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2005/12/31

The Circumcision of Christ

 

The Circumcision of Christ

[January 1]

ALMIGHTY God, who madest thy blessed Son to be circumcised, and obedient to the law for man; Grant us the true circumcision of the Spirit; that, our hearts, and all our members, being mortified from all worldly and carnal lusts, we may in all things obey thy blessed will; through the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Source: Sacramentary of Bishop Gregory of Rome [ca 600AD]. Circumcision was required eight days after birth. Some now call this day "The Holy Name". New Year's Day is of pagan origin, and this day was at a fast day as early as the 6th century. It is based on Romans ii. 29, Collosians iii. 5, and Titus ii. 12

Philippians ii. 9. St. Luke ii. 15
Homilies

"his name was called JESUS"


Announcements for the week beginning 1 Jan 06


Feasts, Memorials, and Fasts
 

Sacramentum of the Order - January 3rd
All centurions are invited to reaffirm the Vow of the Order on this day as was custom in the Legions

Theagenes, Legionary of Parium - January 3rd

Gordias, Centurion, Martyr, Lincinius -- 3 Jan [307-324]

Epiphany - January 6th

--
IN HOC SIGNO VINCES - TIME DEUM ET OPERARE IUSTITIAM
               www.OrderofCenturions.org

2005/12/28

Holy Innocents 28 Dec

 Holy Innocents
[December 28]
O ALMIGHTY God, who out of the mouths of babes and sucklings hast ordained strength, and madest infants to glorify thee by their deaths; Mortify and kill all vices in us, and so strengthen us by thy grace, that by the innocency of our lives, and constancy of our faith even unto death, we may glorify thy holy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
 
 
Herod will seek the young child to destroy him

2005/12/27

John the Apostle and Evagelist [27 Dec]

 
MERCIFUL Lord, we beseech thee to cast thy bright beams of light upon thy Church, that it, being illumined by the doctrine of thy blessed Apostle and Evangelist Saint John, may so walk in the light of thy truth, that it may at length attain to life everlasting; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
 
 
If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves

2005/12/26

Feast of St. Stephen - Deacon - Martry 26 Dec

GRANT, O Lord, that, in all our sufferings here upon earth for the testimony of thy truth, we may stedfastly look up to heaven, and by faith behold the glory that shall be revealed; and, being filled with the Holy Ghost, may learn to love and bless our persecutors by the example of thy first Martyr Saint Stephen, who prayed for his murderers to thee, O blessed Jesus, who standest at the right hand of God to succour all those who suffer for thee, our only Mediator and Advocate. Amen.
followed with the collect for Christmas
 
with sermon by John Chrysostom

Behold, I see the heavens opened,
and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God

2005/12/24

Christmas Day - 25 December

 
Announcements below
 
 
 
The Nativity of our Lord
or the Birthday of Christ, commonly called Christmas Day
[December 25]

ALMIGHTY God, who hast given us thy only-begotten Son to take our nature upon him, and as at this time to be born of a pure virgin; Grant that we being regenerate, and made thy children by adoption and grace, may daily be renewed by thy Holy Spirit; through the same our Lord Jesus Christ, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the same Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.
Source: Archbishop Cranmer [1549AD]. Cranmer highlights the gracious gift by the Father of Jesus to the world and our baptism and adoption that brings the comfort of the Holy Ghost.
 
Jesus is the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world

 
Announcements for the week beginning 25 Dec 05


Feasts, Memorials, and Fasts

2005/12/23

The Eve of the Nativity of our Lord

 
 
The Eve of the Nativity of our Lord
[December 24]

 
GOD, who makest us glad with the yearly remembrance of the birth of thine only Son Jesus Christ; Grant that as we joyfully receive him for our Redeemer, so we may with sure confidence behold him when he shall come to be our Judge, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.
 
 
Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem to be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child


Re: [celticorthodoxy] Fwd: Petition

Aloha Brethren and Disciples,
The Christian Church was highly successful for two hundred years without the cost, upkeep and maintenance of buildings. Would it not be reasonable to return to the "House Church" traditions of the Early Church. There are nine house churches mentioned in the New Testament but not one word concerning the collections for or the construction of buildings. For discipleship growth, a small concentrated forum works far better than a theater for making disciples that are like Jesus, Eph.4:1-16.And house church ministries are not near the target for the militant lost of the Middle East, India or Africa.

It seems to me that we may have made ourselves look important with the focus of energy on expensive buildings and glitz when we should have been simple making disciples as requested by our Lord, John 4:1, Matt.28:18-20. If every disciple helped another believer to become a disciple even taking a whole year for the process, the work could have been done long ago. Exponentially, in only 34 years there could be 8,500,000,000 disciples of our Lord if each disciple made one disciple each and every year. Our Lord made 120 disciples during His short ministry and changed our whole world.
Yours, in His great love and wonderful mercy. Abbot +John<><

Reference: www.Trinity-Aloha.org click onto History, the 20th frame down.
For discipleship training: www.ACTSeminary.org A one year, on line, accredited study program for discipleship foundations with a BTh in Biblical Studies from Aloha Christian Theological Seminary.




2005/12/21

Saint Thomas the Apostle 21 December

Saint Thomas the Apostle
[21 December]

ALMIGHTY and everliving God, who, for the greater confirmation of the faith, didst suffer thy holy Apostle Thomas to be doubtful in thy Son's resurrection; Grant us so perfectly, and without all doubt, to believe in thy Son Jesus Christ, that our faith in thy sight may never be reproved. Hear us, O Lord, through the same Jesus Christ, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be all honour and glory, now and for evermore. Amen.

 
blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed

2005/12/20

Patton Prayer Answered - Advent-Christmas 1944

Almighty and most merciful Father, we humbly beseech thee, of thy great goodness, to restrain these immoderate rains with which we have had to contend. Grant us fair weather for battle. Graciously hearken to us as soldiers who call upon thee that armed with thy power, we may advance from victory to victory, and crush the oppression and wickedness of our enemies, and establish thy justice among men and nations. Amen.   

