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Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday
the first day of Lent

Penitential Office
for use with the devotional office of readings and collect and, or with the Litany

ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who hatest nothing that thou hast made, and dost forgive the sins of all those who are penitent; Create and make in us new and contrite hearts, that we, worthily lamenting our sins and acknowledging our wretchedness, may obtain of thee, the God of all mercy, perfect remission and forgiveness; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

This Collect is to be said every day in Lent, after the Collect appointed for the day, until Palm Sunday.

Source Archbishop Cranmer of Canterbury 1549. Replaced a collect that emphasized fasting, with this one that emphasizes repentence

Joel ii. 12   Psalm 51   &   St. Matthew vi. 16

Homiles featuring John Chrysostom

rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God


The Sunday called Quinquagesima

The Sunday called Quinquagesima
the Sunday before Lent

O LORD, who hast taught us that all our doings without charity are nothing worth; Send thy Holy Ghost, and pour into our hearts that most excellent gift of charity, the very bond of peace and of all virtues, without which whosoever liveth is counted dead before thee. Grant this for thine only Son Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

Deut x. 12   Psalm 23   1 Corinthians xiii. 1.   &   St. Luke xviii. 31
Homilies featuring Chrysostom on Matthew xx. 20-30

Thou son of David, have mercy on me


Announcements for the week beginning 26 Feb 06 

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

Feasts, Memorials, and Fasts

Sundays are feast days our our Lord throughout the year
Wednesdays and Fridays were days of fasting and special devotion in the early church
. Major Feasts and Fasts in bold

Ash Wednesday

Emeterius and Chelidonius, Legionaries of Calahorra, Spain - March 3rd

Adrian - Roman Officer & Martyr March 4th [304]

Centurions in harms way
Peace in the Mideast


Matthias [24 February}


Saint Matthias
[February 24]

O ALMIGHTY God, who into the place of the traitor Judas didst choose thy faithful servant Matthias to be of the number of the twelve Apostles; Grant that thy Church, being alway preserved from false Apostles, may be ordered and guided by faithful and true pastors; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

1 Sam ii. 27, Ps 15, Acts i. 15 and Matthew xi. 25>
Homilies featuring Chrysostom on Acts

and the lot fell upon Matthias;
and he was numbered with the eleven apostles

Matthias just, today his dignity we own
In that the Apostles' lot gave him the vacant throne;
Last chosen of the Twelve, hear him, O Lord of love,
That throned in light and bliss, we too may reign above.

Note: Matthias by tradition "preached the Gospel for more than 30 years in Judea, Cappadocia


George Washington Birthday Observed 20 Feb 06

General George Washington
O ETERNAL GOD, through whose mighty power our fathers won their liberties of old; Grant, we beseech thee, that we and all the people of this land may have grace to maintain these liberties in righteousness and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen

"the General hopes and trusts, that, every officer and man, will endeavour so to live, and act, as becomes a Christian Soldier defending the dearest Right and Liberties of his country."

  • Washington was a member of the Truro Parish of the Anglican Church.
  • He was a vestryman of that church and served as church warden.
  • As a vestryman, he signed an oath of office that included holding to the orthodox Christian view of the Trinity, the Divinity of Jesus Christ, etc. A deist/Unitarian could not sign such an oath.
  • Vestry records show that Washington attended meeting regularly at various churches within his parish.
  • Washington drew plans for a new church building at Pohick and contributed money for the building project. He also contributed to other churches which he attended.
  • Major Popham, who served under Washington during the War, wrote that he attended St. Paul's Church with both Chief Justice Morris and General Washington and that he (the Major) had the “privilege and happiness to kneel with him (Washington)“ at communion. And the major said “I may say often--attended the sacramental table.“ There is also an account of Washington taking Communion with Presbyterians while encamped at Morristown.
  • Washington declared days of prayer and fasting; and his diary indicates that he himself fasted. For instance, his diary entry for 1 June 1774 reads: “Went to church, and fasted all day.“
  • Washington's position of national leadership led to his reluctance to speak out on Christian matters. In a letter he wrote to Brigadier General Nelson on 20 Aug 1778, he says: “The hand of Providence has been conspicuous in all this, that he must be worse than an infidel that lacks faith, and more than wicked that has not gratitude enough to acknowledge his obligations. But it will be time enough for me to turn preacher when my present appointment ceases; and therefore I shall add no more on the doctrine of Providence.“
  • In 1833, Washington's adopted daughter (Nelly Custis) wrote to historian Jared Sparks, expressing indignation that anyone would question Washington's Christianity. That's a very long letter and I won't reproduce it here.
  • Nelly Curtis' observations and conclusions were virtually unanimous with others.
    • Chief Justice John Marshall (Washington'/s biographer, associate, ally, and personal friend) wrote: “Without making ostentatious professions of religion, he was a sincere believer in the Christian faith, and a truly devout man.“
    • James Madison said that he did “...not suppose that Washington had ever attended to the arguments for Christianity, and for the different systems of religion, or in fact that he had formed definite opinions on the subject. But he took these things as he found them, existing, and was constant in his observance of worship according to the received forms of the Episcopal Church in which he was brought up.“
  • Jared Sparks, whose 20-volume collection of Washington's writings made him the best-informed biographer of Washington in the 19th century, attests to Washington's Christian character.


