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2012/09/08

Fourteenth Sunday After Trinity MMXII

Keep, we beseech thee, O Lord, thy Church with thy perpetual mercy: and because, without thee the frailty of man is wont to fall, save it ever by thine aid from all things hurtful, and lead it to all things wise and prudent. Through ...

Latin:
 Custodi, Domine, quaesumus, Ecclesiam tuam propitiatione erpetua: et quia sine te labirtur humana mortalitas, tuis semper auxiliis et abstrahatur a noxiis: ut ad saputaria dirigatur, per
[Gelasian Sacramentary]

Introit: Behold, O God, our shield..
Ps:  How amiable are thy tabernacles, O Lord of Hosts:...
Epistle: Galatians 5:16-24  This I say then, Walk in the Spirit...
Gradual: It is better to trust in the Lord...
Gospel: Luke 17:11-19  And it came to pass, as he went to Jerusalem,...


First English translation from the 1549 BCP 15th Trinity: "
KEPE we beseche thee, O Lorde, thy Churche with thy perpetuall mercye: and because the frailtie of man without thee, cannot but fall: Kepe us ever by thy helpe, and leade us to al thynges profitable to our salvacion; through Jesus Christe our Lorde. Amen "

The collect this Sunday, and for the next, is a petition for the Church.  The translation above is one that I have fashioned based on the original, various translations, and comments. I think it more nearly translates the literal meaning of the original Gelasian collect.  The prayer is for the church as an entity and not for the members; hence "keep us....lead us" is really not the original sense, but rather "save it...lead it".   The collect is not for a building, or for a specific organization, but rather for the called-out ones (ek kaleo), who are Christ's own.  

The collect prays for the Church throughout as it recognizes the frailty of man to keep it pure. Strodach proffers it could be paraphrased to say "'God, save the Church from the unchristian things we men are fain to do to it.' And that is the truth."  The early Church was well aware of the wiles or errors of men to  pervert the faith handed down by the Apostles.  It was at the time of this collect still fighting against the Arian heresy.  Indeed the mural of Jesus at Revena showed Christ standing upon the adler and the lion, signals of the struggle and triumph of the Church over Arianism. http://www.orderofcenturions.org/christ_militant.html

Arianism is one heresy that has revived and is alive in many false gatherings today that profess to be Christian. Each generation is faced with new challenges as men invent new understandings of God and his Church or dredge up old ones that have been repressed in days gone by. One I came across of interest yesterday is the Church of Later Day Saints (Mormons)  It thrives, and the article below claims it denies all other Christian churches which hold to the creeds

In the epistle today, Paul admonishes the folk to walk by the Spirit...and then goes on to list the works of the flesh so that one may recognize more easily those things that are of the Spirit, which he speaks of as fruits.  Look closely at any gathering that professes Christ and see whether its frail members live mainly by the Spirit or by the flesh... but look also at the doctrines they profess and compare diligently what they proffer with what was handed down from the Apostles as the True Faith for the True Church -- that which was held for nearly two thousand years. Recognize secondary things that may be acceptable variations from the primary  things; it is the First Things which are requisite of any of the Catholic Churches of Christ (Ecclesi√¶ Christi Catholic√¶)

An  homily of Chrysostom on the epistle


Finis

(Portions were paraphrased and passages cited from The Collect of the Day, by Paul Zeller Strodach, 1939, The United Lutheran Press, Philadelphia)  http://www.cyberhymnal.org/bio/s/t/r/strodach_pz.htm
 
The Ancient Collect: Its history and form

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Released by Primus Pilus
Legio Christi-Ecclesia Militans
"Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another" [St. Paul's Epistle to the Romans 14:19]

* ORDO CENTURIONUM * IN HOC SIGNO VINCES * TIME DEUM ET OPERARE IUSTITIAM

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