 This prayer was issued to 250,000 solders with a Christmas card and a training directive to commanders on prayer on December 8th
ON DECEMBER 20 1944 THE SKIES CLEARED, THE THIRD ARMY ROLLED TO RELIEVE THE 101ST AIRBORNE DIVISON WHICH WAS HOLDING OUT AGAINST AN ARMY THAT ENCIRCLED IT AT BASTOGNE - ON 26 DECEMBER THE THIRD ARMY BROKE THE SEIGE.
See the full story at the link below the Patton window, with additional links to the Patton Society

To each officer and soldier in the Third United States Army, I Wish a Merry Christmas. I have full confidence in your courage, devotion to duty, and skill in battle. We march in our might to complete victory. May God's blessings rest upon each of you on this Christmas Day.

G.S. Patton, Jr, Lieutenant General, Commanding, Third United States Army.

with links to the Patton Society
 
Merry Christmas!  Primus Pilus

--
IN HOC SIGNO VINCES - TIME DEUM ET OPERARE IUSTITIAM
               www.OrderofCenturions.org

 

2005/12/17

The Fourth Sunday in Advent

The Fourth Sunday in Advent

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 Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be honour and glory, world without end. Amen.

ALMIGHTY God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life, in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal, through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, now and ever. Amen
.

Source: Bishop Gelasius of Rome Sacramentary [464 AD]. The 1662 edition added the "running the race that is before us" "Succor" is to run to help, while "sore let" is to thwart, hinder

Isaiah xl. 1, Psalm 80, Philippians iv. 4 & St. John i. 19.

Homilies

he it is who coming after me is preferred before me,
whose shoe's latchet I am not worthy to unloose
Announcements for the week beginning 18 Dec 05

Please hold all centurions in your prayers this week. You may like to use this Centurion's Daily Litany


Feasts, Memorials, and Fasts

Thomas the Apostle -- December 21st


BIDDINGS

Please pray for
Maranatha! in Advent
[1Cor16:22]
Centurions in harms way
Peace in the Mideast


2005/12/13

Advent Ember Days

Note: The Order has at least 31 ordained registered ministers, and many laymen who have active ministires or support the Chaplaincy. We have several who are in study for the ministry. Please pray for all our members enganged in any ministry, for those about to enter seminary and training, and that even more of our membership may offer themselves through local church bodies and orgainzaitons to serve God.
 
Ember Days
Wednesday, Friday and Saturday at the Four Seasons
O ALMIGHTY God, who hast committed to the hands of men the ministry of reconciliation; We humbly beseech thee, by the inspiration of thy Holy Spirit, to put it into the hearts of many to offer themselves for this ministry; that thereby mankind may be drawn to thy blessed kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
 
In Advent, Lent, and Whitsuntide this collect is followed with the seasonal collect
 

2005/12/11

The Third Sunday in Advent

 
The Third Sunday in Advent
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.

ALMIGHTY God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life, in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal, through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, now and ever. Amen.
Source: 1662 Prayer Book. This collect replaced a short Collect from the Middle Ages. It relates to Romans xv.4 and Luke xxi. 25. The creedal articles are obvious in it. [Barbee & Zahl]
 
Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee
 
Announcements for the week beginning 11 Dec 05


Feasts, Memorials, and Fasts

Winter Ember Days
Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday
pray for our many ministers, seminarians, and those who are considering studying for the ministry.
Pray for our members who teach or operate seminaries and schools

60 Martyrs of Gaza - December 17th

BIDDINGS

Please pray for
Maranatha! in Advent
[1Cor16:22]
Centurions in harms way
Peace in the Mideast

2005/12/06

Praise the Lord, and pass the ammunition!

Praise the Lord, and pass the ammunition !
 
The immortal words of Chaplain (LTjg) Howell Forgy, U.S.S. New Orleans; Sunday Morning, Pearl Harbor, December, 7th, 1941.

Lest we forget!
 
A hymn was written a bit later to capture these immortal words… and later Chaplain Forgy wrote a book. December 7th 1941, the date that shall live in infamy, let us remember that the United States entered into a period of solemn prayer and preparation to meet this life and death threat.
 
 
See lyrics, story, and great photo of hymn book with scene of Pearl and action on the New Orleans here
http://my.execpc.com/~dschaaf/praise.html


"With confidence in our armed forces - with the unbounded
determination of our people - we will gain the inevitable triumph - so help us God."
FDR 8 Dec 41.
http://www.law.ou.edu/hist/infamy.html

Today we fight battles on several fronts. There is an ongoing battle in the West with a post-modern culture that has little room for God. In the Order of Centurions, our battle is of a spiritual nature, but no less threatening [Mt10:28]. All should do as Chaplain Forgy, and "Praise Lord, and pass the ammunition." [Eph 6:12ff ]. Our amammunitionust be in words and deeds as we carry the Gospel forward - a message of justice, righteousness, mercy, and charity. We also must remain vigilant to defend against apostasy from within and asassaultsn the faith from without.
 
