Dear Brothers and Sisters,
The Whitsun Ember Days are here. If you are asking, “What’s an ember day?” the here is something to help. On the heels of Pentecost these Ember Days are focused on the Holy Spirit’s coming and the giving of His gifts, especially those related to ordained ministry.
For us these days are days of abstinence/fasting. And special attention should be given to prayer. Here are the lessons for Whitsuntide Wednesday – it is always an Ember Day:
ALMIGHTY God, our heavenly Father, who hast purchased to
thyself an universal Church by the precious blood of thy dear Son:
Mercifully look upon the same, and at this time so guide and govern
the minds of thy servants the Bishops and Pastors of thy flock, that
they may lay hands suddenly on no man, but faithfully and wisely
make choice of fit persons, to serve in the sacred Ministry of thy
Church. And to those who shall be ordained to any holy function,
give thy grace and heavenly benediction; that both by their life and
doctrine they may show forth thy glory, and set forward the salvation
of all men; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
O GOD, who as at this time didst teach the hearts of thy faithful
people, by sending to them the light of thy Holy Spirit: Grant us by
the same Spirit to have a right judgment in all things, and evermore
to rejoice in his holy comfort; through the merits of Christ Jesus our
Saviour, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the same
Spirit, one God, world without end. Amen.
This Collect is to be said daily throughout Whitsun Week.
The Epistle. 2 Corinthians 3:17-4:6.
NOW the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is,
there is liberty. But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the
glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to
glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord. Therefore seeing we have this
ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not; but have
renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness,
nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the
truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight
of God. But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: in
whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which
believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the
image of God, should shine unto them. For we preach not ourselves,
but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake.
For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath
shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of
God in the face of Jesus Christ.
The Gospel. St. Luke 4:16-21.
JESUS came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as
his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and
stood up for to read. And there was delivered unto him the book of
the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the
place where it was written:
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he hath anointed me to preach The Gospel to the poor;
he hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted,
to preach deliverance to the captives,
and recovering of sight to the blind,
to set at liberty them that are bruised,
to preach the acceptable year of the Lord.
And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister,
and sat down.”
And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were
fastened on him. And he began to say unto them, This day is this
scripture fulfilled in your ears.”
May the Lord be pleased to accept our Embertide intentions.
I remain yours in Christ,