Morning Prayer 22.8.13: Thursday of Proper 15

I still my soul and make it quiet,
like a child upon its mother’s breast; *
my soul is quieted within me.

A burned-out, unidentified church in Nazla, Egypt on Monday. A clearer picture is emerging after the anti-Christian rampage, which affected all denominations, Anglican, Coptic and evangelical: 61 churches and related institutions were attacked, burned, looted or destroyed, as well as many homes, individuals and small businesses. (Tara Todros-Whitehill/The New York Times)

A burned-out, unidentified church in Nazla, Egypt on Monday. A clearer picture is emerging after the anti-Christian rampage, which affected all denominations, Anglican, Coptic and evangelical: 61 churches and related institutions were attacked, burned, looted or destroyed, as well as many homes, individuals and small businesses. (Tara Todros-Whitehill/The New York Times)

The Lord is in his holy temple; let all the earth keep silence before him. Habakkuk 2:20

INVITATORY AND PSALTER

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

Praise to the holy and undivided Trinity, one God:
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 131

O LORD, I am not proud; *
I have no haughty looks.
I do not occupy myself with great matters, *
or with things that are too hard for me.
But I still my soul and make it quiet,
like a child upon its mother’s breast; *
my soul is quieted within me.
O Israel, wait upon the LORD, *
from this time forth for evermore.

Psalm 132

LORD, remember David, *
and all the hardships he endured;
How he swore an oath to the LORD *
and vowed a vow to the Mighty One of Jacob:
“I will not come under the roof of my house, *
nor climb up into my bed;
I will not allow my eyes to sleep, *
nor let my eyelids slumber;
Until I find a place for the LORD, *
a dwelling for the Mighty One of Jacob.”
“The ark! We heard it was in Ephratah; *
we found it in the fields of Jearim.
Let us go to God’s dwelling place; *
let us fall upon our knees before God’s footstool.”
Arise, O LORD, into your resting-place, *
you and the ark of your strength.
Let your priests be clothed with righteousness; *
let your faithful people sing with joy.
For your servant David’s sake, *
do not turn away the face of your anointed.
The LORD has sworn an oath to David; *
and in truth will not break it:
“A son, the fruit of your body *
will I set upon your throne.
If your children keep my covenant
and my testimonies that I shall teach them, *
their children will sit upon your throne for evermore.”
For the LORD has chosen Zion, *
and desired it for the holy habitation:
“This shall be my resting-place for ever; *
here will I dwell, for in Zion I delight.
I will surely bless the provisions of Zion, *
and satisfy its poor with bread.
I will clothe its priests with salvation, *
and its faithful people will rejoice and sing.
There will I make the horn of David flourish; *
I have prepared a lamp for my anointed.
As for his enemies, I will clothe them with shame; *
but as for him, his crown will shine.”

Praise to the holy and undivided Trinity, one God: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

THE LESSONS
2 Samuel 19:1-23 (NRSV)

It was told Joab, “The king is weeping and mourning for Absalom.” So the victory that day was turned into mourning for all the troops; for the troops heard that day, “The king is grieving for his son.” The troops stole into the city that day as soldiers steal in who are ashamed when they flee in battle. The king covered his face, and the king cried with a loud voice, “O my son Absalom, O Absalom, my son, my son!” Then Joab came into the house to the king, and said, “Today you have covered with shame the faces of all your officers who have saved your life today, and the lives of your sons and your daughters, and the lives of your wives and your concubines, for love of those who hate you and for hatred of those who love you. You have made it clear today that commanders and officers are nothing to you; for I perceive that if Absalom were alive and all of us were dead today, then you would be pleased. So go out at once and speak kindly to your servants; for I swear by the LORD, if you do not go, not a man will stay with you this night; and this will be worse for you than any disaster that has come upon you from your youth until now.” Then the king got up and took his seat in the gate. The troops were all told, “See, the king is sitting in the gate”; and all the troops came before the king. Meanwhile, all the Israelites had fled to their homes.