Mark

2005/12/03

The Second Sunday in Advent

The Second Sunday in Advent
BLESSED Lord, who hast caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning; Grant that we may in such wise hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that by patience and comfort of thy holy Word, we may embrace, and ever hold fast, the blessed hope of everlasting life, which thou hast given us in our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

ALMIGHTY God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life, in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal, through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, now and ever. Amen.
Collect for the First Sunday in Advent, to be read daily
Source (1st Collect): Archbishop Thomas Cranmer [1549 AD]. The emphasis on Scripture is enunciated here. Note the pleading form is different than other collects; it names only Jesus. [Barbee and Zahl] Cranmer proposed continuous reading of the Scriptures - "lectio continua". Archbishop John Chrysostom, among other early doctors, was an advocate and practicioner of lectio continua.
 
 
Announcements for the week beginning 4 Dec 05

Feasts, Memorials, and Fasts
None this week

BIDDINGS

Please pray for
Maranatha! in Advent
[1Cor16:22]
Centurions in harms way
Centurion deploying
Peace in the Mideast

2005/11/29

Saint Andrew the Apostle [November 30]

 Saint Andrew the Apostle
[November 30]
ALMIGHTY God, who didst give such grace unto thy holy Apostle Saint Andrew, that he readily obeyed the calling of thy Son Jesus Christ, and followed him without delay; Grant unto us all, that we, being called by thy holy Word, may forthwith give up ourselves obediently to fulfil thy holy commandments; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

ALMIGHTY God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life, in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal, through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, now and ever. Amen
.
 
 
Follow me and I will make you fishers of men

2005/11/26

The First Sunday in Advent

announcements below
 
The First Sunday in Advent
ALMIGHTY God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life, in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal, through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, now and ever. Amen.
This Collect is to be repeated every day, after the other Collects in Advent, until Christmas Day.
Source: Archbishop Thomas Cranmer in 1549 Prayer Book. Based on Romans 13:8-12 and Matheww 21:1-13 which are appointed for this Sunday [Barbee and Zahl]
 
Announcements for the week beginning 27 November 05


Feasts, Memorials, and Fasts

Adventus - in preparation for the Feast of the Nativity, the church of 480AD fasted Mon, Wed, Fri., by 750 people only observed an abstinance and special devotion for "The Coming". The fast was followed by the 12 days of Christmas to the Epiphany with no fasting or abstinance on any day

 
Mercurius of Caesarea in Cappadocia - November 25th
Andrew the Apostle -- November 30th
Anthemius, Chaplain to the Crusades & Bishop - December 3rd


BIDDINGS

Please pray for

Maranatha! in Advent
[1Cor16:22]
Centurions in harms way
Peace in the Mideast

2005/11/24

Narnia Movie 9 Dec: CS Lewis Tale

On the 22nd I'd sent out a small reflection on the centurion of the week, 1LT CS Lewis. I've just learned that one of his best and most popular novels is to be released as a movie. See a commentary from Orthodoxy today here:
 
The Author, Apostolos Hill, has commended it in his bottom line is cited here,
 
For ourselves, for our children, and for our salvation it is vital that we take full advantage of the release of this wonderful film to explore these themes and the many others not touched upon above. The power of myth to convey essential truths is fully in line with the parables of the New Testament, only in our time we have become such literalists that we fail to see the import such myths carry and the truths they have the power to deliver.
 
So, enjoy the movie and talk about it with your children. Use it as an opportunity to discuss our most precious Faith with them. And if you haven't already done so, by all means, buy the Narnia series for your family this Christmas.
 
Here is the promotional site for the movie: http://adisney.go.com/disneypictures/narnia/index.html

Prayer Request - Kenya

Centurion Simeon of Kenya sends his greetings and news of his activities of late. Shown below is a picture of one of his church gatherings of the Catholic Church of Christ in Kenya.  He bids our prayers, as he and his church pray for $5,000 US for a church building. Simon shares news of a most effective minister's conference they had this past week with 34 pastors in attendance, some from different denominations.
 
He also asks for our prayers for his mission journey planned for 25 Nov - 1 Dec to the Tanzanian Church were he will preach the Gospel of repentance and faith.
 
 
Should you happen to know of a possible source of funds for this worthy cause, or have any ideas, please contact Curtis or me. If you would like to correspond with Simeon please write for his email.
 
 

2005/11/23

Thanksgiving Day - US

In the United States folk will be celebrating the Feast of Thanksgiving this Thursday - a tradition with its roots in the Feast of the Tabernacles of Israel, and the harvest feast of Rome, which was brought to England by the legions and to the US by the Pilgrims. Pray your day is happy and your travels are safe.

Thanksgiving Day

O MOST merciful Father, who hast blessed the labours of the husbandman in the returns of the fruits of the earth; We give thee humble and hearty thanks for this thy bounty; beseeching thee to continue thy loving-kindness to us, that our land may still yield her increase, to thy glory and our comfort; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Deut xxvi. 1, Psalm 145, St. James i. 16 & St. Matthew vi. 25
Homilies Featuring Chrysostom

seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you




--
IN HOC SIGNO VINCES - TIME DEUM ET OPERARE IUSTITIAM
www.OrderofCenturions.org

2005/11/22

Re: Centurio Epistula CS Lewis - Apologist November 22

Aloha Mark,
Hope you enjoy this teaching that came in today form Marc White along
the same lines, at the bottom, if interested. Blessings +Ken<><

Mark Carroll wrote:
> CS Lewis is remembered today. His popular books defending Christianity,
> and his novels have influenced many to turn to Jesus and the Church. See
> his story here
> http://www.orderofcenturions.org/cslewis.html
>
> I appreciate this quotation from his preface to the book Mere Christianity.
>
> I offer no help to anyone who is hesitating between two Christian
> 'denominations'. You will not learn from me whether you ought to become
> an Anglican, a Methodist, a Presbyterian, or a Roman Catholic. This
> omission is intentional... …. I am not trying to convert anyone to my
> own position. Ever since I became a Christian I have thought that the
> best, perhaps the only, service I could do for my unbelieving neighbours
> was to explain and defend the belief that has been common to nearly all
> Christians at all times. [Preface to Mere Christianity]
>
> The thought and belief that is common to nearly all Christians at all
> times, is that which has come to us from the canon of scriptures of the
> New Testament era and universal teachings of the early Church

An excellent teaching so I pass it along to you, Love in Jesus, Ken

Our brother the apostle Paul stated in his letter to the Philippians
that we corporately should be striving together with ONE MIND and SPIRIT
for the faith of the gospel. Moreover, he went on to say that his joy
would be complete when we're all intent on ONE PURPOSE, being united in
Spirit.

