Oremus for Monday, March 14, 2022

Fannie Lou Hamer, center, with husband Pap, rear, and friends. Photo © Bruce Davidson/Magnum Photos 1970

Fannie Lou Hamer
Fannie Lou Hamer (1917-1977) was born in Mississippi in 1917. Starting at the age of six, Hamer, the youngest child of a sharecropper family, picked cotton. She was only able to attend school until the age of 13 because her family needed her labor. She married Perry Hamer at the age of 27, and together they worked on a plantation owned by a man named Marlow for the next 18 years. They took in two poor girls whom they later adopted. Throughout her life she was known for her singing of hymns of freedom.
During the 1950’s, Hamer became involved in the Civil Rights Movement. She decided to join the effort for voting rights. She joined a group and traveled to Indianola, Mississippi to register African American voters. When she returned to the plantation she was fired by Marlow.
Hamer was recruited by the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and began traveling around the South, singing hymns and doing activist work for the organization. While doing this work she was arrested on a false charge and severely beaten. This experience affected her deeply but did not stop her work for justice for Black people. Her work grew national attention, even disturbing the Southern Democratic Party. Lyndon B Johnson referred to her as “that illiterate woman.” Hamer ran for Congressional office in 1964 and 1965 but failed to win. However, she continued her work for justice until her death on this day in 1977.

As she wrote: I believe that we have just got to keep some kind of faith that the people who want to make this country a good place to live can gain and influence politics in this country. I do have faith, as bad as the situation is now, for if I hadn’t had faith four years ago I wouldn’t have gone to Atlantic City, New Jersey, to tell the Democratic Convention why the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party should be seated in place of the “regular” Democrats from Mississippi. …And if I didn’t have faith, I wouldn’t spend so much of my time talking to ninety percent white audiences all over the country, and going to these ninety percent white political conventions, and writing pieces like this for the magazine of the Southern Churchmen.1

Antiphon https://tinyurl.com/kstdbwh2

Look toward the Lord and be radiant;
let your faces not be abashed. Psalm 34

Eternal God, our judge and redeemer,
we confess that we have tried to hide from you,
for we have done wrong.
We have lived for ourselves,
and apart from you.
We have turned from our neighbors,
and refused to bear the burdens of others.
We have ignored the pain of the world,
and passed by the hungry, the poor, and the oppressed.
In your great mercy forgive our sins
and free us from selfishness,
that we may choose your will
and obey your commandments;
through Jesus Christ our Savior. AmenBCW

Music: https://tinyurl.com/ufxekitx

God, come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.
Glory 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.

HYMN: Spiritual
Recording: led by Fannie Lou Hamer https://tinyurl.com/vk22c96d

This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine!
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine!
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine!
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine!

Additional stanzas:
Ev’rywhere I go, I’m gonna let it shine!
I’ve got the light of freedom…
Jesus gave it to me now…
Shine, shine, shine…

PSALMS

Psalm 71 (Anglican Chant: https://tinyurl.com/ybx8s3ew)
1  In thee, O Lord, have I put my trust,
let me never be put to confusion *
 but rid me, and deliver me, in thy righteousness;
incline thine ear unto me, and save me.
2  Be thou my strong hold, whereunto I may alway resort *
 thou hast promised to help me,
for thou art my house of defence, and my castle.
3  Deliver me, O my God, out of the hand of the ungodly *
 out of the hand of the unrighteous and cruel man.
4  For thou, O Lord God, art the thing that I long for *
 thou art my hope, even from my youth.
5  Through thee have I been holden up ever since I was born *
 thou art he that took me out of my mother’s womb;
my praise shall be always of thee.
6  I am become as it were a monster unto many *
 but my sure trust is in thee.
7  O let my mouth be filled with thy praise *
 that I may sing of thy glory and honour all the day long.
8  Cast me not away in the time of age *
 forsake me not when my strength faileth me.
9  For mine enemies speak against me,
and they that lay wait for my soul take their counsel together, saying *
 God hath forsaken him; persecute him, and take him,
for there is none to deliver him.
10  Go not far from me, O God *
 my God, haste thee to help me.
11  Let them be confounded and perish that are against my soul *
 let them be covered with shame and dishonour that seek to do me evil.
12  As for me, I will patiently abide alway *
 and will praise thee more and more.
13  My mouth shall daily speak of thy righteousness and salvation *
 for I know no end thereof.
14  I will go forth in the strength of the Lord God *
 and will make mention of thy righteousness only.
15  Thou, O God, hast taught me from my youth up until now *
 therefore will I tell of thy wondrous works.
16  Forsake me not, O God, in mine old age, when I am gray-headed *
 until I have shewed thy strength unto this generation,
and thy power to all them that are yet for to come.
17  Thy righteousness, O God, is very high *
 and great things are they that thou hast done;
O God, who is like unto thee?
18  O what great troubles and adversities hast thou shewed me!
and yet didst thou turn and refresh me *
 yea, and broughtest me from the deep of the earth again.
19  Thou hast brought me to great honour *
 and comforted me on every side.
20  Therefore will I praise thee and thy faithfulness, O God,
playing upon an instrument of musick *
 unto thee will I sing upon the harp, O thou Holy One of Israel.
21  My lips will be fain when I sing unto thee *
 and so will my soul whom thou hast delivered.
22  My tongue also shall talk of thy righteousness all the day long *
 for they are confounded and brought unto shame
that seek to do me evil.
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 71 (Karl Kohlhase: http://oremus.org/chant/Psalm-71-KH.mp3)
I take refuge in you, LORD;
let me not always be shamed.
In your righteousness deliver;
extend your ear and save.
Be to me a rock of refuge
where I can always come;
For you give command to save,
my fortress and my rock.

