OREMUS: 6 July 2011

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Tue Jul 5 17:54:19 GMT 2011


*******************************************************
Visit our website at http://www.oremus.org 
*******************************************************

OREMUS for July 6
Thomas More, Scholar, and John Fisher, Bishop of Rochester, Martyrs, 1535

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

Blessed are you, Almighty God,
we give you thanks for this life and its blessings, 
for joys great and simple, 
for gifts and powers more than we deserve, 
for love at the heart of your purpose
and a surpassing wisdom in all your works, 
for light in the world brought once in Christ
and shining ever through the Spirit. 
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 30

I will exalt you, O Lord,
   because you have lifted me up*
 and have not let my enemies triumph over me.
O Lord my God, I cried out to you,*
 and you restored me to health.
You brought me up, O Lord, from the dead;*
 you restored my life as I was going down to the grave.
Sing to the Lord, you servants of his;*
 give thanks for the remembrance of his holiness.
For his wrath endures but the twinkling of an eye,*
 his favour for a lifetime.
Weeping may spend the night,*
 but joy comes in the morning.
While I felt secure, I said,
   'I shall never be disturbed.*
 You, Lord, with your favour,
   made me as strong as the mountains.'
Then you hid your face,*
 and I was filled with fear.
I cried to you, O Lord;*
 I pleaded with the Lord, saying,
'What profit is there in my blood,
   if I go down to the Pit?*
 will the dust praise you or declare your faithfulness?
'Hear, O Lord, and have mercy upon me;*
 O Lord, be my helper.'
You have turned my wailing into dancing;*
 you have put off my sackcloth and clothed me with joy;
Therefore my heart sings to you without ceasing;*
 O Lord my God, I will give you thanks for ever.

Psalm 31

In you, O Lord, have I taken refuge;
   let me never be put to shame;*
 deliver me in your righteousness.
Incline your ear to me;*
 make haste to deliver me.
Be my strong rock, a castle to keep me safe,
   for you are my crag and my stronghold;*
 for the sake of your name, lead me and guide me.
Take me out of the net
   that they have secretly set for me,*
 for you are my tower of strength.
Into your hands I commend my spirit,*
 for you have redeemed me,
   O Lord, O God of truth.
I hate those who cling to worthless idols,*
 and I put my trust in the Lord.
I will rejoice and be glad because of your mercy;*
 for you have seen my affliction;
   you know my distress.
You have not shut me up in the power of the enemy;*
 you have set my feet in an open place.
Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I am in trouble;*
 my eye is consumed with sorrow,
   and also my throat and my belly.
For my life is wasted with grief,
   and my years with sighing;*
 my strength fails me because of affliction,
   and my bones are consumed.
I have become a reproach to all my enemies
   and even to my neighbours,
   a dismay to those of my acquaintance;*
 when they see me in the street they avoid me.
I am forgotten like the dead, out of mind;*
 I am as useless as a broken pot.
For I have heard the whispering of the crowd;
   fear is all around;*
 they put their heads together against me;
   they plot to take my life.
But as for me, I have trusted in you, O Lord.*
 I have said, 'You are my God.
'My times are in your hand;*
 rescue me from the hand of my enemies,

   and from those who persecute me.
'Make your face to shine upon your servant,*
 and in your lovingkindness save me.'
Lord, let me not be ashamed
   for having called upon you;*
 rather, let the wicked be put to shame;
   let them be silent in the grave.
Let the lying lips be silenced
   which speak against the righteous,*
 haughtily, disdainfully and with contempt.
How great is your goodness, O Lord,
   which you have laid up for those who fear you;*
 which you have done in the sight of all
   for those who put their trust in you.
You hide them in the covert of your presence
   from those who slander them;*
 you keep them in your shelter from the strife of tongues.
Blessed be the Lord!*
 for he has shown me the wonders of his love
   in a besieged city.
Yet I said in my alarm,
   'I have been cut off from the sight of your eyes.'*
 Nevertheless, you heard the sound of my entreaty
   when I cried out to you.
Love the Lord, all you who worship him;*
 the Lord protects the faithful,
   but repays to the full those who act haughtily.
Be strong and let your heart take courage,*
 all you who wait for the Lord.