Philip. 1:27
Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so
that whether I come and see you or remain absent, I will hear of you
that you are standing firm in ONE SPIRIT, with ONE MIND striving
together for the faith of the gospel;

Philip. 2:2
make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same
love, united in spirit, intent on ONE PURPOSE.

So, my friends, once again let me refer to the words of our Savior about
the perfection in unity:

John 17:22-23
"The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may
BE ONE, just as We are ONE; I in them and You in Me, that they may be
PERFECTED IN UNITY, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and
loved them, even as You have loved Me."

We also saw in Acts that they came to one mind:
Acts 15:25
it seemed good to us, HAVING BECOME of ONE MIND, to select men to send
to you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, Our good friend in the faith,
Jon Zens of Searching Together, writes these words as preface to his
article on "Communication in Community:"

"Many of us do not have pleasant memories surrounding the church
"business" meetings of our past. Just about all of us have gone through
the pains of a church split. Some of us have agonized through a
plurality of church divisions.

Has it ever occurred to us that most breakdowns in Christian
relationships are rooted, not in the outward "problem" (doctrinal or
policy differences, etc.), but in a lack of the spiritual qualities
found in Eph.4:2-3? Gentleness and humility are necessary in times of
difficulty.

We may know the answers to catechism questions, but we do not know how
to listen to a person with a different viewpoint. We may claim the gift
of tongues, but know little of how to keep our tongues from speaking
evil. We may be able to ramble on about the doctrine of election, but we
lack the grace of God's elect in our speech (Eph.4 :29; Col.3:12).

Paul knew that Christians, by not acting in love, were capable of biting
and devouring one another (Gal.5:13,15, 26). In our day, we know that
church splits occur at an alarming rate. Why is it that Christians have
such a struggle getting along with one another? Much of the problems
lies in the fact that believers have not been equipped in how to work
matters through with others. As Elliot Johnson observes:

In order to reach unity we need some way to talk about our different
interpretations and to evaluate these differences. "Author's Intention &
Biblical Interpretation," I.C.B.I., 1982, p.1).

"We need some way. . ." Is it possible that we have been deceived by a
vicious scheme of the evil one? The New Testament assumes that
everything will not be smooth among Christians. It assumes that there
will be complaints and differences of perspective among believers. But
it is with reference to the means given in the N.T. to deal with such
problems that Christians are the most ill-equipped. In so many cases we
fail to practice the new covenant methods of conflict resolution.

I would like to offer a few points that will highlight the importance of
believers knowing how to deal with the inevitable differences that will
come up among brethren.

1. Communication in the family of God is a crucial means to certain
ends, not an end in itself. Our overarching goal is to grow in Christ
and the application of His truth to our lives. Interpersonal
communication is necessary in the attainment of this goal. But the
situation should never degenerate to the point where communication
becomes a substitute for "speaking the truth in love." Some emphasize
"open dialogue" so much that ascertaining and applying truth become
irrelevant. Others so "earnestly contend" for every theological jot and
tittle that serious interchange is short-circuited. There is a balance
here that must be prayerfully sought, a balance captured beautifully in
words by Vernard Ever:

The preservation of fellowship is of supreme value; however, uniformity,
or unanimity, in the truth is also of high value. The pressure toward
unanimity dare not be allowed to destroy fellowship, but neither dare
the joys of fellowship be allowed to stifle the search for the point of
concord that marks the truth . . . . if this dialectical balance be
patiently maintained, the Spirit can and will eventually bring about
unanimity - while in the process enhancing rather than destroying
fellowship (ST, 12:1, 13).

2. The N.T. puts a premium on the maintenance of Christian relationships
(Matt.5:23; Col.3:13; Luke 17:3-4). The breakdown of "oneness" in
Corinth was a central concern for Paul (1 Cor.1:10-13; 3:1-4; 11:18).
Jesus taught that ruptured relationships among His people warranted the
immediate interruption of devotional activities (Matt.5:23). Our love to
the invisible God is measured primarily by our ability to love the
tangible brethren who surround us (1 John 4:20).

We are just playing religious games if we think we can be devoted to God
while not dealing with unreconciled relationships with other Christians.
As much as lies within us, we are to seek and to labor for peace in
Christ's body.

3. As Paul contemplated the implications of the gospel for our daily
living, he began with how we are to function with other believers (Eph.
4:1-3; Rom.12:1-8; CoI.3:12-15). This is in harmony with Christ's new
commandment, "love one another as I have loved you" The gospel brings us
into a body where we must learn to grow with others (1 Cor.12:13).

