OREMUS: 25 December 2011

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Sat Dec 24 17:00:00 GMT 2011


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OREMUS for December 25
The Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ
(Christmas Day)

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

Blessed are you, O God of light,
your loving kindness dawns,
your tender compassion shines upon us,
for in our Saviour, born of human flesh,
you reveal your gracious gift
of our birth to life eternal.
Your radiant glory enlightens the lives
of those who celebrate his birth.
You call us to treasure in our hearts
what we have been told,
that our lives may proclaim
your great and gentle mercy.
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/chrocant.html

Psalm 45

My heart is stirring with a noble song;
   let me recite what I have fashioned for the king;*
 my tongue shall be the pen of a skilled writer.
You are the fairest of men;*
 grace flows from your lips,
   because God has blessed you for ever.
Strap your sword upon your thigh, O mighty warrior,*
 in your pride and in your majesty.
Ride out and conquer in the cause of truth*
 and for the sake of justice.
Your right hand will show you marvellous things;*
 your arrows are very sharp, O mighty warrior.
The peoples are falling at your feet,*
 and the king's enemies are losing heart.
Your throne, O God, endures for ever and ever,*
 a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of your kingdom;
   you love righteousness and hate iniquity;
Therefore God, your God, has anointed you*
 with the oil of gladness above your fellows.
All your garments are fragrant with myrrh, aloes and cassia,*
 and the music of strings from ivory palaces makes you glad.
Kings' daughters stand among the ladies of the court;*
 on your right hand is the queen,
   adorned with the gold of Ophir.
'Hear, O daughter; consider and listen closely;*
 forget your people and your family's house.
'The king will have pleasure in your beauty;*
 he is your master; therefore do him honour.
'The people of Tyre are here with a gift;*
 the rich among the people seek your favour.'
All glorious is the princess as she enters;*
 her gown is cloth-of-gold.
In embroidered apparel she is brought to the king;*
 after her the bridesmaids follow in procession.
With joy and gladness they are brought,*
 and enter into the palace of the king.
'In place of fathers, O king, you shall have sons;*
 you shall make them princes over all the earth.
'I will make your name to be remembered
   from one generation to another;*
 therefore nations will praise you for ever and ever.'

Psalm 148

Alleluia!
   Praise the Lord from the heavens;*
 praise him in the heights.
Praise him, all you angels of his;*
 praise him, all his host.
Praise him, sun and moon;*
 praise him, all you shining stars.
Praise him, heaven of heavens,*
 and you waters above the heavens.
Let them praise the name of the Lord;*
 for he commanded and they were created.
He made them stand fast for ever and ever;*
 he gave them a law which shall not pass away.
Praise the Lord from the earth,*
 you sea-monsters and all deeps;
Fire and hail, snow and fog,*
 tempestuous wind, doing his will;
Mountains and all hills,*
 fruit trees and all cedars;
Wild beasts and all cattle,*
 creeping things and winged birds;
Kings of the earth and all peoples,*
 princes and all rulers of the world;
Young men and maidens,*
 old and young together.
Let them praise the name of the Lord,*
 for his name only is exalted,
   his splendour is over earth and heaven.
He has raised up strength for his people
   and praise for all his loyal servants,*
 the children of Israel, a people who are near him.
   Alleluia!

FIRST READING [Isaiah 65:17-25]:

For I am about to create new heavens
   and a new earth;
the former things shall not be remembered
   or come to mind. 
But be glad and rejoice for ever
   in what I am creating;
for I am about to create Jerusalem as a joy,
   and its people as a delight. 
I will rejoice in Jerusalem,
   and delight in my people;
no more shall the sound of weeping be heard in it,
   or the cry of distress. 
No more shall there be in it
   an infant that lives but a few days,
   or an old person who does not live out a lifetime;
for one who dies at a hundred years will be considered a youth,
   and one who falls short of a hundred will be considered accursed. 
They shall build houses and inhabit them;
   they shall plant vineyards and eat their fruit. 
They shall not build and another inhabit;
   they shall not plant and another eat;
for like the days of a tree shall the days of my people be,
   and my chosen shall long enjoy the work of their hands. 
They shall not labour in vain,
   or bear children for calamity;
for they shall be offspring blessed by the Lord—
   and their descendants as well. 
Before they call I will answer,
   while they are yet speaking I will hear. 
The wolf and the lamb shall feed together,
   the lion shall eat straw like the ox;
   but the serpent—its food shall be dust!
They shall not hurt or destroy
   on all my holy mountain, 
says the Lord. 

HYMN 
Words: Marcus Aurelius Clemens Prudentius (348-413);
trans. John Mason Neale, 1854 and Henry Williams Baker, 1861 
Tune: Divinum mysterium

Of the Father's love begotten,
ere the worlds began to be,
he is Alpha and Omega,
he the source, the ending he,
of the things that are, that have been,
and that future years shall see,
evermore and evermore!

