Friday, December 31, 2010

Ancient Mozarabic Prayer

(The term "Mozarabic" refers to Christians living under Arabic rule in medieval Spain.)

Ancient Mozarabic prayer (before 700 AD)
Hear us, O never-failing Light,
Lord our God, our only Light, the Fountain of Light,
the Light of your angels, thrones, dominions,
principalities, powers, and of all the beings of this world;
you have created the light of your saints,
the bright cloud of witnesses around us.
May our souls be your lamps, kindled and illumined by you.
May they shine and burn with your truth,
and never go out in darkness and ashes.
May we be your dwelling, shining from you, shining in you;
may we shine and our light never fail;
may we worship you always.
May we be kindled brightly and never extinguished.
Being filled with Christ’s splendor,
may we shine within, so that the gloom of sin is cleared away,
and the light of everlasting life abides within us. Amen.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Prayer of St. Ephraim of Syria

O Lord and Master of my life, take from me the spirit of sloth, despondency, lust for power and idle talk.

But grant unto me, Thy servant, a spirit of chastity (integrity), humility, patience and love.

Yea, O Lord and King, grant me to see mine own faults and not to judge my brother. For blessed art Thou unto the ages. Amen.

Sunday, November 7, 2010



When you think of pilgrimage, you think of traveling to a special place.

It might be a place of great personal interest or of profound historical or religious significance. One who goes on a pilgrimage might be seeking beauty, or blessing or a miracle. It might be the place of an early childhood memory, the homestead of an ancestor, or the grave of a loved one.

Wherever this journey takes you it is a holy place, a place of personal reflection that inspires, shapes and moves you to a place of greater growth as a person and deeper into the heart of God..

For us as Christians, Holy Communion is a pilgrimage back to the foot of the cross. Whether we celebrate the Lord's Supper weekly, monthly, or more or less often, it should be a pilgrimage. As we come to the foot of the Cross in Holy Communion we remember, we ponder, we meditate, not just on the fact of Christ's death, but also on what was accomplished on the Cross, the benefits of His death and what that means to us in everyday life.

Because of the Cross we find...
eternal life
true righteousness and holiness
peace with God
hope and strength
the basis for the fruits and gifts of the Spirit
victory over the devil
victory over sin
victory over death
... the list could go on and on.

It's all because of the Cross! These are the types of things we should remember when we come to the Table of the Lord.

Then, as we have contemplated these things, before receiving the Body and Blood of the Lord, we should examine our hearts and lives and ask ourselves the question: “Am I living out those benefits and does my daily life reflect the accomplishments of the Cross to others?”

As we make a pilgrimage to the foot of the Cross in Holy Communion, meet us there. And may the benefits, accomplishments, and victories of the Cross, be lived out through each and everyone who professes Your Name. Amen.

Friday, October 29, 2010

A Life That Worships

All we do and all we are, our whole lives are to be expressions of worship. Bowed at the altar, helping someone in need, or even weeding a garden, can be acts of worship when offered to God with a heart of gratitude. When our hearts and lives are right before God, every breath we take is worship.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Prayer for Cleansing

O God, cleanse me a sinner, for I have done nothing good before Thee. Deliver me from the evil one, and may Thy will be in me, that I might open my unworthy lips without condemnation and praise Thy holy name, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, now and forever and unto the ages of ages. Amen.
- Marcarius the Great (Egypt, 300-390 a.d.)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Make of Me a Good Man

"Were I worthy of such favor from God, I would ask that He would grant to me one miracle, that by His grace He would make of me a good man." --- Anskar, Scandanavian saint, 9th century

Friday, September 3, 2010

Without monasticism, Protestants miss out on community

Below is an online article of interest. I cut and pasted the article here, but included the direct link as well. Click on the title of this post to go to the original post.

Without monasticism, Protestants miss out on community
by Bill Tammeus on Aug. 25, 2010 A small c catholic

CLYDE, Mo. -- Sr. Dawn, who met us when we arrived at the Benedictine Sisters of Perpetual Adoration monastery here, used to be what I still am -- a Presbyterian. Same story with Sr. Sean, the prioress. Same with two old friends whom my wife and I accompanied on a recent Sunday visit to see the environmentally friendly remodeling work being done here. Our friends have returned to Catholicism, the faith of their youth.
All of that Presbyterian-Catholic crossover has moved me to think about what we Protestants are missing because we don’t have a monastic tradition. It seems a fair question as a follow-up to my most recent NCR column about what I think Catholics are missing because they don’t have female priests.