The Sunday called Sexagesima

the second Sunday before Lent

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. Amen.

Source: Sacrmentary of Bishop Gregory of Rome [600 AD]

Isaiah l. 4   Psalm 71   Corinthians xi. 19   &   St. Luke viii. 4

Homilies featuring Chrysostom on the Epistle

Announcements for the week beginning 19 Feb 06

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

Feasts, Memorials, and Fasts

Sundays are feast days our our Lord throughout the year
Wednesdays and Fridays were days of fasting and special devotion in the early church
. Major Feasts and Fasts in bold

Matthias the Apostle -- February 24th

Centurions in harms way
Peace in the Mideast


Neighborhood Safety: John Walsh --a modern day vigilante and 21st Century knight who has done more than any other citizen in our time to counter crime-- has teamed with Julie Clark to create The Safe Side, and it supports Family Watchdog that provides American Communities with this resource to locate Registered Convicted Sex Offenders. Quickly obtain a map of your area by entering your zip code.
A study showed that 5% of released offenders in 1994 committed offenses again within three years, and we suspect that the actual percentage of recidivism is much higher see report here
I recommend you learn about your own neighborhood. If there is a potential threat, beware, and inform your neighbors. You can get specific information on a sex offender including address and photograph.
This is all public information controlled by law-enforcement officials for public safety. Please read this page also
Keep watch and pray


The Sunday called Septuagesima

The Sunday called Septuagesima
the third Sunday before Lent

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.

Source: Sacramentary of Bishop Gregory of Rome [600 AD]. The collect shows the great stress that Gregory knew from all sorts of calamities and threats - often perceived directly as a result of the sin of the nation. Septuageesima is the pre-Lent Sunday approximately 70 days before Easter. It comes from the Middle Ages

Joshua i:1   Psalm xx   1 Corinthians ix. 24   &   St. Matthew xx. 1

Homily of John Chrysostom

Announcements for the week beginning 12 Feb 06

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

Feasts, Memorials, and Fasts

Lew Wallace, General (US), Evangelist - February 15


Centurions in harms way
Peace in the Mideast



The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany

announcements below

The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany

O LORD, we beseech thee to keep thy Church and household continually in thy true religion; that they who do lean only upon the hope of thy heavenly grace may evermore be defended by thy mighty power; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Source: Sacrementary of Bishop Gregory of Rome [600 AD]. Cranmer added "Church" to the "familia". Note "ONLY" by the hope of grace.

Habakkuk i. 12, Psalm 112, Colossians iii. 12   &   St. Matthew xiii. 24

Homilies featuring Chrysostom on the Gospel

Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them:
but gather the wheat into my barn


Announcements for the week beginning 5 Feb 06 

Please hold all centurions in your prayers this week. You may like to use this Centurion's Daily Litany
Happy 21st Birthday to a very special Combat Marine and Soldier of Christ

Congratulations to those centurions who have earned the honorary Tribune designation on the Feast of Cornelius the Centurion, 4 February:

Feasts, Memorials, and Fasts

Sundays are feast days our our Lord throughout the year
Wednesdays and Fridays were days of fasting and special devotion in the early church
. Major Feasts and Fasts in bold

Theodore Stratelates, Legatus, Martyr - February 7th
In the Orthodox Church he is considered a Great Martyr and given the same respect as the Apostles


Centurions in harms way
Peace in the Mideast


Feast of Cornelius the Centurion [Feb 4]

Feast of Cornelius the Centurion

I ask that all take a moment and give thanks to God for the example of the first Christian among the Gentiles, Cornelius the Centurion. This feast is especially appropriate in this season of Epiphany as we think of Christ's light to the Gentiles. It was Peter who said of Cornelius, before baptizing him, "Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him."

On this day the Order also salutes all its Christian uniformed veterans and recognizes their service to God and County. For a reading this day,  in addition to chapter 10 and 11 of Acts,  I commend this following article sent to me on the eve of this feast by a fellow centurion, The Friendly Defender of Justice
This year we have added to the Tribune eligibility list those centurions who put their lives on the line in our communities as police officers (as they were Roman legionaries in the time of the early church). Indeed, I think it is likely that Cornelius was more of a chief of police in Caesarea than an officer of the line for combat.
 The article from is timely on this occasion. I commend the web site, and you might consider signing up for Scott Farrell's newsletter. 