All the people were disputing throughout all the tribes of Israel, saying, “The king delivered us from the hand of our enemies, and saved us from the hand of the Philistines; and now he has fled out of the land because of Absalom. But Absalom, whom we anointed over us, is dead in battle. Now therefore why do you say nothing about bringing the king back?” King David sent this message to the priests Zadok and Abiathar, “Say to the elders of Judah, ‘Why should you be the last to bring the king back to his house? The talk of all Israel has come to the king. You are my kin, you are my bone and my flesh; why then should you be the last to bring back the king?’ And say to Amasa, ‘Are you not my bone and my flesh? So may God do to me, and more, if you are not the commander of my army from now on, in place of Joab.’” Amasa swayed the hearts of all the people of Judah as one, and they sent word to the king, “Return, both you and all your servants.” So the king came back to the Jordan; and Judah came to Gilgal to meet the king and to bring him over the Jordan.

Shimei son of Gera, the Benjaminite, from Bahurim, hurried to come down with the people of Judah to meet King David; with him were a thousand people from Benjamin. And Ziba, the servant of the house of Saul, with his fifteen sons and his twenty servants, rushed down to the Jordan ahead of the king, while the crossing was taking place, to bring over the king’s household, and to do his pleasure. Shimei son of Gera fell down before the king, as he was about to cross the Jordan, and said to the king, “May my lord not hold me guilty or remember how your servant did wrong on the day my lord the king left Jerusalem; may the king not bear it in mind. For your servant knows that I have sinned; therefore, see, I have come this day, the first of all the house of Joseph to come down to meet my lord the king.” Abishai son of Zeruiah answered, “Shall not Shimei be put to death for this, because he cursed the Lord’s anointed?” But David said, “What have I to do with you, you sons of Zeruiah, that you should today become an adversary to me? Shall anyone be put to death in Israel this day? For do I not know that I am this day king over Israel?” The king said to Shimei, “You shall not die.” And the king gave him his oath.

Canticle: The Song of Moses
Cantemus Domino
Exodus 15:1-6, 11-13, 17-18

I will sing to the Lord, for he is lofty and uplifted; *
the horse and its rider has he hurled into the sea.
The Lord is my strength and my refuge; *
the Lord has become my Savior.
This is my God and I will praise him, *
the God of my people and I will exalt him.
The Lord is a mighty warrior; *
Yahweh is his Name.
The chariots of Pharoah and his army has he hurled into the sea;
the finest of those who bear armor have been drowned in the Red Sea.
The fathomless deep has overwhelmed them; *
they sank into the depths like a stone.
Your right hand, O Lord, is glorious in might; *
your right hand, O Lord, has overthrown the enemy.
Who can be compared with you, O Lord, among the gods? *
who is like you, glorious in holiness,
awesome in renown, and worker of wonders?
You stretched forth your right hand; *
the earth swallowed them up.
With your constant love you led the people you redeemed; *
with your might you brought them in safety to your holy dwelling.
You will bring them in and plant them *
on the mount of your possession,
The resting-place you have made for yourself, O Lord, *
the sanctuary, O Lord, that your hand has established.
The Lord shall reign *
for ever and 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.

Acts 24:1-23 (NRSV)

Five days later the high priest Ananias came down with some elders and an attorney, a certain Tertullus, and they reported their case against Paul to the governor. When Paul had been summoned, Tertullus began to accuse him, saying: “Your Excellency, because of you we have long enjoyed peace, and reforms have been made for this people because of your foresight. We welcome this in every way and everywhere with utmost gratitude. But, to detain you no further, I beg you to hear us briefly with your customary graciousness. We have, in fact, found this man a pestilent fellow, an agitator among all the Jews throughout the world, and a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes. He even tried to profane the temple, and so we seized him. By examining him yourself you will be able to learn from him concerning everything of which we accuse him.” The Jews also joined in the charge by asserting that all this was true.

