Monday, July 24, 2017Thomas a Kempis
Priest and Mystic
Author of The Imitation of Christ, a meditative book of devotion which, according to Lesser Feasts and Fasts of the Episcopal Church, has been translated into more languages than any other book, save for the Bible itself.
For an example of how his works influence Christian thought and theology even to this day, see Why Pray for the Dead? in the Sermon Archive.
Holy Father, who hast nourished and strengthened thy Church by the inspired writings of thy servant Thomas a Kempis: Grant that we may learn from him to know what is necessary to be known, to love what is to be loved, to praise what highly pleaseth thee, and always to seek to know and follow thy will; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Tuesday, July 25, 2017SAINT JAMES
Today we remember Saint James (the Greater), the brother of John, who along with John and Peter, appeared to be set apart from the other disciples quite frequently. For example, it was Peter, James and John with the Lord at his Transfiguration.
James is "the Greater" to contrast him with the other one of the twelve also named James. James (the Lesser) is commemorated with Saint Philip in May.
►In 2010, when the Feast of Saint James fell on a Sunday, Fr Austin preached a sermon entitled How to Get Close to Jesus.
O gracious God, we remember before thee this day thy servant and apostle James, first among the Twelve to suffer martyrdom for the Name of Jesus Christ; and we pray that thou wilt pour out upon the leaders of thy Church that spirit of self-denying service by which alone they may have true authority among thy people; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Wednesday, July 26, 2017The Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Holy Scripture tells us nothing about Mary's parents. In the second century, an aprocophal text called the Protevangelium of James gave an account of her parents, Joachim and Anne, which tradition accepted over the years. Pope Urban the Sixth, in 1378, fixed Anne's feast day to follow the Feast of Saint James, and Joachim was joined with Anne on this day beginning in 1969.
Though we know nothing about them personally from Scripture itself, we do know this: they raised a daughter who would become Mother of God.
Almighty God, heavenly Father, we remember in thanksgiving this day the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary; and we pray that we all may be made one in the heavenly family of thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord; who with thee and the Holy Spirit liveth and reigneth, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Thursday, July 27, 2017William Reed Huntington
Priest and Ecumenist
Sixth Rector of Grace Church, New York City
Authored the Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral which can be found in the historical documents section of the 1979 Prayer Book. He also wrote the collect we use during worship on Monday in Holy Week.
O Lord our God, we thank thee for instilling in the heart of thy servant William Reed Huntington a fervent love for thy Church and its mission in the world; and we pray that, with unflagging faith in thy promises, we may make known to all people thy blessed gift of eternal life; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.