Morning Prayer 1.23.18, Phillips Brooks, Bishop of Massachusetts, 1893

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Abram believed the LORD; and the LORD reckoned it to him as righteousness.

Maurice Peress has died, a maverick conductor whose career bridged classical and jazz. He got turned on to African-American music in the Army, when he was assigned to a newly desegregated regimental band. After discharge, he and Seiji Ozawa served as assistant conductors under Leonard Bernstein at the New York Philharmonic. He became principal conductor in Corpus Christi and Austin, where the Bureau of Indian Affairs recruited him to bring music to Indian reservations and incorporate Native sounds; with a last name of Peress, BIA took him for Tex-Mex and figured that made him half-Indian already. New York born and raised, he answered with one word – “Shalom!” – and grabbed it. After what he considered a tortured 6-year stint as music director in Kansas City, he worked closely with Duke Ellington to bring his works to Carnegie Hall. Peress then settled in for a 33-year run at the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College; led the world premiere of Bernstein’s “Mass” at the Kennedy Center; and staged acclaimed re-creations of the most significant concerts of the 20th century. He once led a performance at the White House before a tepid audience of political con men and connivers, who finally came alive when he ushered in Ellington’s band – which was the whole point of the program; elevator music is easy to ignore, but look what happens, even to Kansas City, when you bring in the beat. Maurice Perres was an all-American. (Julie Glassberg/The New York Times)

From the rising of the sun to its setting my Name shall be great among the nations, and in every place incense shall be offered to my Name, and a pure offering; for my Name shall be great among the nations, says the Lord of hosts. Malachi 1:11

INVITATORY AND PSALTER

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

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

Psalm 95:1-7

Come, let us sing to the Lord;
let us shout for joy to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come before God’s presence with thanksgiving;
and raise to the Lord a shout with psalms.
For you are a great God;
you are great above all gods.
In your hand are the caverns of the earth;
and the heights of the hills are yours also.
The sea is yours, for you made it,
and your hands have molded the dry land.
Come, let us bow down and bend the knee,
and kneel before the Lord our Maker.
For you are our God,
and we are the people of your pasture, and the sheep of your hand.
Oh, that today we would hearken to your voice!

Psalm 45

1 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.
2 You are the fairest of men; *
grace flows from your lips,
because God has blessed you for ever.
3 Strap your sword upon your thigh, O mighty warrior, *
in your pride and in your majesty.
4 Ride out and conquer in the cause of truth *
and for the sake of justice.
5 Your right hand will show you marvelous things; *
your arrows are very sharp, O mighty warrior.
6 The peoples are falling at your feet, *
and the king’s enemies are losing heart.
7 Your throne, O God, endures for ever and ever, *
a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of your reign;
you love righteousness and hate iniquity.
8 Therefore God, your God, has anointed you *
with the oil of gladness above your fellows.
9 All your garments are fragrant with myrrh, aloes, and cassia, *
and the music of strings from ivory palaces makes you glad.
10 Kings’ daughters stand among the ladies of the court; *
on your right hand is the queen,
adorned with the gold of Ophir.
11 ”Hear, O daughter; consider and listen closely; *
forget your people and your father’s house.
12 The king will have pleasure in your beauty; *
he is your master; therefore do him honor.
13 The people of Tyre are here with a gift; *
the rich among the people seek your favor.”
14 All glorious is the princess as she enters; *
her gown is cloth-of-gold.
15 In embroidered apparel she is brought to the king; *
after her the bridesmaids follow in procession.
16 With joy and gladness they are brought, *
and enter into the palace of the king.
17 “In place of fathers, O king, you shall have sons; *
you shall make them princes over all the earth.
18 I will make your name to be remembered
from one generation to another; *
therefore nations will praise you for ever and ever.”

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Abram’s covenant sacrifice. No matter how repulsive it is to us today, animal sacrifice was a huge improvement over the human sacrifices often performed by the nations surrounding Israel, and marked a monumental turning point in the Hebrews’ relationship with God. (YouTube screengrab)

THE LESSONS
Genesis 15:1-11, 17-21 (NRSV)

After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, “Do not be afraid, Abram, I am your shield; your reward shall be very great.” But Abram said, “O Lord GOD, what will you give me, for I continue childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” And Abram said, “You have given me no offspring, and so a slave born in my house is to be my heir.” But the word of the LORD came to him, “This man shall not be your heir; no one but your very own issue shall be your heir.” He brought him outside and said, “Look toward heaven and count the stars, if you are able to count them.” Then he said to him, “So shall your descendants be.” And he believed the LORD; and the LORD reckoned it to him as righteousness.

Then he said to him, “I am the LORD who brought you from Ur of the Chaldeans, to give you this land to possess.” But he said, “O Lord GOD, how am I to know that I shall possess it?” He said to him, “Bring me a heifer three years old, a female goat three years old, a ram three years old, a turtledove, and a young pigeon.” He brought him all these and cut them in two, laying each half over against the other; but he did not cut the birds in two. And when birds of prey came down on the carcasses, Abram drove them away.

When the sun had gone down and it was dark, a smoking fire pot and a flaming torch passed between these pieces. On that day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, “To your descendants I give this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates, the land of the Kenites, the Kenizzites, the Kadmonites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Rephaim, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Girgashites, and the Jebusites.”

Canticle: A Song of Pilgrimage
Ecclesiasticus 51:13-16, 20b-22

Before I ventured forth,
even while I was very young, *
I sought wisdom openly in my prayer.
In the forecourts of the temple I asked for her, *
and I will seek her to the end.
From first blossom to early fruit, *
she has been the delight of my heart.
My foot has kept firmly to the true path, *
diligently from my youth have I pursued her.
I inclined my ear a little and received her; *
I found for myself much wisdom and became adept in her.
To the one who gives me wisdom will I give glory, *
for I have resolved to live according to her way.
From the beginning I gained courage from her, *
therefore I will not be forsaken.
In my inmost being I have been stirred to seek her, *
therefore have I gained a good possession.
As my reward the Almighty has given me the gift of language,*
and with it will I offer praise to God.

Unknown artist’s rendering of the Holy of Holies of Solomon’s Temple, showing the Ark of the Covenant and its contents: the tablets of the 10 Commandments, Aaron’s staff that budded, and a jar of manna from heaven. The high priest entered this inner sanctum just once a year on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, after purifying himself.

Hebrews 9:1-14 (NRSV)

Now even the first covenant had regulations for worship and an earthly sanctuary. For a tent was constructed, the first one, in which were the lampstand, the table, and the bread of the Presence; this is called the Holy Place. Behind the second curtain was a tent called the Holy of Holies. In it stood the golden altar of incense and the ark of the covenant overlaid on all sides with gold, in which there were a golden urn holding the manna, and Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tablets of the covenant; above it were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the mercy seat. Of these things we cannot speak now in detail.

Such preparations having been made, the priests go continually into the first tent to carry out their ritual duties; but only the high priest goes into the second, and he but once a year, and not without taking the blood that he offers for himself and for the sins committed unintentionally by the people. By this the Holy Spirit indicates that the way into the sanctuary has not yet been disclosed as long as the first tent is still standing. This is a symbol of the present time, during which gifts and sacrifices are offered that cannot perfect the conscience of the worshiper, but deal only with food and drink and various baptisms, regulations for the body imposed until the time comes to set things right.

But when Christ came as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation), he entered once for all into the Holy Place, not with the blood of goats and calves, but with his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption. For if the blood of goats and bulls, with the sprinkling of the ashes of a heifer, sanctifies those who have been defiled so that their flesh is purified, how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to worship the living God!

