OREMUS: 3 September 2010

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Thu Sep 2 18:39:49 GMT 2010


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OREMUS for Friday, September 3, 2010
Gregory the Great, Bishop of Rome, Teacher of the Faith, 604

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

Blessed are you, O God,
like fireworks in the night
the Holy Spirit came
to lift our spirits, to inspire fresh daring,
that our lives might be spent in honor
of our Savior, God's only Son.
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/ocan.html

Psalm 15

Lord, who may dwell in your tabernacle?*
 who may abide upon your holy hill?
Whoever leads a blameless life and does what is right,*
 who speaks the truth from his heart.
There is no guile upon his tongue;
   he does no evil to his friend;*
 he does not heap contempt upon his neighbour.
In his sight the wicked is rejected,*
 but he honours those who fear the Lord.
He has sworn to do no wrong*
 and does not take back his word.
He does not give his money in hope of gain,*
 nor does he take a bribe against the innocent.
Whoever does these things*
 shall never be overthrown.

Psalm 16

Protect me, O God, for I take refuge in you;*
 I have said to the Lord, 'You are my Lord,
   my good above all other.'
All my delight is upon the godly that are in the land,*
 upon those who are noble among the people.
But those who run after other gods*
 shall have their troubles multiplied.
Their libations of blood I will not offer,*
 nor take the names of their gods upon my lips.
O Lord, you are my portion and my cup;*
 it is you who uphold my lot.
My boundaries enclose a pleasant land;*
 indeed, I have a goodly heritage.
I will bless the Lord who gives me counsel;*
 my heart teaches me, night after night.
I have set the Lord always before me;*
 because he is at my right hand I shall not fall.
My heart, therefore, is glad and my spirit rejoices;*
 my body also shall rest in hope.
For you will not abandon me to the grave,*
 nor let your holy one see the Pit.
You will show me the path of life;*
 in your presence there is fullness of joy,
   and in your right hand are pleasures for evermore.

Psalm 17

Hear my plea of innocence, O Lord;
   give heed to my cry;*
 listen to my prayer,
   which does not come from lying lips.
Let my vindication come forth from your presence;*
 let your eyes be fixed on justice.
Weigh my heart, summon me by night,*
 melt me down; you will find no impurity in me.
I give no offence with my mouth as others do;*
 I have heeded the words of your lips.
My footsteps hold fast to the ways of your law;*
 in your paths my feet shall not stumble.
I call upon you, O God, for you will answer me;*
 incline your ear to me and hear my words.
Show me your marvellous lovingkindness,*
 O Saviour of those who take refuge at your right hand
   from those who rise up against them.
Keep me as the apple of your eye;*
 hide me under the shadow of your wings,
>From the wicked who assault me,*
 from my deadly enemies who surround me.
They have closed their heart to pity,*
 and their mouth speaks proud things.
They press me hard,
   now they surround me,*
 watching how they may cast me to the ground,
Like a lion, greedy for its prey,*
 and like a young lion lurking in secret places.
Arise, O Lord; confront them and bring them down;*
 deliver me from the wicked by your sword.
Deliver me, O Lord, by your hand*
 from those whose portion in life is this world;
Whose bellies you fill with your treasure,*
 who are well supplied with children
   and leave their wealth to their little ones.
But at my vindication I shall see your face;*
 when I awake, I shall be satisfied,
   beholding your likeness.

FIRST READING [2 Sam. 15:30-16:4]:

David went up the ascent of the Mount of Olives, weeping as he went, with his head covered and walking barefoot; and all the people who were with him covered their heads and went up, weeping as they went. David was told that Ahithophel was among the conspirators with Absalom. And David said, 'O Lord, I pray you, turn the counsel of Ahithophel into foolishness.' 

When David came to the summit, where God was worshipped, Hushai the Archite came to meet him with his coat torn and earth on his head. David said to him, 'If you go on with me, you will be a burden to me. But if you return to the city and say to Absalom, “I will be your servant, O king; as I have been your father's servant in time past, so now I will be your servant”, then you will defeat for me the counsel of Ahithophel. The priests Zadok and Abiathar will be with you there. So whatever you hear from the king's house, tell it to the priests Zadok and Abiathar. Their two sons are with them there, Zadok's son Ahimaaz and Abiathar's son Jonathan; and by them you shall report to me everything you hear.' So Hushai, David's friend, came into the city, just as Absalom was entering Jerusalem. 

