Evening Prayer 8.27.16, Thomas Gallaudet & Henry Winter Syle, Priests to the Deaf

You know neither me nor my Father. If you knew me, you would know my Father also.

The Episcopal Church was the first to recognize the unmet needs of the deaf and began ministry to them about 160 years ago when the Rev. Thomas Gallaudet began a Bible study using American Sign Language; that study group grew into St. Ann’s Church of the Deaf, above, where Melissa Inniss, Bishop Andrew Dietsche of New York, and Evelyn Schaefer gathered in 2013 to celebrate the 90th birthday of the Rev. Henry Buzzard, longtime priest at St. Ann’s. Fr. Buzzard is the first Episcopal priest to be deaf and blind. Today The Episcopal Church has about 25 deaf churches in many parts of the USA. (saintjudes.org)

The Episcopal Church was the first to recognize the unmet needs of the deaf and began ministry to them about 160 years ago when the Rev. Thomas Gallaudet convened a Bible study group using American Sign Language; that group grew into St. Ann’s Church of the Deaf, above, where Melissa Inniss, Bishop Andrew Dietsche of New York, and Evelyn Schafer gathered in 2013 to celebrate the 90th birthday of the Rev. Henry Buzzard, longtime priest at St. Ann’s. Fr. Buzzard was the first deaf and blind person to be ordained a priest. Today The Episcopal Church has about 25 deaf churches in the USA, but many lack even part-time clergy. (saintjudes.org)

If I say, “Surely the darkness will cover me, and the light around me turn to night,” darkness is not dark to you, O Lord; the night is as bright as the day; darkness and light to you are both alike. Psalm 139:10-11

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
Phos hilaron

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 110:1-5

1  The LORD said to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand, *
until I make your enemies your footstool.”
2  The LORD will send the scepter of your power out of Zion, *
saying, “Rule over your enemies round about you.
3  Nobility has been yours from the day of your birth; *
in the beauty of holiness have I begotten you,
like dew from the womb of the morning.”
4  The LORD has sworn and will not recant: *
“You are a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.”
5  The Lord who is at your right hand
will smite rulers in the day of his wrath; *
he will rule over the nations.

Psalm 116

1  I love the LORD, because the LORD has heard the voice of my supplication, *
and inclined an ear to me whenever I cried out.
2  The cords of death entangled me;
the grip of the grave took hold of me; *
I came to grief and sorrow.
3  Then I called upon the Name of the LORD: *
“O LORD, I pray you, save my life.”
4  Gracious is the LORD and righteous; *
our God is full of compassion.
5  The LORD watches over the innocent; *
I was brought very low, and the LORD helped me.
6  Turn again to your rest, O my soul. *
for the LORD has treated you well.
7  For you have rescued my life from death, *
my eyes from tears, and my feet from stumbling.
8  I will walk in the presence of the LORD *
in the land of the living.
9  I believed, even when I said,
“I have been brought very low.” *
In my distress I said, “No one can be trusted.”
10  How shall I repay you, O LORD, *
for all the good things you have done for me?
11  I will lift up the cup of salvation *
and call upon the Name of the LORD.
12  I will fulfill my vows to the LORD *
in the presence of all the chosen people.
13  Precious in your sight, O LORD, *
is the death of your servants.
14  O LORD, I am your servant; *
I am your servant and the child of your handmaid;
you have freed me from my bonds.
15  I will offer you the sacrifice of thanksgiving *
and call upon the Name of the LORD.
16  I will fulfill my vows to the LORD *
in the presence of all the people,
17  In the courts of the LORD’s house, *
in the midst of you, O Jerusalem.
Hallelujah!

Psalm 117

1  Praise the LORD, all you nations; *
give praise, all you peoples.
2  For the loving-kindness of the LORD toward us is great, *
and the faithfulness of the LORD endures for ever.
Hallelujah!

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 LESSON
John 8:12-20 (NRSV)

Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life.” Then the Pharisees said to him, “You are testifying on your own behalf; your testimony is not valid.” Jesus answered, “Even if I testify on my own behalf, my testimony is valid because I know where I have come from and where I am going, but you do not know where I come from or where I am going. You judge by human standards; I judge no one. Yet even if I do judge, my judgment is valid; for it is not I alone who judge, but I and the Father who sent me. In your law it is written that the testimony of two witnesses is valid. I testify on my own behalf, and the Father who sent me testifies on my behalf.” Then they said to him, “Where is your Father?” Jesus answered, “You know neither me nor my Father. If you knew me, you would know my Father also.” He spoke these words while he was teaching in the treasury of the temple, but no one arrested him, because his hour had not yet come.

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.

Henry Winter Syle became the first deaf priest, despite proof-texting opponents who claimed that disability made him "unfit matter." But he was better educated (Yale, Oxford) than they were and his bishop went right on ahead. A disciple of Thomas Gallaudet, Father Syle built the first church constructed especially for the Deaf in 1888. The architecture and furnishings matter in Deaf facilities; smoke and security alarms that sound a noise don’t help (use flashing lights too), keep hallway obstructions to a minimum and sightlines clear (when deaf people converse, they look at each other intently) – and be careful where you lay down carpet, or you won’t know when the congregation is stamping its feet in applause.

Henry Winter Syle became the first deaf priest, despite proof-texting opponents who claimed that disability made him “unfit matter.” But he was better educated (Yale, Oxford) than they were and his bishop went right on ahead. A student of Thomas Gallaudet, Father Syle built the first church constructed especially for the deaf in 1888. The architecture and furnishings matter in deaf facilities; smoke and security alarms that sound a noise don’t help (use flashing lights too), keep hallway obstructions to a minimum and sightlines clear (when deaf people converse, they look at each other intently, not at the floor) – and be careful where you lay down carpet, or you won’t know when the congregation is stamping its feet in riotous applause.

Collect of the Day: Thomas Gallaudet with Henry Winter Syle, 1902, 1890

O loving God, whose will it is that everyone should come to you and be saved: We bless your holy Name for your servants Thomas Gallaudet and Henry Winter Syle, whose labors with and for those who are deaf we commemorate today, and we pray that you will continually move your Church to respond in love to the needs of all people; through Jesus Christ, who opened the ears of the deaf, and who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for 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.

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

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
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.

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: Lord’s Prayer in ASL – Boston Deaf Apostolate. 2013

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