OREMUS: 16 March 2012

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Thu Mar 15 17:00:00 GMT 2012

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OREMUS for March 16

O God, make speed to save us;
O Lord, make haste to help us.

See, now is the acceptable time,
now is the day of salvation!
Let us worship God.

Blessed are you, God of holiness and mercy,
you never abandon your people:
you see our misery,
hear our cry
and come swiftly to our deliverance.
You shatter the hardness of our hearts
and open our minds
to the wisdom of the Gospel,
that we may grasp the lessons
you teach us daily
and bring forth the fruit
of true and continual conversion.
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. 

Psalm 79

O God, the heathen have come
into your inheritance;
they have profaned your holy temple;*
 they have made Jerusalem a heap of rubble.
They have given the bodies of your servants
as food for the birds of the air,*
 and the flesh of your faithful ones
 to the beasts of the field.
They have shed their blood like water
on every side of Jerusalem,*
 and there was no one to bury them.
We have become a reproach to our neighbours,*
 an object of scorn
 and derision to those around us.
How long will you be angry, O Lord?*
 will your fury blaze like fire for ever?
Pour out your wrath upon the heathen
who have not known you*
 and upon the kingdoms
 that have not called upon your name.
For they have devoured Jacob*
 and made his dwelling a ruin.
Remember not our past sins;
let your compassion be swift to meet us;*
 for we have been brought very low.
Help us, O God our Saviour,
for the glory of your name;*
 deliver us and forgive us our sins,
 for your name's sake.
Why should the heathen say, 
'Where is their God?'*
 Let it be known among the heathen
 and in our sight
 that you avenge the shedding
 of your servants' blood.]
Let the sorrowful sighing of the prisoners
come before you,*
 and by your great might
 spare those who are condemned to die.
May the revilings with which
they reviled you, O Lord,*
 return sevenfold into their bosoms.
We are your people and the sheep of your pasture;*
 we will give you thanks for ever
and show forth your praise from age to age.

Psalm 80[CCP]

Hear, O Shepherd of Israel,
leading Joseph like a flock;*
 shine forth, you that are enthroned
 upon the cherubim. 
In the presence
of Ephraim, Benjamin and Manasseh,*
 stir up your strength and come to help us. 
Restore us, O God of hosts;*
 show the light of your countenance
 and we shall be saved. 
O Lord God of hosts,*
 how long will you be angered
 despite the prayers of your people? 
You have fed them with the bread of tears;*
 you have given them
 bowls of tears to drink. 
You have made us
the derision of our neighbours,*
 and our enemies laugh us to scorn. 
Restore us, O God of hosts;*
 show the light of your countenance
 and we shall be saved. 
You have brought a vine out of Egypt;*
 you cast out the nations and planted it. 
You prepared the ground for it;*
 it took root and filled the land. 
The mountains were covered by its shadow*
 and the towering cedar trees by its boughs. 
You stretched out its tendrils to the Sea*
 and its branches to the River. 
Why have you broken down its wall,*
 so that all who pass by pluck off its grapes? 
The wild boar of the forest has ravaged it,*
 and the beasts of the field
 have grazed upon it. 
Turn now, O God of hosts,
look down from heaven; 
behold and tend this vine;*
 preserve what your right hand has planted. 
They burn it with fire like rubbish;*
 at the rebuke of your countenance
 let them perish. 
Let your hand be upon
the man of your right hand,*
 the son of man you have made
 so strong for yourself. 
And so will we never turn away from you;*
 give us life,
 that we may call upon your name. 
Restore us, O Lord God of hosts;*
 show the light of your countenance
 and we shall be saved. 

Psalm 81

Sing with joy to God our strength*
 and raise a loud shout to the God of Jacob. 
Raise a song and sound the timbrel,*
 the merry harp and the lyre. 
Blow the ram's-horn at the new moon,*
 and at the full moon, the day of our feast. 
For this is a statute for Israel,*
 a law of the God of Jacob. 
He laid it as a solemn charge upon Joseph,*
 when he came out of the land of Egypt. 
I heard an unfamiliar voice saying,*
 'I eased his shoulder from the burden; 
 his hands were set free
 from bearing the load.' 
You called on me in trouble
and I saved you;*
 I answered you
 from the secret place of thunder
 and tested you
 at the waters of Meribah. 
Hear, O my people,
and I will admonish you:*
 O Israel, if you would but listen to me! 
There shall be no strange god among you;*
 you shall not worship a foreign god. 
I am the Lord your God, 
who brought you
out of the land of Egypt and said,*
 'Open your mouth wide and I will fill it.' 
And yet my people did not hear my voice,*
 and Israel would not obey me. 
So I gave them over
to the stubbornness of their hearts,*
 to follow their own devices. 
O that my people would listen to me!*
 that Israel would walk in my ways! 
I should soon subdue their enemies*
 and turn my hand against their foes. 
Those who hate the Lord
would cringe before him,*
 and their punishment would last for ever. 
But Israel would I feed
with the finest wheat*
 and satisfy him with honey from the rock. 

