Daily Prayer At Saint Laika’s

FRIDAY THE EIGHTH OF DECEMBER 2017

OPENING PRAYER

Our Lord and our God, our merciful Father in Heaven, we entreat you with childlike hearts, give us in this world whatever is really good and happy for us in soul and body, according to your holy will and pleasure. May we live as Christians, endure with patience, and at last die in peace and hope, for Jesus Christ’s sake. Amen

( Johann Quirsfeld )

CANTICLE

Lord of all being, throned afar,
thy glory flames from sun and star;
centre and soul of every sphere,
yet to each loving heart how near.

Sun of our life, thy quickening ray
sheds on our path the glow of day;
star of our hope, thy softened light
cheers the long watches of the night.

Our midnight is thy smile withdrawn;
our noontide is thy gracious dawn;
our rainbow arch, thy mercy’s sign;
all, save the clouds of sin, are thine.

Lord of all life, below, above,
whose light is truth, whose warmth is love,
before thy ever blazing throne
we ask no lustre of our own.

Grant us thy truth to make us free,
and kindling hearts that burn for thee,
till all thy living altars claim
one holy light, one heavenly flame.

( Oliver Wendell Holmes )

MEDITATION by Tim Madsen

Narcisa de Jesús: Ecuadoran mystic and servant of the poor

It is difficult for those of us who spend our days in the midst of the world and the daily interactions we take for granted, to understand the call to mysticism. Today Narcisa de Jesús confronts us with exactly that challenge.

Narcisa was born in Nobol, Ecuador in 1832, the sixth of nine children. Her parents worked hard and were landowners with the means to provide well for their children. Narcisa’s mother died when Narcisa was only six years old. Helped by an older sister, Narcisa learned to read, write, sing, play the guitar, sew, weave, embroider and cook. She had great qualities, with a particular bent for music. Her father died when she was nineteen. Already she had received the call of the Lord on her life. She moved to Guayaquil and began a ministry to the poor and sick, and a particular ministry to care for abandoned children. It was during this time that she practiced intense personal devotion to Jesus. Withdrawing from the public for periods of time when she would pray and spend time in the presence of the Lord. During this time she also took on work as a seamstress to provide financial support for her brothers and sisters. In 1868 she moved to Lima, Peru and lived as a lay member of the Dominican Convent there. She existed on bread and water and the reception of Holy Communion. She was frequently found in states of ecstasy. Towards the end of 1869, Narcisa developed high fevers for which medical remedies could do little. She died on the eighth of December, 1869.

The folk piety of the people among whom she lived immediately declared her sanctity. In Peru, Guayaquil, and Nobol, she was venerated as a saint. The Dominican nuns with who she had been living, preserved her remains in their chapel. In 1955 her nearly incorruptible remains were transferred back to Nobol, Ecuador. She was declared a saint of the Catholic Church in 2008.

Scripture. In "Psalm Sixteen," verse eleven, we read:

You show me the path of life. In your presence there is fullness of joy; in your right hand are pleasures for evermore.

INTERCESSIONS

We pray...

... for peace in the world.

... for Christian mystics; that we, in our own way, may glimpse the divine and be encouraged by that encounter to serve God more fully in our everyday lives.

... for those living in the path of the California wildfires and those fighting the flames.

... for peace on the streets of Jerusalem and throughout Palestine.

... for young people suffering from eating disorders.

... for those who have died recently and for those who mourn their passing.

... for those who are unwell and for those caring for them.

... for those, both close to us and far off, who we hold in our personal prayers.

... for ourselves.

THE LORD'S PRAYER

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done; on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.

READING

From "Becoming Wise" by Krista Tippett:

Spiritual humility is not about getting small, not about debasing oneself, but about approaching everything and everyone else with a readiness to see goodness and to be surprised. This is the humility of a child, which Jesus lauded. It is the humility of the scientist and the mystic. It has a lightness of step, not a heaviness of heart. That lightness is the surest litmus test I know for recognising wisdom when you see it in the world or feel its stirrings in yourself. The questions that can lead us are already alive in our midst, waiting to be summoned and made real. It is a joy to name them. It is a gift to plant them in our senses, our bodies, the places we inhabit, the part of the world we can see and touch and help to heal. It is a relief to claim our love of each other and take that on as an adventure, a calling. It is a pleasure to wonder at the mystery we are and find delight in the vastness of reality that is embedded in our beings. It is a privilege to hold something robust and resilient called hope, which has the power to shift the world on its axis.

CLOSING PRAYER

Lord God, you gave the holy virgin Narcisa de Jesús gift upon gift from heaven. Grant, we pray, that, imitating her virtues on earth, we may delight with her in the joys of eternity, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

May the Lord bless us, protect us from all evil and bring us to everlasting life. Amen.

NOW LIGHT A CANDLE

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