Morning Prayer 8.12.16, Florence Nightingale, Nurse & Social Reformer, 1910

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When Samson came to Lehi, the Philistines came shouting to meet him; and the spirit of the LORD rushed on him, and the ropes that were on his arms became like flax that has caught fire, and his bonds melted off his hands.

Every Friday night in Oakland, California, neighborhood activists conduct a peace walk to protest gun violence and encourage community partnership with the police and criminal justice reform; every Friday night our webcaster Robin leaves early from Video Evensong so she can join the peace walk. On 5 August the marchers were led by a 9-year-old named Tijon – a blessed thing, but also a rebuke to adults who can’t solve their problems without violence. “A little child shall lead them,” indeed. (Lois Beckett)

Every Friday night in Oakland, California, neighborhood activists conduct a peace walk to protest gun violence, and encourage community-police partnership and criminal justice reform; every Friday night our webcaster Robin leaves early from Video Evensong so she can join the peace walk. On August 5 the marchers were led by a 9-year-old named Tijon – a blessed thing, but also a rebuke to adults who can’t solve their problems without violence. “A little child shall lead them,” indeed. (Lois Beckett)

The hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for such the Father seeks to worship him. John 4:23

CONFESSION OF SIN

Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen.

Almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us all our sins through our Lord Jesus Christ, strengthen us in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep us in eternal life. Amen.

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
Venite

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 the Lord is 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 102

1  LORD, hear my prayer, and let my cry come before you; *
hide not your face from me in the day of my trouble.
2  Incline your ear to me; *
when I call, make haste to answer me,
3  For my days drift away like smoke, *
and my bones are hot as burning coals.
4  My heart is smitten like grass and withered, *
so that I forget to eat my bread.
5  Because of the voice of my groaning *
I am but skin and bones.
6  I have become like a vulture in the wilderness, *
like an owl among the ruins.
7  I lie awake and groan; *
I am like a sparrow, lonely on a house-top.
8  My enemies revile me all day long, *
and those who scoff at me have taken an oath against me.
9  For I have eaten ashes for bread *
and mingled my drink with weeping.
10  Because of your indignation and wrath *
you have lifted me up and thrown me away.
11  My days pass away like a shadow, *
and I wither like the grass.
12  But you, O LORD, endure for ever, *
and your Name from age to age.
13  You will arise and have compassion on Zion,
for it is time to have mercy upon it; *
indeed, the appointed time has come.
14  For your servants love its very rubble, *
and are moved to pity even for its dust.
15  The nations shall fear your Name, O LORD, *
and all the kings of the earth your glory.
16  For you, O LORD, will build up Zion, *
and your glory will appear.
17  You will look with favor on the prayer of the homeless; *
you will not despise their plea.
18  Let this be written for a future generation, *
so that a people yet unborn may praise the LORD.
19  For the LORD looked down from the holy place on high; *
and from the heavens beheld the earth;
20  To hear the groan of the captive *
and to set free those condemned to die;
21  That they may declare in Zion the Name of the LORD, *
and the praise of our God in Jerusalem;
22  When the peoples are gathered together, *
and the realms also, to serve the LORD.
23  The LORD has brought down my strength before my time; *
and shortened the number of my days;
24  And I said, “O my God,
do not take me away in the midst of my days; *
your years endure throughout all generations.
25  In the beginning, O LORD, you laid the foundations of the earth, *
and the heavens are the work of your hands;
26  They shall perish, but you will endure;
they all shall wear out like a garment; *
as clothing you will change them,
and they shall be changed;
27  But you are always the same, *
and your years will never end.
28  The children of your servants shall continue, *
and their offspring shall stand fast in your sight.”

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 LESSONS
Judges 14:20—15:20 (NRSV)

And Samson’s wife was given to his companion, who had been his best man.