The atmosphere of an assembly is crucial. The spiritual characteristics
of Eph.4:2-3, 31-32, provide a context in which the truth can be spoken
and obeyed. If "truth" is presented in a setting where such attributes
are lacking, then the biting and devouring of one another is just around
the corner. If "love" is emphasized in a context of indifference to
truth, then empty sentimentalism results. As l have said before, "to
fully accept people in the bonds of truth and to confront them in an
atmosphere of acceptance is a tension we must face and work out" (ST.
12:1, 1). Lawrence Crabb has some good thoughts on this:

Change takes place when truth is presented in relationship. Perhaps a
relationship of deep regard and empathetic concern is the context for
change, creating an atmosphere in which the truth of God can be heard
nondefensively and thus penetrate more deeply . . . . to be healthy, a
church must present truth in the context of encouraging relationships
(Encouragement: The Key to Caring)

Assemblies will never be perfect. However, I have no hesitation in
asserting that to the degree the principles set forth in "Communication
in Community" are practiced, the healthier assemblies will be. It is
very likely, as (Thomas) Dubay suggests, "that discussing some of these
items may itself provide a helpful breakthrough." I pray that it will."

Thank you, Jon. Feel free to contact him (jzens@searchingtogether.org)
for a copy of Dubay's exceleent piece on this.

Can we be of "one mind" and the "same judgment?" Be it done to us
according to our faith!

Saints, we're one day closer to Home, and Him! Love Him wholeheartedly!

>
>

CS Lewis - Apologist November 22

CS Lewis is remembered today. His popular books defending Christianity, and his novels have influenced many to turn to Jesus and the Church. See his story here 
 
I appreciate this quotation from his preface to the book Mere Christianity.
 
 I offer no help to anyone who is hesitating between two Christian 'denominations'. You will not learn from me whether you ought to become an Anglican, a Methodist, a Presbyterian, or a Roman Catholic. This omission is intentional... …. I am not trying to convert anyone to my own position. Ever since I became a Christian I have thought that the best, perhaps the only, service I could do for my unbelieving neighbours was to explain and defend the belief that has been common to nearly all Christians at all times. [Preface to Mere Christianity]
 
The thought and belief that is common to nearly all Christians at all times, is that which has come to us from the canon of scriptures of the New Testament era and universal teachings of the early Church
 
 

2005/11/19

The Sunday next before Advent

see announcements below:

The Sunday next before Advent
STIR up, we beseech thee, O Lord, the wills of thy faithful people; that they, plenteously bringing forth the fruit of good works, may by thee be plenteously rewarded; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Source of Collect unknown
Andrew.. saith unto him, There is a lad here


Announcements for the week beginning 20 November 05

We have opened a new unofficial forum for centurions specifically dedicated to supporting fellowship in the Order. It is called: "Centurionum". Any registered centurion may join the group
Weekly Collect, Scripture and Homily
May be used throughout the week following the apppointed Sunday unless another set is appointed for a special day

We welcome our newest registered centurions: Rod of New Zealand

Please hold all centurions in your prayers this week. You may like to use this Centurion's Daily Litany


Feasts, Commemorations, and Fasts


BIDDINGS

Please pray for

Centurions in harms way
Peace in the Mideast

2005/11/12

The Second Sunday before Advent

 
The Second Sunday before Advent
The propers being also the 6th Sunday after Epiphany

 

O GOD, whose blessed Son was manifested that he might destroy the works of the devil, and make us the sons of God, and heirs of eternal life; Grant us, we beseech thee, that, having this hope, we may purify ourselves, even as he is pure; that, when he shall appear again with power and great glory, we may be made like unto him in his eternal and glorious kingdom; where with thee, O Father, and thee, O Holy Ghost, he liveth and reigneth ever, one God, world without end. Amen.

This Collect was added in 1662. It clearly poinst to the Gospel of the day and the Second Coming of Christ

Isaiah lxvi. 1, Psalms xciii & xcviii, 1 St. John iii. 1   &   St. Matthew xxiv. 23

Homiles featuring Chrysostom on Matthew

 

 
Announcements for the week beginning 13 November 05

Weekly Collect, Scripture and Homily
May be used throughout the week following the apppointed Sunday unless another set is appointed for a special day

We welcome our newest registered centurions: Richard of Kansas & Terry of Iowa

Please hold all centurions in your prayers this week. You may like to use this Centurion's Daily Litany


Feasts, Commemorations, and Fasts
None this week


BIDDINGS

Please pray for

Centurions in harms way
Peace in the Mideast

Dating the Church at Megiddo 3rd Century

This MSN article dates the church decades before Constantine. Here is an excerpt. See more at the link http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/9950210/
 
Archaeologists said the church dated from the third century, decades before Constantine legalized Christianity across the Byzantine Empire......

The inscription, which specifies that Aketous donated a table to the church, indicates the house of worship predated the Byzantine era, when Christians began using altars in place of tables in their rituals, Tepper said. Remnants of a table were uncovered between the two mosaics.

The Holy Table at the Megiddo Church

More on the Table.. in the center... see my comment below
************
"One of the most dramatic finds suggests that, instead of an altar, a simple table stood in the center of the church, at which a sacred meal was held to commemorate the Last Supper.

Photographs of three Greek inscriptions in the mosaic were sent to Hebrew University expert Professor Leah Di Segni, who told Haaretz on Sunday that the use of the term "table" in one of them instead of the word "altar" might lead to a breakthrough in the study of ancient Christianity. It is commonly believed that church rituals based on the Last Supper took place around an altar.
*************
 
A look at the architecture of the early church with a table in the center is not new.
Take a look here at a early church layout about 1/2 way down on this page
 
and the  table/altar is in the center. Also notice that is not up against a wall in any of the pictures but could be walked around.  The presider and all may have been facing east during the prayers, that tradition was certainly placed in the canon law early on. The period after 312 and the Edict of Milan was one of change in the ceremonial of the Church, vestments, etc. It is quite possible that this "table" mentioned in the article and written in the words on the floor, became to be known as an "altar" in later periods.  Of course both the last supper, and all passover family feasts always occurred around a table.
 