When the governor motioned to him to speak, Paul replied: “I cheerfully make my defense, knowing that for many years you have been a judge over this nation. As you can find out, it is not more than twelve days since I went up to worship in Jerusalem. They did not find me disputing with anyone in the temple or stirring up a crowd either in the synagogues or throughout the city. Neither can they prove to you the charge that they now bring against me. But this I admit to you, that according to the Way, which they call a sect, I worship the God of our ancestors, believing everything laid down according to the law or written in the prophets. I have a hope in God – a hope that they themselves also accept – that there will be a resurrection of both the righteous and the unrighteous. Therefore I do my best always to have a clear conscience toward God and all people. Now after some years I came to bring alms to my nation and to offer sacrifices. While I was doing this, they found me in the temple, completing the rite of purification, without any crowd or disturbance. But there were some Jews from Asia – they ought to be here before you to make an accusation, if they have anything against me. Or let these men here tell what crime they had found when I stood before the council, unless it was this one sentence that I called out while standing before them, ‘It is about the resurrection of the dead that I am on trial before you today.’”

But Felix, who was rather well informed about the Way, adjourned the hearing with the comment, “When Lysias the tribune comes down, I will decide your case.” Then he ordered the centurion to keep him in custody, but to let him have some liberty and not to prevent any of his friends from taking care of his needs.

Canticle: Glory to God
Gloria in excelsis

Glory to God in the highest,
and peace to his people on earth.
Lord God, heavenly King,
almighty God and Father,
we worship you, we give you thanks,
we praise you for your glory.
Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of the Father,
Lord God, Lamb of God,
you take away the sin of the world:
have mercy on us;
you are seated at the right hand of the Father:
receive our prayer.
For you alone are the Holy One,
you alone are the Lord,
you alone are the Most High,
Jesus Christ,
with the Holy Spirit,
in the glory of God the Father. Amen.

Mark 12:28-34 (NRSV)

One of the scribes came near and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that Jesus answered them well, he asked him, “Which commandment is the first of all?” Jesus answered, “The first is, ‘Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one; you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” Then the scribe said to him, “You are right, Teacher; you have truly said that ‘he is one, and besides him there is no other’; and ‘to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the strength,’ and ‘to love one’s neighbor as oneself’ – this is much more important than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.” When Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” After that no one dared to ask him any question.

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

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.

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

Native American Christ; artist unknown

Native American Christ; artist unknown

Collect of the Day: Proper 15

Almighty God, you have given your only Son to be for us a sacrifice for sin, and also an example of godly life: Give us grace to receive thankfully the fruits of his redeeming work, and to follow daily in the blessed steps of his most holy life; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Thursday Morning Prayer List: In Places of Political Unrest & Violence

Syria, Central African Republic, Turkey, Libya, Egypt, Yemen, Sudan, Bahrain, Tunisia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Mali, Israel, Palestine

For peace

For our soldiers
For civilians in war zones

For Prisoners

For all at Guantanamo
Susan, prisoner on death row
the innocent
the guilty
the victims of crime
all political prisoners
all prison ministries and chaplains
Sr. Helen Prejean and other prison reformers

The ethos of the Community of St. John the Divine has always been to do with health and healing, but the last thirty years have been a time of enormous evolutionary change in the whole of our lifestyle, with an ethos now embracing all aspects of health, healing, pastoral care and reconciliation in its widest context. (convent website)

The ethos of the Community of St. John the Divine has always been to do with health and healing, but the last thirty years have been a time of enormous evolutionary change in the whole of their lifestyle, with an ethos now embracing all aspects of health, healing, pastoral care and reconciliation in its widest context. (convent website)

For Monastic Orders and Vocations

O Lord Jesus Christ, you became poor for our sake, that we might be made rich through your poverty: Guide and sanctify, we pray, those whom you call to follow you under the vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, especially for the Community of St. John the Divine in Birmingham, UK, that by their prayer and service they may enrich your Church, and by their life and worship may glorify your Name; for you reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Anglican Cycle of Prayer: Diocese of Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia

St. Paul's Cathedral, Rockhampton (Trevor Bunning)

St. Paul’s Cathedral, Rockhampton (Trevor Bunning)

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.

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 him from generation to generation in the Church, and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever. Amen.++

For information about the Community of St. John the Divine, click here.

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