Canticle: A Song of Faith
1 Peter 1:3-4, 18-21

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, *
by divine mercy we have a new birth into a living hope;
Through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, *
we have an inheritance that is imperishable in heaven.
The ransom that was paid to free us *
was not paid in silver or gold,
But in the precious blood of Christ, *
the Lamb without spot or stain.
God raised Jesus from the dead and gave him glory *
so that we might have faith and hope in God.

Nathan Greene: Christ Heals at the Pool of Bethesda

John 5:1-18 (NRSV)

After this there was a festival of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. Now in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate there is a pool, called in Hebrew Beth-zatha, which has five porticoes. In these lay many invalids—blind, lame, and paralyzed. One man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had been there a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be made well?” The sick man answered him, “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; and while I am making my way, someone else steps down ahead of me.” Jesus said to him, “Stand up, take your mat and walk.” At once the man was made well, and he took up his mat and began to walk. Now that day was a sabbath. So the Jews said to the man who had been cured, “It is the sabbath; it is not lawful for you to carry your mat.” But he answered them, “The man who made me well said to me, ‘Take up your mat and walk.'” They asked him, “Who is the man who said to you, ‘Take it up and walk’?” Now the man who had been healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had disappeared in the crowd that was there. Later Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, “See, you have been made well! Do not sin any more, so that nothing worse happens to you.” The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well. Therefore the Jews started persecuting Jesus, because he was doing such things on the sabbath.

But Jesus answered them, “My Father is still working, and I also am working.” For this reason the Jews were seeking all the more to kill him, because he was not only breaking the sabbath, but was also calling God his own Father, thereby making himself equal to God.

THE APOSTLES’ CREED

I believe in God,
the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ,
God’s only son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.

THE PRAYERS

The Lord be with you.
And also with you.
Let us pray.

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your Name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial,
and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours,
now and for ever. Amen.

V. Help us, O God our Savior;
R. Deliver us and forgive us our sins.
V. Look upon your congregation;
R. Give to your people the blessing of peace.
V. Declare your glory among the nations;
R. And your wonders among all peoples.
V. Do not let the oppressed be shamed and turned away;
R. Never forget the lives of your poor.
V. Continue your loving-kindness to those who know you;
R. And your favor to those who are true of heart.
V. Satisfy us by your loving-kindness in the morning;
R. So shall we rejoice and be glad all the days of our life.

Phillips Brooks was a type of respectable clergyman who doesn’t exist anymore: born to a prominent Boston family, he graduated from Harvard at 20, then from Virginia Theological Seminary, and gained fame as a preacher in Philadelphia before being brought back to Boston as rector of Trinity Church, one of the city’s most prestigious. His fame grew, he preached to great crowds, published hymns and books and lectured at Yale Divinity School. He turned down an assistant bishopric in Philadelphia before finally being elected Bishop of Massachusetts shortly before he died, greatly esteemed and mourned as a civic treasure.

Collect of the Day: Phillips Brooks, Bishop of Massachusetts, 1893

O everlasting God, you revealed truth to your servant Phillips Brooks, and so formed and molded his mind and heart that he was able to mediate that truth with grace and power: Grant, we pray, that all those whom you call to preach the Gospel may steep themselves in your Word, and conform their lives to your will; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

No News Is the Best News: No U.S. Casualties in War Last Week
They Have Names, compiled since 2007 by Clint Gilliland

Total War Deaths: 8,398

Iraq: Total Deaths: 4,852
-no U.S. or allied casualties reported this past week-

Afghanistan: Total Deaths: 3,546
-no U.S. or allied casualties reported this past week-

For Those in the Armed Forces of our Country

Almighty God, we commend to your gracious care and keeping all the men and women of our armed forces at home and abroad. Defend them day by day with your heavenly grace; strengthen them in their trials and temptations; give them courage to face the perils which beset them; and grant them a sense of your abiding presence wherever they may be; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

A Collect for Peace

O God, the author of peace and lover of concord, to know you is eternal life and to serve you is perfect freedom: Defend us, your humble servants, in all assaults of our enemies; that we, surely trusting in your defense, may not fear the power of any adversaries; through the might of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Please add your own intercessions, supplications and thanksgivings here.

Collect for Mission

Lord Jesus Christ, you stretched out your arms of love on the hard wood of the cross that everyone might come within the reach of your saving embrace: So clothe us in your Spirit that we, reaching forth our hands in love, may bring those who do not know you to the knowledge and love of you; for the honor of your Name. Amen.

Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with us all evermore. Amen. 2 Corinthians 13:14++

VIDEO: God hath sent his angels (Phillips Brooks, James Cutler Dunn Parker) – Mary Katherine May, 2013

Evening Prayer 1.22.18, Vincent of Saragossa, Deacon & Martyr, 304

The Galileans welcomed Jesus, since they had seen all that he had done in Jerusalem.

Kyle Stephens was among the young female gymnasts who confronted Dr. Larry Nassar at his sentencing hearing last week after he confessed to sexually abusing 140 of them as children. He held his head in his hands and couldn’t look at any of them. He was a professor of sports medicine at Michigan State University, certified by USA Gymnastics, and this weekend calls grew louder for the university president to resign. If she does she’ll be joining three members of the sport’s governing body, who were forced out earlier today. (Rena Laverty/European Pressphoto Agency)

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ. Philippians 1:2

INVITATORY AND PSALTER

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

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

Hymn: O Gracious Light

O gracious Light,
pure brightness of the everliving Father in heaven,
O Jesus Christ, holy and blessed!
Now as we come to the setting of the sun,
and our eyes behold the vesper light,
we sing your praises, O God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
You are worthy at all times to be praised by happy voices,
O Son of God, O Giver of life,
and to be glorified through all the worlds.

Psalm 44

1 We have heard with our ears, O God,
our forefathers have told us, *
the deeds you did in their days,
in the days of old.
2 How with your hand you drove the peoples out
and planted our ancestors in the land; *
how you destroyed nations and made your people flourish.
3 For they did not take the land by their sword,
nor did their arm win the victory for them; *
but your right hand, your arm, and the light of your countenance,
because you favored them.
4 You are my Sovereign and my God; *
you command victories for Jacob.
5 Through you we pushed back our adversaries; *
through your Name we trampled on those who rose up against us.
6 For I do not rely on my bow, *
and my sword does not give me the victory.
7 Surely you gave us victory over our adversaries *
and put those who hate us to shame.
8 Every day we gloried in God, *
and we will praise your Name for ever.
9 Nevertheless, you have rejected and humbled us *
and do not go forth with our armies.
10 You have made us fall back before our adversary, *
and our enemies have plundered us.
11 You have made us like sheep to be eaten *
and have scattered us among the nations.
12 You are selling your people for a trifle *
and are making no profit on the sale of them.
13 You have made us the scorn of our neighbors, *
a mockery and derision to those around us.
14 You have made us a byword among the nations, *
a laughing-stock among the peoples.
15 My humiliation is daily before me, *
and shame has covered my face;
16 Because of the taunts of the mockers and blasphemers, *
because of the enemy and avenger.
17 All this has come upon us; *
yet we have not forgotten you,
nor have we betrayed your covenant.
18 Our heart never turned back, *
nor did our footsteps stray from your path;
19 Though you thrust us down into a place of misery, *
and covered us over with deep darkness.
20 If we have forgotten the Name of our God, *
or stretched out our hands to some strange god,
21 Will not God find it out? *
for you know the secrets of the heart.
22 Indeed, for your sake we are killed all the day long; *
we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.
23 Awake, O Lord! why are you sleeping? *
Arise! do not reject us for ever.
24 Why have you hidden your face *
and forgotten our affliction and oppression?
25 We sink down into the dust; *
our body cleaves to the ground.
26 Rise up, and help us, *
and save us, for the sake of your steadfast love.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Jesus heals an official’s son. (Artist unknown)

THE LESSON
John 4:43-54 (NRSV)

When the two days were over, he went from that place to Galilee (for Jesus himself had testified that a prophet has no honor in the prophet’s own country). When he came to Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him, since they had seen all that he had done in Jerusalem at the festival; for they too had gone to the festival.

