Oremus for Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Constance and Her Companions, the Martyrs of Memphis,
window in All Saints Chapel, University of the South, Sewanee, Tennessee

Constance and Her Companions, the Martyrs of Memphis
In 1873 a group of sisters of the Sisterhood of St. Mary went to Memphis, Tennessee, at the request of Bishop Charles T. Quintard, to establish a school for girls adjacent to the Cathedral of St. Mary. They were confronted by an epidemic of yellow fever and began to care for the sick. Yellow fever returned in 1878. The sisters stayed in Memphis to continue to minister to the sick while others fled the city. Sister Constance and six other Sisters of St. Mary, Sister Clare of the Society of St. Margaret in Boston, and a number of Memphis clergy ministered to the victims of the deadly disease. More than 5,000 people died, including Sister Constance on Sept. 9, 1878, Sister Thecla on Sept. 12, Sister Ruth on Sept. 17, and Sister Francis on Oct. 4. The high altar at the Cathedral of St. Mary is a memorial to the four martyred sisters.

Antiphon1

Ant. These signs will accompany those who believe:
they will cast out demons,
and when they lay their hands upon the sick,
these will recover, allelu-ia.
V. I will bless the Lord at all times; *
praise of him is always in my mouth.
In the Lord my soul shall make its boast; *
the humble shall hear and be glad. Mark 16; Psalm 34

Eternal God,
your touch makes this world holy.
Open our eyes to see your hand at work
in the splendor of creation,
and in the beauty of human life.
Help us to cherish the gifts that surround us,
to share your blessings with our sisters and brothers,
and to experience the joy of life in your presence.
We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen. BCW

Music: https://tinyurl.com/ycn4djk5

O Lord, open my lips.
And my mouth will declare your praise.
Make haste, O God, to deliver me;
make haste to help me, O Lord.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen.
Praise to you, O Christ, Alleluia!

HYMN: Augustus Toplady
Tune: St Paul https://tinyurl.com/y2qtn5k7

1 When languor and disease invade
This trembling house of clay,
’Tis sweet to look beyond my pains,
And long to fly away.

2 Sweet to look inward, and attend
The whispers of His love;
Sweet to look upward to the place
Where Jesus pleads above.

3 Sweet to look back, and see my name
In life’s fair book set down;
Sweet to look forward and behold
Eternal joys my own.

4 Sweet to reflect how grace divine
My sins on Jesus laid;
Sweet to remember that His blood
My debt of suffering paid.

PSALMS
For psalms in contemporary language, https://tinyurl.com/y9tjh7rk

Psalm 45 (Anglican Chant: https://tinyurl.com/ybupe5te)

1  My heart is inditing of a good matter *
 I speak of the things which I have made unto the King.
2  My tongue is the pen *
 of a ready writer.
3  Thou art fairer than the children of men *
 full of grace are thy lips, because God hath blessed thee for ever.
4  Gird thee with thy sword upon thy thigh, O thou most Mighty *
 according to thy worship and renown.
5  Good luck have thou with thine honour *
 ride on, because of the word of truth, of meekness,
and righteousness; and thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things.
6  Thy arrows are very sharp, and the people shall be subdued unto thee *
 even in the midst among the King’s enemies.
7  Thy seat, O God, endureth for ever *
 the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre.
8  Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity *
 wherefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee
with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.
9  All thy garments smell of myrrh, aloes, and cassia *
 out of the ivory palaces, whereby they have made thee glad.
10  Kings’ daughters were among thy honourable women *
 upon thy right hand did stand the queen in a vesture of gold,
wrought about with divers colours.
11  Hearken, O daughter, and consider, incline thine ear *
 forget also thine own people, and thy father’s house.
12  So shall the King have pleasure in thy beauty *
 for he is thy Lord God, and worship thou him.
13  And the daughter of Tyre shall be there with a gift *
 like as the rich also among the people shall make their supplication before thee.
14  The King’s daughter is all glorious within *
 her clothing is of wrought gold.
15  She shall be brought unto the King in raiment of needle-work *
 the virgins that be her fellows shall bear her company,
and shall be brought unto thee.
16  With joy and gladness shall they be brought *
 and shall enter into the King’s palace.
17  Instead of thy fathers thou shalt have children *
 whom thou mayest make princes in all lands.
18  I will remember thy Name from one generation to another *
 therefore shall the people give thanks unto thee, world without end.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son :
and to the Holy Ghost;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be :
world without end. Amen.