FIRST READING [Ezekiel 20:30-44]:

Therefore say to the house of Israel, Thus says the Lord God: Will you defile yourselves after the manner of your ancestors and go astray after their detestable things? When you offer your gifts and make your children pass through the fire, you defile yourselves with all your idols to this day. And shall I be consulted by you, O house of Israel? As I live, says the Lord God, I will not be consulted by you. 

What is in your mind shall never happen—the thought, 'Let us be like the nations, like the tribes of the countries, and worship wood and stone.' 

As I live, says the Lord God, surely with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, and with wrath poured out, I will be king over you. I will bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you are scattered, with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, and with wrath poured out; and I will bring you into the wilderness of the peoples, and there I will enter into judgement with you face to face. As I entered into judgement with your ancestors in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so I will enter into judgement with you, says the Lord God. I will make you pass under the staff, and will bring you within the bond of the covenant. I will purge out the rebels among you, and those who transgress against me; I will bring them out of the land where they reside as aliens, but they shall not enter the land of Israel. Then you shall know that I am the Lord. 

As for you, O house of Israel, thus says the Lord God: Go, serve your idols, every one of you now and hereafter, if you will not listen to me; but my holy name you shall no more profane with your gifts and your idols. 

For on my holy mountain, the mountain height of Israel, says the Lord God, there all the house of Israel, all of them, shall serve me in the land; there I will accept them, and there I will require your contributions and the choicest of your gifts, with all your sacred things. As a pleasing odour I will accept you, when I bring you out from the peoples, and gather you out of the countries where you have been scattered; and I will manifest my holiness among you in the sight of the nations. You shall know that I am the Lord, when I bring you into the land of Israel, the country that I swore to give to your ancestors. There you shall remember your ways and all the deeds by which you have polluted yourselves; and you shall loathe yourselves for all the evils that you have committed. And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I deal with you for my name's sake, not according to your evil ways or corrupt deeds, O house of Israel, says the Lord God. 

Words: John Page Hopps (1834-1911)
Tune: Orientis partibus, St Benedict
Father, lead me day by day
ever in thine own good way;
teach me to be pure and true,
show me what I ought to do.

When in danger, make me brave;
make me know that thou canst save,
keep me safe by thy dear side;
let me in thy love abide.

When I'm tempted to do wrong,
make me steadfast, wise, and strong;
and when all alone I stand,
shield me with thy mighty hand.

When my heart is full of glee,
help me to remember thee;
happy most of all to know
that my Father loves me so.

When my work seems hard and dry,
may I press on cheerily;
help me patiently to bear
pain and hardship, toil and care.

May I see the good and bright,
when they pass before my sight;
may I hear the heavenly voice
when the pure and wise rejoice.

May I do the good I know,
be thy loving child below,
then at last go home to thee,
evermore thy child to be. 

SECOND READING [Romans 8:1-11]:

There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do: by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and to deal with sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, so that the just requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. To set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For this reason the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God's law—indeed it cannot, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God. 

But you are not in the flesh; you are in the Spirit, since the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. But if Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit that dwells in you. 

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

God of love
hear the cry of those who yearn for love;
fractured families, broken homes
neglected, unwanted, alone.
God of love,
hear our prayer

God of justice
hear the cry of those who yearn for justice;
persecuted and oppressed,
exploited, ill-treated, broken.
God of justice
hear our prayer

God of peace
hear the cry of those who yearn for peace;
in battle zones and broken states,
frightened, fearful, anxious
God of peace
hear our prayer

God of healing
hear the cry of those who yearn for healing;
physical and spiritual
hurting, weakened, depressed
God of healing
hear our prayer

God of mercy
Hear the cry of those who yearn for mercy;
convicted, in need of your Grace,
contrite, humble, bowed down,
God of mercy
hear our prayer

Journey with us, O holy God, 
as we continue our way to the cross. 
Sharpen our focus, that our attention
may center more on you than ourselves. 
Lead us through the shadows of darkness and prepare our hearts, 
that we might be a people of prayer, 
ready to perceive and respond 
to your Son and our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Trusting in the compassion of God,
let us pray as our Savior taught us:

- The Lord's Prayer

May we persevere in the quest for holiness,,BR>
and while we seek
to serve you in this present age,
set our hearts on your eternal glory. Amen.

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 sentence is 2 Corinthians 6:2. The opening prayer of thanksgiving is in _Benedictine Daily Prayer_ by Maxwell E. Johnson. The intercession is by John Birch http://www.faithandworship.com/  The collect is reprinted by permission from _The Worship Sourcebook_, (c) 2004 CRC Publications.The closing sentence is from _Celebrating the Christian Year_ by Alan Griffiths.

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