Then he came again to Cana in Galilee where he had changed the water into wine. Now there was a royal official whose son lay ill in Capernaum. When he heard that Jesus had come from Judea to Galilee, he went and begged him to come down and heal his son, for he was at the point of death. Then Jesus said to him, “Unless you see signs and wonders you will not believe.” The official said to him, “Sir, come down before my little boy dies.” Jesus said to him, “Go; your son will live.” The man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him and started on his way. As he was going down, his slaves met him and told him that his child was alive. So he asked them the hour when he began to recover, and they said to him, “Yesterday at one in the afternoon the fever left him.” The father realized that this was the hour when Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” So he himself believed, along with his whole household. Now this was the second sign that Jesus did after coming from Judea to Galilee.

Canticle: The Song of Simeon
Luke 2:29-32

Lord, you now have set your servant free *
to go in peace as you have promised;
For these eyes of mine have seen the Savior, *
whom you have prepared for all the world to see:
A Light to enlighten the nations, *
and the glory of your people Israel.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

THE APOSTLES’ CREED

I believe in God,
the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ,
God’s only son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.

THE PRAYERS

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your Name,
your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours, now and for ever. Amen.

That this evening may be holy, good, and peaceful,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That your holy angels may lead us in paths of peace and goodwill,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That we may be pardoned and forgiven for our sins and offenses,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That there may be peace to your Church and to the whole world,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That we may depart this life in your faith and fear,
and not be condemned before the great judgment seat of Christ,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That we may be bound together by your Holy Spirit
in the communion of all your saints,
entrusting one another and all our life to Christ,
We entreat you, O Lord.

Many people consider it a problem that early saints whose lives were mostly undocumented, especially in times of persecution, have often had myths and backstories created for them, encouraged by churches too eager to promote a saint’s cult; commercial motives are not unknown. People can feel let down, deceived and even lied to, and superstitious practices and powers are increasingly doubted. Vincent of Saragossa is one such saint, to whom amazing feats of death-defying courage and endurance have been attributed. We know that Vincent was a deacon, that he was martyred in Spain in 304, and that Christians in that time and place mourned him deeply and exalted him highly. As literacy and scholarship increased, churches have demanded evidence that assertions about saints are true, and that gaps in our knowledge be disclosed and examined. Formal canonization in modern times is a rigorous, lengthy process, and even when approved, some doubts will remain along with popular acclaim. Anglicans do not canonize anyone, but believe such decisions should be made ecumenically. We can still remember holy women and holy men, but we leave their veneration to individual conscience. (source unknown)

Anglicans do not canonize or declare saints, but regard that as a declaration of ecumenical councils – which, by Anglican reckoning, have not occurred since the Reformation. Instead we recognize a small fraction of those declared prior to that time by Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy, including Vincent of Saragossa, and add selected observances of worthy role models by national Anglican churches, with each province of the Anglican Communion free to select its own, and plenty of international consultation. The Episcopal Church restricts the title of “Saint” to persons recognized in the New Testament, such as the 12 Apostles, their equals (St. Mary Magdalene) and successors (St. Paul); all others are referred to by their given names. It can get messy, but in The Episcopal Church “sainthood” now arises from the local congregation, with decisions made democratically by the General Convention.

Collect of the Day: Vincent, Deacon of Saragossa, and Martyr, 304

Almighty God, your deacon Vincent, upheld by you, was not terrified by threats nor overcome by torments: Strengthen us to endure all adversity with invincible and steadfast faith; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

For Peace

Almighty God, kindle, we pray, in every heart the true love of peace, and guide with your wisdom those who take counsel for the nations of the earth, that in tranquillity your dominion may increase until the earth is filled with the knowledge of your love; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Monday Evening Prayer List: Thanksgivings

Our new 2018 donors
Our longtime pledgers
Jo Riley
Our Evening Prayer podcast audience
Music on Daily Office Radio
Our mission partners in Haiti, Liberia, Brazil and on the Rosebud Reservation
Those who give to food banks, pantries and meal programs, and all who receive
Community Health Centers and Free Clinics

Please add your own prayers here.

Anglican Cycle of Prayer: Diocese of Amichi, Nigeria

A Collect for Mission

O God and Father of all, whom the whole heavens adore: Let the whole earth also worship you, all nations obey you, all tongues confess and bless you, and men and women everywhere love you and serve you in peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

A Prayer of St. Chrysostom

Almighty God, you have given us grace at this time with one accord to make our common supplications to you; and you have promised through your well-beloved Son that when two or three are gathered together in his Name you will be in the midst of them: Fulfil now, O Lord, our desires and petitions as may be best for us; granting us in this world knowledge of your truth, and in the age to come life everlasting. Amen.

Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with us all evermore. Amen. 2 Corinthians 13:14++

VIDEO: Give us the wings of faith to rise (see #253, James Whitbourn; Isaac Watts) ) – Northern Illinois University Chorus, 2016

Morning Prayer 1.22.18, Vincent, Deacon of Saragossa, and Martyr, 304

We recorded both live services and they’re ready to watch now:

To see our 7 a.m. webcast, click here.
To catch us at 9 a.m., go here.

I will put my laws in their minds,
and write them on their hearts,
and I will be their God,
and they shall be my people.

Dr. Mathilde Krim has died, founder of AmFAR, the Foundation for AIDS Research, the world’s leading advocacy and scientific funding organization for people with the disease. She was a geneticist and virologist when she took up the cause in the mid-’80s, enlisting celebrities and wealthy donors. The disease has caused 39 million deaths so far, and 36.7 million people now live with it; deaths still run a million a year. (Lucas Jackson)

I will give you as a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth. Isaiah 49:6b

INVITATORY AND PSALTER

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

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

Psalm 95:1-7

Come, let us sing to the Lord;
let us shout for joy to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come before God’s presence with thanksgiving;
and raise to the Lord a shout with psalms.
For you are a great God;
you are great above all gods.
In your hand are the caverns of the earth;
and the heights of the hills are yours also.
The sea is yours, for you made it,
and your hands have molded the dry land.
Come, let us bow down and bend the knee,
and kneel before the Lord our Maker.
For you are our God,
and we are the people of your pasture, and the sheep of your hand.
Oh, that today we would hearken to your voice!

Psalm 41

1 Happy are they who consider the poor and needy! *
the LORD will deliver them in the time of trouble.
2 The LORD preserves them and keeps them alive,
so that they may be happy in the land; *
the LORD does not hand them over to the will of their enemies.
3 The LORD sustains them on their sickbed *
and ministers to them in their illness.
4 I said, “LORD, be merciful to me; *
heal me, for I have sinned against you.”
5 My enemies are saying wicked things about me: *
asking when I will die, and when my name will perish.
6 Even if they come to see me, they speak empty words; *
their heart collects false rumors;
they go outside and spread them.
7 All my enemies whisper together about me *
and devise evil against me.
8 They say a deadly thing has fastened on me; *
that I have taken to my bed and will never get up again.
9 Even my best friend, whom I trusted,
who broke bread with me, *
has scorned me and turned against me.
10 But you, O LORD, be merciful to me and raise me up, *
and I shall repay them.
11 By this I know you are pleased with me, *
that my enemy does not triumph over me.
12 In my integrity you hold me fast, *
and shall set me before your face for ever.

