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The 22nd Sunday After Trinity

Collect: Lord, we beseech thee to keep thy household the Church in continual godliness; that through thy protection it may be free from all adversities, and devoutly given to serve thee in good works, to the glory of thy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Saints and Feast Days

Sunday, October 28: St.Simon and St Jude, Apostles

We know little about these two apostles; St. Simon is included in each list of the twelve in the Synoptic Gospels; St. Jude (or Judas) is included in Luke and and Acts, but is named as “Thaddeus” in Matthew and Mark — they were probably the same person.  Here is what we do know: St. Luke calls St. Simon “the Zealot.” The Zealots believed that the Messiah would come as a military leader bringing vindication to the Jews through force. St. Jude (or Judas, or Thaddeus) is traditionally the author of the book of Jude (though some consider this unlikely since the author of Jude refers to the apostles in the past tense and doesn’t seem to consider himself as one of the number). The church historian Eusebius records a legend that King Abgar of Edessa (a city in what is now southeast Turkey) sent to Jesus asking to be cured of his leprosy. He also sent an artist to make a representation of Jesus. Jesus, impressed by the King’s faith, pressed his face into a cloth which left His image, and He sent it back to the King, by means of St. Jude. When the King saw the image of Jesus, he was immediately healed and converted to Christianity along with most of his subjects.

Monday, October 29: James Hannington and His Companions

Born in 1847, Fr. John-Julian stresses the ordinariness of James Hannington’s upbringing and life — until he was around 35 years old. At that point, the Devonshire curate volunteered to become a missionary to Victoria, Nyanza, Africa. On his first trip, he became so sick that he had to return to England almost immediately. After two years, Hannington accepted an appointment to become the first Bishop of Eastern Equatorial Africa. After around a year of ministry on the shores of Lake Victoria, he was captured by natives because of the king Mwanga’s animosity toward Christians. Hannington and his companions, by Mwanga’s orders, were massacred. One of his companions, a boy left for dead, witnessed that before  Hannington was speared to death, he said “Go, tell Mwanga that I die for the people of Buganda and that I have purchased the road to Uganda with my blood.” Seven years later, when Hannington’s remains were recovered, Mwanga himself had become an Anglican Christian.

Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Oct. 31, Nov 1-2: All Hallows, All Saints, and All Souls: Learn more at this link.

Saturday, October 3: Richard Hooker

Richard Hooker is considered to be the man who defined the via media or “middle way” of Anglicanism. Living from 1553 to 1600, Richard Hooker’s life overlapped with the reign of Queen Elizabeth I (from 1158 to 1603). Born to a family with little means, Richard Hooker’s potential was recognized early on. Through the patronage of Bishop John Jewel, he was educated at Corpus Christi College, Oxford and became a fellow. He was ordained priest in 1579 and became rector five years later at a parish in Buckinghamshire (an apparently unglamorous position — some of his former students found him “tending sheep and reading Horace, from which he was called indoors to rock the cradle”) After a former student found a way to get Hooker a position of ecclesiastical authority, Hooker became Master of the Temple in 1586. However, he experienced such controversy there that he pleaded with the Archbishop to be removed saying, “My Lord. . . I am weary of the noise and contentions of this place; and indeed God and Nature did not intend me for contentions, but for study and quietness.” Nonetheless, the controversies that so wearied him became the ground upon which he wrote his greatest work, Of the Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity.*  He once again became a parish priest and died on this day in the year 1600. These were his last words:

“Good Doctor, God hath heard my daily petitions, for I am at peace with all men, and He is at peace with me; and for that blessed assurance I feel that inward joy which this world can neither give nor take from me: my conscience beareth me this witness, and this witness makes the thoughts of death joyful. I could wish to live to do the Church more service; but cannot hope it, for my days are past as a shadow that returns not.”

*If you’re interested in reading Richard Hooker, the Davenant Institute has been engaged in the Richard Hooker Modernization Project

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