Daily Prayer At Saint Laika’s



O most glorious and exalted Lord, you are glorified in the heights above by servants of fire and spirit in most holy fashion, yet in your love you wished to be glorified by humanity on earth as well, so that you might exalt our mortal race and make us like supernal beings and brothers in your dominion. Free us, Lord, in your compassion, from whatever cares hinder the worship of you, and teach us to seek the kingdom and its righteousness in accordance with your holy commandments that bring freedom; and bring us at last to your heavenly kingdom along with all the saints in your glory, where we will sing your praises. Amen.

( Syrian Orthodox Daily Office Book )


The glory of these forty days we celebrate with songs of praise;
for Christ, by whom all things were made, himself has fasted and has prayed.

Alone and fasting Moses saw the loving God who gave the law;
and to Elijah, fasting, came the steeds and chariots of flame.

So Daniel trained his mystic sight, delivered from the lions’ might;
and John, the Bridegroom’s friend, became the herald of Messiah’s name.

Then grant us, Lord, like them to be full oft in fast and prayer with thee;
our spirits strengthen with thy grace, and give us joy to see thy face.

O Father, Son, and Spirit blest, to thee be every prayer addressed,
who art in threefold name adored, from age to age, the only Lord.

( Gregory the First )

MEDITATION by Tim Madsen

What to do when science challenges religious interpretations

How slowly those entrusted with the responsibility to speak on behalf of the Christian Church, have learned to respect the work of scientists. It was on the fifth of March, 1616, that a book, written by Polish priest Nicolaus Copernicus, entitled “On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres” was placed on the index of forbidden books by the Roman Catholic Church. The book was first published in 1543. It offered the idea that the earth, along with other celestial bodies in our solar system revolved around the sun. This challenged Ptolemy’s geocentric model, which had been unchallenged for centuries.

You get the idea, when you know the story behind the book, that Copernicus knew this would land him in hot water with the powers-to-be. He first surfaced his idea in an anonymous tract. This dates to 1514. Even when he was working on his more expansive theories in the 1530’s he hesitated to publish anything.

He was right to be hesitant, and it was not only the Catholic Church that promoted this climate of fear. In 1539 Martin Luther weighed in on the as yet unnamed Copernicus.

Luther wrote: “People gave ear to an upstart astrologer who strove to show that the earth revolves, not the heavens or the firmament, the sun and the moon. This fool wishes to reverse the entire science of astronomy; but sacred Scripture tells us (Joshua 10:13) that Joshua commanded the sun to stand still, and not the earth.”

Copernicus finally published the book just a few weeks before his death in 1543. He escaped the fear and intimidation that would characterise the relationships between studiers of science and bearers of Church tradition. His book remained on the index of forbidden books until 1758, when Pope Benedict the Fourteenth had it taken off the index.

Today, many parts of the Church, including the Roman Catholics, have made their peace with science and now are considered partners in the scientific study of the universe, but still in the dawning years of the twenty-first century, large segments of Christians are convinced that science is incompatible with faith, and take refuge in pseudoscience in a vain attempt to bring science under the control of Bible interpreters who take a dim view of science, indeed.

Scripture: In "Psalm Nineteen," at verses one and two, we read:

The heavens are telling the glory of God and the firmament proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours forth speech, and night to night declares knowledge.


Let us now call to mind our sin and the infinite mercy of God.

God the Father, have mercy upon us.
God the Son, have mercy upon us.
God the Holy Spirit, have mercy upon us.
Holy, blessed and glorious Trinity, have mercy upon us.

From all evil and mischief; from pride, vanity, and hypocrisy;
from envy, hatred, and malice; and from all evil intent,
good Lord, deliver us.

From sloth, worldliness and love of money;
from hardness of heart and contempt for your word and your laws,
good Lord, deliver us.

From sins of body and mind;
from the deceits of the world, the flesh and the devil,
good Lord, deliver us.

In all times of sorrow; in all times of joy;
in the hour of death, and at the day of judgement,
good Lord, deliver us.

By the mystery of your holy incarnation;
by your birth, childhood and obedience;
by your baptism, fasting and temptation,
good Lord, deliver us.

By your ministry in word and work;
by your mighty acts of power;
and by your preaching of the kingdom,
good Lord, deliver us.

By your agony and trial;
by your cross and passion;
and by your precious death and burial,
good Lord, deliver us.

By your mighty resurrection;
by your glorious ascension;
and by your sending of the Holy Spirit,
good Lord, deliver us.

Give us true repentance; forgive us our sins of negligence and ignorance and our deliberate sins; and grant us the grace of your Holy Spirit to amend our lives according to your holy word.

Holy God, holy and strong, holy and immortal, have mercy upon us.
Make our hearts clean, O God; and renew a right spirit within us.

We pray...

... for peace in the world.

... for scientists who are Christians, in particular, those who face hatred at work because of their faith.

... for those affected by the outbreak of Lassa fever in Nigeria. DETAILS

... 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.


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. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and for ever. Amen.


From “Lame Deer, Seeker of Visions” by Richard Erdoes:

The different religions confused me. Which was the right one? I tried to figure it out but had no success. It worried me. The different Gods - Catholic, Jewish, Protestant, Mohammedan - seemed very particular in the way in which they expected me to keep on good terms with them. I couldn't please one without offending the others. One kind soul solved my problem by taking me on my first trip to the planetarium. I contemplated the insignificant flyspeck called Earth, the millions of suns and solar systems, and concluded that whoever was in charge of all this would not throw a fit if I ate ham, or meat on Friday, or did not fast in the daytime during Ramadan. I felt much better after this and was, for a while, keenly interested in astronomy.


We praise you, O God, for the order and fertility of your creation, for the discoveries of science about its history and pattern, and for the insights of those who have seen your hand at work as its creator. Help us to cherish all that is good and holy, and lead us ever to desire to know the truth of this universe we inhabit; through Jesus Christ, our saviour and lord. Amen.

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


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