13 Blessed be the LORD God of Israel *
from age to age. Amen. Amen.

Psalm 52

1 You tyrant, why do you boast of wickedness *
against the godly all day long?
2 You plot ruin;
your tongue is like a sharpened razor, *
O worker of deception.
3 You love evil more than good *
and lying more than speaking the truth.
4 You love all words that hurt, *
O you deceitful tongue.
5 Oh, that God would demolish you utterly, *
topple you, and snatch you from your dwelling,
and root you out of the land of the living!
6 The righteous shall see and tremble, *
and they shall laugh at you, saying,
7 “This is the one who did not take God for a refuge, *
but trusted in great wealth
and relied upon wickedness.”
8 But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God; *
I trust in the mercy of God for ever and ever.
9 I will give you thanks for what you have done *
and declare the goodness of your Name in the presence of the godly.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Edward Burne-Jones: Abram, Melchizedek and David. This window, called one of the finest in the United States, hangs at St. Peter’s in Albany, New York.

THE LESSONS
Genesis 14:8-24 (NRSV)

Then the king of Sodom, the king of Gomorrah, the king of Admah, the king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela (that is, Zoar) went out, and they joined battle in the Valley of Siddim with King Chedorlaomer of Elam, King Tidal of Goiim, King Amraphel of Shinar, and King Arioch of Ellasar, four kings against five. Now the Valley of Siddim was full of bitumen pits; and as the kings of Sodom and Gomorrah fled, some fell into them, and the rest fled to the hill country. So the enemy took all the goods of Sodom and Gomorrah, and all their provisions, and went their way; they also took Lot, the son of Abram’s brother, who lived in Sodom, and his goods, and departed.

Then one who had escaped came and told Abram the Hebrew, who was living by the oaks of Mamre the Amorite, brother of Eshcol and of Aner; these were allies of Abram. When Abram heard that his nephew had been taken captive, he led forth his trained men, born in his house, three hundred eighteen of them, and went in pursuit as far as Dan. He divided his forces against them by night, he and his servants, and routed them and pursued them to Hobah, north of Damascus. Then he brought back all the goods, and also brought back his nephew Lot with his goods, and the women and the people.

After his return from the defeat of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him, the king of Sodom went out to meet him at the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley). And King Melchizedek of Salem brought out bread and wine; he was priest of God Most High. He blessed him and said,

“Blessed be Abram by God Most High,
maker of heaven and earth;
and blessed be God Most High,
who has delivered your enemies into your hand!”

And Abram gave him one tenth of everything. Then the king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the persons, but take the goods for yourself.” But Abram said to the king of Sodom, “I have sworn to the LORD, God Most High, maker of heaven and earth, that I would not take a thread or a sandal-thong or anything that is yours, so that you might not say, ‘I have made Abram rich.’ I will take nothing but what the young men have eaten, and the share of the men who went with me – Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre. Let them take their share.”

Canticle: A Song of Hannah
1 Samuel 2:1-8

My heart exults in you, O God; *
my triumph song is lifted in you.
My mouth derides my enemies, *
for I rejoice in your salvation.
There is none holy like you, *
nor any rock to be compared to you, our God.
Do not heap up prideful words or speak in arrogance; *
Only God is knowing and weighs all actions.
The bows of the mighty are broken, *
but the weak are clothed in strength.
Those once full now labor for bread, *
those who hungered now are well fed.
The childless woman has borne sevenfold, *
while the mother of many is forlorn.
God destroys and brings to life, casts down and raises up; *
gives wealth or takes it away, humbles and dignifies.
God raises the poor from the dust; *
and lifts the needy from the ash heap
To make them sit with the rulers *
and inherit a place of honor.
For the pillars of the earth are God’s *
on which the whole earth is founded.

Christ the High Priest (Living Orthodox Theology)

Hebrews 8:1-13 (NRSV)

Now the main point in what we are saying is this: we have such a high priest, one who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, a minister in the sanctuary and the true tent that the Lord, and not any mortal, has set up. For every high priest is appointed to offer gifts and sacrifices; hence it is necessary for this priest also to have something to offer. Now if he were on earth, he would not be a priest at all, since there are priests who offer gifts according to the law. They offer worship in a sanctuary that is a sketch and shadow of the heavenly one; for Moses, when he was about to erect the tent, was warned, “See that you make everything according to the pattern that was shown you on the mountain.”

But Jesus has now obtained a more excellent ministry, and to that degree he is the mediator of a better covenant, which has been enacted through better promises. For if that first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no need to look for a second one. God finds fault with them when he says:

“The days are surely coming, says the Lord,
when I will establish a new covenant with the house of Israel
and with the house of Judah;
not like the covenant that I made with their ancestors,
on the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt;
for they did not continue in my covenant,
and so I had no concern for them, says the Lord.
This is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel
after those days, says the Lord:
I will put my laws in their minds,
and write them on their hearts,
and I will be their God,
and they shall be my people.
And they shall not teach one another or say to each other, ‘Know the Lord,’
for they shall all know me,
from the least of them to the greatest.
For I will be merciful toward their iniquities,
and I will remember their sins no more.”

In speaking of “a new covenant,” he has made the first one obsolete. And what is obsolete and growing old will soon disappear.

Canticle: A Song of Christ’s Humility
Philippians 2:6-11

Though in the form of God, *
Christ Jesus did not cling to equality with God,
But emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, *
and was born in human likeness.
Being found in human form, he humbled himself *
and became obedient to death, even death on a cross.
Therefore, God has highly exalted him *
and given him the name above every name,
That at the name of Jesus, every knee shall bow, *
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
And every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, *
to the glory of God the Father.

Joseph-Marie Vien, 1752: Jesus Heals the Official’s Son (Musée des Beaux-Arts, Marseille, France)

John 4:43-54 (NRSV)

When the two days were over, he went from that place to Galilee (for Jesus himself had testified that a prophet has no honor in the prophet’s own country). When he came to Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him, since they had seen all that he had done in Jerusalem at the festival; for they too had gone to the festival.

Then he came again to Cana in Galilee where he had changed the water into wine. Now there was a royal official whose son lay ill in Capernaum. When he heard that Jesus had come from Judea to Galilee, he went and begged him to come down and heal his son, for he was at the point of death. Then Jesus said to him, “Unless you see signs and wonders you will not believe.” The official said to him, “Sir, come down before my little boy dies.” Jesus said to him, “Go; your son will live.” The man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him and started on his way. As he was going down, his slaves met him and told him that his child was alive. So he asked them the hour when he began to recover, and they said to him, “Yesterday at one in the afternoon the fever left him.” The father realized that this was the hour when Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” So he himself believed, along with his whole household. Now this was the second sign that Jesus did after coming from Judea to Galilee.

THE APOSTLES’ CREED

I believe in God,
the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ,
God’s only son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.

THE PRAYERS

The Lord be with you.
And also with you.
Let us pray.

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your Name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial,
and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours,
now and for ever. Amen.

V. Save your people, Lord, and bless your inheritance;
R. Govern and uphold them, now and always.
V. Day by day we bless you;
R. We praise your Name for ever.
V. Lord, keep us from all sin today;
R. Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy.
V. Lord, show us your love and mercy;
R. For we put our trust in you.
V. In you, Lord, is our hope;
R. And we shall never hope in vain.

