WEDNESDAY THE THIRD OF JANUARY 2018
O Lord, grant me to greet the coming day in peace. Help me in all things to rely on your holy will. In every hour of the day, reveal your will to me. Bless my dealings with all who surround me. Teach me to treat all that comes to me throughout the day with peace of soul and with the ﬁrm conviction that your will governs all. In all my deeds and words, guide my thoughts and feelings. In unforeseen events, let me not forget that all are sent by you. Teach me to act ﬁrmly and wisely, without embittering and embarrassing others. Give me the strength to bear the fatigue of the coming day with all that it shall bring. Direct my will; teach me to pray; pray you yourself in me. Amen.
( Philaret of Moscow )
"Ah! Lord God, the world’s creator,
king of all, great or small,
art thou cradled, art thou crying,
swathed and bound, on the ground,
in the stable lying?
"Love of man hath brought me hither,
cords of love, from above,
to exalt him thither;
dead in trespass, child, I sought thee;
gone astray, from my way,
life and pardon brought thee."
"Empty be my scrip and coffer,
yet it is wealth, plenty, health,
I am come to offer;
haste I to enrich and dress thee;
born to die, low I lie,
and would gladly bless thee."
Therefore thousand thousand praises
are thy due, Babe Jesu,
these my heart upraises;
angels, mortals, furthest, nighest,
sing in mirth, "Peace on earth,
Glory in the highest."
( Jean Mauburn )
MEDITATION by Tim Madsen
John Wyclif: a Morningstar to point the way. (transferred from Sunday)
At the beginning of a new year, Saint Laika’s remembers John Wyclif, an English scholar, reformer and "Bible" translator in the fourteenth century. He is often called the “Morningstar” of the Reformation, for his views on the place of the "Bible" in Christian life, and the overreach of papal claims to govern the Church of Christ. His followers were known as Lollards, who preached anti-clericalism and biblically centered reforms to the Church’s common life. He died on the thirty-first of December, 1384.
The fourteenth century was a century of turmoil, particularly in England. The Hundred Years War with France put a heavy burden of taxes on the backs of the poor. The Papacy had moved from Rome to Avignon for most of the century and was dominated by the French. By the time of Wyclif’s death, the papacy had broken in two, with an Italian pope in Rome and a French pope in Avignon. The Black Death (Bubonic Plague) ravaged Europe, decimating populations and causing the rise of mystical movements like the Flagellants who, convinced that the plague was a judgment of God against them, went about whipping themselves. Others were convinced the world was coming to an end.
Wyclif’s teachings directly addressed the tumult of the times. First was his emphasis upon an individual's interpretation of the "Bible" as the best guide to a moral life, as opposed to the Church’s emphasis on receiving its sacraments as the only way to salvation.
Second, he insisted that holiness of an individual was more important than that of formal office; that is, a truly pious person was morally superior to a wicked ordained cleric. Wycliffe challenged the privileged status of the clergy, which was central to their powerful role in England.
Finally, he attacked the luxurious and exorbitant rites, ceremonies, and sheer pomp of the Church’s public worship.
The "Wyclif Bible" was his crowning work. It was completed in the year he died, and it is said that Wyclif was directly responsible for the translation of the four gospels, and perhaps for the whole of the "New Testament."
After his death, his teachings were picked up and promoted by Bohemian priest, Jan Hus. At the Council of Constance in 1414, both Wyclif and Hus were declared heretics. Hus was burned at the stake in 1414. Wyclif’s body was exhumed in 1428 and his bones were burned and then strewn in the river near his burial site.
Scripture. In "Psalm Thirty-Three", at verses ten and eleven we read:
The LORD brings the counsel of the nations to nothing; he frustrates the plans of the peoples. The counsel of the LORD stands forever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations.
... for peace in the world.
... for an end to all clergy abuses, corruption and privilege in Christian churches.
... for those who were killed or injured when a coach plummeted one hundred metres down a cliff and landed upside down on a beach in Pasamayo, Peru DETAILS; for all who have been involved in road traffic accidents recently.
... 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.
From John Wyclif's letter of excuse to Pope Urban VI:
I have joyfully to tell all true men the belief that I hold, and always to the pope. For I suppose that if my faith be rightful and given of God, the pope will gladly conserve it, and if my faith be error, the pope will wisely amend it. I suppose over this, that the gospel of Christ be part of the body of God's law. For I believe that Jesu Christ, that gave in his own person this gospel, is very God and very Man, and by this it passes all other laws. I suppose over this, that the pope be most obliged to the keeping of the gospel among all men that live here. For the pope is the highest vicar that Christ has here in earth. For greatness of Christ's vicars is not measured by worldly greatness, but by this, that this vicar follows more Christ by virtuous living, for thus teaches the gospel. That this is the sentence of Christ and of his gospel, I take as belief, that Christ for time that he walked here was most poor man of all, both in spirit and in possessions, for Christ says that he had nought for to rest his head on. And over this, I take as belief that no man should follow the pope, nor no saint that is now in heaven, but inasmuch as he followed Christ, for James and John erred, and Peter and Paul sinned. Of this I take as wholesome counsel, that the pope leave his worldly lordship to worldly lords, as Christ gave him, and move speedily all his clerks to do so, for thus did Christ, and taught thus his disciples, till the fiend had blinded this world.
O God, your justice continually challenges your Church to live according to its calling: grant us who now remember the work of John Wyclif contrition for the wounds which our sins inflict on your Church, and such love for Christ that we may seek to heal the divisions which afflict his Body; through the same Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of 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
CLICK HERE, then click on "Begin" and follow the instructions on each page.