, become
   thousands of myriads;
may your offspring gain possession
   of the gates of their foes.' 
Then Rebekah and her maids rose up, mounted the camels, and followed the man; thus the servant took Rebekah, and went his way. 

Now Isaac had come from Beer-lahai-roi, and was settled in the Negeb. Isaac went out in the evening to walk in the field; and looking up, he saw camels coming. And Rebekah looked up, and when she saw Isaac, she slipped quickly from the camel, and said to the servant, 'Who is the man over there, walking in the field to meet us?' The servant said, 'It is my master.' So she took her veil and covered herself. And the servant told Isaac all the things that he had done. Then Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah's tent. He took Rebekah, and she became his wife; and he loved her. So Isaac was comforted after his mother's death. 

HYMN 
Words: Shirley Erena Murray (c) Hope Publishing Co. Used with permission.
Tune: Cambodia

Stranger God, you come to us,
knock on doors and ask for shelter, 
wash our feet with towel and water, 
teach us how to pray, 
heed what women say. 

Stranger with compassion's face, 
here you speak of love and healing, 
shout your anger, cry your feeling, 
show a God that's weak --
turn the other cheek. 

Stranger God, you come to us, 
unexpected, unprotected, 
in our body resurrected
where our hope has died, 
hanging crucified. 

Strangest God of all you seem: 
though we mock you, or neglect you, 
never can we so reject you
that you let us go --
love cannot say "No!" 

Stranger God, you come to us, 
Stranger God, you come to us.

SECOND READING [John 9:24-end]:

 So for the second time they called the man who had been blind, and they said to him, 'Give glory to God! We know that this man is a sinner.' He answered, 'I do not know whether he is a sinner. One thing I do know, that though I was blind, now I see.' They said to him, 'What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?' He answered them, 'I have told you already, and you would not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you also want to become his disciples?' Then they reviled him, saying, 'You are his disciple, but we are disciples of Moses. We know that God has spoken to Moses, but as for this man, we do not know where he comes from.' The man answered, 'Here is an astonishing thing! You do not know where he comes from, and yet he opened my eyes. We know that God does not listen to sinners, but he does listen to one who worships him and obeys his will. Never since the world began has it been heard that anyone opened the eyes of a person born blind. If this man were not from God, he could do nothing.' They answered him, 'You were born entirely in sins, and are you trying to teach us?' And they drove him out. 

Jesus heard that they had driven him out, and when he found him, he said, 'Do you believe in the Son of Man?' He answered, 'And who is he, sir? Tell me, so that I may believe in him.' Jesus said to him, 'You have seen him, and the one speaking with you is he.' He said, 'Lord, I believe.' And he worshipped him. Jesus said, 'I came into this world for judgement so that those who do not see may see, and those who do see may become blind.' Some of the Pharisees near him heard this and said to him, 'Surely we are not blind, are we?' Jesus said to them, 'If you were blind, you would not have sin. But now that you say, "We see", your sin remains. 

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

Prayer:
Show us your mercy, O Lord;
And grant us your salvation.

O Lord, save our nation;
And teach wisdom to those in authority.

Let your priests be clothed with righteousness;
Let your faithful people sing with joy.

Let your ways be known upon earth;
Your saving health among all nations.

Give your people the blessing of peace
And may all the earth be filled with your glory.

Create in us clean hearts, O God,
And renew a right spirit within us.

God of wilderness and water,
your Son was baptized and tempted as we are. 
Guide us through this season,
that we may not avoid struggle,
but open ourselves to blessing,
through the cleansing depths of repentance
and the heaven-rending words of the Spirit. Amen.

Almighty God, 
who have to your servant Polycarp 
boldness to confess the name of our Savior Jesus Christ 
before the rulers of this world 
and courage to die for this faith: 
grant that we also may be ready to give 
an answer for the faith that is in us 
and to suffer gladly for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ, 
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, 
one God, now and for ever. Amen.
		
Trusting in the compassion of God,
let us pray as our Savior taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

May God give us comfort and peace, light and joy,
in this world and the next. 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 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 of thanksgiving and the closing sentence are adapted from
prayers in _Book of Common Worship_, (c) 1993 Westminster
/ John Knox Press. 

The opening prayer of thanksgiving adapts phrases from _Opening
Prayers: Collects in Contemporary Language_. Canterbury Press,
Norwich, 1999.

The closing sentence is from _New Patterns for Worship_,
copyright (c) The Archbishops' Council, 2002.



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