Almighty God, you have knit together your elect in one communion and fellowship in the mystical body of your Son Christ our Lord: Give us grace so to follow your blessed saints in all virtuous and godly living, that we may come to those ineffable joys that you have prepared for those who truly love you; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen. (Book of Common Prayer, 245)
I caught up on a bunch of my blog reading yesterday afternoon. So many excellent posts reminding readers the value of remembering the saints of past, present and future in our worship services this week. I thought you might enjoy reading also.
You'll notice the blending of both remembrances, souls passed and saints made alive in Christ.
For All the Saints at Image Journal: As usual, Andy Whitman makes me want to cry. And then to write.
Death, Art and Christian Worship at Transpositions: Oh how I wish I could have had Jim Watkins standing with me all those times I was accused of worshiping death in my previous non-denominational church just because I thought it appropriate for us to learn the language of lament. I've forgiven the critics but only believe more deeply the need for us to gain healing for the anxieties that demand only postures of triumph in our corporate worship services. God, forgive us the deafening liturgy that mutes the language of the saints of old as well the Christ who meets us in our weeping and strengthens us in our sorrow. Forgive us the ways we counterfeit sentimentality for our deepest griefs.
Feeling Familiar at Clayfire Curator: I've read and re-read this post all week, a week that I committed to the healing of the Cross so many family wounds, gave thanks the redemption of so many family gifts. I love the way Mandy Smith reclaims the oldest meaning of the word familiar.
All Saints Day at Christ Church's blog: I love the words our rector, Cliff Warner, chose to encourage us in our preparation for worship together this week. Make sure you read the story his wife Christine shares as a reminder of the grand scope of saints we recognize today.
Almighty and everlasting God, we give you most high praise and hearty thanks for the wonderful grace and virtue declared in all your saints, who have been the chosen vessels of your grace, and the lights of the world in their times: for Abraham, the father of believers, and Sarah his wife; for Moses the lawgiver, and Aaron the priest; for Miriam and Joshua, Deborah and Gideon, and Samuel with Hannah his mother, and for all the holy patriarchs; for Isaiah and all the prophets; for the Blessed Virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus Christ our Lord and God; for Peter and Paul and all the apostles; for Mary and Martha, and Mary Magdalene; for Stephen, the first martyr, and for all the martyrs; and for all your other righteous servants, known to us and unknown; and we beseech you that, rejoicing in their fellowship, encouraged by their examples, and aided by their prayers, we also may run with steadfastness the race that is set before us, and finish our course in faith; and that at the day of the general resurrection, we, with all those who are of the mystical body of your Son, may be set on his right hand, and hear his most joyful voice: “Come, you blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.” Grant this, O Father, for the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, our only Mediator and Advocate.