School of Francis Coribalta, 17th C.: St. Vincent of Saragossa. We know little about him, but a thousand gorgeous myths like this: He was the spokesman for his bishop Valerius, who had a speech impediment. When Rome ordered persecutions, Vincent gave such a passionate, articulate defense of Christ on his bishop’s behalf, the governor sent the bishop into exile and had Vincent executed instead. He’s also said to have overcome fantastic trials like this with a millstone around his neck. The first martyr of Iberia, he is the patron saint of Lisbon, Portugal as well as Valencia and all of Spain.

Collect of the Day: Vincent, Deacon of Saragossa, and Martyr, 304

Almighty God, your deacon Vincent, upheld by you, was not terrified by threats nor overcome by torments: Strengthen us to endure all adversity with invincible and steadfast faith; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Collect for the Renewal of Life

O God, the King eternal, whose light divides the day from the night and turns the shadow of death into the morning: Drive far from us all wrong desires, incline our hearts to keep your law, and guide our feet into the way of peace; that, having done your will with cheerfulness during the day, we may, when night comes, rejoice to give you thanks; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Monday Morning Prayer List: Most Recent (20)

Up to 1 million government workers laid off by Congress
untold private contractors also thrown out of work, some small businesses will be forced to close
Tom Schroder, departed
Sara’s mother, departed
Dick, for a smooth move to the nursing home
Joan & Robin, health challenges
Sharon L., cancer
Kaleb, continued recovery
Hilary and Angela
Sr. Julian’s mother Anne, dementia
Daisy, premature infant
Katherine G., stage 4 cancer
Joan, paralysed after surgery; Watt, husband and caregiver
Debbie, lung cancer
Lucy and Georgie are looking for work
Tom Dayton, cancer
Rowena, continued improvement
Joanne, cancer is back
Michelle & Marlene, discernment
Rebecca N., breast cancer
Nichole & Matt’s healthy baby

Please add your own intercessions, supplications and thanksgivings here.

For the Mission of the Church

Everliving God, whose will it is that all should come to you through your Son Jesus Christ: Inspire our witness to him, that all may know the power of his forgiveness and the hope of his resurrection; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Glory to God whose power, working in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine; Glory to him from generation to generation in the Church, and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever. Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21++

VIDEO: Blessed feasts of blessed martyrs (see #239, Ode to Joy, Ludwig van Beethoven, from 9th Symphony; Latin, 12th C., tr. John Mason Neale) – Our Lady of Perpetual Succour, Singapore, 2014

Evening Prayer 1.21.18, Third Sunday after the Epiphany

“He has done everything well; he even makes the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.”

Pope Francis visited Peru last week, talking about poverty, the destruction of the Amazon rainforest and meeting with indigenous leaders. Here’s what the world is up against: illegal gold mining and resulting toxic waste in Madre de Dios province, just for starters. The life of the planet is faltering, but here are criminals trying to get rich, the enemies of every person, plant and animal on Earth. (Rodrigo Abd/Associated Press)

Let my prayer be set forth in your sight as incense, the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice. Psalm 141:2

INVITATORY AND PSALTER

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

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

Hymn: Light of the World

Light of the world in grace and beauty,
Mirror of God’s eternal face,
Transparent flame of love’s free duty,
You bring salvation to our race.
Now, as we see the lights of evening,
We raise our voice in hymns of praise;
Worthy are you of endless blessing,
Sun of our night, lamp of our days.

Psalm 103

1 Bless the LORD, O my soul, *
and all that is within me, bless God’s holy Name.
2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, *
and forget not all the benefits of the LORD.
3 Who forgives all your sins *
and heals all your infirmities;
4 Who redeems your life from the grave *
and crowns you with mercy and loving-kindness;
5 Who satisfies you with good things *
and your youth is renewed like an eagle’s.
6 The LORD executes righteousness *
and judgment for all who are oppressed.
7 To Moses were made known God’s ways *
and to the children of Israel the works of the LORD.
8 The LORD is full of compassion and mercy, *
slow to anger and of great kindness.
9 The LORD will not always accuse us, *
nor remain angry for ever.
10 The LORD has not dealt with us according to our sins, *
nor rewarded us according to our wickedness.
11 For as the heavens are high above the earth, *
so is the LORD’s mercy great upon the God-fearing.
12 As far as the east is from the west, *
so far has the LORD removed our sins from us.
13 As a father cares for his children, *
so does the LORD care for the God-fearing.
14 For the LORD knows whereof we are made *
and remembers that we are but dust.
15 Our days are like the grass; *
we flourish like a flower of the field;
16 When the wind goes over it, it is gone, *
and its place shall know it no more.
17 But the merciful goodness of the LORD endures for ever on the God-fearing, *
and the righteousness of the LORD on children’s children;
18 On those who keep the holy covenant *
and remember the commandments and do them.
19 The LORD has set a throne in heaven, *
and the sovereignty of the LORD has dominion over all.
20 Bless the LORD, you holy angels,
you mighty ones who do God’s bidding, *
and hearken to the voice of God’s word.
21 Bless the LORD, all you holy hosts, *
you holy ministers who do God’s will.
22 Bless the LORD, all you works of God,
in all places of God’s dominion; *
bless the LORD, O my soul.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Richard Caemmerer: Ephphatha

THE LESSON
Mark 7:31-37 (NRSV)

Then Jesus returned from the region of Tyre, and went by way of Sidon towards the Sea of Galilee, in the region of the Decapolis. They brought to him a deaf man who had an impediment in his speech; and they begged him to lay his hand on him. He took him aside in private, away from the crowd, and put his fingers into his ears, and he spat and touched his tongue. Then looking up to heaven, he sighed and said to him, “Ephphatha,” that is, “Be opened.” And immediately his ears were opened, his tongue was released, and he spoke plainly. Then Jesus ordered them to tell no one; but the more he ordered them, the more zealously they proclaimed it. They were astounded beyond measure, saying, “He has done everything well; he even makes the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.”

Canticle: The Song of Mary
Luke 1:46-55

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in you, O God my Savior, *
for you have looked with favor on your lowly servant.
From this day all generations will call me blessed: *
you, the Almighty, have done great things for me,
and holy is your Name.
You have mercy on those who fear you *
from generation to generation.
You have shown strength with your arm, *
and scattered the proud in their conceit,
Casting down the mighty from their thrones, *
and lifting up the lowly.
You have filled the hungry with good things, *
and sent the rich away empty.
You have come to the help of your servant Israel, *
for you have remembered your promise of mercy,
The promise made to our forebears, *
to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

THE APOSTLES’ CREED

I believe in God,
the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ,
God’s only son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.

THE PRAYERS

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your Name,
your kingdom come, your will be done
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial
and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours,
now and for ever. Amen.

Show us your mercy, O Lord;
And grant us your salvation.
Clothe your ministers with righteousness;
Let your people sing with joy.
Give peace, O Lord, in all the world;
For only in you can we live in safety.
Lord, keep this nation under your care;
And guide us in the way of justice and truth.
Let your way be known upon earth;
Your saving health among all nations.
Let not the needy, O Lord, be forgotten;
Nor the hope of the poor be taken away.
Create in us clean hearts, O God;
And sustain us with your Holy Spirit.