The Friendly Defender of Justice

By Scott Farrell

©2006, Shining Armor Enterprises

Police officers in many ways embody the knightly ideal of justice in
the modern world. They perform the hard-but-necessary job of keeping
the streets safe by apprehending criminals and miscreants, and
bringing them to justice, even as the knights of old were expected to

With the image of the police officer as the modern-day knight in
shining armor in mind, consider this excerpt from an article that
recently appeared in a local magazine. The piece was written by a
journalist who spent a night on patrol with one of the city's gang
investigation units. The reporter described a brief exchange he
witnessed between an officer and some bystanders:

"(The officer) stopped and chatted with two or three former and
current gang members. 'I get along with almost all these guys out
here,' the policeman commented. 'I treat them right, even when I
arrest them. And they appreciate that.'"

Perhaps that statement raises your hackles a bit. After all, gang
activities are illegal, and gang members are notorious for
perpetrating dreadful, heinous crimes, including getting children
hooked on drugs, running prostitution rings and executing petty turf
wars that endanger innocent bystanders. When a law enforcement
officer approaches such lawless thugs, we might like to think the
officer would become forceful and intimidating, and perhaps even
"rough up" the perpetrators a bit (like they do in TV cop shows) in
order to make them regret the error of their ways.

Of course, such aggressive behavior could hardly be called
chivalrous, but if the Code of Chivalry obliges police officers to
treat pimps, drug dealers and drive-by shooters gently and amicably,
then perhaps this is proof that the principle of chivalry truly is
obsolete in today's world.

That is a compelling argument — but before we summarily divorce
chivalry and justice, consider the rationale behind the notion of
"treating criminals right."

First, there's the purely practical consideration of getting the job
done. Yes, brutalizing a gang member in the backseat of a squad car
might put a halt to a single life of crime; on the other hand,
establishing respectful rapport within the gang community undoubtedly
gives police officers and detectives access to vital information
regarding other investigations. Courteous treatment may prevent or
solve many future criminal activities.

There's also the consideration of how the "rough" approach to justice
affects the crime fighters themselves. People who assume hostile,
antagonistic attitudes in "limited" scenarios (such as police
officers and soldiers, but also managers, teachers, athletes,
politicians or anyone whose job includes the role of an "enforcer")
often find those attitudes can't simply be switched off at the end of
the day. Adopting an outlook of chivalry and courtesy helps the
agents of justice avoid becoming as callous, corrupt and brutal as
the criminals they're fighting.

Lastly, although frequently overlooked, there is the presumption of
innocence that is one of the legal foundations of a free society.
Even if a police officer catches a criminal red-handed, the law does
not give him or her the authority to act as judge, jury and
executioner. In order to truly uphold the principle of justice, a
police officer should approach thugs and gang members with the same
level of respect as little old ladies and lost children.

Knights of the Middle Ages recognized that, as arbiters of the king's
justice, they couldn't go about simply whacking troublemakers on the
head — no matter how much they wanted to. Ramon Llull, author of the
13th century "Book of Knighthood and Chivalry" explained:

"Without justice, chivalry may not be. For an injurious (i.e.,
prejudiced or biased) knight is an enemy of justice; he defeats it
and casts himself out of the noble order of chivalry."

This in no way indicates that chivalry means tolerating violations of
the law, being lenient to criminals, or surrendering the duty to
protect those in peril. But "embodying the ideal of justice" doesn't
mean merely imposing the rules onto others by force, or wreaking
vengeance under the pretext of upholding the law. It means being a
living example of the standards of fairness and integrity you expect
of others — even when others fail to measure up to the high ideals of
the Code of Chivalry.


Readers are permitted and encouraged to share this article with
others as a way of furthering the understanding of the Code of
Chivalry in the modern world. Scott Farrell's seminar "Leadership
Secrets of the Code of Chivalry" is available to businesses, athletic
teams and civic groups throughout the Southern California area; more
information can be found on our website. Please include all copyright
statements and attributions when forwarding Chivalry Today articles.
Copyright 2006 Scott Farrell and Shining Armor Enterprises. Visit our
website at .

Chaplains of the Dorchester

Today is the anniversary of the sinking of the USS Dorchester in 1943, and the remarkable story of four Chaplains who laid down their lives for their men. I highly commend this site year-in and year-out. It speaks volumes. My thanks as always to my friend and fellow centurion, Joshua of New Jersey who provided this link and remembrance of these men for our calendar.

related sites




The Presentation of Christ in the Temple


The Presentation of Christ in the Temple
commonly called
The Purification of Mary the Virgin
[February 2]

ALMIGHTY and everliving God, we humbly beseech thy Majesty, that, as thy only-begotten Son was this day presented in the temple in substance of our flesh, so we may be presented unto thee with pure and clean hearts, by the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Malachi iii. 1, Galatians 1, Psalm 84,   &   St. Luke ii. 22
Homily of Sophorium

a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel