Friday, April 18, 2014

Good Friday (6)

The Passion

Since blood is fittest, Lord, to write
Thy sorrows in, and bloody fight;
My heart hath store; write there, where in
One box doth lie both ink and sin:

That when sin spies so many foes,
Thy whips, thy nails, thy wounds, thy woes,
All come to lodge there, sin may say,
No room for me, and fly away.

Sin being gone, oh fill the place,
And keep possession with thy grace;
Lest sin take courage and return,
And all the writings blot or burn.

George Hubert

graphic: Veronica's veil, painting by Domenico Fetti (c. 1620).

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Maudy/ Holy Thursday

Maundy Thursday is always the Easter week Thursday before Good Friday. The name originated in England and Scotland among the Protestant Churches. Although the Scottish Book of Common Prayer uses the name "Holy Thursday". Roman Catholics, except in England, referred to Maundy Thursday as "Holy Thursday". In the Eastern Orthodox Church, tradition it goes by Great and Holy Thursday.

The word Maundy is an English derivative of the Latin mandatum, the first word of the phrase "Mandatum novum do vobis ut diligatis invicem sicut dilexi vos" (Jesus's statement "A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you" in the John 13:34.")

On this day four events are remembered: Christ's washing of the Disciples' Feet, the sharing of the Last Supper with the disciples, Christ's agony in the Garden of Gethsemane, and His betrayal by Judas Iscariot.

graphic: Salvador Dali's 1955 painting 'The Sacrament of the Last Supper"

living water reprint from 2009

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Palm Sunday ( 7)

Gloria Laus (Christ the King )

Gloria, lausAcomposed by St. Theodulph of Orléans in 810, in Latin  is the Palm Sunday Hymnus ad Christum Regem ("Hymn to Christ the King") sung during the procession of the Liturgy of the Palms.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Penitential Psalms (7)

Psalm 143

Hear my prayer, O Lord;
give ear to my supplications!
In thy faithfulness answer me, in thy righteousness!
Enter not into judgment with thy servant;
for no man living is righteous before thee.
For the enemy has pursued me;
he has crushed my life to the ground;
he has made me sit in darkness like those long dead.
Therefore my spirit faints within me;
my heart within me is appalled.
I remember the days of old,
I meditate on all that thou hast done;
I muse on what thy hands have wrought.
I stretch out my hands to thee;
my soul thirsts for thee like a parched land.
Make haste to answer me, O Lord!
My spirit fails!
Hide not thy face from me,
lest I be like those who go down to the Pit.
Let me hear in the morning of thy steadfast love,
for in thee I put my trust.
Teach me the way I should go,
for to thee I lift up my soul.
Deliver me, O Lord, from my enemies!
I have fled to thee for refuge!
Teach me to do thy will,
for thou art my God!
Let thy good spirit lead me
on a level path!
For thy name's sake, O Lord, preserve my life!
In thy righteousness bring me out of trouble!
And in thy steadfast love cut off my enemies,
and destroy all my adversaries,
for I am thy servant. 

graphic: viola Song

Friday, April 11, 2014

Penitentials Psalms (6)

מִמַּעֲמַקִּים קְרָאתִיךָ    יְהוָה.
אֲדֹנָי,    שִׁמְעָה בְקוֹלִי:
תִּהְיֶינָה אָזְנֶיךָ, קַשֻּׁבוֹת--    לְקוֹל, תַּחֲנוּנָי

Psalm 130

Out of the depths I cry to thee, O Lord!
Lord, hear my voice!
Let thy ears be attentive
to the voice of my supplications!
If thou, O Lord, shouldst mark iniquities,
Lord, who could stand?
But there is forgiveness with thee,
that thou mayest be feared.
I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
and in his word I hope; my soul waits for the Lord
more than watchmen for the morning,
more than watchmen for the morning.
O Israel, hope in the Lord!
For with the Lord there is steadfast love,
and with him is plenteous redemption.
And he will redeem Israel
from all his iniquities...

graphic: out of the depths i have cried to thee, in Hebrew

Thursday, April 10, 2014

A Simple Foot Washing Liturgy for Holy Thursday


      Posting this on the Thursday before Holy Thursday so you have time to use it if your so inclined 

 Prayer of Preparation for Worship
God of love, as we prepare to remember the events of this poignant night, open our eyes to see the beauty of Jesus’ self-giving love, and by your Spirit work in our community a desire and commitment to serve each other and our hurting world. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Tolling of the Bell

Bearing of the Light (lighting of a candle)

Solemn Declaration (Sung Amen)

Call to Worship
“I give you a new commandment, that you love one another.
Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another.”
In worship on this night, we testify to God’s love shown perfectly in Christ.
We recommit ourselves to love one another as a community of faith.
O taste and see that the Lord is good!
Come, let us worship the Lord!

The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Call to Confession
As we remember this night of betrayal and desertion, let us confess our sins before God and one another.

Prayer of Confession
Merciful God, we have not loved you with all our heart and mind and strength and soul.
[Silent prayer]
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
We have not loved our neighbors as you have taught us.

[Silent prayer]
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
We are indifferent to the saving grace of your Word and life.

[Silent prayer]

Lord, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Forgive and heal us by your steadfast love made known to us in the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

The Word
Old Testament: Exodus 12:1-4, 11-14
Psalm: Psalm 116:1-4, 12-19
Epistle: 1 Corinthians 11:23-26
Gospel: John 13: 1-17, 31b-35

Affirmation of Faith: The Nicene Creed

Ritual of Footwashing
So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.
For I have set you an example that you also should do as I have done for you.

Call to Prayer
As Jesus prayed to his Father in the shadows of the Garden of Gethsemane, let us pray together now in the shadow of his love.

Prayers of the People
For the leaders of the world, that they may put aside their differences and seek the peace of Christ, we pray,
Lord, hear our prayer.
For the Church, that she may become a servant offering hope, life, and compassion to all who seek God’s love, we pray.
Lord, hear our prayer.
For all who receive daily bread in welfare lines, food banks, and at this table, that they may forgive our daily trespasses, we pray,
Lord, hear our prayer.
Lord, gather your people around your table, that we who celebrate this sacrament may understand what Christ does for us and follow in his way, we pray,
Lord, hear our prayer.
That we may long for the day when all may feast at the table of our Lord, no one will be an outsider, and all will be loved, we pray,
Lord, hear our prayer.
As our Lord continues to make intercession for us, let us unite in this prayer, remembering those who asked us to pray and those who need our prayers.
[Silent prayer]
Gracious God, as we eat and drink the sacrament of the body and blood of your Son, given for us on the cross, help us in turn to give ourselves to you by giving ourselves to others. We pray through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 The Meal

Blessed are you, Lord God of the Universe, you are the giver of this bread, fruit of the earth and of human labor. Let it become the bread of life!
Blessed be God, now and forever!

Blessed are you, Lord God of the universe, you are the giver of this wine, fruit of the vine and of human labor. Let it become the wine of the eternal kingdom!
Blessed be God, now and forever!

As the grain once scattered on the fields and the grapes once dispersed on the hillside are now reunited on this table in bread and wine, so, Lord, may your whole church be gathered together from the corners of the earth into your kingdom!
Come, Lord Jesus, come!


Silent Prayer

The people leave in silence

 graphic: Ethiopian Icon of Christ washing Peters Feet

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906-1945)

The following hymn was composed by Dietrich Bonhoeffer while detained in a concentration camp , shortly before his execution.

By gracious powers so wonderfully sheltered,
And confidently waiting come what may,
we know that God is with us night and morning,
and never fails to greet us each new day.

Yet is this heart by its old foe tormented,
Still evil days bring burdens hard to bear;
Oh, give our frightened souls the sure salvation for which,
O Lord, You taught us to prepare.

And when this cup You give is filled to brimming
With bitter suffering, hard to understand,
we take it thankfully and without trembling,
out of so good and so beloved a hand.

Yet when again in this same world You give us
The joy we had, the brightness of Your Sun,
we shall remember all the days we lived through,
and our whole life shall then be Yours alone.

This hymn appears in the 1982 Episcopal Hymnal (695). The translator is F. Pratt Green (1903- ) listed in hymnal indexes sometimes under Green and sometimes under Pratt Green. The translation copyright is Hope Publishing Company 1974.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Penitential psalms (5)