When I asked Sr. Sean what she thought monastic-free Protestants miss, her answer was both simple and profound -- "community." Oh, it’s not that we Protestants don’t try (and sometimes succeed) in creating a wonderful sense of community within congregations, it’s just that it never is quite fully committed community in the radical sense that members of monastic communities experience.

Yes, I know that monastic communities often struggle to create and maintain healthy community. I remember what my friend Kathleen Norris said about this in her wonderful book The Cloister Walk. One of the monks at the monastery in Minnesota she was writing about told her that a big problem in maintaining a loving sense of community in such a place is that the mother of every monk there fixed potatoes in a different way.

So let’s not kid ourselves. Monastic life has its issues. And yet it’s the kind of model of community that Protestants (save for some Episcopalians) lack, and its absence in many ways creates a hollow within the body that doesn’t get filled in other ways.

What else are we Protestants missing because we have no monastic tradition? I put the question to the Rev. W. Paul Jones, a friend who spent most of his life as a Methodist seminary professor but now is a Catholic priest and Trappist monk. His list was long, but included:

1. An appreciation of silence and the "booming wonder of standing at awe before Mystery."
2. The value of solitude in a society of "invasive togetherness."
3. An "appreciation of the alternation between doing and being, work and leisure, aloneness and togetherness, prayer and work."
4. An awareness of the diversity of spiritual life -- from Protestants’ emphasis on words through the monastic goal of contemplation as quiet union with God.
5. The importance of the monastic use of lectio divina as a way of being "personally addressed" by scripture.
6. Worship for its own sake, as opposed to "getting something out of it."
The value of retreats in balancing one’s daily life.
7. A deep valuing of tradition.
8. A celebration of saints "as models for transformative living."
9. A more profound appreciation of liturgy.
10. An awareness of nature and the seasons as "an honoring of life’s ongoing rhythms."
11. An appreciation of a rule that gives structure to one’s time and that creates responsibility for how one spends one’s time and resources.
12. A valuing of the church’s organic diversity, "so that while Jesuits and Trappists would seem to have little in common, the various orders affirm the importance of each other in giving wholeness to the church as a robe of rainbow colors" -- a church that is not only human but also the Body of Christ.
13. An alternative to society’s competitive, ownership-driven, individualistic, materialistic approach.

Monasticism, Jones says, "is the ongoing remembrance of the earliest Christian communities in which all receive according to their needs and contribute according to their abilities so that none goes away empty."

So as a Protestant I long for this tradition, just as I’m sure some Catholics long to be ministered to by female priests.
* * *
Bill Tammeus, a Presbyterian elder and former award-winning faith columnist for The Kansas City Star, writes the daily "Faith Matters" blog for The Star’s website and a monthly column for The Presbyterian Outlook. His latest book, co-authored with Rabbi Jacques Cukierkorn, is They Were Just People: Stories of Rescue in Poland During the Holocaust. His e-mail address is

Friday, August 13, 2010

Bumper Sticker Ideas

Three Bumper Sticker Ideas:
1. Is your lectio divina?
2. Don't forget your meditation!
3. Prayer: Shut up and Listen!

Friday, June 11, 2010

A Prayer of Clement

We beseech thee, Master, to be our helper and protector.
Save the afflicted among us; have mercy on the lowly;
raise up the fallen; appear to the needy; heal the ungodly;
restore the wanderers of thy people;
feed the hungry; ransom our prisoners;
raise up the sick; comfort the faint-hearted.

(Clement of Rome, 1st Century)

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Pewter Pin

Discontent in the Outer Court

"Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful to him, and bless his name." - Psalm 100:4

The picture here is of the tabernacle. There is at least a sense of awareness that people are gathering in the Name of Yahweh. I imagine busyness, the noise of people, the noise and smell of animals being brought for sacrifice, commotion, much activity and, perhaps an atmosphere of celebration as people draw near with thanksgiving and praise. This was good. This was necessary.

This was the outer court.

There was and is another place, a holy place, the Holiest of Places, where none of those outer court practices will be tolerated. The Overwhelming Presence demands, requires, compels: silence, reverence, a breathtaking sense of awe as we approach with holy fear... the very throne of God. There... the Almighty speaks to us and we are... broken so we can be made whole, humbled so we can be raised up, made to see our sinfulness so we can fully appreciate and experience His forgiveness. In that Place and only in that Place we are truly... changed.