After his disastrous trip to Chile, Pope Francis met with indigenous leaders in the Amazon Basin, calling all humanity to a “defense of the Earth” before greed and politicians make it uninhabitable. (Vincenzo Pinto/Agence France-Presse)

Collect of the Day: Third Sunday after the Epiphany

Give us grace, O Lord, to answer readily the call of our Savior Jesus Christ and proclaim to all people the Good News of his salvation, that we and the whole world may perceive the glory of his marvelous works; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

A Collect for Sundays

Lord God, whose Son our Savior Jesus Christ triumphed over the powers of death and prepared for us our place in the new Jerusalem: Grant that we, who have this day given thanks for his resurrection, may praise you in that City of which he is the light, and where he lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.

Anglican Cycle of Prayer: The Church of Bangladesh

Sunday Evening Prayer List

For This Congregation
Our Daily Office Radio listeners, producers and talent; Julie Wilson, Jo Riley
Our Asia-Pacific, British, North American & Spanish-language subscribers
Our Facebook group, Twitter followers & iTunes audience
Our Mission Board
Our Chaplain, Mother Gwen
Our Missioner, Rev. Maria
Our Honorary Deacon, Clint
Our Officiants, Cantors’ Guild & Production Team
Our Episcopal Visitor, +Catherine

A Collect for Mission

O God and Father of all, whom the whole heavens adore: Let the whole earth also worship you, all nations obey you, all tongues confess and bless you, and men and women everywhere love you and serve you in peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

A Prayer of St. Chrysostom

Almighty God, you have given us grace at this time with one accord to make our common supplications to you; and you have promised through your well-beloved Son that when two or three are gathered together in his Name you will be in the midst of them: Fulfil now, O Lord, our desires and petitions as may be best for us; granting us in this world knowledge of your truth, and in the age to come life everlasting. Amen.

Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Glory to God whose power, working in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine: Glory to God from generation to generation in the Church, and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever. Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21++

VIDEO: Amazon: the lungs of our planet – BBC, 2014

Morning Prayer 1.21.18, Third Sunday after the Epiphany

The LORD said to Abram, “All the land that you see I will give to you and to your offspring forever.”

Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop Michael Curry made an extended pastoral visit last week to hurricane-damaged churches and towns in the Florida Keys and the Virgin Islands, to listen, strategize, shed tears and give hugs. Above, greeting parishioners at All Saints Cathedral on St. Thomas, USVI. (All photos: Amy Sowder/Episcopal News Service)

Nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising. Isaiah 60:1

INVITATORY AND PSALTER

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

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

Psalm 100
Jubilate

Be joyful in the Lord, all you lands;
serve the Lord with gladness
and come before his presence with a song.

Know this: The Lord himself is God;
he himself has made us, and we are his;
we are his people and the sheep of his pasture.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving;
go into his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and call upon his Name.

For the Lord is good;
his mercy is everlasting;
and his faithfulness endures from age to age.

Psalm 63:1-8

1 O God, you are my God; eagerly I seek you; *
my soul thirsts for you, my flesh faints for you,
as in a barren and dry land where there is no water.
2 Therefore I have gazed upon you in your holy place, *
that I might behold your power and your glory.
3 For your loving-kindness is better than life itself; *
my lips shall give you praise.
4 So will I bless you as long as I live *
and lift up my hands in your Name.
5 My soul is content, as with marrow and fatness, *
and my mouth praises you with joyful lips,
6 When I remember you upon my bed, *
and meditate on you in the night watches.
7 For you have been my helper, *
and under the shadow of your wings I will rejoice.
8 My soul clings to you; *
your right hand holds me fast.

Psalm 98

1 Sing unto the LORD a new song, *
for the LORD has done marvelous things.
2 The right hand and the holy arm of the LORD *
have secured the victory.
3 The LORD has made known this victory; *
and has openly shown righteousness in the sight of the nations.
4 The LORD remembers mercy and faithfulness to the house of Israel, *
and all the ends of the earth have seen the victory of our God.
5 Shout with joy to the LORD, all you lands; *
lift up your voice, rejoice, and sing.
6 Sing to the LORD with the harp, *
with the harp and the voice of song.
7 With trumpets and the sound of the horn *
shout with joy before the Sovereign, the LORD.
8 Let the sea make a noise and all that is in it, *
the lands and those who dwell therein.
9 Let the rivers clap their hands, *
and let the hills ring out with joy before the LORD,
who is coming to judge the earth.
10 In righteousness shall the LORD judge the world *
and the peoples with equity.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Abram and his nephew Lot decide to go their separate ways, because the land “isn’t big enough” to hold all their households, livestock and possessions. It’s a story rich in meaning, about peacemaking, God’s goodness and Abraham’s obedient faith. Lot takes the better portion among the cities of the Plain, though danger will find him there; Abraham receives an eternal legacy, and builds an altar to the LORD. (Bible for Slackers)

THE LESSONS
Genesis 13:2-18 (NRSV)

Now Abram was very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold. He journeyed on by stages from the Negeb as far as Bethel, to the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Bethel and Ai, to the place where he had made an altar at the first; and there Abram called on the name of the LORD. Now Lot, who went with Abram, also had flocks and herds and tents, so that the land could not support both of them living together; for their possessions were so great that they could not live together, and there was strife between the herders of Abram’s livestock and the herders of Lot’s livestock. At that time the Canaanites and the Perizzites lived in the land.

Then Abram said to Lot, “Let there be no strife between you and me, and between your herders and my herders; for we are kindred. Is not the whole land before you? Separate yourself from me. If you take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if you take the right hand, then I will go to the left.” Lot looked about him, and saw that the plain of the Jordan was well watered everywhere like the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt, in the direction of Zoar; this was before the LORD had destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah. So Lot chose for himself all the plain of the Jordan, and Lot journeyed eastward; thus they separated from each other. Abram settled in the land of Canaan, while Lot settled among the cities of the Plain and moved his tent as far as Sodom. Now the people of Sodom were wicked, great sinners against the LORD.

The LORD said to Abram, after Lot had separated from him, “Raise your eyes now, and look from the place where you are, northward and southward and eastward and westward; for all the land that you see I will give to you and to your offspring forever. I will make your offspring like the dust of the earth; so that if one can count the dust of the earth, your offspring also can be counted. Rise up, walk through the length and the breadth of the land, for I will give it to you.” So Abram moved his tent, and came and settled by the oaks of Mamre, which are at Hebron; and there he built an altar to the LORD.

Canticle: A Song of Jerusalem Our Mother
Isaiah 66:10-14

Rejoice with Jerusalem and be glad for her *
all you who love her,
Rejoice, rejoice with her, *
all you who mourn over her,
That you may drink deeply with delight *
from her comforting breast.
For thus says our God, *
“I will extend peace to her like a river,
the wealth of nations like an overflowing stream.
“You shall nurse and be carried on her arm,
and you shall nestle in her lap.
“As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you; *
you shall be comforted in Jerusalem.
“You shall see, and your heart shall rejoice, *
you shall flourish like the grass of the fields.”

Alison “Sonny” Cook, a longtime parishioner at St. Columba’s, Marathon, Florida, showed Bishop Curry photos of hurricane damage at her house, which was destroyed. She now lives in a travel trailer provided by the church and parked on the grounds. Marathon is a small town spread over seven islands in the Florida Keys, halfway between Miami and Key West.

