OREMUS: 13 September 2010

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Sun Sep 12 23:30:59 GMT 2010


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OREMUS for Monday, September 13, 2010
Cyprian, Bishop of Carthage, Martyr, 258

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

Blessed are you, O God,
in Christ the walls that divide are broken down,
the chains that enslave are thrown aside,
and we are freed from death and despair
to life and hope,
liberated from hate and war
and empowered to love and seek peace.
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 68 [CCP]

Let God arise and let his enemies be scattered;*
 let those who hate him flee before him. 
Let them vanish like smoke
   when the wind drives it away;*
 as the wax melts at the fire,
   so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.
But let the righteous be glad and rejoice before God;*
 let them also be merry and joyful.
Sing to God, sing praises to his name;
   exalt him who rides upon the heavens;*
 Yahweh is his name, rejoice before him!
Father of orphans, defender of widows,*
 God in his holy habitation!
God gives the solitary a home

   and brings forth prisoners into freedom;*
 but the rebels shall live in dry places.
O God, when you went forth before your people,*
 when you marched through the wilderness,
The earth shook and the skies poured down rain,
   at the presence of God, the God of Sinai,*
 at the presence of God, the God of Israel.
You sent a gracious rain, O God, upon your inheritance;*
 you refreshed the land when it was weary.
Your people found their home in it;*
 in your goodness, O God,
   you have made provision for the poor.
The Lord gave the word;*
 great was the company of women who bore the tidings:
'Kings with their armies are fleeing away;*
 the women at home are dividing the spoils.'
Though you lingered among the sheepfolds,*
 you shall be like a dove
   whose wings are covered with silver,
   whose feathers are like green gold.
When the Almighty scattered kings,*
 it was like snow falling in Zalmon.
O mighty mountain, O hill of Bashan!*
 O rugged mountain, O hill of Bashan!
Why do you look with envy, O rugged mountain,
   at the hill which God chose for his resting place?*
 truly, the Lord will dwell there for ever.
The chariots of God are twenty thousand,
   even thousands of thousands;*
 the Lord comes in holiness from Sinai.
You have gone up on high and led captivity captive;
   you have received gifts even from your enemies,*
 that the Lord God might dwell among them.
Blessed be the Lord day by day,*
 the God of our salvation, who bears our burdens.
He is our God, the God of our salvation;*
 God is the Lord, by whom we escape death.
Your procession is seen, O God,*
 your procession into the sanctuary, my God and my King.
The singers go before, musicians follow after,*
 in the midst of maidens playing upon the handdrums.
Bless God in the congregation;*
 bless the Lord, you that are of the fountain of Israel.
There is Benjamin, least of the tribes, at the head;
   the princes of Judah in a company;*
 and the princes of Zebulon and Naphtali.
Send forth your strength, O God;*
 establish, O God, what you have wrought for us.
Kings shall bring gifts to you,*
 for your temple's sake at Jerusalem.
Rebuke the wild beast of the reeds,*
 and the peoples, a herd of wild bulls with its calves.
Trample down those who lust after silver;*
 scatter the peoples that delight in war.
Let tribute be brought out of Egypt;*
 let Ethiopia stretch out her hands to God.
Sing to God, O kingdoms of the earth;*
 sing praises to the Lord.
He rides in the heavens, the ancient heavens;*
 he sends forth his voice, his mighty voice.
Ascribe power to God;*
 his majesty is over Israel;
   his strength is in the skies.
How wonderful is God in his holy places!*
 the God of Israel giving strength and power to his people!
   Blessed be God!

FIRST READING [2 Sam. 19:24-39]:

Mephibosheth grandson of Saul came down to meet the king; he had not taken care of his feet, or trimmed his beard, or washed his clothes, from the day the king left until the day he came back in safety. When he came from Jerusalem to meet the king, the king said to him, 'Why did you not go with me, Mephibosheth?' He answered, 'My lord, O king, my servant deceived me; for your servant said to him, “Saddle a donkey for me, so that I may ride on it and go with the king.” For your servant is lame. He has slandered your servant to my lord the king. But my lord the king is like the angel of God; do therefore what seems good to you. For all my father's house were doomed to death before my lord the king; but you set your servant among those who eat at your table. What further right have I, then, to appeal to the king?' The king said to him, 'Why speak any more of your affairs? I have decided: you and Ziba shall divide the land.' Mephibosheth said to the king, 'Let him take it all, since my lord the king has arrived home safely.' 

Now Barzillai the Gileadite had come down from Rogelim; he went on with the king to the Jordan, to escort him over the Jordan. Barzillai was a very aged man, eighty years old. He had provided the king with food while he stayed at Mahanaim, for he was a very wealthy man. The king said to Barzillai, 'Come over with me, and I will provide for you in Jerusalem at my side.' But Barzillai said to the king, 'How many years have I still to live, that I should go up with the king to Jerusalem? Today I am eighty years old; can I discern what is pleasant and what is not? Can your servant taste what he eats or what he drinks? Can I still listen to the voice of singing men and singing women? Why then should your servant be an added burden to my lord the king? Your servant will go a little way over the Jordan with the king. Why should the king recompense me with such a reward? Please let your servant return, so that I may die in my own town, near the graves of my father and my mother. But here is your servant Chimham; let him go over with my lord the king; and do for him whatever seems good to you.' The king answered, 'Chimham shall go over with me, and I will do for him whatever seems good to you; and all that you desire of me I will do for you.' Then all the people crossed over the Jordan, and the king crossed over; the king kissed Barzillai and blessed him, and he returned to his own home. 

