OREMUS: 2 January 2011

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Sat Jan 1 17:00:00 GMT 2011


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OREMUS for January 2
Basil the Great and Gregory Nazianzen, Bishops, 379 and 389

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

Blessed are you, loving and merciful God,
you fill our hearts with joy
as we recognize in Christ the revelation of your love.
No eye can see his glory as our God,
yet now he is seen like one of us.
Christ is your Son before all ages,
yet now he is born in time.
He has come to lift up all things to himself,
to restore unity to creation,
and to lead us from exile into your heavenly kingdom.
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 9

I will give thanks to you, O Lord, with my whole heart;*
 I will tell of all your marvellous works.
I will be glad and rejoice in you;*
 I will sing to your name, O Most High.
When my enemies are driven back,*
 they will stumble and perish at your presence.
For you have maintained my right and my cause;*
 you sit upon your throne judging right.
You have rebuked the ungodly and destroyed the wicked;*
 you have blotted out their name for ever and ever.
As for the enemy, they are finished, in perpetual ruin,*
 their cities ploughed under,
   the memory of them perished;
But the Lord is enthroned for ever;*
 he has set up his throne for judgement.
It is he who rules the world with righteousness;*
 he judges the peoples with equity.
The Lord will be a refuge for the oppressed,*
 a refuge in time of trouble.
Those who know your name will put their trust in you,*
 for you never forsake those who seek you, O Lord.
Sing praise to the Lord who dwells in Zion;*
 proclaim to the peoples the things he has done.
The avenger of blood will remember them;*
 he will not forget the cry of the afflicted.
Have pity on me, O Lord;*
 see the misery I suffer from those who hate me,
   O you who lift me up from the gate of death;
So that I may tell of all your praises
   and rejoice in your salvation*
 in the gates of the city of Zion.
The ungodly have fallen into the pit they dug,*
 and in the snare they set is their own foot caught.
The Lord is known by his acts of justice;*
 the wicked are trapped in the works of their own hands.
The wicked shall be given over to the grave,*
 and also all the peoples that forget God.
For the needy shall not always be forgotten,*
 and the hope of the poor shall not perish for ever.
Rise up, O Lord,
   let not the ungodly have the upper hand;*
 let them be judged before you.
Put fear upon them, O Lord;*
 let the ungodly know they are but mortal.

Psalm 10

Why do you stand so far off, O Lord,*
 and hide yourself in time of trouble?
The wicked arrogantly persecute the poor,*
 but they are trapped in the schemes they have devised.
The wicked boast of their heart's desire;*
 the covetous curse and revile the Lord.
The wicked are so proud that they care not for God;*
 their only thought is, 'God does not matter.'
Their ways are devious at all times;
   your judgements are far above out of their sight;*
 they defy all their enemies.
They say in their heart, 'I shall not be shaken;*
 no harm shall happen to me ever.'
Their mouth is full of cursing, deceit and oppression;*
 under their tongue are mischief and wrong.
They lurk in ambush in public squares
   and in secret places they murder the innocent;*
 they spy out the helpless.
They lie in wait, like a lion in a covert;
   they lie in wait to seize upon the lowly;*
 they seize the lowly and drag them away in their net.
The innocent are broken and humbled before them;*
 the helpless fall before their power.
They say in their heart, 'God has forgotten;*
 he hides his face; he will never notice.'
Rise up, O Lord;
   lift up your hand, O God;*
 do not forget the afflicted.
Why should the wicked revile God?*
 why should they say in their heart, 'You do not care'?
Surely, you behold trouble and misery;*
 you see it and take it into your own hand.
The helpless commit themselves to you,*
 for you are the helper of orphans.
Break the power of the wicked and evil;*
 search out their wickedness until you find none.
The Lord is king for ever and ever;*
 the ungodly shall perish from his land.
The Lord will hear the desire of the humble;*
 you will strengthen their heart and your ears shall hear;
To give justice to the orphan and oppressed,*
 so that mere mortals may strike terror no more.

Psalm 11

In the Lord have I taken refuge;*
 how then can you say to me,
   'Fly away like a bird to the hilltop;
'For see how the wicked bend the bow
   and fit their arrows to the string,*
 to shoot from ambush at the true of heart.
'When the foundations are being destroyed,*
 what can the righteous do?'
The Lord is in his holy temple;*
 the Lord's throne is in heaven.
His eyes behold the inhabited world;*
 his piercing eye weighs our worth.
The Lord weighs the righteous as well as the wicked,*
 but those who delight in violence he abhors.
Upon the wicked he shall rain coals of fire
   and burning sulphur;*
 a scorching wind shall be their lot.
For the Lord is righteous;
   he delights in righteous deeds;*
 and the just shall see his face.