FIRST READING [Jeremiah 36.1–18]:

In the fourth year of King Jehoiakim son of Josiah of Judah, this word came to Jeremiah from the Lord: Take a scroll and write on it all the words that I have spoken to you against Israel and Judah and all the nations, from the day I spoke to you, from the days of Josiah until today. It may be that when the house of Judah hears of all the disasters that I intend to do to them, all of them may turn from their evil ways, so that I may forgive their iniquity and their sin. 

Then Jeremiah called Baruch son of Neriah, and Baruch wrote on a scroll at Jeremiah's dictation all the words of the Lord that he had spoken to him. And Jeremiah ordered Baruch, saying, 'I am prevented from entering the house of the Lord; so you go yourself, and on a fast day in the hearing of the people in the Lord's house you shall read the words of the Lord from the scroll that you have written at my dictation. You shall read them also in the hearing of all the people of Judah who come up from their towns. It may be that their plea will come before the Lord, and that all of them will turn from their evil ways, for great is the anger and wrath that the Lord has pronounced against this people.' And Baruch son of Neriah did all that the prophet Jeremiah ordered him about reading from the scroll the words of the Lord in the Lord's house. 

In the fifth year of King Jehoiakim son of Josiah of Judah, in the ninth month, all the people in Jerusalem and all the people who came from the towns of Judah to Jerusalem proclaimed a fast before the Lord. Then, in the hearing of all the people, Baruch read the words of Jeremiah from the scroll, in the house of the Lord, in the chamber of Gemariah son of Shaphan the secretary, which was in the upper court, at the entry of the New Gate of the Lord's house. 

When Micaiah son of Gemariah son of Shaphan heard all the words of the Lord from the scroll, he went down to the king's house, into the secretary's chamber; and all the officials were sitting there: Elishama the secretary, Delaiah son of Shemaiah, Elnathan son of Achbor, Gemariah son of Shaphan, Zedekiah son of Hananiah, and all the officials. And Micaiah told them all the words that he had heard, when Baruch read the scroll in the hearing of the people. Then all the officials sent Jehudi son of Nethaniah son of Shelemiah son of Cushi to say to Baruch, 'Bring the scroll that you read in the hearing of the people, and come.' So Baruch son of Neriah took the scroll in his hand and came to them. And they said to him, 'Sit down and read it to us.' So Baruch read it to them. When they heard all the words, they turned to one another in alarm, and said to Baruch, 'We certainly must report all these words to the king.' Then they questioned Baruch, 'Tell us now, how did you write all these words? Was it at his dictation?' Baruch answered them, 'He dictated all these words to me, and I wrote them with ink on the scroll.' 

HYMN 
Words: James R Lowell (1819-1891)
Tune: Tallis' Ordinal

We will speak out, we will be heard!
Though all earth's systems crack,
We will not bate a single word,
Nor take a letter back!

Let liars fear, let cowards shrink,
Let traitors turn away;
Whatever we have dared to think,
That dare we also say.

We speak the truth, and what care we
For hissing and for scorn,
While some faint gleaming we can see
Of freedom's coming morn.

We will speak out, we will be heard!
Though all earth's systems crack,
We will not bate a single word,
Nor take a letter back!

SECOND READING [2 Corinthians 6.1–7.1]:

As we work together with him, we urge you also not to accept the grace of God in vain. For he says,
'At an acceptable time I have listened to you,
   and on a day of salvation I have helped you.'