The veil of separation has been torn asunder; access has been granted; the Father, with outstretched hands, beckons us to "Come."

May we and our churches never be content with mere "outer court" worship.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

A Revival of What?

You often hear about the need for revival. Preachers call their congregations to pray for revival. Though not as common as a few years ago, we have revival meetings. (The church world is now flooded with "conferences," but still no revival.) There are multitudes of books, CD's, and DVD's about revival. Revival, revival, revival!

The question I ask is, a revival of what? Signs and wonders? Passion and fervor? Real prayer and true worship? Service? Holiness?

When it all boils down, when we get to the bottom line, what we need a revival of, what the world needs to see a revival of in the Church and in individual Christians, what the Father longs to see in His children is a revival of... Christlikeness.

"Revive us, O Lord. Do not simply give us a hunger and desire for Christlikeness, for a hunger is not satisfied, and a desire shows something lacking and unfulfilled. Mold us and shape us into the image of Christ, not just as a testimony to the world, but for Your glory. Revive in us, a true spirit of the likeness of Your Son. Send revival, O Lord."

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Trisagion Prayer

The following is a variation of what is known as the Trisagion Prayer. Trisagion means "thrice holy." It is laid out for use in a group setting.

Leader - O Heavenly King, Comforter, the Spirit of Truth, You Who are everywhere present and fill all things, the Treasury of all that is good and Giver of life: Come, and abide in us, and cleanse us from every stain, and save our souls, O Good One.

All - Holy God. Holy Mighty. Holy Immortal, have mercy on us.

Leader - All Holy Trinity, have mercy on us. Lord, forgive our sins.

All - Holy God. Holy Mighty. Holy Immortal, have mercy on us.

Leader - Master, pardon our transgressions. Holy One, visit and heal our infirmities, for the glory of Your Name.

All - Holy God. Holy Mighty. Holy Immortal, have mercy on us.

Glory to the Father, and the Son and the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning is now and will be forever. Amen

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Collect for Holy Saturday

From the Book of Common Prayer:

O God, Creator of heaven and earth: Grant that, as the crucified body of your dear Son was laid in the tomb and rested on his holy Sabbath, so we may await with him the coming of the third day, and rise with him to newness of life; who now lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Good Friday Prayer

On this Good Friday, the following Apochryphal canticle was part of my morning reading and prayer. What a great prayer for today's occasion or for any other time of confession and repentance.

14 A Song of Penitence, Kyrie Pantokrator
Prayer of Manasseh 1-2, 4, 6-7, 11-15

O Lord and Ruler of the hosts of heaven,
God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob,
and of all their righteous offspring:

You made the heavens and the earth,
with all their vast array.

All things quake with fear at your presence;
they tremble because of your power.

But your merciful promise is beyond all measure;
it surpasses all that our minds can fathom.

O Lord, you are full of compassion,
long-suffering, and abounding in mercy.

You hold back your hand;
you do not punish as we deserve.

In your great goodness, Lord,
you have promised forgiveness to sinners,
that they may repent of their sin and be saved.

And now, O Lord, I bend the knee of my heart,
and make my appeal, sure of your gracious goodness.

I have sinned, O Lord, I have sinned,
and I know my wickedness only too well.

Therefore I make this prayer to you:
Forgive me, Lord, forgive me.

Do not let me perish in my sin,
nor condemn me to the depths of the earth.

For you, O Lord, are the God of those who repent,
and in me you will show forth your goodness.

Unworthy as I am, you will save me,
in accordance with your great mercy,
and I will praise you without ceasing all the days of my life.

For all the powers of heaven sing your praises,
and yours is the glory to ages of ages. Amen.


Thursday, April 1, 2010

Maundy Thursday

Today is Maundy Thursday, the Holy Day that we commemorate the institution of the Eucharist, Holy Communion or the Lord's Supper, by the Lord Jesus at the Last Supper. This happened "on the night He was betrayed," on the evening before His crucifixion.

Maundy Thursday is known by different names, depending on the faith tradition that is commemorating it.