Mark

Roman Officer Patron of Acient Church of Megiddo

Centurions:   We see below that A Roman Officer - Gaianus  - contributed the money from personal funds to build the Church in Megiddo, and the word "table" rather than "altar" was used in the wording.  Note that three women were specifically honored. A better photo of the fish.  More to come on this most significant find. Mark
original news source:

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/641806.html


One of the most dramatic finds suggests that, instead of an altar, a simple table stood in the center of the church, at which a sacred meal was held to commemorate the Last Supper.



Three Greek inscriptions were discovered on the mosaic floor, as well as decorations, geometric designs and a medallion decorated with drawings of fish

Photographs of three Greek inscriptions in the mosaic were sent to Hebrew University expert Professor Leah Di Segni, who told Haaretz on Sunday that the use of the term "table" in one of them instead of the word "altar" might lead to a breakthrough in the study of ancient Christianity. It is commonly believed that church rituals based on the Last Supper took place around an altar.

The northern inscription mentions a Roman army officer who donated the money to build the floor. The eastern inscription commemorates four women, and the western inscription mentions a woman by the name of Ekeptos, who "donated this table to the god Jesus Christ in commemoration."


Please visit the link provided for the complete story.



(source: IAA)




I do not know if this is of interst for Christians, however the Hebrew article states the (eastern inscription) women`s names were Primilia, Kirikea, Dorothea and Kresta – and the northern inscription was dedicated by a military officer named Gaianus who contributed to the construction of the mosaic floor from his own funds.

Additionally, a large Roman period Jewish ritual bath (miqweh) was found.




Related News Links:
isracast.com
Israel Antiquities Authority.org.il

Acient Christian Church in Megiddo, Isreal

Please note the symbol of the fish, a symbol of communion and the miracles of our Lord, an acient icon.
 
Ancient Church Found on the Grounds of an Israeli Prison
By ARON HELLER, AP

JERUSALEM (Nov. 6) - Israeli archaeologists said Saturday they have discovered what may be the oldest Christian church in the Holy Land on the grounds of a prison near the biblical site of Armageddon.
Ariel Schalit, AP
"This is a once in a lifetime find and the inscriptions are very rare," Antiquities Authority excavation supervisor, Jotham Tefer, told Israel's Channel Two.

The Israeli Antiquities Authority said the ruins are believed to date back to the third or fourth centuries and include references to Jesus and images of fish, an ancient Christian symbol.

"This is a very ancient structure, maybe the oldest in our area," said Yotam Tepper, the head archaeologist on the dig.

The dig took place over the past 18 months at the Megiddo prison in Israel's northern Galilee region, with the most significant discoveries taking place in the past two weeks, Tepper said. Scholars believe Megiddo to be the New Testament's Armageddon, the site of a final war between good and evil.

Tepper said the discovery could reveal more about an important period of Christianity, which was banned until the fourth century.

"Normally, we have from this period in our region historical evidence from literature, not archaeological evidence," he said. "There is no structure you can compare it to. It is a very unique find."

Getty Images
Israeli prison warders and archaeologists gather outside the protected ruins of the recently excavated church. An inscription on the floor of the structure declares it was dedicated to " the God Jesus Christ as a memorial. "

Channel Two television, which first reported the story, broadcast pictures of a detailed and well-preserved mosaic bearing the name of Jesus Christ in ancient Greek and images of fish.

Pietro Sambi, the Vatican's ambassador to Israel, praised the find as a "great discovery."

"Of course, all the Christians are convinced of the history of Jesus Christ," he told Channel Two. "But is it extremely important to have archaeological proof of a church dedicated to him? Certainly."

Joe Zias, an anthropologist and a former curator with the Israeli Antiquities Authorities, said the discovery was significant but unlikely to be the world's oldest church. He said Christianity was outlawed until the time of Emperor Constantine in the fourth century, and there were no churches before then.

"The earliest it could be is fourth century and we have other fourth-century churches. I think what is important here is the size, the inscription and the mosaics," he said. "I think it is an important find ... but I wouldn't say it was the oldest church in the world."

The Antiquities Authority said more than 60 prison inmates participated in the dig in recent months. Channel Two said there is speculation Israel may move the prison and open a tourist attraction in its place.

"If it's between a prison and a church, I would like a church," Zias said. "You can put a prison anywhere."

Israeli Tourism Minister Avraham Hirshzon said the discovery could greatly increase tourism to Israel.

"If we nurture this properly, then certainly there will be a large stream of tourists who could come to Israel," he told Channel Two.

11-06-05 10:26 EST

Copyright 2005 The Associated Press. The information contained in the AP news report may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed without the prior written authority of The Associated Press. All active hyperlinks have been inserted by AOL.

2005/11/11

Chrysostom: and "The Problem with Evangelical Theologies"

In the links to the homilies in the Propers (collect, eptistle, and Gospel) sent out each holy day and Sunday for the past several months, I've placed an homily by John "Golden Throat" Chrysostom [ca 400AD] Bishop of Constantinople, whenever available.  Chrysostom is probably the most respected preacher of the Church. 
 
 
 
I came across this article where the author of a new book speaks highly of returning to Chrysostom's style today: The Problem with Evangelical Theologies by Ben Witherington II
 
Here is his bottom line recommendation about returning to ancient form of exegesis and approach to the scriptures and preaching.
 

Christianity Today Q: Naturally, you argue that this requires a fresh approach to reading and interpreting the Bible. Who are some pre-Enlightenment interpreters of the Bible who are models of good exegesis for us today?
Witherington A: Some of the Antiochian fathers would be good—Gregory of Nyssa and Gregory Nazianzus, for example. But if there's one person who seems to be in touch with the original Greek and rhetorical ethos of the New Testament and especially Paul, that would be John Chrysostom. I'm thankful that we've got some wonderful new studies on Chrysostom as an exegete and a theologian (like Margaret Mitchell's The Heavenly Trumpet, which helps us appreciate his numerous homilies on the New Testament). In contrast to the Latin Fathers, like Augustine, he is very much in touch with the living language of the Greek text. He is able to resonate with it, to pick up the rhetorical signals, the cultural signals, and understand the trajectory of the theology and ethics being taught.