Hear my prayer, O Lord;
let my cry come to thee!
Do not hide thy face from me
in the day of my distress!
Incline thy ear to me;
answer me speedily in the day when I call!
For my days pass away like smoke,
and my bones burn like a furnace.
My heart is smitten like grass, and withered;
I forget to eat my bread.
Because of my loud groaning
my bones cleave to my flesh.
I am like a vulture of the wilderness,
like an owl of the waste places;
I lie awake,
I am like a lonely bird on the housetop.
All the day my enemies taunt me,
those who deride me use my name for a curse.
For I eat ashes like bread,
and mingle tears with my drink,
because of thy indignation and anger;
for thou hast taken me up and thrown me away.
My days are like an evening shadow;
I wither away like grass.
But thou, O Lord, art enthroned for ever;
thy name endures to all generations.
Thou wilt arise and have pity on Zion;
it is the time to favor her;
the appointed time has come.
For thy servants hold her stones dear,
and have pity on her dust.
The nations will fear the name of the Lord,
and all the kings of the earth thy glory.
For the Lord will build up Zion,
he will appear in his glory;
he will regard the prayer of the destitute,
and will not despise their supplication.
Let this be recorded for a generation to come,
so that a people yet unborn may praise the Lord:
That he looked down from his holy height,
from heaven the Lord looked at the earth,
to hear the groans of the prisoners,
to set free those who were doomed to die;
That men may declare in Zion the name of the Lord,
and in Jerusalem his praise, when peoples gather together,
and kingdoms, to worship the Lord.
He has broken my strength in mid-course;
he has shortened my days.
"O my God," I say, "take me not hence in the midst of my days,
thou whose years endure
throughout all generations!"
Of old thou didst lay the foundation of the earth,
and the heavens are the work of thy hands.
They will perish, but thou dost endure;
they will all wear out like a garment.
Thou changest them like raiment, and they pass away;
but thou art the same,
and thy years have no end.
The children of thy servants shall dwell secure;
their posterity shall be established before thee.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Penitential Psalms (4)



Have mercy on me, O God,
according to thy steadfast love;
according to thy abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.
Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
and cleanse me from my sin!
For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is ever before me.
Against thee, thee only, have I sinned,
and done that which is evil in thy sight,
so that thou art justified in thy sentence
and blameless in thy judgment.
Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity,
and in sin did my mother conceive me.
Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward being;
therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart.
Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Fill me with joy and gladness;
let the bones which thou hast broken rejoice.
Hide thy face from my sins,
and blot out all my iniquities.
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and put a new and right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from thy presence,
and take not thy holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of thy salvation,
and uphold me with a willing spirit.
Then I will teach transgressors thy ways,
and sinners will return to thee.
Deliver me from blood guiltiness, O God,
thou God of my salvation,
and my tongue will sing aloud of thy deliverance.
O Lord, open thou my lips,
and my mouth shall show forth thy praise.
For thou hast no delight in sacrifice;
were I to give a burnt offering, thou wouldst not be pleased.
The sacrifice acceptable to God is a broken spirit;
a broken and contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.
Do good to Zion in thy good pleasure;
rebuild the walls of Jerusalem,
Then wilt thou delight in right sacrifices,
in burnt offerings and whole burnt offerings;
then bulls will be offered on thy altar.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Martin Luther King Jr. on Peace & Justice (1929-1968)

Nonviolence is absolute commitment to the way of love. Love is not emotional bash; it is not empty sentimentalism. It is the active outpouring of one's whole being into the being of another.
--Martin Luther King, Jr., 1957 (1929-1968)

We must move past indecision to action. We must find new ways to speak for peace in Vietnam and for justice throughout the developing world, a world that borders on our doors. If we do not act, we shall surely be dragged down the long, dark, and shameful corridors of time reserved for those who possess power without compassion, might without morality, and strength without sight.
--Martin Luther King, Jr., "Conscience and the Vietnam War" in The Trumpet of Conscience (1968)

I refuse to accept the cynical notion that nation after nation must spiral down a militaristic stairway into the hell of nuclear annihilation... I believe that even amid today's mortar bursts and whining bullets, there is still hope for a brighter tomorrow... I still believe that one day mankind will bow before the altars of God and be crowned triumphant over war and bloodshed.
--Martin Luther King, Jr., Address in Acceptance of Nobel Peace Prize - 10 December 1964

In struggling for human dignity the oppressed people of the world must not allow themselves to become bitter or indulge in hate campaigns. To retaliate with hate and bitterness would do nothing but intensify the hate in the world. Along the way of life, someone must have sense enough and morality enough to cut off the chain of hate. This can be done only by projecting the ethics of love to the center of our lives.
----Martin Luther King, Jr., undated

World peace through nonviolent means is neither absurd nor unattainable. All other methods have failed. Thus we must begin anew. Nonviolence is a good starting point. Those of us who believe in this method can be voices of reason, sanity, and understanding amid the voices of violence, hatred, and emotion. We can very well set a mood of peace out of which a system of peace can be built.
----Martin Luther King, Jr., December 1964