The Second Sunday after Christmas

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Sunday, January 5, 2019
The Second Sunday after Christmas

The Collect

Let us pray:

ALMIGHTY God, who hast poured upon us the new light of thine incarnate Word; Grant that the same light enkindled in our hearts may shine forth in our lives; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

Old Testament

Isaiah 61:1-3

The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;
To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn;
To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.

Response

Psalms 84:1-8 (KJV)
Quam dilecta!

How amiable are thy tabernacles, O Lord of hosts!*
My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the Lord: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God.
Yea, the sparrow hath found an house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, even thine altars, O Lord of hosts, my King, and my God.*
Blessed are they that dwell in thy house: they will be still praising thee. Selah.
Blessed is the man whose strength is in thee; in whose heart are the ways of them.*
Who passing through the valley of Baca make it a well; the rain also filleth the pools.
They go from strength to strength, every one of them in Zion appeareth before God.*
O Lord God of hosts, hear my prayer: give ear, O God of Jacob. Selah.

The Epistle

Ephesians 1:3-6;15-19a (KJV)

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

15 Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints,
16 Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers;
17 That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him:
18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,
19 And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power,

The Gospel

Matthew 2:1-12 (KJV)

Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,
Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.
When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.
And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born.
And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet,
And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.
Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, enquired of them diligently what time the star appeared.
And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.
When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.
10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.
11 And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense and myrrh.
12 And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.

 

Categories: Sunday Readings

Merry Christmas 2019

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Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Holy Greetings to you in the name of Yahusha Maschiach (Jesus Christ). We pray the Lord’s abundant blessings upon you and your families as we enter into this most blessed and sacred season when we celebrate the birth of our Lord.

As we enter this season, we are often burdened with the usual commercial holiday non-sense. However, we are assured of the true reason for the season. Our holiday preparations never seem quite done, and we try our very best to please those near and dear to us. We are excited at the prospect of seeing our dear friends, families, brothers and sisters in the Lord as we sit down to a grand holiday feast.
This is also the time when we sit down and watch those classic holiday shows, such as White Christmas, It’s a Wonderful Life, Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, The Polar Express, and of course, The Grinch that Stole Christmas. As we sit and gaze at these holiday shows, we are taken back in time when life seemed simpler…when the cares and woes of life didn’t seem so immense…when our thoughts were focused on what we will get under the tree, rather than what the Lord has gifted us with…Everlasting Life and Salvation.

One of my favorite programs to watch is The Grinch That Stole Christmas. When I was younger, it was due to the fact that the music and rhyme of the dialog spoke to me. However, now it is due to the very potent and simple message that this holiday classic truly brings. After all the antics, theft, and hatred he expressed towards the Who’s of Whoville, the Grinch experienced something that is so graciously given of our Lord, yet we vary rarely see or experience it with our fellow man…FORGIVENESS!
As we close out this year, let us both give and experience the simple message of forgiveness. Let us cast aside our anger, frustrations, bitterness and walk in the light that only forgiveness brings through our Lord and Savior.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to each and every one of you, your families, friends and loved ones.

We look forward to seeing all of you soon and sharing in a time of devoted worship, sincere prayer, and brotherly unity.

 

Many Blessings!

+++D. E. Chase, Ph.D., OSP

Categories: Pastoral Letters

The Fourth Sunday of Advent

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Sunday, December 22, 2019
The Fourth Sunday of Advent

The Collect

Let us pray:

O LORD, raise up, we pray thee, thy power, and come among us, and with great might succour us; that whereas, through our sins and wickedness, we are sore let and hindered in running the race that is set before us, thy bountiful grace and mercy may speedily help and ‘deliver us; through the satisfaction of thy Son our Lord*, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be honour and glory, world with out end. Amen.

Old Testament

Isaiah 7:10-6 King James Version (KJV)

10 Moreover the Lord spake again unto Ahaz, saying,
11 Ask thee a sign of the Lord thy God; ask it either in the depth, or in the height above.
12 But Ahaz said, I will not ask, neither will I tempt the Lord.
13 And he said, Hear ye now, O house of David; Is it a small thing for you to weary men, but will ye weary my God also?
14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
15 Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good.
16 For before the child shall know to refuse the evil, and choose the good, the land that thou abhorrest shall be forsaken of both her kings.

