Morning Prayer 22.11.21, C.S. Lewis, Spiritual Writer. 1963

By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading.

Justus Rosenberg has died, a beloved professor at Bard College for nearly 60 years who seldom spoke of his heroics during the Holocaust. Amid rising anti-Semitism in his birthplace of Gdansk, Poland, his family sent him to study in Paris – until the Nazis claimed it too. He ended up in Marseille, a teenage courier for Varian Fry, a U.S. journalist whose American Rescue Committee saved 2000 Jewish intellectuals, including Marc Chagall and Hannah Arendt. He later became an active combatant, escaped being sentenced to a death camp, and fought alongside the U.S. Army’s 636th Tank Destroyer Battalion, earning a Bronze Star and Purple Heart. After the war he enrolled in the Sorbonne, then hired on at Bard and never left. (See another photo below.) (Preston Schlebusch/The New York Times)

I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Psalm 122:1

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 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 106:1-18

1 Hallelujah!
Give thanks to the LORD, who is good, *
whose mercy endures for ever.
2 Can anyone declare the mighty acts of the LORD *
or show forth all God’s praise?
3 Happy are those who act with justice *
and always do what is right!
4 Remember me, O LORD, with the favor you have for your people, *
and visit me with your saving help;
5 That I may see the prosperity of your elect
and be glad with the gladness of your people, *
that I may glory with your inheritance.

6 We have sinned as our ancestors did; *
we have done wrong and dealt wickedly.
7 In Egypt they did not consider your marvelous works,
nor remember the abundance of your love; *
they defied the Most High at the Red Sea.
8 But you saved them for your Name’s sake, *
to make your power known.
9 The LORD rebuked the Red Sea, and it dried up, *
God led them through the deep as through a desert.
10 The LORD saved them from the hand of those who hated them *
and redeemed them from the hand of the enemy.
11 The waters covered their oppressors; *
not one of them was left.
12 Then they believed the words of the LORD *
and sang out songs of praise.

13 But they soon forgot the deeds of the LORD *
and did not await divine counsel.
14 A craving seized them in the wilderness, *
and they put God to the test in the desert.
15 God gave them what they asked, *
but sent leanness into their soul.
16 They envied Moses in the camp, *
and Aaron, the holy one of the LORD.
17 The earth opened and swallowed Dathan *
and covered the company of Abiram.
18 Fire blazed up against their company, *
and flames devoured the wicked.

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.

Thomas Seddon, 1855: Jerusalem and the Valley of Jehoshaphat from the Hill of Evil Counsel. “Valley of Jehoshaphat” is less an actual place than a rhetorical device, like the Valley of the Shadow of Death. (Tate Gallery)

THE LESSONS
Joel 3:1-2, 9-17 (NRSV)

For then, in those days and at that time, when I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem, I will gather all the nations and bring them down to the valley of Jehoshaphat, and I will enter into judgment with them there, on account of my people and my heritage Israel, because they have scattered them among the nations. They have divided my land.

Proclaim this among the nations:
Prepare war,
stir up the warriors.
Let all the soldiers draw near,
let them come up.
Beat your plowshares into swords,
and your pruning hooks into spears;
let the weakling say, “I am a warrior.”

Come quickly,
all you nations all around,
gather yourselves there.
Bring down your warriors, O LORD.
Let the nations rouse themselves,
and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat;
for there I will sit to judge all the neighboring nations.

Put in the sickle,
for the harvest is ripe.
Go in, tread,
for the wine press is full.
The vats overflow,
for their wickedness is great.

Multitudes, multitudes,
in the valley of decision!
For the day of the LORD is near
in the valley of decision.
The sun and the moon are darkened,
and the stars withdraw their shining.

The LORD roars from Zion,
and utters his voice from Jerusalem,
and the heavens and the earth shake.
But the LORD is a refuge for his people,
a stronghold for the people of Israel.

So you shall know that I, the LORD your God,
dwell in Zion, my holy mountain.
And Jerusalem shall be holy,
and strangers shall never again pass through it.

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.

Will Paget jumping the wall by the lych gate at St. John’s, Lafayette, Indiana, 2015, as his late father Ted Paget watches. (Amy Paget)

1 Peter 1:1-12 (NRSV)

Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To the exiles of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, who have been chosen and destined by God the Father and sanctified by the Spirit to be obedient to Jesus Christ and to be sprinkled with his blood: May grace and peace be yours in abundance.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who are being protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, even if now for a little while you have had to suffer various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith—being more precious than gold that, though perishable, is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

Although you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy, for you are receiving the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls. Concerning this salvation, the prophets who prophesied of the grace that was to be yours made careful search and inquiry, inquiring about the person or time that the Spirit of Christ within them indicated when it testified in advance to the sufferings destined for Christ and the subsequent glory. It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you, in regard to the things that have now been announced to you through those who brought you good news by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven —things into which angels long to look!

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.

(Getty Images)

Matthew 19:1-12 (NRSV)

When Jesus had finished saying these things, he left Galilee and went to the region of Judea beyond the Jordan. Large crowds followed him, and he cured them there.

Some Pharisees came to him, and to test him they asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any cause?” He answered, “Have you not read that the one who made them at the beginning ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” They said to him, “Why then did Moses command us to give a certificate of dismissal and to divorce her?” He said to them, “It was because you were so hard-hearted that Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for unchastity, and marries another commits adultery.”

His disciples said to him, “If such is the case of a man with his wife, it is better not to marry.” But he said to them, “Not everyone can accept this teaching, but only those to whom it is given. For there are eunuchs who have been so from birth, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by others, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. Let anyone accept this who can.”

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.

Justus Rosenberg as a youth in the French Resistance. He looked so young and “Aryan” the Nazis never suspected him. (personal photo)

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.

Though he was raised Anglican, C.S. Lewis was a reluctant convert as a young adult. He felt that God pursued him relentlessly, till he was forced to give in. From there, out came a fountain of beloved books like “The Screwtape Letters” and “Mere Christianity,” as well as children’s novels like “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.”

Collect of the Day: Clive Staples Lewis, Apologist and Spiritual Writer, 1963

O God of searing truth and surpassing beauty, we give you thanks for Clive Staples Lewis, whose sanctified imagination lights fires of faith in young and old alike. Surprise us also with your joy and draw us into that new and abundant life which is ours in Christ Jesus, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for 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.

Anglican Rosary Prayer
said on the cruciform bead

Dear Lord Jesus,
help me do the things I should.
To be to others kind and good.
And in all I do or say,
grow more loving every day.

Monday Morning Prayer List: Most Recent

257,390,497 cases of coronavirus around the world; 5,149,651 deaths
USA: 47,711,461 cases, 771,044 deaths

Dorothy, in hospice
Leah
Nathaniel
The Rev. Paula Clark, brain aneurysm, and family
Catherine, pancreatic cancer & chemo
Terry Kay Morton, kidney and liver cancer
Deacon Marc, eye disease
Erik, accident & surgery
Adriana, breast cancer
Eric needs a kidney
Yvonne, chemotherapy
Dawn, healing of spirit, body and mind
Diana, breast cancer
Rich Suda, metastatic prostate cancer
Brad, employment
Nicky, age 5, severe leukemia; 5 siblings, mother Janet
Brittany, difficult pregnancy
Beverly, abdominal cancer
Wanda, lung cancer
Demetrius Johnson, kidney cancer

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: I’ll praise my Maker while I’ve breath (#429, Old 113th, German, 1525; Isaac Watts, alt. John Wesley, para. Ps. 146) – 1st Methodist Church, Houston, 2016

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