Author: thehomelyhours

Passion Sunday; The Fifth Week of Lent

Collect: We beseech thee, Almighty God, mercifully to look upon thy people; that by thy great goodness they may be governed and preserved evermore, both in body and soul; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Saints and Blesseds Monday, April 8: William Augustus Muhlenberg Living from 1796 to 1877, William Augustus Muhlenburg was a priest who had great influence on the 19th century American church. He was born to a family who had been Lutheran for generations, but he joined the Episcopal church as a young man, bordained deacon in 1817 and priest in 1820. Working towards Ecumenism within Christian churches, his proposals became the basis of the Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral. He founded the first free church in America (before this, churches were funded by auctioning and paying for pew rents) which was also the first church in the country to celebrate the Eucharist weekly; he wrote hymns and worked on hymnals; he founded parish day schools, and a church village on Long Island (Saint Johnland), among many other projects. He died on April 6, 1877. Tuesday, April …

The Fourth Week of Lent

Collect: Grant, we beseech thee, Almighty God, that we, who for our evil deeds do worthily deserve to be punished, by the comfort of thy grace may mercifully be relieved; through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen. Saints and “Blesseds” Monday, April 1: Blessed Frederick Denison Maurice Born the son of a Unitarian minister in 1805, John Frederick Denison Maurice became an Anglican when he was 26 and then a priest at 29. A founder of the Christian Socialist Movement, Maurice characterized unrestricted capitalism as “expecting Universal Selfishness to do the work of Universal Love.” Obviously a contentious figure, he is best remembered for his book The Kingdom of Christ. Though he lost his professorship at King’s College, London in 1853 because of his challenge of traditional concepts of hell and eternity, he was given a chair at Cambridge in 1866. He held this chair until his death in 1872. You can read some of his work at Anglican History. Tuesday, April 2: Blessed John Donne John Donne was born around 1571 and was raised as …

The Third Week of Lent

Collect: “We beseech thee, Almighty God, look upon the hearty desires of thy humble servants, and stretch forth the right hand of thy Majesty, to be our defence against all our enemies; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.  Feasts, Saints, and Blesseds Monday, March 25: The Annunciation of our Lord Jesus Christ to the Blessed Virgin Mary On this feast day, we remember the holy moment recorded in  Luke 1:26-38, when the angel Gabriel announces to the Virgin Mary that she is “highly favored” and will be the bearer of the Christ. The feast day is exactly nine months before the Nativity on December 25th. While the first authentic records of “Lady Day” are in the mid-8th century, it may have been celebrated at least since the late 4th century. Here is an excerpt from St. Cyril of Alexandria, preached at the council of Ephesus in 431: “We hail you, O mysterious and Holy Trinity who has gathered us together in council in this church of Holy Mary, the God-bearer. We hail you, Mary, the God-bearer, sacred …

The Second Week of Lent

Collect: Almighty God, who seest that we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves; Keep us both outwardly in our bodies, and inwardly in our souls; that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body, and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Saints and Blesseds Sunday, March 17: St. Patrick The Ordo Calendar has transferred St. Patrick’s Day to next week, but if you’re celebrating today, here is a St. Patrick coloring page from Michelle Abernathy art. And, from the archives, here is some background on the hymn, The Breastplate of St. Patrick  Monday, March 18, St. Cyril of Jerusalem Born around 315, Cyril was born and spent the majority of his life in Jerusalem,  a hotbed of controversy at the time. As a priest, he was given the duty of instructing the Catechumens of Jerusalem. His Catechetical Lectures to them are tremendously valuable; they not only provide a vivid picture of the Church at that time, but they are …

St. Patrick Coloring Page

Continuing her series of saints coloring pages, Michelle Abernathy has created a St. Patrick coloring page for us! Download the Saint Patrick coloring page here. (You can also see the watercolor original here). If you’re wondering what you should be singing on St. Patrick’s day besides Irish folk songs, here we have an explanation of the best hymn ever: The Lorica (or Breastplate) of St. Patrick. Tomorrow, we’ll be eating shepherd’s pie, reading Tomie dePaola’s Patrick: Patron Saint of Ireland and looking forward to our church’s upcoming Irish Folk Sing.

The First Sunday of Lent

Collect: O Lord, who for our sake didst fast forty days and forty nights; Give us grace to use such abstinence, that, our flesh being subdued to the Spirit, we may ever obey thy godly motions in righteousness, and true holiness, to thine honour and glory, who livest and reignest with the father and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen. Saints’ and Ember Days Tuesday, March 12: Gregory the Great Born around 540 to a preeminent Roman family, Gregory spent his first 35 years concerned with civil justice, eventually being named Prefect of Rome, the highest civil office in the city. But abruptly, at age 35, he chose to become a novice monk and sold or gave away his property in order to establish seven monasteries. These quiet years as a monk were the happiest of his life, but he couldn’t remain long in obscurity. Called to various advancing positions within the church, around 586 (and though he attempted to flee to avoid it), Gregory was chosen as the pope. Gregory’s pursuit …

Sexagesima

Collect: O Lord God, who seest that we put not our trust in any thing that we do; Mercifully grant that by thy power we may be defended against all adversity; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Saint Days: Monday, February 25: Saint Matthias All we know about Saint Matthias comes from first chapter of Acts, verses 23-26. In this chapter, after Christ’s ascension, the early church is gathered (around 120 people) and Peter declares the need to replace Judas Iscariot. The church decides upon two men — Justus and Matthias —  who both fit the requirements of being “one of the men who have accompanied us during all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from the baptism of John until the day when he was taken up from us—one of these men must become with us a witness to his resurrection” (Acts 1:21-22). And then, after casting lots between the two, the lot fell on Matthias. Saint Jerome and the Venerable Bede agree that they cast lots because of …

Giveaway [closed]– Make Room: A Child’s Guide to Lent and Easter

For the past few years, we have been recommending Laura Alary’s Make Room: A Child’s Guide to Lent and Easter. My daughter’s godparents gave it to her for her (Lenten) birthday and we love it. I’m so thankful for Alary’s clear and lyrical explanation of Lent and Holy Week.  And I appreciate that it simplifies Lenten plans: you can essentially use this book as a guide for all your family activities during the season. Because I think it’s so helpful, I contacted Paraclete Press to see whether they would be interested in giving away a copy on our blog. I’ve never done this before, so I was thrilled that they said “yes.” You can just comment below before next Tuesday to be entered into the giveaway. I wrote a recommendation of this book two years ago.  Here are a few excerpts:     “In the book, Alary sets out a map for Lent, explaining in simple but lovely prose that Lent is for “making time,” “making space,” and “making room” for the kingdom of God in our everyday lives. …

Septuagesima

Collect: O Lord, we beseech thee favourably to hear the prayers of thy people; that we, who are justly punished for our offences, may be mercifully delivered by thy goodness, for the glory of thy Name; through Jesus Christ our Saviour, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost ever, one God, world without end. Amen. Septuagesima Septuagesima is the 9th Sunday before Easter, and thus, the third Sunday before Lent. “Septuagesima” comes from the word “seventieth” in Latin. This Sunday always falls within seventy days before Lent. These weeks before Lent can also be called “Shrovetide” and they are meant to be days to prepare for Lent. This week, there are no saints listed on the ordo calendar. So instead, I listed the Lenten resources that we have and put little excerpts up, so that you can see what piques your interest. Book Recommendations for Lent? When I look at what we have for Lent, I see that we are really lacking in Lenten book recommendations. I have a list of our priest’s …