Response

Psalm 80:1-7, 16-18 King James Version (KJV)

Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, thou that leadest Joseph like a flock; thou that dwellest between the cherubims, shine forth.
Before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh stir up thy strength, and come and save us.
Turn us again, O God, and cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.
O Lord God of hosts, how long wilt thou be angry against the prayer of thy people?
Thou feedest them with the bread of tears; and givest them tears to drink in great measure.
Thou makest us a strife unto our neighbours: and our enemies laugh among themselves.
Turn us again, O God of hosts, and cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.
16 It is burned with fire, it is cut down: they perish at the rebuke of thy countenance.
17 Let thy hand be upon the man of thy right hand, upon the son of man whom thou madest strong for thyself.
18 So will not we go back from thee: quicken us, and we will call upon thy name.

The Epistle

Philippians 4:4-7 King James Version (KJV)

Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.
Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.
Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

The Gospel

John 1:19-28 King James Version (KJV)

19 And this is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou?
20 And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am not the Christ.
21 And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No.
22 Then said they unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself?
23 He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias.
24 And they which were sent were of the Pharisees.
25 And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet?
26 John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth one among you, whom ye know not;
27 He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe’s latchet I am not worthy to unloose.
28 These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing.

Categories: Sunday Readings

The Third Sunday of Advent

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Sunday, December 15, 2019
The Third Sunday of Advent

The Collect

Let us pray:

O LORD Jesus Christ, who at thy first coming didst send thy messenger to prepare thy way before thee; Grant that the ministers and stewards of thy mysteries may likewise so prepare and make ready thy way, by turning the hearts of the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, that at thy second coming to judge the world we may be found an acceptable people in thy sight, who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.

Old Testament

Isaiah 35:1-10 King James Version (KJV)

35 The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose.
It shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice even with joy and singing: the glory of Lebanon shall be given unto it, the excellency of Carmel and Sharon, they shall see the glory of the Lord, and the excellency of our God.
Strengthen ye the weak hands, and confirm the feeble knees.
Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompence; he will come and save you.
Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped.
Then shall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert.
And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water: in the habitation of dragons, where each lay, shall be grass with reeds and rushes.
And an highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein.
No lion shall be there, nor any ravenous beast shall go up thereon, it shall not be found there; but the redeemed shall walk there:
10 And the ransomed of the Lord shall return, and come to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads: they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.

Response

Canticle 15
The Song of Mary Magnificat
Luke 1:46-55

46 And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord,
47 And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.
48 For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.
49 For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name.
50 And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation.
51 He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
52 He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree.
53 He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away.
54 He hath helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy;
55 As he spake to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for ever.

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

The Epistle

James 5:7-10 King James Version (KJV)

Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain.
Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.
Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door.
10 Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience.

The Gospel

Matthew 11:2-11 King James Version (KJV)

Now when John had heard in the prison the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples,
And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another?
Jesus answered and said unto them, Go and shew John again those things which ye do hear and see:
The blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them.
And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.
And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken with the wind?
But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings’ houses.
But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet.
10 For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

 

Categories: Sunday Readings

Why I Wear My Collar

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By: Abp. D. E. Chase, Ph.D. OSP
Presiding Archbishop & Patriarch

The world has many signs and symbols. We are taught from our youth how to discern and decipher weather signs, and in some households, the practice of observing signs from a natural, cultural, spiritual, or occult viewpoint. The Clerical, Roman, or Clergy collar is a spiritual and mystical sign, meant to be a sign to people, but also, a constant reminder to the Priest of the Lord of who they are, what they are and why they are.

Clerical Collars in modern usage have become recognized as a part of a “uniform.” The uniform calls for the individual wearer to fashion themselves in a manner prescribed by an ecclesiastical authority, which is often borrowed from the views and concepts of established Church orders throughout the world. In fact, most of the garments, vestments and accessories we darn as clergy are often borrowed much in the same way.