Galatians 2:1-10 (NRSV)

Then after fourteen years I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, taking Titus along with me. I went up in response to a revelation. Then I laid before them (though only in a private meeting with the acknowledged leaders) the gospel that I proclaim among the Gentiles, in order to make sure that I was not running, or had not run, in vain. But even Titus, who was with me, was not compelled to be circumcised, though he was a Greek. But because of false believers secretly brought in, who slipped in to spy on the freedom we have in Christ Jesus, so that they might enslave us—we did not submit to them even for a moment, so that the truth of the gospel might always remain with you. And from those who were supposed to be acknowledged leaders (what they actually were makes no difference to me; God shows no partiality)—those leaders contributed nothing to me. On the contrary, when they saw that I had been entrusted with the gospel for the uncircumcised, just as Peter had been entrusted with the gospel for the circumcised (for he who worked through Peter making him an apostle to the circumcised also worked through me in sending me to the Gentiles), and when James and Cephas and John, who were acknowledged pillars, recognized the grace that had been given to me, they gave to Barnabas and me the right hand of fellowship, agreeing that we should go to the Gentiles and they to the circumcised. They asked only one thing, that we remember the poor, which was actually what I was eager to do.

Canticle: A Song of Our Adoption
Ephesians 1:3-10

Blessed are you, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, *
for you have blessed us in Christ
with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.
Before the world was made, you chose us to be yours in Christ, *
that we should be holy and blameless before you.
You destined us for adoption as your children through Jesus Christ, *
according to the good pleasure of your will,
To the praise of your glorious grace, *
that you have freely given us in the Beloved.
In you, we have redemption through the blood of Christ,
the forgiveness of our sins,
According to the riches of your grace *
which you have lavished upon us.
You have made known to us, in all wisdom and insight, *
the mystery of your will,
According to your good pleasure which you set forth in Christ, *
as a plan for the fullness of time,
To gather together all things in Christ, *
things in heaven and things on earth.

Garbage has mostly been cleared from the main highway, but still lines some of the streets of the Florida Keys, especially big heavy items like washing machines and refrigerators. This was last week; the hurricane hit September 10.

Mark 7:31-37 (NRSV)

Then Jesus returned from the region of Tyre, and went by way of Sidon towards the Sea of Galilee, in the region of the Decapolis. They brought to him a deaf man who had an impediment in his speech; and they begged him to lay his hand on him. He took him aside in private, away from the crowd, and put his fingers into his ears, and he spat and touched his tongue. Then looking up to heaven, he sighed and said to him, “Ephphatha,” that is, “Be opened.” And immediately his ears were opened, his tongue was released, and he spoke plainly. Then Jesus ordered them to tell no one; but the more he ordered them, the more zealously they proclaimed it. They were astounded beyond measure, saying, “He has done everything well; he even makes the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.”

THE APOSTLES’ CREED

I believe in God,
the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ,
God’s only son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.

The Presiding Bishop reserved time to meet with the bishop and clergy of the Virgin Islands to hear their unique burdens and concerns; Bishop Edward A. Gumbs put them front and center. His diocese includes 14 congregations on both the British and U.S. islands; what the first hurricane didn’t hit, the second one did.

THE PRAYERS

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your Name,
your kingdom come, your will be done
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial
and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours,
now and for ever. Amen.

Show us your mercy, O Lord;
And grant us your salvation.
Clothe your ministers with righteousness;
Let your people sing with joy.
Give peace, O Lord, in all the world;
For only in you can we live in safety.
Lord, keep this nation under your care;
And guide us in the way of justice and truth.
Let your way be known upon earth;
Your saving health among all nations.
Let not the needy, O Lord, be forgotten;
Nor the hope of the poor be taken away.
Create in us clean hearts, O God;
And sustain us with your Holy Spirit.

The Presiding Bishop knows how to talk to children; he visited All Saints Cathedral School in Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, USVI. The school suffered moderate damage in the hurricane, and lost students (and their tuition) in the aftermath, as parents were forced to relocate in search of housing and jobs. Some went to St. Croix, which largely escaped Irma and then got flattened by Maria; other families moved in with relatives in South Florida and other places. For the children of families who were able to remain in the islands, Bishop Curry’s visit caused great delight.

Collect of the Day: Third Sunday after the Epiphany

Give us grace, O Lord, to answer readily the call of our Savior Jesus Christ and proclaim to all people the Good News of his salvation, that we and the whole world may perceive the glory of his marvelous works; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

A Collect for Sundays

O God, you make us glad with the weekly remembrance of the glorious resurrection of your Son our Lord: Give us this day such blessing through our worship of you, that the week to come may be spent in your favor; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Sunday Morning Prayer List: Our Donors

The Daily Office is presented in 2018 by the following.
up to 11.28.17

Anonymous, Connecticut, in memory of Shene Bowie
Rosemary Cole, Alabama, in memory of Rosa Lee Ponder; in honor of Rebecca Morgan
Amy, Pennsylvania
Richard Burgess, Texas
Robert Horner, Texas, in memory of godly parents
Catherine Reid, Washington
Warner White, Vermont
Gregory Jacobs, New Jersey, in memory of the Rev. Dr. Solomon N. Jacobs
Harold Van Lonkhuyzen, Maine
Thomas LaFrance, California

Please add your own prayers here.

Prayer for Mission

Almighty and everlasting God, by whose Spirit the whole body of your faithful people is governed and sanctified: Receive our supplications and prayers which we offer before you for all members of your holy Church, that in their vocation and ministry they may truly and devoutly serve you; through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

The General Thanksgiving

Almighty God, Father of all mercies,
we your unworthy servants give you humble thanks
for all your goodness and loving-kindness
to us and to all whom you have made.
We bless you for our creation, preservation,
and all the blessings of this life;
but above all for your immeasurable love
in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ;
for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory.
And, we pray, give us such an awareness of your mercies,
that with truly thankful hearts we may show forth your praise,
not only with our lips, but in our lives,
by giving up our selves to your service,
and by walking before you
in holiness and righteousness all our days;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit,
be honor and glory throughout all ages. Amen.

Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with us all evermore. Amen. 2 Corinthians 13:14++

VIDEO: Christ is made the sure foundation (#518, Westminster Abbey, Henry Purcell; Latin, 7th C., tr. Hymns Ancient and Modern, after John Mason Neale, alt.) – First-Plymouth, Lincoln, Nebraska, 2015

Evening Prayer 1.20.18, Fabian, Pope and Martyr, 250

The Samaritans asked Jesus to stay with them; and he stayed there two days.

Pope Francis visited South America this week, and the first leg of his trip went badly. Three churches in Santiago, Chile had their entrances bombed, with minor damage and no reported injuries, and five others were attacked. Clergy, religious and lay supporters of 100 victims of Church sexual abuse, mostly impoverished indigenous children, staged widespread protests in several cities aimed at a notorious priest’s lenient treatment by a Vatican court, and especially local Bishop Juan Barros’ alleged coverup. The priest, Fernando Karadimo, was sentenced by the Vatican tribunal to a life of penitence and prayer, but walked away free instead of being imprisoned. At Francis’ first Mass someone threw a hat that hit him in the head; he was unhurt. Elsewhere, riot police arrested 30 demonstrators and dispersed a crowd of 200; Thursday the Pope denounced the protests against Barros, calling them slander without proof or justification. Karadimo was a mentor to Barros, and there were protests against Barros’ elevation by this Pope in 2015. Francis’ comments drew worldwide headlines, and condemnation by leading U.S. newspapers. How popes handle criminal priests hasn’t changed since Thomas Becket, who demanded that the Church have the right to discipline its own, regardless of who is victimized. Francis himself gave Boston’s Cardinal Bernard Law a safe haven and a cushy job in Rome after a massive sexual abuse scandal, and installed Cardinal George Pell, accused by Australian police of sexual abuse and covering up hundreds of similar cases, as the Vatican’s finance minister. (Pablo Vera/Agence France-Presse)

From the rising of the sun to its setting my Name shall be great among the nations, and in every place incense shall be offered to my Name, and a pure offering; for my Name shall be great among the nations, says the Lord of hosts. Malachi 1:11

INVITATORY AND PSALTER

O God, be not far from us.
Come quickly to help us, O God.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

Hymn: Light of the World

Light of the world in grace and beauty,
Mirror of God’s eternal face,
Transparent flame of love’s free duty,
You bring salvation to our race.
Now, as we see the lights of evening,
We raise our voice in hymns of praise;
Worthy are you of endless blessing,
Sun of our night, lamp of our days.

