FRIDAY THE TENTH OF MARCH, 2017
* SOJOURNER TRUTH AND HARRIET ROSS TUBMAN *
Lord, let your holy breath ever keep alive in us that fire which your son of old came to kindle upon earth, that we also may be anointed with the spirit of peace, holiness, and obedience, and dwell in your fellowship for ever Amen.
( Rowland Williams )
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
The fool has said in his heart, "There is no God."
Corrupt are they, and abominable in their wickedness;
there is no one that does good.
God has looked down from heaven upon the children of earth,
to see if there is anyone who is wise and seeks after God.
They are all gone out of the way;
all alike have become corrupt;
there is no one that does good, no not one.
Have they no knowledge, those evildoers,
who eat up my people as if they ate bread,
and do not call upon God?
There shall they be in great fear,
such fear as never was;
for God will scatter the bones of the ungodly.
They will be put to shame,
because God has rejected them.
O that Israel's salvation would come out of Zion!
When God restores the fortunes of his people
then will Jacob rejoice and Israel be glad.
Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and shall be for ever. Amen.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
Without you, O God, nothing is real,
all things are open to corruption
and we are deadened by deceit;
do not abandon us to our folly,
but give us hearts that seek you
and, at the last, joy in your heavenly city;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
MEDITATION by Tim Madsen
Sojourner Truth and Harriet Ross Tubman: liberators
Today Saint Laika’s remembers two women whose efforts were essential in securing freedom for the many African-American slaves , and after America’s civil war, to improve their lives and livelihoods. Both of these women were undergirded by their strong faith in Christ, their knowledge of "The Bible," and their desire to give themselves to the cause of others.
Sojourner Truth ( c. 1797 – November 26, 1883 ) was an African-American abolitionist and women's rights activist. She was born as a slave in New York, but managed to escape with her infant daughter to freedom in 1826. After going to court to recover her son, she became the first black woman to win such a case against a white man. Her birth name was Isabella ( "Bell" ) Baumfree. She gave herself the name Sojourner Truth in 1843.
Her best-known extemporaneous speech on gender inequalities, "Ain't I a Woman?," was delivered in 1851 at the Ohio Women's Rights Convention in Akron, Ohio. During the Civil War, Truth helped recruit black troops for the Union Army; after the war, she tried unsuccessfully to secure land grants from the federal government for former slaves. Sojourner Truth had a radical conversion to Christianity early in her adult life. She affiliated for many years with the Methodist Church and later she joined the Seventh Day Adventist Church.
Harriet Ross Tubman was also born into slavery in 1820 in Maryland. She connected deeply and intuitively with the story of Israel’s liberation by God in the book of "Exodus." It became the basis of her belief that it was God's will to deliver slaves in America out of their bondage, and that it was her duty to help accomplish this. In 1844, she managed to find freedom in Canada, nevertheless she returned to help others escape. Working with other abolitionists, chiefly white Quakers, she made at least nineteen excursions into Maryland in the 1850's, leading more than three hundred slaves to freedom. During the Civil War, she joined the Northern Army as a cook and a nurse and a spy, and on one occasion led a raid that freed over seven hundred and fifty slaves. After the war, she worked to shelter orphans and elderly poor persons, and to advance the status of women and blacks. She became known as the "Moses of her People."
Scripture. In "The First Letter of Peter," chapter four at verses ten and eleven, we read:
"Like good stewards of the manifold grace of God, serve one another with whatever gift each of you has received. Whoever speaks must do so as one speaking the very words of God; whoever serves must do so with the strength that God supplies, so that God may be glorified in all things through Jesus Christ. To him belong the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen."
O God, whose Spirit guides us into all truth and makes us free: Strengthen and sustain us as you did your servants Sojourner Truth, and Harriet Ross Tubman. Give us vision and courage to stand against oppression and injustice and all that works against the glorious liberty to which you call all your children; through Jesus Christ our saviour, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.
... for peace in the world.
... for an to slavery and human trafficking in whatever form they may take.
... for those who work to free others, in particular those who risk their lives or liberty in doing so.
... for the Rohingya Muslim people of Myanmar who have been victims of "crimes against humanity" at the hands of their nation's military. For those who have fled their homes and are now refugees in foreign lands. DETAILS
... for those injured during an axe attack injured in an axe attack at the main railway station in the western German city of Dusseldorf and for all victims of random violence. DETAILS
... for those who have died 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 a sermon on "Ecclesiastes" by Gregory of Nyssa:
"I got me slaves and slave-girls."
For what price, tell me? What did you find in existence worth as much as this human nature? What price did you put on rationality? How many obols did you reckon the equivalent of the likeness of God? How many staters did you get for selling that being shaped by God?
God said, Let us make man in our own image and likeness. If he is in the likeness of God, and rules the whole earth, and has been granted authority over everything on earth from God, who is his buyer, tell me? Who is his seller?
To God alone belongs this power or, rather, not even to God himself. For his gracious gifts, it says, are irrevocable. God would not therefore reduce the human race to slavery, since he himself, when we had been enslaved to sin, spontaneously recalled us to freedom.
But if God does not enslave what is free, who is he that sets his own power above God's?
O God, whose Spirit guides us into all truth and makes us free: strengthen and sustain us as you did your servants, Sojourner Truth and Harriet Ross Tubman. Give us vision and courage to stand against oppression and injustice and all that works against the glorious liberty to which you call all your children; through Jesus Christ our saviour, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. 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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