After a while, at the time of the wheat harvest, Samson went to visit his wife, bringing along a kid. He said, “I want to go into my wife’s room.” But her father would not allow him to go in. Her father said, “I was sure that you had rejected her; so I gave her to your companion. Is not her younger sister prettier than she? Why not take her instead?” Samson said to them, “This time, when I do mischief to the Philistines, I will be without blame.” So Samson went and caught three hundred foxes, and took some torches; and he turned the foxes tail to tail, and put a torch between each pair of tails. When he had set fire to the torches, he let the foxes go into the standing grain of the Philistines, and burned up the shocks and the standing grain, as well as the vineyards and olive groves. Then the Philistines asked, “Who has done this?” And they said, “Samson, the son-in-law of the Timnite, because he has taken Samson’s wife and given her to his companion.” So the Philistines came up, and burned her and her father. Samson said to them, “If this is what you do, I swear I will not stop until I have taken revenge on you.” He struck them down hip and thigh with great slaughter; and he went down and stayed in the cleft of the rock of Etam.

Then the Philistines came up and encamped in Judah, and made a raid on Lehi. The men of Judah said, “Why have you come up against us?” They said, “We have come up to bind Samson, to do to him as he did to us.” Then three thousand men of Judah went down to the cleft of the rock of Etam, and they said to Samson, “Do you not know that the Philistines are rulers over us? What then have you done to us?” He replied, “As they did to me, so I have done to them.” They said to him, “We have come down to bind you, so that we may give you into the hands of the Philistines.” Samson answered them, “Swear to me that you yourselves will not attack me.” They said to him, “No, we will only bind you and give you into their hands; we will not kill you.” So they bound him with two new ropes, and brought him up from the rock.

When he came to Lehi, the Philistines came shouting to meet him; and the spirit of the LORD rushed on him, and the ropes that were on his arms became like flax that has caught fire, and his bonds melted off his hands. Then he found a fresh jawbone of a donkey, reached down and took it, and with it he killed a thousand men. And Samson said,

“With the jawbone of a donkey,
heaps upon heaps,
with the jawbone of a donkey
I have slain a thousand men.”

When he had finished speaking, he threw away the jawbone; and that place was called Ramath-lehi [Hill of the Jawbone].

By then he was very thirsty, and he called on the LORD, saying, “You have granted this great victory by the hand of your servant. Am I now to die of thirst, and fall into the hands of the uncircumcised?” So God split open the hollow place that is at Lehi, and water came from it. When he drank, his spirit returned, and he revived. Therefore it was named En-hakkore [The Spring of the One Who Called], which is at Lehi to this day. And he judged Israel in the days of the Philistines twenty years.

Canticle: Second Song of Isaiah
Isaiah 55:6-11

Seek the Lord while he wills to be found; *
call upon him when he draws near.
Let the wicked forsake their ways *
and the evil ones their thoughts;
And let them turn to the Lord, and he will have compassion, *
and to our God, for he will richly pardon.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, *
nor your ways my ways, says the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth, *
so are my ways higher than your ways,
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
For as rain and snow fall from the heavens *
and return not again, but water the earth,
Bringing forth life and giving growth, *
seed for sowing and bread for eating,
So is my word that goes forth from my mouth; *
it will not return to me empty;
But it will accomplish that which I have purposed, *
and prosper in that for which I sent it.

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.

Acts 7:17-29 (NRSV)

Stephen said, “But as the time drew near for the fulfillment of the promise that God had made to Abraham, our people in Egypt increased and multiplied until another king who had not known Joseph ruled over Egypt. He dealt craftily with our race and forced our ancestors to abandon their infants so that they would die. At this time Moses was born, and he was beautiful before God. For three months he was brought up in his father’s house; and when he was abandoned, Pharaoh’s daughter adopted him and brought him up as her own son. So Moses was instructed in all the wisdom of the Egyptians and was powerful in his words and deeds.