In most churches in the West, Maundy Thursday is called Holy Thursday.
In the Easter Orthodox Tradition you might see - Great and Holy Thursday
In the Coptic (Egyptian) Church - Covenant Thursday
In the Syriac Orthodox Church - Thursday of Mysteries

Whatever your faith tradition, or by whatever name you call today, may you be blessed on this Holy Day.

Prayer for Holy Thursday from the Book of Common Prayer:

Almighty Father, whose dear Son, on the night before he suffered,
instituted the Sacrament of his Body and Blood:
Mercifully grant that we may receive it thankfully
in remembrance of Jesus Christ our Lord,
who in these holy mysteries gives us a pledge of eternal life;
and who now lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Facebook Fan Page

For those of you who are on Facebook, type in "Liturgicostal Worship" and become a fan.

Here's a description I put in the info section:
This page was created for Pentecostal believers in Jesus Christ who have discovered or rediscovered the joy of liturgical worship. Are you a “classical” Pentecostal or Charismatic follower of Christ who has an interest in any of the following?:
Liturgy; monasticism; lectio divina; Christ-centered meditation; silent prayer; fixed-hour prayer; use of the lectionary; a more sacramental view of communion and water baptism; regular fasting; Lenten observances; chanting; the use of worship aids such as: prayer books, icons, incense, candles, prayer beads, etc.
If you answered, “Yes!” to any of the above, then perhaps this fan page is for you.

If you are a Pentecostal believer and have a strong passion, a growing interest or just a budding curiosity toward liturgical worship and practices, you are invited to join in. Perhaps you just want to sit back and quietly observe, you, too, are welcome.

Though you will be free to share your thoughts, ideas and questions, divisiveness, profanity, the belittling of another's worship practices will not be tolerated. The goal is to encourage one another as we seek to worship the Triune God in more meaningful ways that may be different from the “typical” ways Pentecostals usually worship. Please try to keep you comments/discussions on-topic.

Posts deemed too far off-topic will be deleted.

I hope to see you there!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Fasting and Feasting During Lent

I came across the following list and thought it would be of interest to the readers of this blog as we approach this Lenten season. We often think of giving something up for Lent, which is fine and can have great spiritual value. Others speak of adding a discipline rather than giving something up. A discipline might be an additional time of daily prayer and meditation or Scripture reading. It might be a community service activity of some kind, or volunteering for some worthwhile cause.

Whether you add or subtract during this Lenten season, may do it with the goal of becoming more like Jesus. The list that follows may give you some ideas for Lent that, hopefully, will continue on past the Lenten season and help you to reshape and redirect your life in the areas where needed.

Fast and Feasting During Lent
Fast from judging others; feast on the Christ indwelling them.
Fast from emphasis on differences; feast on the unity of all life.
Fast from apparent darkness; feast on the reality of light.
Fast from thoughts of illness; feast on the healing power of God.
Fast from words that pollute; feast on phrases that purify.
Fast from discontent; feast on gratitude.
Fast from anger; feast on patience.
Fast from pessimism; feast on optimism.
Fast from worry; feast on divine order.
Fast from complaining; feast on appreciation.
Fast from negatives; feast on affirmatives.
Fast from unrelenting pressures; feast on unceasing prayer.
Fast from hostility; feast on non-resistance.
Fast from bitterness; feast on forgiveness.
Fast from self-concern; feast on compassion for others.
Fast from personal anxiety; feast on eternal Truth.
Fast from discouragement; feast on hope.
Fast from facts that depress; feast on truths that uplift.
Fast from lethargy; feast on enthusiasm.
Fast from suspicion; feast on truth.
Fast from thoughts that weaken; feast on promises that inspire.
Fast from shadows of sorrow; feast on the sunlight of serenity.
Fast from idle gossip; feast on purposeful silence.
Fast from problems that overwhelm; feast on prayer that undergirds.
William Arthur Ward
(American author, teacher and pastor, 1921-1994.)

Friday, February 5, 2010

Wesley's Covenant Prayer

I am no longer my own, but Thine.
Put me to what Thou wilt, rank me with whom Thou wilt.
Put me to doing, put me to suffering.
Let me be employed for Thee or laid aside for Thee,
exalted for Thee or brought low for Thee.
Let me be full, let me be empty.
Let me have all things, let me have nothing.
I freely and heartily yield all things to Thy pleasure and disposal.

And now, O glorious and blessed God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
Thou art mine, and I am Thine.
So be it.
And the covenant which I have made on earth,
let it be ratified in heaven.