FIRST READING [Isaiah 62:1–12]:

For Zion's sake I will not keep silent,
   and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest,
until her vindication shines out like the dawn,
   and her salvation like a burning torch. 
The nations shall see your vindication,
   and all the kings your glory;
and you shall be called by a new name
   that the mouth of the Lord will give. 
You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord,
   and a royal diadem in the hand of your God. 
You shall no more be termed Forsaken,
   and your land shall no more be termed Desolate;
but you shall be called My Delight Is in Her,
   and your land Married;
for the Lord delights in you,
   and your land shall be married. 
For as a young man marries a young woman,
   so shall your builder marry you,
and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride,
   so shall your God rejoice over you. 
Upon your walls, O Jerusalem,
   I have posted sentinels;
all day and all night
   they shall never be silent.
You who remind the Lord,
   take no rest, 
and give him no rest
   until he establishes Jerusalem
   and makes it renowned throughout the earth. 
The Lord has sworn by his right hand
   and by his mighty arm:
I will not again give your grain
   to be food for your enemies,
and foreigners shall not drink the wine
   for which you have laboured; 
but those who garner it shall eat it
   and praise the Lord,
and those who gather it shall drink it
   in my holy courts. 

Go through, go through the gates,
   prepare the way for the people;
build up, build up the highway,
   clear it of stones,
   lift up an ensign over the peoples. 
The Lord has proclaimed
   to the end of the earth:
Say to daughter Zion,
   'See, your salvation comes;
his reward is with him,
   and his recompense before him.' 
They shall be called, 'The Holy People,
   The Redeemed of the Lord';
and you shall be called, 'Sought Out,
   A City Not Forsaken.' 

HYMN 
Words: Christina Rossetti (1830-1894), 1885
Tune: Gartan, Hermitage

Love came down at Christmas,
love all lovely, love divine;
love was born at Christmas:
star and angels gave the sign.

Worship we the Godhead,
love incarnate, love divine;
worship we our Jesus,
but wherewith the sacred sign?

Love shall be our token;
love be yours and love be mine,
Love to God and to all men,
love for plea and gift and sign.

SECOND READING [Luke 2:1–20]:

In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. All went to their own towns to be registered. Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David. He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and who was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn. 

In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, 'Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.' And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying, 
'Glory to God in the highest heaven,
   and on earth peace among those whom he favours!' 

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, 'Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.' So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about this child; and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them. 

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

Prayer:
Unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given.
Let us offer our prayers for the needs of the world.

Wonderful Counselor,
give your wisdom to the rulers of the nations...
We pray especially for the people of Palestine.
Lord, in your mercy
hear our prayer.

Mighty God,
make the whole world know
that the government is on your shoulders...
Lord, in your mercy
hear our prayer.

Everlasting Father,
establish your reign of justice and righteousness for ever...
Lord, in your mercy
hear our prayer.

Prince of Peace,
bring in the endless kingdom of your peace...
Lord, in your mercy
hear our prayer.

Lord of the Church,
hear our prayer,
and make us one in heart and mind
to serve you with joy for ever.
Lord, in your mercy
hear our prayer.

God of power and life, 
the glory of all who believe in you: 
Fill the world with your splendor 
and show the nations the light of your truth; 
through Jesus Christ our Lord, 
who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, 
one God, now and forever. Amen.

Lord God, whose servants Basil and Gregory
proclaimed the mystery of your Word made flesh,
to build up your Church in wisdom and strength:
grant that we may rejoice in his presence among us,
and so be brought with them to know the power
of your unending love;
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.
       
Awaiting his coming in glory,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

Rejoicing in the presence of God here among us,
let us pray in faith and trust:

- The Lord's Prayer

May the Christ who by becoming incarnate gathered into one
things earthly and heavenly,
bestow upon us the fullness of peace and goodwill. Amen.

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The psalms and the invitation to the Lord's Prayer 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 of thanksgiving and the closing sentence are adapted from
_The Promise of His Glory_ (Mowbray), (c) The Central
Board of Finance  of the Church of England 1990, 1991, which is used with
permission.

The collect is from _The Book of Alternative Services of The
Anglican Church of Canada_.
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.

Gregory and Basil were two friends bound together by their desire to promote and defend the divinity of Christ as proclaimed in the Nicene Creed. This was against the seemingly overwhelming pressure from both Church and State for the establishment of Arianism, which denied Christ's divinity and thus the whole Christian doctrine of the Trinity. Basil was renowned for being headstrong and forceful, in comparison to his friend Gregory, who would rather spend his days in prayer and living the simple, ascetic life. Gregory's brilliance in oratory and theological debate meant that a hidden life was virtually impossible and Basil drew him into the forefront of the controversy. Their joint persuasive eloquence convinced the first Council of Constantinople, meeting in 381, that their teaching was the truly orthodox one and the Council ratified the text of the Nicene Creed in the form it is used in the East to this day. Basil died in 379 and Gregory ten years later. [Exciting Holiness]


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