“When he was forty years old, it came into his heart to visit his relatives, the Israelites. When he saw one of them being wronged, he defended the oppressed man and avenged him by striking down the Egyptian. He supposed that his kinsfolk would understand that God through him was rescuing them, but they did not understand. The next day he came to some of them as they were quarreling and tried to reconcile them, saying, ‘Men, you are brothers; why do you wrong each other?’ But the man who was wronging his neighbor pushed Moses aside, saying, ‘Who made you a ruler and a judge over us? Do you want to kill me as you killed the Egyptian yesterday?’ When he heard this, Moses fled and became a resident alien in the land of Midian. There he became the father of two sons.”

Canticle: A Song to the Lamb
Revelation 4:11, 5:9-10, 13

Splendor and honor and kingly power *
are yours by right, O Lord our God,
For you created everything that is, *
and by your will they were created and have their being;
And yours by right, O Lamb that was slain, *
for with your blood you have redeemed for God,
From every family, language, people, and nation, *
a kingdom of priests to serve our God.
And so, to him who sits upon the throne, *
and to Christ the Lamb,
Be worship and praise, dominion and splendor, *
for ever and for evermore.

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)

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

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 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.

There are not many saints about whom we can say, “She touched my life directly by her work and ministry,” but we can say that of Florence Nightingale. Her chief works were these: Cutting the British death toll in the Crimean War by using science to prove a link between sanitation and mortality; organizing a professional nursing school in London, which turned nursing from a suspicious pursuit into a profession; and authoring a classic textbook used for decades. Her influence was worldwide, from India to Europe and the Americas; her faith was unwavering. God bless nurses! (source unknown)

There are not many saints about whom we can say, “She touched my life directly by her work and ministry,” but we can say that of Florence Nightingale. Her chief works were these: Cutting the British death toll in the Crimean War by using science to prove a link between sanitation and mortality; organizing a professional nursing school in London, which turned nursing from a suspicious pursuit into a profession; and authoring a classic textbook used for decades. Her influence was worldwide, from India to Europe and the Americas; her faith was unwavering. God bless nurses! (source unknown)

Collect of the Day: Florence Nightingale, Nurse, Social Reformer, 1910

Life-giving God, you alone have power over life and death, over health and sickness: Give power, wisdom, and gentleness to those who follow the lead of your servant Florence Nightingale, that they, bearing with them your presence, may not only heal but bless, and shine as lanterns of hope in the darkest hours of pain and fear; through Jesus Christ, the healer of body and soul, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

A Collect for Fridays

Almighty God, whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain, and entered not into glory before he was crucified: Mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross, may find it none other than the way of life and peace; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord. Amen.

Friday Morning Prayer List

For the Poor of every nation
For the cold and hungry
For those who minister among them
Parish food pantries, gardens and orchards

For Those Facing Danger & Oppression
Archbishops Paul Yazigi and John Ibrahim, Syria, abducted 2 years ago, fate unknown
Christians persecuted in Sudan, Egypt, Iraq, Syria, India and Pakistan
Muslims persecuted in India, Myanmar, Europe & the USA
All women and girls of the world
LGBTs in places of violence, especially youth worldwide
Victims of human trafficking

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.

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.

Webcast Dismissal
by Josh Thomas

O God, we’re ready to depart now to begin the rest of our morning. Thank you for this time together to worship you, to see and listen to each other over miles and time zones. We ask your blessing on the concerns and joys each of us has brought with us, that you will be with N., N., and each of our viewers as we go about our day. Be present in our encounters with others, and give us awareness of you in our solitude. Help us do good work and live good lives, in unity with your Son and Holy Spirit. And now, with one voice,

Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Now to him who is able to keep you from falling, and to present you without blemish before the presence of his glory with rejoicing, to the only God our Savior, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all time and now and for ever. Amen. Jude 24-25++

VIDEO: Immortal, invisible, God only wise (#423, St. Denio, Welsh; Walter Chalmers Smith) – BBC “Songs of Praise” at Halifax Minster, 2012

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