Thanks to a super-fan, we’re embarking on a new exploration of the Book of Common Prayer, starting with the prayer for those who influence public opinion. Plus – what’s in the lectionary this week?
This week’s prayer (BCP 827):
Almighty God, you proclaim your truth in every age by many voices: Direct, in our time, we pray, those who speak where many listen and write what many read; that they may do their part in making the heart of this people wise, its mind sound, and its will righteous; to the honor of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
We finally come back after our Halloween break (and then some) for an Advent roundup and how to deal with this #spoileralert of a Sunday lectionary.
This week’s prayers:
First Sunday of Advent
Almighty God, give us grace to cast away the works of darkness, and put on the armor of light, now in the time of this mortal life in which your Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the living and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen. Second Sunday of Advent
Merciful God, who sent your messengers the prophets to preach repentance and prepare the way for our salvation: Give us grace to heed their warnings and forsake our sins, that we may greet with joy the coming of Jesus Christ our Redeemer; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Third Sunday of Advent
Stir up your power, O Lord, and with great might come among us; and, because we are sorely hindered by our sins, let your bountiful grace and mercy speedily help and deliver us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit, be honor and glory, now and for ever. Amen.
Fourth Sunday of Advent
Purify our conscience, Almighty God, by your daily visitation, that your Son Jesus Christ, at his coming, may find in us a mansion prepared for himself; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
We don’t presume to know how you voted, nor do we even care. But we do know that a lot of people are hurting and scared right now, and we all have to live with each other now that the election is over.
We have a homework assignment for you: tell us about ways you are witnessing or spreading love. Use Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, e-mail, whatever works for you, and use the hashtag #collectlove.
And dear listeners, know that even though we’ve been on a break, we’re coming back soon. We love you a lot, but God loves you even more.
This week’s prayer: For Times of Conflict (BCP p. 824)
O God, you have bound us together in a common life. Help us, in the midst of our struggles for justice and truth, to confront one another without hatred or bitterness, and to work together with mutual forbearance and respect; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
On hearing that God is more ready to hear than we are to pray, Holli observes that she always asks her daughter how her day was, and mostly all she has to say is that things are fine.
This week’s prayer: Proper 21 (BCP p. 234)
Almighty and everlasting God, you are always more ready to hear than we to pray, and to give more than we either desire or deserve: Pour upon us the abundance of your mercy, forgiving us those things of which our conscience is afraid, and giving us those good things for which we are not worthy to ask, except through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ our Savior; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Image by ocean_of_stars. Used under a Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 2.0 license.
Luci Hoad and Jordan Ware, co-hosts of Two Feminists Annotate the Bible (subscribe on iTunes), join us for a second week to talk about the mysteries of using your power to show mercy and pity.
This week’s prayer: Proper 21 (BCP p. 234)
O God, you declare your almighty power chiefly in showing mercy and pity: Grant us the fullness of your grace, that we, running to obtain your promises, may become partakers of your heavenly treasure; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
As Social Media Sunday approaches again on September 25, 2016, it appears to be increasingly embraced by the institutional church. But we love that the origin story of Social Media Sunday is two laypeople doing their thing on the internet. Here’s our interview with Carolyn Clement, one of the people who gave Social Media Sunday its start.
Also, if you haven’t already, check out the Acts 8 Movement’s resources for ways to proclaim, engage, and invite using social media, available both in English and Spanish. These materials are not Social Media Sunday specific, so if you missed the date, you should still feel free to use them whenever seems best.
Grant us, Lord, not to be anxious about earthly things, but to love things heavenly; and even now, while we are placed among things that are passing away, to hold fast to those that shall endure; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
One of the things the authors and revisers of the 1979 Book of Common Prayer could never have anticipated was how, nearly 40 years on, the technology replacement cycle would become a pervasive, painful feature of the lives of the faithful. Two weeks ago, Holli Powell, co-host of The Collect Call podcast, faced an ailing laptop. Finding nothing in the Prayers and Thanksgivings or Burial of the Dead sections of the prayer book to ease her despair, she and co-host Brendan O’Sullivan-Hale appealed to their listeners for a new collect.
Listeners delivered! The submissions we received combined an ancient form of prayer with modern #firstworldproblems. We hope these prayers help you turn your mind to higher things next time your laptop crashes. To aid you, we’ve also combined selected words with images, in homage to the prayers The Episcopal Church posts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram daily.
From Tyler Richards, a collect wrestling with the love-hate relationship we have with technology:
Grant peace, O merciful God, to your people, who are pressed on all sides by the onslaught of technology, that we, working through the power of your spirit, might strive to maintain and utilize the technology that is set before us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
This week we totally solve the mystery of why we need God’s help to love God, and then we fight about the merits of the Pumpkin Spice Latte.
This week’s prayer: Proper 18 (BCP p. 233)
O God, because without you we are not able to please you, mercifully grant that your Holy Spirit may in all things direct and rule our hearts; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.