See, now is the acceptable time; see, now is the day of salvation! We are putting no obstacle in anyone's way, so that no fault may be found with our ministry, but as servants of God we have commended ourselves in every way: through great endurance, in afflictions, hardships, calamities, beatings, imprisonments, riots, labours, sleepless nights, hunger; by purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, holiness of spirit, genuine love, truthful speech, and the power of God; with the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and for the left; in honour and dishonour, in ill repute and good repute. We are treated as impostors, and yet are true; as unknown, and yet are well known; as dying, and see—we are alive; as punished, and yet not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing everything. 

We have spoken frankly to you Corinthians; our heart is wide open to you. There is no restriction in our affections, but only in yours. In return—I speak as to children—open wide your hearts also. 

Do not be mismatched with unbelievers. For what partnership is there between righteousness and lawlessness? Or what fellowship is there between light and darkness? What agreement does Christ have with Beliar? Or what does a believer share with an unbeliever? What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; as God said,
'I will live in them and walk among them,
   and I will be their God,
   and they shall be my people. 
Therefore come out from them,
   and be separate from them, says the Lord,
and touch nothing unclean;
   then I will welcome you, 
and I will be your father,
   and you shall be my sons and daughters,
says the Lord Almighty.' 

Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and of spirit, making holiness perfect in the fear of God.

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

Prayer:
We praise you, God our creator, for your handiwork in
shaping and sustaining your wondrous creation. Especially
we thank you for
     the miracle of life and the wonder of living...
                         (We thank you, Lord.)
     particular blessings coming to us in this day...
     the resources of the earth...
     gifts of creative vision and skillful craft...
     the treasure stored in every human life...

We dare to pray for others, God our Savior, claiming your
love in Jesus Christ for the whole world, committing
ourselves to care for those around us in his name.
Especially we pray for
     those who work for the benefit of others... 
                         (Lord, hear our prayer.)
     those who cannot work today...
     those who teach and those who learn...
     people who are poor...
     the Church in Europe...
 

God of peace,
you strive to set within us
a Gospel joy.
It is there, very nearby,
ever renewed by the trusting way
you behold our lives. Amen.

God of love, 
who gave your servants 
Thomas More and John Fisher 
a gentleness of spirit and a firmness of faith: 
strengthen us in holding to your truth 
that at the last, we may ever live and love together 
with all your saints in heaven; 
through Jesus Christ our Lord, 
who lives and reigns with you and 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

Bless all who labour in your harvest,
that they may rejoice to announce your peace
and not be afraid to declare
the coming of your judgement. Amen.

*******************************************************
The psalms 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 is from _Chalice Worship_, (c) Chalice Press, 1997. Reproduced with permission. The first collect is by Brother Roger of Taize and the closing sentence by Alan Griffiths.

Born in London in 1478, Thomas More studied classics and then the law, being called to the Bar at twenty-three years old. His clear honesty and integrity impressed Henry VIII and he appointed Thomas as his Chancellor. He supported the king in his efforts to reform the clergy but disagreed over Henry's disputes with the papacy, caused by the king's desire to annul his marriage to Catherine of Aragon and to find another queen who might provide him with a male heir. Henry could stand no such act of defiance and imprisoned his chancellor in the hope that he would renege. Thomas refused to take the Oath on the Act of Succession, which declared the king to be the only protector and supreme head of the Church in England, and was executed for treason on this day in 1535, declaring that he died the king's good servant but God's first. 

John Fisher was Thomas More's close friend and ally. A brilliant academic, he had substantially reformed the life of the University of Cambridge, through the wealth and influence of his patron, Lady Margaret Beaufort, the mother of Henry VII. He was made Bishop of Rochester and proved himself to be a good pastor to his small diocese. As with Thomas, Henry VIII much admired him at first, but when he opposed the king their relationship deteriorated. Aged sixty-six and in indifferent health, he nevertheless endured the trauma of imprisonment in the Tower of London. He was executed just two weeks before Thomas on 22 July 1535. [Exciting Holiness]



More information about the oremus mailing list