HYMN 
Words: William Young Fullerton (1857-1932), 1929;
Tune: Londonderry Air

http://www.oremus.org/hymnal/i/i029.html
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I cannot tell how he whom angels worship
should stoop to love the peoples of the earth,
or why as shepherd he should seek the wanderer
with his mysterious promise of new birth.
But this I know, that he was born of Mary,
when Bethlehem's manger was his only home,
and that he lived at Nazareth and labored,
and so the Savior, Savior of the world, is come.

I cannot tell how silently he suffered,
as with his peace he graced this place of tears,
or how his heart upon the cross was broken,
the crown of pain to three and thirty years.
But this I know, he heals the broken-hearted,
and stays our sin, and calms our lurking fear,
and lifts the burden from the heavy laden,
for yet the Savior, Savior of the world, is here.

I cannot tell how he will win the nations,
how he will claim his earthly heritage,
how satisfy the needs and aspirations
of east and west, of sinner and of sage.
But this I know, all flesh shall see his glory,
and he shall reap the harvest he has sown,
and some glad day his sun shall shine in splendor
when he the Savior, Savior of the world, is known.

I cannot tell how all the lands shall worship,
when, at his bidding, every storm is stilled,
or who can say how great the jubilation
when every heart with perfect love is filled.
But this I know, the skies will thrill with rapture,
and myriad, myriad human voices sing,
and earth to heaven, and heaven to earth, will answer:
'At last the Savior, Savior of the world, is King!' 

SECOND READING [Matt. 7:1-12]:

Jesus said, 'Do not judge, so that you may not be judged. For with the judgement you make you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get. Why do you see the speck in your neighbour's eye, but do not notice the log in your own eye? Or how can you say to your neighbour, “Let me take the speck out of your eye”, while the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your neighbour's eye. 

'Do not give what is holy to dogs; and do not throw your pearls before swine, or they will trample them under foot and turn and maul you. 

'Ask, and it will be given to you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. Is there anyone among you who, if your child asks for bread, will give a stone? Or if the child asks for a fish, will give a snake? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good things to those who ask him! 

'In everything do to others as you would have them do to you; for this is the law and the prophets.'

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

Prayer:
All-seeing, all-loving God,
you behold the human family as one.
You regard each of us as loved, redeemed, a temple of your Spirit.
Beholding you, we respond in thanks and praise as one Church.

Renew the Church in a dynamic sense of your grace.
Renew us, O Lord.

We remember your Church in the Diocese of
Renew us, O Lord.

Work in us a continuing conversion:
Renew us, O Lord.

Give all your disciples eyes to see you in the ordinary:
Renew us, O Lord.

Lift the heavy hands of oppression
from the poor, the abused and the exploited:
Renew us, O Lord.

Kindle in the suffering and desperate
the warmth of your nearness and consolation:
Renew us, O Lord.

Stir up in us attention to the Spirit breathing within us:
Renew us, O Lord.

Almighty God,
your whole creation declares your glory.
May we perceive you in all your works
and live in the light of your righteousness,
through him who is the light of the world,
Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Holy God,
who brought Cyprian to faith in Christ,
made him a bishop in the Church
and crowned his witness with a martyr's death:
grant that, after his example,
we may love the Church and her teachings,
find your forgiveness within her fellowship
and so come to share the heavenly banquet
you have prepared for us;
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

Let your peace, O God,
fill our hearts, our world, our universe. 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 uses phrases from a hymn by Walter Farquahrson and a prayer by
Satish Kumar. The closing prayer uses a sentence from the same prayer by Kumar. 

The second collect is 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.

Cyprian was born around 200 AD in North Africa, of pagan parents. He was a
prominent trial lawyer and teacher of rhetoric. Around 246 he became a
Christian, and in 248 was chosen Bishop of Carthage. A year later the
persecution under the Emperor Decius began, and Cyprian went into hiding.
He was severely censured for this (unjustly on my view -- see Mt 2:13; 10:23;
24:16). After the persecution had died down, it remained to consider how to
deal with the lapsed, meaning with those Christians who had denied the faith
under duress. Cyprian held that they ought to be received back into full
communion after suitable intervals of probation and penance, adjusted to the
gravity of the denial. In this he took a middle course between Novatus, who
received apostates with no probation at all, and Novatian, who would not
receive them back at all, and who broke communion with the rest of the
Church over this issue, forming a dissident group particularly strong in Rome
and Antioch. (Novatus, somewhat surprisingly, ended up joining the party of
Novatian.) Cyprian, who held the same position as the Bishop of Rome on the
treatment of the lapsed, wrote urging the Christians of Rome to stand with
their bishop.
Later, the question arose whether baptisms performed by heretical groups
ought to be recognized as valid by the Church, or whether converts from such
groups ought to be rebaptized. Cyprian favored re-baptism, and Bishop
Stephen of Rome did not. The resulting controversy was not resolved during
Cyprian's lifetime.
During the reign of the Emperor Valerian, Carthage suffered a severe plague
epidemic. Cyprian organized a program of medical relief and nursing of the
sick, available to all residents, but this did not prevent the masses from being
convinced that the epidemic resulted from the wrath of the gods at the spread
of Christianity. Another persecution arose, and this time Cyprian did not flee.
He was arrested, tried, and finally beheaded on 14 September 258. (Because
14 is Holy Cross Day, he is usually commemorated on a nearby open day.) We
have an account of his trial and martyrdom.
Many of his writings have been preserved. His essay On The Unity of The
Catholic Church stresses the importance of visible, concrete unity among
Christians, and the role of the bishops in guaranteeing that unity. It has greatly
influenced Christian thought, as have his essays and letters on Baptism and the
Lord's Supper. He has been quoted both for and against the Roman Catholic
claims for Papal authority.



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