Great Canon of St. Andrew (Eastern Orthodox)
Monday, March 3, 2014, 7:00 PM

Canon of Repentance 

1. Where shall I begin to lament the deeds of my wretched life? What first-fruit shall I offer, O Christ, for my present lamentation? But in Thy compassion grant me release from my falls.

2. Come, wretched soul, with your flesh, confess to the Creator of all. In future refrain from your former brutishness, and offer to God tears in repentance.

3. Having rivaled the first-created Adam by my transgression, I realize that I am stripped naked of God and of the everlasting kingdom and bliss through my sins. (Genesis 3)

“The Great Canon is served during the first week of the Great Lent. During Great Compline on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.” (citation)



Sunday before Lent
Sunday, March 2, 2014, 12:00 PM

This evening, the Eastern church begins its annual Lenten fast with the vespers service of Forgiveness Sunday. Before we spend the next 40 days in the repentance of our sins, we prepare ourselves by asking forgiveness not only of Christ and of the priests, but of everyone in our church whether or not we have knowingly offended them. It allows us to put an end to any chance animosity we might bear toward one another and to commence the fast in a proper state of humility and peace.

You’ll notice that participants prostrate themselves before each other, acknowledging the real presence of Christ within all:

In the Western church, this Sunday  is known as Quinquagesima Sunday, Quinquagesimae, Estomihi, Shrove Sunday, [and] the Last Sunday after Epiphany (citation). Bach wrote the following music in its honor:

Bach Cantata BWV 127 “Die Seele ruht in Jesu Händen

Die Seele ruht in Jesu Händen,
My soul rests in the hands of Jesus,

Wenn Erde diesen Leib bedeckt.
Though earth covers this body

Ach ruft mich bald, ihr Sterbeglocken,
Ah, call me soon, you funereal bells,

Ich bin zum Sterben unerschrocken,
I am not terrified to die

Weil mich mein Jesus wieder weckt.
Since my Jesus will awaken me again.

Recital at Indiana School of Music (1990)
Brian Madsen Oboe, Diana Livingston soprano



Historic Communication
Thursday, February 27, 2014, 11:12 AM

Pope Francis reached out recently to the Evangelical community via a video message that has already started going viral, but which I present here in hopes it will  give our readers pause to consider the sincere love of Christ that fundamentally unites us.



Lagniappe – Robert Lowry (1864)
Sunday, February 23, 2014, 7:00 AM

At the River

Shall we gather at the river,
Where bright angel feet have trod,
With its crystal tide forever
Flowing by the throne of God?

Refrain:

Yes, we’ll gather at the river,
The beautiful, the beautiful river;
Gather with the saints at the river
That flows by the throne of God.
(more…)



Art of Eternity – Part III
Saturday, February 22, 2014, 7:00 AM

When East Meets West

“Andrew examines early Christian art and the reasons for its evolution during the Renaissance. He also reveals just how far modern artists have been influenced by the pre-perspective view of the world.”



Lagniappe – Brother Claude Ely
Sunday, February 16, 2014, 7:00 AM

This is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it! ~ Psalm 118:24

Ain’t No Grave (Can Hold My Body Down)

There ain’t no grave
Can hold my body down
There ain’t no grave
Can hold my body down

When I hear that trumpet sound
I’m gonna rise right out of the ground
Ain’t no grave
Can hold my body down


Well, look way down the river
And what do you think I see
I see a band of angels
And they’re coming after me

Ain’t no grave
Can hold my body down
There ain’t no grave
Can hold my body down

Well, look down yonder, Gabriel
Put your feet on the land and sea
But Gabriel, don’t you blow your trumpet
Until you hear from me

There ain’t no grave
Can hold my body down
Ain’t no grave
Can hold my body down

Well meet me, Jesus, meet me
Meet me in the middle of the air
And if these wings don’t fail me,
I will meet you anywhere

Ain’t no grave
Can hold my body down
There ain’t no grave
Can hold my body down

Well meet me, Mother and Father,
Meet me down the river road
And Mama, you know that I’ll be there
When I check in my load

Ain’t no grave
Can hold my body down
There ain’t no grave
Can hold my body down
There ain’t no grave
Can hold my body down

Written by Brother Claude Ely, sung by the Peasall family.



Art of Eternity – Part II
Saturday, February 15, 2014, 7:00 AM

Part Two – The Glory of Byzantium



Lagniappe – Joseph M. Scriven (1855)
Sunday, February 9, 2014, 7:00 AM

(more…)



Art of Eternity – Part I
Saturday, February 8, 2014, 11:05 AM

Part One – Painting Paradise

An interesting 3-part series by BBC4 on Ancient Christian Art, with good views of some rarely-seen early Christian art. Although the perspective of art historian Andrew Graham-Dixon is western and secular—sometimes ill-informed—the overall tone is respectful. Worthwhile just to see the art.

Keep warm!



Lagniappe – Wesley
Sunday, February 2, 2014, 7:00 AM

This is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it! ~ Psalm 118:24

O Thou Who Camest From Above

O Thou Who camest from above,
The pure celestial fire to impart,
Kindle a flame of sacred love
Upon the mean altar of my heart.

There let it for Thy glory burn
With inextinguishable blaze,
[or, Unquenched, undimmed, in darkest days,]
And trembling to its source return,
In humble prayer and fervent praise.

Jesus, confirm my heart’s desire
To work and speak and think for Thee;
Still let me guard the holy fire,
And still stir up Thy gift in me.

Ready for all Thy perfect will,
My acts of faith and love repeat,
Till death Thy endless mercies seal,
And make my sacrifice complete.

Sung by the choir of Rochester Cathedral


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