My God, please rescue me
from the hand of the wicked
From the grip of evil men,
from the grasp of the embittered,
Lord GOD, you are my hope,
my confidence from youth.
You have held me since my birth,
even from my mother’s womb;

My praise is perpetual

I’m a wonder to the crowd,
my refuge is so strong.
My mouth is filled with praise
and your glory all day long.
Don’t leave in my old age
nor when my strength expires.
For my foes who watch my life,
take counsel and conspire

Saying, “God has left, give chase;
seize him with none to save”
My God, be not far off;
and to my help make haste!
O let them be ashamed,
who bring my soul alarm
O cover them with shame,
who seek to do me harm.

My praise is perpetual

As for me, I’ll always hope,
and praise you more and more.
Of your justice my mouth speaks,
your salvation all day long;
Their sum cannot be known,
all the deeds of the Lord God;
Of your righteousness I’ll tell,
of yours and yours alone.

God trained me from my youth,
and still your works I’m praising.
Even when I’m old and gray,
O God, do not forsake me,
Until I tell your power
to this age and those to come
Of your justice to the heav’ns.
Who is like you, O my God?

My praise is perpetual

You who’ve shown me many trials,
again you will revive me,
From the deepest place on earth
you’ll bring a new arising.
My greatness you’ll increase
when you turn back to console.
I will praise you with a harp,
for your faithfulness, O God;

With the lyre I’ll sing to you,
O Holy One of Israel.
And my lips will shout for joy;
the praise of my redeemed soul.
My tongue will also tell
of your justice all the day;
For those sought my harm
are turned back and ashamed.

My praise is perpetual
My praise is perpetual

Psalm 72 (Anglican Chant: https://tinyurl.com/ya9qaxre)
1  Give the King thy judgements, O God *
 and thy righteousness unto the King’s son.
2  Then shall he judge thy people according unto right *
 and defend the poor.
3  The mountains also shall bring peace *
 and the little hills righteousness unto the people.
4  He shall keep the simple folk by their right *
 defend the children of the poor, and punish the wrong doer.
5  They shall fear thee, as long as the sun and moon endureth *
 from one generation to another.
6  He shall come down like the rain into a fleece of wool *
 even as the drops that water the earth.
7  In his time shall the righteous flourish *
 yea, and abundance of peace, so long as the moon endureth.
8  His dominion shall be also from the one sea to the other *
 and from the flood unto the world’s end.
9  They that dwell in the wilderness shall kneel before him *
 his enemies shall lick the dust.
10  The kings of Tharsis and of the isles shall give presents *
 the kings of Arabia and Saba shall bring gifts.
11  All kings shall fall down before him *
 all nations shall do him service.
12  For he shall deliver the poor when he crieth *
 the needy also, and him that hath no helper.
13  He shall be favourable to the simple and needy *
 and shall preserve the souls of the poor.
14  He shall deliver their souls from falsehood and wrong *
 and dear shall their blood be in his sight.
15  He shall live, and unto him shall be given of the gold of Arabia *
 prayer shall be made ever unto him, and daily shall he be praised.
16  There shall be an heap of corn in the earth, high upon the hills *
 his fruit shall shake like Libanus,
and shall be green in the city like grass upon the earth.
17  His Name shall endure for ever;
his Name shall remain under the sun among the posterities *
 which shall be blessed through him; and all the heathen shall praise him.
18  Blessed be the Lord God, even the God of Israel *
 which only doeth wondrous things ;
19  And blessed be the Name of his Majesty for ever *
 and all the earth shall be filled with his Majesty. Amen, Amen.
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 72 (Karl Kohlhase: http://oremus.org/chant/Psalm-72-KH.mp3)
Give the King your justice, O God;
and your righteousness to the Royal Son
May he judge your people with equity
and all of the poor with justice
Let the mountains bring peace to the people
and the hills bear righteousness
He’ll defend the poor of the nation,
help poor children and crush oppressors