Psalm 46 (Anglican Chant: https://tinyurl.com/y7svqcl3)

1  God is our hope and strength *
 a very present help in trouble.
2  Therefore will we not fear, though the earth be moved *
 and though the hills be carried into the midst of the sea.
3  Though the waters thereof rage and swell *
 and though the mountains shake at the tempest of the same.
4  The rivers of the flood thereof shall make glad the city of God *
 the holy place of the tabernacle of the most Highest.
5  God is in the midst of her, therefore shall she not be removed *
 God shall help her, and that right early.
6  The heathen make much ado, and the kingdoms are moved *
 but God hath shewed his voice, and the earth shall melt away.
7  The Lord of hosts is with us *
 the God of Jacob is our refuge.
8  O come hither, and behold the works of the Lord *
 what destruction he hath brought upon the earth.
9  He maketh wars to cease in all the world *
 he breaketh the bow, and knappeth the spear in sunder,
and burneth the chariots in the fire.
10  Be still then, and know that I am God *
 I will be exalted among the heathen, and I will be exalted in the earth.
11  The Lord of hosts is with us *
 the God of Jacob is our refuge.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son :
and to the Holy Ghost;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be :
world without end. Amen.

Psalm 47 (Anglican Chant: https://tinyurl.com/y7qnhdoz)

1  Clap your hands together, all ye people *
 O sing unto God with the voice of melody.
2  For the Lord is high, and to be feared *
 he is the great King upon all the earth.
3  He shall subdue the people under us *
 and the nations under our feet.
4  He shall choose out an heritage for us *
 even the worship of Jacob, whom he loved.
5  God is gone up with a merry noise *
 and the Lord with the sound of the trump.
6  O sing praises, sing praises unto our God *
 O sing praises, sing praises unto our King.
7  For God is the King of all the earth *
 sing ye praises with understanding.
8  God reigneth over the heathen *
 God sitteth upon his holy seat.
9  The princes of the people are joined
unto the people of the God of Abraham *
 for God, which is very high exalted,
doth defend the earth, as it were with a shield.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son :
and to the Holy Ghost;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be :
world without end. Amen.

PRAYER

God our strength, you are the only refuge of all who trust you.
Fortify us with your goodness to live in quietness of spirit,
that we may serve you all our days;
through Jesus Christ, your Son. Amen. BCW

THE WORD OF GOD

Reading: Leviticus 16:1-5, 20-28

The Lord spoke to Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron, when they drew near before the Lord and died. The Lord said to Moses:

Tell your brother Aaron not to come just at any time into the sanctuary inside the curtain before the mercy-seat that is upon the ark, or he will die; for I appear in the cloud upon the mercy-seat. Thus shall Aaron come into the holy place: with a young bull for a sin-offering and a ram for a burnt-offering. He shall put on the holy linen tunic, and shall have the linen undergarments next to his body, fasten the linen sash, and wear the linen turban; these are the holy vestments. He shall bathe his body in water, and then put them on. He shall take from the congregation of the people of Israel two male goats for a sin-offering, and one ram for a burnt-offering.

When he has finished atoning for the holy place and the tent of meeting and the altar, he shall present the live goat. Then Aaron shall lay both his hands on the head of the live goat, and confess over it all the iniquities of the people of Israel, and all their transgressions, all their sins, putting them on the head of the goat, and sending it away into the wilderness by means of someone designated for the task. The goat shall bear on itself all their iniquities to a barren region; and the goat shall be set free in the wilderness.

Then Aaron shall enter the tent of meeting, and shall take off the linen vestments that he put on when he went into the holy place, and shall leave them there. He shall bathe his body in water in a holy place, and put on his vestments; then he shall come out and offer his burnt-offering and the burnt-offering of the people, making atonement for himself and for the people. The fat of the sin-offering he shall turn into smoke on the altar. The one who sets the goat free for Azazel shall wash his clothes and bathe his body in water, and afterwards may come into the camp. The bull of the sin-offering and the goat of the sin-offering, whose blood was brought in to make atonement in the holy place, shall be taken outside the camp; their skin and their flesh and their dung shall be consumed in fire. The one who burns them shall wash his clothes and bathe his body in water, and afterwards may come into the camp.