Psalm 42

1 As the deer longs for the water-brooks, *
so longs my soul for you, O God.
2 My soul is athirst for God, athirst for the living God; *
when shall I come to appear before the presence of God?
3 My tears have been my food day and night, *
while all day long they say to me,
“Where now is your God?”
4 I pour out my soul when I think on these things: *
how I went with the multitude and led them into the house of God,
5 With the voice of praise and thanksgiving *
among those who keep holy-day.
6 Why are you so full of heaviness, O my soul? *
and why are you so disquieted within me?
7 Put your trust in God; *
for I will yet give thanks to the One
who is the help of my countenance, and my God.

8 My soul is heavy within me; *
therefore I will remember you from the land of Jordan,
and from the peak of Mizar among the heights of Hermon.
9 One deep calls out to another in the noise of your cataracts; *
all your rapids and floods have gone over me.
10 The LORD grants loving-kindness in the daytime; *
in the night season the song of the LORD is with me,
a prayer to the God of my life.
11 I will say to the God of my strength,
“Why have you forgotten me? *
and why do I go so heavily while the enemy oppresses me?”
12 While my bones are being broken, *
my enemies mock me to my face;
13 All day long they mock me *
and say to me, “Where now is your God?”
14 Why are you so full of heaviness, O my soul? *
and why are you so disquieted within me?
15 Put your trust in God; *
for I will yet give thanks to the One
who is the help of my countenance, and my God.

Psalm 43

1 Give judgment for me, O God,
and defend my cause against an ungodly people; *
deliver me from the deceitful and the wicked.
2 For you are the God of my strength;
why have you put me from you? *
and why do I go so heavily while the enemy oppresses me?
3 Send out your light and your truth, that they may lead me, *
and bring me to your holy hill
and to your dwelling;
4 That I may go to the altar of God,
to the God of my joy and gladness; *
and on the harp I will give thanks to you, O God my God.
5 Why are you so full of heaviness, O my soul? *
and why are you so disquieted within me?
6 Put your trust in God; *
for I will yet give thanks to the One
who is the help of my countenance, and my God.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Pope Francis moved on to Peru yesterday for this Mass at Puerto Maldonado; wonderful cross. Tomorrow we will cover more of his visit to Peru, including his theme of environmental justice. (Ernesto Benavides/Agence France-Presse)

THE LESSON
John 4:27-42 (NRSV)

Just then his disciples came. They were astonished that Jesus was speaking with a woman, but no one said, “What do you want?” or “Why are you speaking with her?” Then the woman left her water jar and went back to the city. She said to the people, “Come and see a man who told me everything I have ever done! He cannot be the Messiah, can he?” They left the city and were on their way to him.

Meanwhile the disciples were urging him, “Rabbi, eat something.” But he said to them, “I have food to eat that you do not know about.” So the disciples said to one another, “Surely no one has brought him something to eat?” Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to complete his work. Do you not say, ‘Four months more, then comes the harvest’? But I tell you, look around you, and see how the fields are ripe for harvesting. The reaper is already receiving wages and is gathering fruit for eternal life, so that sower and reaper may rejoice together. For here the saying holds true, ‘One sows and another reaps.’ I sent you to reap that for which you did not labor. Others have labored, and you have entered into their labor.”

Many Samaritans from that city believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I have ever done.” So when the Samaritans came to him, they asked him to stay with them; and he stayed there two days. And many more believed because of his word. They said to the woman, “It is no longer because of what you said that we believe, for we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this is truly the Savior of the world.”

Canticle: The Song of Mary
Luke 1:46-55

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in you, O God my Savior, *
for you have looked with favor on your lowly servant.
From this day all generations will call me blessed: *
you, the Almighty, have done great things for me,
and holy is your Name.
You have mercy on those who fear you *
from generation to generation.
You have shown strength with your arm, *
and scattered the proud in their conceit,
Casting down the mighty from their thrones, *
and lifting up the lowly.
You have filled the hungry with good things, *
and sent the rich away empty.
You have come to the help of your servant Israel, *
for you have remembered your promise of mercy,
The promise made to our forebears, *
to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

THE APOSTLES’ CREED

I believe in God,
the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ,
his only son, our Lord.
He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit
and born of the Virgin Mary.
He suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried.
He descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again.
He ascended into heaven,
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.

THE PRAYERS

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your Name,
your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours, now and for ever. Amen.

That this evening may be holy, good, and peaceful,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That your holy angels may lead us in paths of peace and goodwill,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That we may be pardoned and forgiven for our sins and offenses,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That there may be peace to your Church and to the whole world,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That we may depart this life in your faith and fear,
and not be condemned before the great judgment seat of Christ,
We entreat you, O Lord.
That we may be bound together by your Holy Spirit
in the communion of all your saints,
entrusting one another and all our life to Christ,
We entreat you, O Lord.

Statue of St. Fabian at St. Peter’s Basilica, Rome. Counted as the 20th pope, he set a courageous example for his followers, many of whom suffered great torment in Decius’s persecution. Fragments of Fabian’s tombstone still exist, with his name and the words “bishop” and “martyr” still dimly visible.

Collect of the Day: Fabian, Bishop of Rome and Martyr, 250

Almighty God, you called Fabian to be a faithful pastor and servant of your people, and to lay down his life in witness to your Son: Grant that we, strengthened by his example and aided by his prayers, may in times of trial and persecution remain steadfast in faith and endurance, for the sake of him who laid down his life for us all, Jesus Christ our Savior; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

A Collect for Saturdays

O God, the source of eternal light: Shed forth your unending day upon us who watch for you, that our lips may praise you, our lives may bless you, and our worship on the morrow give you glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Saturday Evening Prayer List: For the Church

Anglican Cycle of Prayer: Diocese of Amazon, Brazil

For Our Mission Partners
Cuttington University School of Nursing, Liberia
The American Friends of Cuttington, New York
Colleges and Universities of the Anglican Communion, New York; Canon Jamie Callaway
Haiti Nursing Foundation
Diocese of Brasilia Afterschool Program, Brazil
Rosebud Episcopal Mission, South Dakota
St. André’s School, Mithon, Haiti

For Mission

O God, you have made of one blood all the peoples of the earth, and sent your blessed Son to preach peace to those who are far off and to those who are near: Grant that people everywhere may seek after you and find you; bring the nations into your fold; pour out your Spirit upon all flesh, and hasten the coming of your kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

A Prayer of St. Chrysostom

Almighty God, you have given us grace at this time with one accord to make our common supplications to you; and you have promised through your well-beloved Son that when two or three are gathered together in his Name you will be in the midst of them: Fulfil now, O Lord, our desires and petitions as may be best for us; granting us in this world knowledge of your truth, and in the age to come life everlasting. Amen.

Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

May the God of hope fill us with all joy and peace in believing through the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Romans 15:13++

VIDEO: Forgive our sins as we forgive (#674, Detroit, anonymous, Supplement to The Kentucky Harmony, 1820; Rosamond E. Herklots) – Koiné, 2014