Amen and amen

May his honor endure like the sun
and as long as the moon for all ages
May he come down like rain on the field,
like showers that water the earth
In his days may righteousness flourish
and great peace till the moon is no more

Amen and amen

May his rule be from sea to sea,
from the river to the ends of the earth
Desert dwellers shall bow down to him,
and the hostile shall all lick the dust
May the kings of Tarshish bring tribute
and the kings of Sheba bring gifts
O let all the kings fall prostrate,
and may all the nations serve him

Amen and amen.

For he saves the needy who call,
the afflicted and those with no helper
For the weak and the poor his compassion
will save the souls of the needy
From oppression and violence he saves them;
and their blood is dear in his sight

Amen and amen.

So long may he live!
May the gold of Sheba be given
Let there be perpetual prayers
and blessings for him all the day
May the grain of the earth be abundant;
may it wave on mountain peaks
May its fruit be like unto Lebanon;
in the towns let people blossom

Amen and amen.

May his name endure forever
and his fame live on like the sun
May men bless themselves by him,
and all nations call him blessed
Bless the LORD, the God of Israel,
who alone can work such wonders
Bless his glorious name forever;
may his glory fill the whole earth

Amen and amen.

PRAYER

God our strong fortress,
do not desert us in old age.
Help us to follow your will
through all our years
and under all circumstances,
that forever we may praise your faithfulness;
through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. BCW

THE WORD OF GOD

Reading: Genesis 41:14-57

hen Pharaoh sent for Joseph, and he was hurriedly brought out of the dungeon. When he had shaved himself and changed his clothes, he came in before Pharaoh. And Pharaoh said to Joseph, ‘I have had a dream, and there is no one who can interpret it. I have heard it said of you that when you hear a dream you can interpret it.’ Joseph answered Pharaoh, ‘It is not I; God will give Pharaoh a favourable answer.’ Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, ‘In my dream I was standing on the banks of the Nile; and seven cows, fat and sleek, came up out of the Nile and fed in the reed grass. Then seven other cows came up after them, poor, very ugly, and thin. Never had I seen such ugly ones in all the land of Egypt. The thin and ugly cows ate up the first seven fat cows, but when they had eaten them no one would have known that they had done so, for they were still as ugly as before. Then I awoke. I fell asleep a second time and I saw in my dream seven ears of grain, full and good, growing on one stalk, and seven ears, withered, thin, and blighted by the east wind, sprouting after them; and the thin ears swallowed up the seven good ears. But when I told it to the magicians, there was no one who could explain it to me.’

Then Joseph said to Pharaoh, ‘Pharaoh’s dreams are one and the same; God has revealed to Pharaoh what he is about to do. The seven good cows are seven years, and the seven good ears are seven years; the dreams are one. The seven lean and ugly cows that came up after them are seven years, as are the seven empty ears blighted by the east wind. They are seven years of famine. It is as I told Pharaoh; God has shown to Pharaoh what he is about to do. There will come seven years of great plenty throughout all the land of Egypt. After them there will arise seven years of famine, and all the plenty will be forgotten in the land of Egypt; the famine will consume the land. The plenty will no longer be known in the land because of the famine that will follow, for it will be very grievous. And the doubling of Pharaoh’s dream means that the thing is fixed by God, and God will shortly bring it about. Now therefore let Pharaoh select a man who is discerning and wise, and set him over the land of Egypt. Let Pharaoh proceed to appoint overseers over the land, and take one-fifth of the produce of the land of Egypt during the seven plenteous years. Let them gather all the food of these good years that are coming, and lay up grain under the authority of Pharaoh for food in the cities, and let them keep it. That food shall be a reserve for the land against the seven years of famine that are to befall the land of Egypt, so that the land may not perish through the famine.’