At his word the words were fram d;
he commanded; it was done:
heaven and earth and depths of ocean
in their threefold order one;
all that grows beneath the shining
of the moon and burning sun,
evermore and evermore!

O that birth for ever bless d,
when the Virgin, full of grace,
by the Holy Ghost conceiving,
bare the Savior of our race;
and the Babe, the world's Redeemer,
first revealed his sacred face,
evermore and evermore!

This is he whom seers in old time
chanted of with one accord;
whom the voices of the prophets
promised in their faithful word;
now he shines, the long expected,
let creation praise its Lord,
evermore and evermore!

O ye heights of heaven, adore him;
angel-hosts, his praises sing;
powers, dominions, bow before him,
and extol our God and King;
let no tongue on earth be silent,
every voice in concert ring,
evermore and evermore!

Thee let old men, thee let young men,
thee let boys in chorus sing;
matrons, virgins, little maidens,
with glad voices answering:
let their guileless songs re-echo,
and the heart its music bring,
evermore and evermore!

Christ, to thee with God the Father,
and, O Holy Ghost, to thee,
hymn and chant and high thanksgiving,
and unwearied praises be;
honor, glory and dominion,
and eternal victory,
evermore and evermore!

SECOND READING [Matthew 1:1-25]:

An account of the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham. 

Abraham was the father of Isaac, and Isaac the father of Jacob, and Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers, and Judah the father of Perez and Zerah by Tamar, and Perez the father of Hezron, and Hezron the father of Aram, and Aram the father of Aminadab, and Aminadab the father of Nahshon, and Nahshon the father of Salmon, and Salmon the father of Boaz by Rahab, and Boaz the father of Obed by Ruth, and Obed the father of Jesse, and Jesse the father of King David.

nd David was the father of Solomon by the wife of Uriah, and Solomon the father of Rehoboam, and Rehoboam the father of Abijah, and Abijah the father of Asaph, and Asaph the father of Jehoshaphat, and Jehoshaphat the father of Joram, and Joram the father of Uzziah, and Uzziah the father of Jotham, and Jotham the father of Ahaz, and Ahaz the father of Hezekiah, and Hezekiah the father of Manasseh, and Manasseh the father of Amos, and Amos the father of Josiah, and Josiah the father of Jechoniah and his brothers, at the time of the deportation to Babylon. 

And after the deportation to Babylon: Jechoniah was the father of Salathiel, and Salathiel the father of Zerubbabel, and Zerubbabel the father of Abiud, and Abiud the father of Eliakim, and Eliakim the father of Azor, and Azor the father of Zadok, and Zadok the father of Achim, and Achim the father of Eliud, and Eliud the father of Eleazar, and Eleazar the father of Matthan, and Matthan the father of Jacob, and Jacob the father of Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom Jesus was born, who is called the Messiah. 

So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David to the deportation to Babylon, fourteen generations; and from the deportation to Babylon to the Messiah, fourteen generations. 

Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly. But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, 'Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.' All this took place to fulfil what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet:  'Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel', which means, 'God is with us.' When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife, but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son; and he named him Jesus.

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

Prayer:
Lord, you fulfill the desire of all who fear you;
you hear their cry, and save them.

Incarnate God, you comfort your people and have compassion on your suffering ones. In your mercy, hear our prayer..

You live in us when we love on another. We pray for ourselves and those dear to us. In your mercy, hear our prayer..

You bring good news of great joy. We pray for our community and for our neighbors. In your mercy, hear our prayer..

You establish your covenant of peace. We pray for the church in all places, that we may know the freedom of life in the Spirit. In your mercy, hear our prayer..

You will judge the peoples with truth. We pray for the world and for all who care for creation. In your mercy, hear our prayer..

We offer you other concerns we carry in our hearts. In your mercy, hear our prayer..

Almighty God and Father of Light, a Child is born for us and a Son is given to us. Your eternal Word leaped down from heaven in the silent watches of the night, and now your church is filled with wonder at the nearness of our God. Open our hearts to receive his life and increase our vision with the rising of dawn, that our lives may be filled with his glory and his peace, who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen. 
          
Rejoicing in the presence of God here among us,
let us pray in faith and trust:

- The Lord's Prayer

May your Word, born to those who have place,
and sung to those who watch in the wild;
unsettle our world with hidden glory and untold peace;
through Jesus Christ, the Child of Promise. 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 is adaptedfrom  two prayers in _Opening Prayers: Collects in Contemporary Language_. Canterbury Press, Norwich, 1999. The intercession is from Take Our Moments and Our Days. The collect is from _Uniting in Worship_, The Uniting Church in Australia. The closing sentence is adapted from Prayers for an Inclusive Church.



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