So, why do we wear Clerical Collars? To answer this question we must first acknowledge the established meaning and purpose of the same. According to BBC News Magazine, “The clerical, or Roman, collar is a sign or mark of a person’s holy calling, according to the Church of England. It is an identifying badge that can be recognised by people of all faiths. Worn by both Anglican and Roman Catholic priests around the world, the narrow, stiff, upright white collar fastens at the back.”

HISTORY:

Let us examine the actual history the Clerical Collar.

The detachable clerical collar was invented in 1865 by the Rev. Donald Mcleod, a Church of Scotland (Presbyterian) minister in Glasgow. (Glasgow Herald of December 6, 1894)

By the mid-1800s, the clergy of the Anglican Communion developed a sense of separation between themselves and the secular world. One of the most distinctive, external symbols of said separation was the implementation of distinguishing clerical dress. Originally, clerical dress was identified by the black coat and white necktie which had been worn for several decades. By the 1880s this had been transformed into the clerical collar, which was worn almost continuously by the greater part of clergy for the rest of the period.

Henry McCloud stated that the collar “was nothing else than the shirt collar turned down over the cleric’s everyday common dress in compliance with a fashion that began toward the end of the sixteenth century. For when the laity began to turn down their collars, the clergy also took up the mode.”

The Clerical Collar was Invented within the Presbyterian Church, of which was adopted by other Christian denominations, including the Roman Catholic Church, Anglican Church, Methodist churches, Eastern Orthodox Church, Baptist churches and the Lutheran churches. Prior to the Second Vatican Council (1962–1965) the practice of Roman Catholic clergy wearing the clerical collar as street-dress tended to be found only in those countries where Roman Catholicism was the minority religion. The use of Clerical Collars was mandatory for U.S. Catholic priests starting in 1884.

Preaching Tabs in the Reformed tradition, which stresses preaching as a central concern, pastors often wear preaching tabs, which project from their clerical collar. Preaching bands (an alternative name for tabs) are also worn by Anglican clergy, particularly on occasions such as inductions when choir dress of cassock, surplice, preaching scarf (Tippet) and the academic hood pertaining to degree is worn, as well as at Mattins and Evensong. Lutheran and Methodist clergy sometimes attach preaching bands to their clerical collars as well.

Denominational Practices:

The clerical collar is worn by all ranks of clergy. Bishops, Priests, and Deacons, and often seminarians who have been admitted to candidacy for the priesthood along with their cassock during liturgical celebrations use the Clerical Collar.

Clerical Collars are typically worn by clergy of groups such as those of the Anglican, Methodist, Presbyterian and Lutheran traditions. However, many Scandinavian Lutheran clergy wear the ruff instead. Additionally, many Pentecostal and non-denominational Protestants, as well as others wear collars. In the Roman Catholic tradition, major seminarians, after receiving admission to candidacy (and thus becoming “candidates” for ordination), often wear clericals in the seminary or in their dioceses.

WHY I WEAR MY CLERICAL COLLAR:

As we have noted in the beginning of this article, the Clerical Collar is a significant tool to express the symbolism of the calling upon one’s life. It separates the clergy from the world, I that it implies that there is a separation between the called and chosen from the laity. It expresses the identity of the wearer as a member of the three major offices (Deacon, Priest, Bishop).

However, if you ask me why I wear my Clerical Collar, the answer is quite simple…

  • It represents years of study and dedication to the Lord and His Church
  • It identifies me as not just a servant, but a Priest of the Most High God
  • It signifies the sacrifice that the Lord has made for me, and my duty to Him
  • It reminds me that I am not above the people of God, rather their humble servant on behalf of the Lord

Categories: Clergy Blog

CLERGY BLOG

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BEWARE OF RELIGIOUS PHILOSOPHIES

Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after MASHIACH. For in him dwelleth all the fulness of ELOHIYM bodily.  Qolasiym (Colossians) 2:8-9

The warning given in these verses is evident. Man must seek the truth of Yahusha and His Word.

Abyssinian1

Categories: Clergy Blog

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