The proposal pleased Pharaoh and all his servants. Pharaoh said to his servants, ‘Can we find anyone else like this—one in whom is the spirit of God?’ So Pharaoh said to Joseph, ‘Since God has shown you all this, there is no one so discerning and wise as you. You shall be over my house, and all my people shall order themselves as you command; only with regard to the throne will I be greater than you.’ And Pharaoh said to Joseph, ‘See, I have set you over all the land of Egypt.’ Removing his signet ring from his hand, Pharaoh put it on Joseph’s hand; he arrayed him in garments of fine linen, and put a gold chain around his neck. He had him ride in the chariot of his second-in-command; and they cried out in front of him, ‘Bow the knee!’ Thus he set him over all the land of Egypt. Moreover, Pharaoh said to Joseph, ‘I am Pharaoh, and without your consent no one shall lift up hand or foot in all the land of Egypt.’ Pharaoh gave Joseph the name Zaphenath-paneah; and he gave him Asenath daughter of Potiphera, priest of On, as his wife. Thus Joseph gained authority over the land of Egypt.

Joseph was thirty years old when he entered the service of Pharaoh king of Egypt. And Joseph went out from the presence of Pharaoh, and went through all the land of Egypt. During the seven plenteous years the earth produced abundantly. He gathered up all the food of the seven years when there was plenty in the land of Egypt, and stored up food in the cities; he stored up in every city the food from the fields around it. So Joseph stored up grain in such abundance—like the sand of the sea—that he stopped measuring it; it was beyond measure.

Before the years of famine came, Joseph had two sons, whom Asenath daughter of Potiphera, priest of On, bore to him. Joseph named the firstborn Manasseh, ‘For’, he said, ‘God has made me forget all my hardship and all my father’s house.’ The second he named Ephraim, ‘For God has made me fruitful in the land of my misfortunes.’

The seven years of plenty that prevailed in the land of Egypt came to an end; and the seven years of famine began to come, just as Joseph had said. There was famine in every country, but throughout the land of Egypt there was bread. When all the land of Egypt was famished, the people cried to Pharaoh for bread. Pharaoh said to all the Egyptians, ‘Go to Joseph; what he says to you, do.’ And since the famine had spread over all the land, Joseph opened all the storehouses, and sold to the Egyptians, for the famine was severe in the land of Egypt. Moreover, all the world came to Joseph in Egypt to buy grain, because the famine became severe throughout the world.

HYMN: Spiritual
Sung by Fannie Lou Hamer: https://tinyurl.com/5yjpe4t8 
Sung by Mavis Staples: https://tinyurl.com/2dympkma

1 Woke up this mornin’ with my mind, stayed on Jesus [freedom]. 
Woke up this mornin’ with my mind, stayed on Jesus.
Woke up this mornin’ with my mind, stayed on Jesus.
Hallelu, hallelu, hallelujah.

2 Walkin’ and talkin’ with my mind, stayed on Jesus.
Walkin’ and talkin’ with my mind, stayed on Jesus.
Walkin’ and talkin’ with my mind, stayed on Jesus.
Hallelu, hallelu, hallelujah.

3 No condemnation with my mind, stayed on Jesus.
No condemnation with my mind, stayed on Jesus.
No condemnation with my mind, stayed on Jesus.
Hallelu, hallelu, hallelujah.

4 Can’t hate your neighbor in your mind, stayed on Jesus.
Can’t hate your neighbor in your mind, stayed on Jesus.
Can’t hate your neighbor in your mind, stayed on Jesus.
Hallelu, hallelu, hallelujah.

5 Love everybody with your mind, stayed on Jesus.
Love everybody with your mind, stayed on Jesus.
Love everybody with your mind, stayed on Jesus.
Hallelu, hallelu, hallelujah.

6 Devil can’t catch you in your mind, stayed on Jesus,
Devil can’t catch you in your mind, stayed on Jesus,
Devil can’t catch you in your mind, stayed on Jesus.
Hallelu, hallelu, hallelujah.

7 Jesus, the captain in your mind, stayed on Jesus,
Jesus, the captain in your mind, stayed on Jesus,
Jesus, the captain in your mind, stayed on Jesus.
Hallelu, hallelu, hallelujah.

Reading: Romans 4:1-12

What then are we to say was gained by Abraham, our ancestor according to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. For what does the scripture say? ‘Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.’ Now to one who works, wages are not reckoned as a gift but as something due. But to one who without works trusts him who justifies the ungodly, such faith is reckoned as righteousness. So also David speaks of the blessedness of those to whom God reckons righteousness irrespective of works:
‘Blessed are those whose iniquities are forgiven,
   and whose sins are covered;
blessed is the one against whom the Lord will not reckon sin.’