 

If any would like to go back and read the homilies, you can find them listed the Order's Sermon page here http://www.orderofcenturions.org/sermons.html,  Holy days not in the table are listed below it. We began the Chrysostom series on Seventh Sunday after Trinity.

 

Mark

Armistice Day 1918

Let us remember the Armistice that ended WWI. It was on the 11th hour, of the 11th day, of the 11th month of the year 1918 that the belligerent parties signed the Armistice.  Amazingly, 35 nations were in this war; representing the nations of most or our centurions.
 
Over 8.6 million soldiers died on the battlefield and 6.5 million civilians. The world hoped it was the war to end all wars.... we know better now.  For a brief history see this site http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_I
 
In the US, our Centurions will be observing Veterans Day.  A salute to all Veterans in the Order of Centurions, and thank you for your service... the Order looks to those Christian men and women who have served God and their country as examples, including the Centurions of the New Testament.
 
I bid your prayers this Armistice Day for Peace in the World and security for all.
 
Let us never forget  In Flander Fields by Lt. Col McCrae, Canada
 
For the USA veterans... from the Commander in Chief
 
Veterans Day, 2005

November 2, 2005

A Proclamation by the President of the United States of America

Americans owe a great debt of gratitude to those who have sacrificed for our liberty and for the security of our Nation. We express deep appreciation to our veterans -- the men and women who stepped forward when America needed them, triumphed over brutal enemies, liberated continents, and answered the prayers of millions around the globe.

From the beaches of Normandy and the snows of Korea to the mountains of Afghanistan and the deserts of Iraq, our courageous veterans have sacrificed so that Americans and others could live in freedom. As we mark the 60th anniversary of the end of World War II this year, we remember the millions of veterans who crossed oceans and defeated two of the most ruthless military forces the world has ever known. The freedom that the children and grandchildren of these veterans now enjoy is a monument to their fallen comrades and the generations of patriots who have served our country.

Through their commitment to freedom, America 's veterans have lifted millions of lives and made our country and the world more secure. They have demonstrated to us that freedom is the mightiest force on Earth. We resolve that their sacrifices will always be remembered by a grateful Nation.

With respect for and in recognition of the contributions our service men and women have made to the cause of peace and freedom around the world, the Congress has provided (5 U.S.C. 6103(a)) that November 11 of each year shall be set aside as a legal public holiday to honor veterans.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim November 11, 2005, as Veterans Day and urge all Americans to observe November 6 through November 12, 2005, as National Veterans Awareness Week. I urge all Americans to recognize the valor and sacrifice of our veterans through ceremonies and prayers. I call upon Federal, State, and local officials to display the flag of the United States and to encourage and participate in patriotic activities in their communities. I invite civic and fraternal organizations, places of worship, schools, businesses, unions, and the media to support this national observance with commemorative expressions and programs.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this second day of November, in the year of our Lord two thousand five, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirtieth.

GEORGE W. BUSH

2005/11/05

The Twenty-fourth Sunday after Trinity

 

The Twenty-fourth Sunday after Trinity

O LORD, we beseech thee, absolve thy people from their offences; that through thy bountiful goodness we may all be delivered from the bands of those sins, which by our frailty we have committed. Grant this, O heavenly Father, for the sake of Jesus Christ, our blessed Lord and Saviour. Amen.

Source: Sacramentary of Bishop Leo of Rome [461] and of Gregory. Said the Sunday week before the penitential season of Advent, it begs God for absolution. Today's Gospel echos this theme as the woman was released from her bands of infirmity through faith [Barbee and Zahl] Note. normally "Sunday week before". This is a long year and well have several more Sundays before advent.

Malachi iii. 13, Psalm 66, Colossians i. 3   &  St. Matthew ix. 18
Homilies

Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole

Announcements for the week beginning 6 November 05



Feasts, Commemorations, and Fasts
The Early Church fasted Wednesdays and Fridays except Christmas to Epiphany and Easter to Pentecost

 
Julius - Centurion of the Augustan Cohort - November 8th
Martin of Tours - November 11th
Mennas, Legionary & Martyr November 11th

BIDDINGS

Please pray for

Centurions in harms way
Peace in the Mideast

2005/11/03

Following the Centurions - Article

Following the Centurions - a brief article by Lt.Col Burt Tussing (USMC Ret), presented at the US Army War College, appears on this Officer Christian Fellowship site. http://ocf.gospelcom.net/pubs/followin.php
 
It is a good summary of the many centurions in the NT and a nice reflection on the Centurion of Capernaum.  It would make a nice approach for any of us who might be asked to talk about what the Order of Centurions is about  -- "Following the Centurions"
 
Our motto is based on this very theme of following the centurions, as Peter said of Cornelius: he fears God and does what is right and is therefore acceptable to God. He said this recognizing that Cornelius was a Gentile.
 
time Deum et operare iustitiam
 
 

2005/10/31

All Saints [November 1]


All Saints
[November 1]

O ALMIGHTY God, who hast knit together thine elect in one communion and fellowship, in the mystical body of thy Son Christ our Lord; Grant us grace so to follow thy blessed Saints in all virtuous and godly living, that we may come to those unspeakable joys which thou hast prepared for those who unfeignedly love thee; through the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

This Collect is to be said daily throughout the Octave.