When David had passed a little beyond the summit, Ziba the servant of Mephibosheth met him, with a couple of donkeys saddled, carrying two hundred loaves of bread, one hundred bunches of raisins, one hundred of summer fruits, and one skin of wine. The king said to Ziba, 'Why have you brought these?' Ziba answered, 'The donkeys are for the king's household to ride, the bread and summer fruit for the young men to eat, and the wine is for those to drink who faint in the wilderness.' The king said, 'And where is your master's son?' Ziba said to the king, 'He remains in Jerusalem; for he said, “Today the house of Israel will give me back my grandfather's kingdom.” ' Then the king said to Ziba, 'All that belonged to Mephibosheth is now yours.' Ziba said, 'I do obeisance; let me find favour in your sight, my lord the king.' 

HYMN 
Words: sometimes attributed to Gregory the Great (545-604) translated John D Chambers (1805-1893)
Tune: Deus tuorum militum, Illsley

Maker of man, who from thy throne
Dost order all things, God alone;
By whose decree the teeming earth
To reptile and to beast gave birth:

The mighty forms that fill the land,
Instinct with life at thy command,
Are given subdued to humankind
For service in their rank assigned.

>From all thy servants drive away
Whate'er of thought impure today
Hath been with open action blent,
Or mingled with the heart's intent,

In heaven thine endless joys bestow,
And grant thy gifts of grace below;
>From chains of strife our souls release,
Bind fast the gentle bands of peace.

O Father, that we ask be done,
Through Jesus Christ, thine only Son;
Who, with the Holy Ghost and thee,
Doth live and reign eternally.

SECOND READING [Matt. 4:1-11]:

Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. He fasted for forty days and forty nights, and afterwards he was famished. The tempter came and said to him, 'If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.' But he answered, 'It is written, "One does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God." ' 

Then the devil took him to the holy city and placed him on the pinnacle of the temple, saying to him, 'If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down; for it is written, "He will command his angels concerning you", and "On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not dash your foot against a stone." ' 
Jesus said to him, 'Again it is written, "Do not put the Lord your God to the test." ' 

Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendour; and he said to him, 'All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.' Jesus said to him, 'Away with you, Satan! for it is written, "Worship the Lord your God, and serve only him." ' Then the devil left him, and suddenly angels came and waited on him. 

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

Prayer:
We pray for the coming of God's kingdom, saying,
Father, by your Spirit:
bring in your kingdom.

You came in Jesus to bring good news to the poor, 
sight to the blind, freedom to the captives, 
and salvation to your people:
anoint us with your Spirit; 

rouse us to work in his name.
Father, by your Spirit,
bring in your kingdom.

Send us to bring help to the poor 
and freedom to the oppressed:
Father, by your Spirit,
bring in your kingdom.

Send us to tell the world 
the good news of your healing love:
Father, by your Spirit,
bring in your kingdom.

Send us to those who mourn,
to bring joy and gladness instead of grief:
Father, by your Spirit,
bring in your kingdom.

Send us to proclaim that the time is here
for you to save your people:
Father, by your Spirit,
bring in your kingdom.

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.
		
Merciful Father,
who chose your bishop Gregory
to be a servant of the servants of God:
grant that, like him, we may ever long to serve you
by proclaiming your gospel to the nations,
and may ever rejoice to sing your praises;
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

May the word of God dwell richly in our heart from hour to hour, 
so that all may see the triumph through Jesus' power and love. 
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 is by Stephen Benner. The closing prayer is a sentence from
_Uniting in Worship_, The Uniting Church in Australia.

Gregory was born in 540, the son of a Roman senator. As a young man he pursued a governmental career, and in 573 was made Prefect of the city of Rome. Following the death of his father, he resigned his office, sold his inheritance, and became a monk. In 579 he was sent by the Pope to Constantinople to be his representative to the Patriarch. He returned to Rome in 586, and was himself elected Pope in 590. At a time of political turmoil, Gregory proved an astute administrator and diplomat, securing peace with the Lombards. He initiated the mission to England, sending Augustine and forty monks from his own monastery to refound the English Church. His writings were pastorally oriented. His spirituality was animated by a dynamic of love and desire for God. Indeed, he is sometimes called the 'Doctor of desire'. For Gregory, desire was a metaphor for the journey into God. As Pope, he styled himself 'Servant of the servants of God' -- a title which typified both his personality and ministry. He died in 604.



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