Is this blessedness, then, pronounced only on the circumcised, or also on the uncircumcised? We say, ‘Faith was reckoned to Abraham as righteousness.’ How then was it reckoned to him? Was it before or after he had been circumcised? It was not after, but before he was circumcised. He received the sign of circumcision as a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised. The purpose was to make him the ancestor of all who believe without being circumcised and who thus have righteousness reckoned to them, and likewise the ancestor of the circumcised who are not only circumcised but who also follow the example of the faith that our ancestor Abraham had before he was circumcised.

HYMN: Charles Wesley
Tune: Ardwick https://tinyurl.com/ywyhu3aa

Away with our fears,
our troubles and tears,
the Spirit is come,
the witness of Jesus returned to his home.

The pledge of our Lord
to his heaven restored,
is sent from the sky,
and tells us our head is exalted on high.

Our glorified head
his Spirit has shed,
with his people to stay,
and never again will he take him away.

Our heavenly guide
with us shall abide,
his comforts impart,
and set up his kingdom of love in the heart.

The heart that believes
his kingdom receives,
his power and his peace,
his life, and his joy’s everlasting increase.

Reading: Mark 9:30-37

They went on from there and passed through Galilee. Jesusdid not want anyone to know it; for he was teaching his disciples, saying to them, ‘The Son of Man is to be betrayed into human hands, and they will kill him, and three days after being killed, he will rise again.’ But they did not understand what he was saying and were afraid to ask him.

Then they came to Capernaum; and when he was in the house he asked them, ‘What were you arguing about on the way?’ But they were silent, for on the way they had argued with one another about who was the greatest. He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, ‘Whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all.’ Then he took a little child and put it among them; and taking it in his arms, he said to them, ‘Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.’

CANTICLE Isaiah 55:6-11
(Setting by Gregory Wilbur: https://tinyurl.com/yawmg8fp)

Seek ye the Lord while he may be found,
Call ye upon him while He is near.
Let the wicked forsake his way,
and the unrighteous man his thoughts:

And let him return unto the Lord,
and he will have mercy upon him;
and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.
As the heavens are higher than the earth,
My ways and thoughts are higher than yours.

And let him return unto the Lord,
and he will have mercy upon him;
and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.

For as the rain cometh down, and snow from heaven,
And maketh it bring forth and bud that it may give seed to sow,
that it may give bread to eat.

So shall my world be that goeth forth out of my mouth:
It shall not return unto me void,
but it shall accomplish that which I please it shall prosper
in the thing whereunto I sent it.

THE PRAYERS BCW

In penitence and faith let us make our prayer to the Father
and ask for his mercy and grace.

For your holy people,
that they may triumph over evil and grow in grace:
We pray to you, O Lord.

For candidates for baptism and confirmation,
that they may live by every word that proceeds from your mouth:
We pray to you, O Lord.

For the leaders of the nations,
that you will guide them in the ways of mercy and truth:
We pray to you, O Lord.

For the needy,
that they may not be forgotten,
nor the hope of the poor be taken away:
We pray to you, O Lord.

For the sick in body, mind and spirit,
that they may know your power to heal:
We pray to you, O Lord.

For the poor in spirit,
that they may inherit the kingdom of heaven
and see you face to face: :
We pray to you, O Lord.

Let us commend the world, for which Christ suffered,
to the mercy and protection of God. Amen.

Setting by Eric Wyse:2

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.

Eternal God, we thank you for the witness of Fannie Lou Hamer, who was sustained by her Christian faith as she led the struggle against apartheid in South Africa. Strengthen us, after her example, to make no peace with oppression and to witness boldly for our Deliverer, Jesus Christ; who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen. HWHM

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


depositphotos_107435298-stock-illustration-hand-drawn-red-grunge-cross-8

Support this ministry

Since 1993, Oremus has been sent daily to hundreds of people around the world. It is done entirely on a volunteer basis and the resources are purchased by Steve with his own funds. If you could support this ministry, I would appreciate it. Thank you advance.

$10.00

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

PIC Prayers for An Inclusive Church. Steven Shakespeare © 2008 Canterbury Press.

1 https://www.dominicancenter.org/fannie-lou-hamer/

HWHM Holy Women, Holy Men © 2010 The Church Pension Fund.

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.

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 traditional language psalms are from The Book of Common Prayer (1662). The modern versions of Psalms 71 and 72 are sung by Karl Kohlhase http://www.k4communications.com/karl/index.html.

Compilation © 2022 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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