The Lord is glorious in his saints; * O come, let us adore him


Revelation vii. 2 & St. Matthew v. 1
Homilies
Hymn: For All the Saints

Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven

centurio ordinarius Marcellus and scribe Cassian [30 Oct 298]

Centurion Marcellus and Scribe Cassian [30 Oct 298]. Our military saints of the day. See the story here
 
 
see the court transcript here
 
 

2005/10/29

Twenty-third Sunday after Trinity

 

The Twenty-third Sunday after Trinity

O GOD, our refuge and strength, who art the author of all godliness; Be ready, we beseech thee, to hear the devout prayers of thy Church; and grant that those things which we ask faithfully we may obtain effectually; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Source: Bishop Gregory of Rome [604 AD] Compare Psalm 46 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help [Barbee and Zahl]. The petition reminds one of Jesus' promise, 21:22 And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.

 

Philippians iii. 17   &  St. Matthew xxii. 15
Homilies

 

Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's;
and unto God the things that are God's.

Announcement
 
Please hold all centurions in your prayers this week - and particularly those who were inducted to the Labarum Guard  You may like to use this Centurion's Daily Litany

 
Observances this week,

Marcellus, Centurion - October 30th

All Saints -- November 1st

Joannicus, Legionary, Abbot November 4th

 

2005/10/28

Saint Simon and Jude 28 Oct

 

Saint Simon and Saint Jude, Apostles.
[October 28]

O ALMIGHTY God, who hast built thy Church upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the head cornerstone; Grant us so to be joined together in unity of spirit by their doctrine, that we may be made an holy temple acceptable unto thee; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Ephesians ii. 17   &   St. John xv. 17
Homilies

built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets,
Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner-stone



 

2005/10/27

BATTLE CRY-LABARUM - 27 OCT

IN HOC SIGNO VINCES
 
27 October is the anniversary of the vision of Constantine, and his epiphany, which led to his adoption of the chi rho as his army's standard,and the motto 'in hoc signo vinces" as the motto/battle cry in the year  312. He ordered a Labarum to be constructed showing the sign and the battle cry, and to be carried before his legions.
 
The next day, 28 October, his forces defeated a much larger force and liberated Rome at Milvian Bridge "Saxa Ruba". He selected pious men to serve as standard bearers and guards of the Labarum.
 
This evening the Order will induct members into the Order's service branch of the Labarum Guard. At Legion we are planning to use this office: http://orderofcenturions.org/labarum_guard/eusebius.html. I invite you to read the account by Eusebius found on the form
 
IHSV
 
 

2005/10/26

Alfred the Great 26 Oct

O Sovereign Lord, you brought your servant Alfred to a troubled throne that he might establish peace in a ravaged land and revive learning and the arts among the people: Awake in us also a keen desire to increase our understanding while we are in this world, and an eager longing to reach that endless life where all will be made clear; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

 

Alfred, 848-900, King of England,  led army that defeated Danes, in peace organized government, built up Navy, translated works, encouraged arts, supported the Church, education, a builder

about Alfred http://pages.zdnet.com/kingalfred/id3.html

 

2005/10/25

New Member Lehman Smith Article

centurionum - Primus Pilus - salutem dicit

It is my pleasure to introduce a new member and share some of his work with you. He is Chevalier Lehmam Smith, KGOTJ, Secretary, Scottish Knights Templar, a US correspondent for the Pakistan Christian Post ( www.pakistanchristianpost.com/ ) . The newspaper stands as a witness and comfort to Pakistani Christians.

With his permission, I have posted one of his recent publications he sent me concerning martyrs in Pakistan that I commend; the lead paragraph follows:

January 20th 2005 marked the 6th year anniversary
date of the shameless murder of a 15 year old boy
named Roy Pontoh. On this date in 1995, Roy attended a
Christian Bible camp on the Station field Complex at
the University of Pattimura at Hila, on the Island of
Ambon, Indonesia.

In attendance were 125 other teens and children along
with parents and counselors, who bonded together
proudly calling themselves "Gods Army ".

read more here http://www.orderofcenturions.org/documents/lehman_smith_050802.html

Lehman also wrote "On becoming a Knight:" http://www.rosslyntemplars.org.uk/becoming_a_knight.htm


IHSV
curate ut valeatis
Marcus

--
IN HOC SIGNO VINCES - TIME DEUM ET OPERARE IUSTITIAM
www.OrderofCenturions.org

2005/10/24

John of Capistrano - [Transferred 23 Oct]

Today the Order remembers John of Capistrano, who was chaplain to a crusade in 1456 that delivered Europe from the Turks
 
 
A good account of this warrior monk is to be found at "The Saint of the Day, by Prof. Plinio CorrĂȘa de Oliveira. Here is an excerpt.
 
After the fall of Constantinople at Islamic hands, he preached the Crusade against the Muslim Turks, exhorting Catholics to raise an army to resist the invaders, who were threatening Christendom by their victorious march into the northwest of Europe. At age 70 he was commissioned by Pope Callistus II as delegate and adviser for the war against the Turks.

He traveled to Belgrade to encourage the 40,000 Catholic soldiers who were surrounded by Mohammed II. By a clever feint, he got past the Turkish guard, entered the city and began to preach constancy in the fight and confidence in the victory. All of Christendom was praying for a successful outcome for the city. The soldiers, under the influence of the Saint, fought and prayed. John Capistrano accompanied the troops in their more difficult maneuvers: the surprise attacks and recoups. Although he took the greatest risks, he was never wounded by a single bullet. It was due to him, above all, that Belgrade was saved. This victory stalled the Turkish invasion, which in turn saved all of Europe. .
 
John died about three months later and so we remember him on the 23 day of October. Read more here