HYMN: Robert Lowry
Tune: Tebben

1 What can wash away my sin? 
Nothing but the blood of Jesus. 
What can make me whole again? 
Nothing but the blood of Jesus. 

Refrain:
O precious is the flow 
that makes me white as snow; 
no other fount I know; 
nothing but the blood of Jesus. 

2 For my pardon this I see: 
nothing but the blood of Jesus. 
For my cleansing this my plea: 
nothing but the blood of Jesus. [Refrain]

3 Nothing can for sin atone: 
nothing but the blood of Jesus. 
Naught of good that I have done: 
nothing but the blood of Jesus. [Refrain]

4 This is all my hope and peace: 
nothing but the blood of Jesus. 
This is all my righteousness: 
nothing but the blood of Jesus. [Refrain]

Reading: Matthew 21:18-22

In the morning, when Jesus returned to the city, he was hungry. And seeing a fig tree by the side of the road, he went to it and found nothing at all on it but leaves. Then he said to it, ‘May no fruit ever come from you again!’ And the fig tree withered at once. When the disciples saw it, they were amazed, saying, ‘How did the fig tree wither at once?’ Jesus answered them, ‘Truly I tell you, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only will you do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, “Be lifted up and thrown into the sea”, it will be done. Whatever you ask for in prayer with faith, you will receive.’

CANTICLE Song of the Three Young Men 29-34
(Setting by Timothy R. Smith: https://tinyurl.com/ycrdhlqc)

Refrain:
Glory and praise, glory and praise, glory and praise for ever!

Blessed are you, O Lord, the God of our fathers,
praiseworthy and exalted above all forever;
and blessed is your holy and glorious name,
praiseworthy and exalted above all ages. Refrain

Blessed are you in the temple of your holy glory,
praiseworthy and exalted above all forever. Refrain

Blessed are you on the throne of your kingdom,
praiseworthy and exalted above all forever. Refrain

Blessed are you who look into the depths
from your throne upon the cherubim,
praiseworthy and exalted above all forever. Refrain

THE PRAYERS BCW

God of all mercies, we praise you that you have brought us to this new day, brightening
our lives with the dawn of promise and hope in Jesus Christ.
Especially we thank you for
the warmth of sunlight, the wetness of rain and snow, and all that nourishes the earth…
the presence and power of your Spirit . . .
the support and encouragement we receive from others . . .
those who provide for public safety and well-being . . .
the mission of the church around the world. . . .

Merciful God, strengthen us in prayer that we may lift up the brokenness of this
world for your healing, and share in the saving love of Jesus Christ.
Especially we pray for
those in positions of authority over others . . .
the lonely and forgotten . . .
children without families or homes . . .
agents of caring and relief . . .
the church in Asia and the Middle East. . . .

(Plainsong Mode 2: https://tinyurl.com/yctqq8cf)DL

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;
and 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.

God of unity and truth,
encourage the fervent,
enlighten the doubtful
and bring back the wayward.
Gather us all together in mutual love,
so that our prayer may be pleasing to you.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God for ever and ever. Amen. Opening Prayers, alt.

Music: https://tinyurl.com/y9efvwm5
Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God,
and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with us all. Amen. 2 Cor. 13:14


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BCW Book of Common Worship, Presbyterian Church U.S.A., 1993.

EH Exciting Holiness, Ed. Brother Tristram SSF © European Province of the Society of Saint Francis, 1997

RCLP Revised Common Lectionary Prayers. © 2002 Consultation on Common Texts admin. Augsburg Fortress.

Opening Prayers – Collects in Contemporary Language, © 1998 ICEL/Canterbury Press

1 Adam Bartlett, Simple English Propers; audio from https://musicasacra.com/additional-publications/sep-practice-videos/ ©

The three main scripture readings are from the The New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Edition, The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

The psalms are from The Book of Common Prayer (1662).

Musical links are usually either to artists’ albums posted on Spotify or to recordings made available at smallchurchmusic.com. Audio stripped from YouTube videos is footnoted accordingly above.

Compilation © 2020 Stephen T. Benner. All links worked at the time they were created, but I cannot accept responsibility for their content or any damage resulting from their use. The linked content is under the control of the respective content creators and is subject to change at any time. Any copyright texts included in this compilation are provided for non-commercial purposes related to study or worship. Please contact the respective copyright holders for permission to use the texts in other contexts.

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