St. Cuthbert, monk and Bishop of Lindisfarne

January 22, 2013

The Venerable Bede, who wrote a life of Cuthbert (635-687), tells us that in his youth, while tending sheep one night, and praying, “as was his wont,” he saw a stream of light break through the darkness, and in its midst, “a company of the heavenly host descended to the earth, and having received among them a spirit of surpassing brightness, returned without delay to their heavenly home.” Learning the next day that Aidan of Lindisfarne had died at that very time, Cuthbert “determined forthwith to enter a monastery.”

Trained in the austere traditions of Celtic monasticism, Cuthbert was Prior of Melrose Abbey for thirteen years, and then of Lindisfarne for twelve years. He made visitations to remote villages, preaching and teaching. Bede said, “Above all, he was afire with heavenly love, unassumingly patient, devoted to unceasing prayer, and kindly to all who came to him for comfort. He regarded as equivalent to prayer the labour of helping the weaker brethern with advice, remembering that he who said ‘Thou shalt love the Lord thy God’, also said, ‘Love thy neighbour’.”

Cuthbert was made Bishop of Lindisfarne. He accepted the decisions of the synod of Whitby in 663 that brought the usages of the English Church in line with Roman practice. He was thus a “healer of the breach” that threatened to divide the church into Celtic and Roman factions.

Our Father in heaven,

We thank You for the life and ministry of Cuthbert.  We lift up in prayer Justin Portal Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury-designate.  May he too be afire with heavenly love, unassumingly patient, devoted to unceasing prayer, and kindly to all who came to him for comfort.  We pray that he would seek the healing of the breach within the Church of England and the Anglican Communion by the cross of Jesus.  Amen. 

Hat tip: SF

St. Hilda, Abbess of Whitby

January 22, 2013

Hilda (614-680) was intructed by Paulinus (one of the companions of Augustine of Canterbury) in the doctrines of Christianity in preparation for her baptism at the age of thirteen. Descended from the Northumbrian royal line, Hilda then lived, chaste and respected, at the King’s court for tweny years.

She decided to enter the monastic life, and Bishop Aidan persuaded her to do so in her home country rather than in Gaul. Aidan appointed her Abbess of Hartlepool, where she established the rule of life that she had been taught by Paulinus and Aidan. She became renowned for her wisdom, eagerness for learning, and devotion to God’s service.

Some years later, she founded the abbey at Whitby, where both nuns and monks lived. Several of her monks became bishops. She encouraged the poet Caedmon, a servant at Whitby, to become a monk and to continue his inspired writing.

Whitby was the site of the famous synod convened to decide divisive questions involved in the differing traditions of Celtic Christians and the followers of Roman order. Hilda favored the Celtic position, but when the Roman position prevailed she was obedient to the synod’s decision.

Bede’s account of Hilda: “So great was her prudence that not only ordinary folk, but kings and princes used to come and ask her advice in their difficulties and take it. Those under her direction were required to make a thorough study of the Scriptures and occupy themselves in good works… For her own example taught them all to serve God obediently when in health, and to render thanks to him faithfully when in trouble or bodily weakness.”

Our Father in heaven,
We thank You for the life and ministry of Hilda. We humbly petition You for a revival of monastic vocations in the Church of England. Amen.

Hat tip: SF

Ephesians 4:30-32

January 22, 2013

And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. (Ephesians 4:30-31)
      Jesus, we have brought so much grief to your Holy Spirit by our words and deeds. Help us to put all these evils aside and live in peace with one another. Thank you.

And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ forgave you. (Ephesians 4:32)
      Father, please help us daily imitate your love and relate to all your people with compassion and love. Thank you.

Tuesday: 26, 28 * 36, 39; Isa. 44:9-20; Eph. 4:17-32; Mark 3:19b-35
Wednesday: 38 * 119:25-48; Isa. 44:24-45:7; Eph. 5:1-14; Mark 4:1-20

      Notes from the Front Line

Diocesan Intercessions: Daily: For our Bishop and for growth in every parish, January 22 The Trustees of the Diocese

***** Robin Mark – How Great are You Lord

***** From: Deacon Alan Hart
Sent: Monday, January 21, 2013
Subject: Prayer Table report ST. ANN’S OF AMSTERDAM (Monday, January 21 of 2013, 10-11 a.m. in front of our church on Division STreet. It was very cold (18 degrees at start) but at least there was no wind. Almost NO foot traffic and even very little vehicular traffic today, perhaps due to it being a holiday or the extreme cold. We did have people drive by, however, who may very well be contemplating coming to the table at another time. The important thing is to let people in the community know we are always THERE on Monday morning for prayer. We only had four people stop, but numbers of people who come are not the main concern. Changed lives is what we are out here for. Deb Gerlach, Ann Degroff and Deacon Alan Hart presiding at His table today.)

(Did not give out any crosses or anoint anyone with Holy Oil today. We did give out some warm winter clothing.)

TIM and CAROLYN — This young couple stopped for prayer for the second week in a row. TIM is having facial bone surgery on Wednesday. We prayed for safe surgery and swift and complete healing, and also for faith and hope and love to replace whatever fears and anxieties Tim and Carolyn are feeling now.

JENNA and EMMANUEL — I guess today was the day for young couples. We prayed for peace and love to reign for this man and woman as they seek to try to strengthen their marriage. God knows the details.

Albany Intercessor

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