Saturday, February 25, 2012

Saturday after Ash Wednesday: All spiritual and mature Christians . . . share in the office of priesthood

Opening Sentence
To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness, because we have rebelled against him and have not obeyed the voice of the Lord our God by following the laws which he has set before us. Daniel 9:9, 10

Commemoration: Æthelbert
O God, who called your servant Æthelbert of Kent to an earthly Throne that he might advance your heavenly kingdom, and gave him zeal for your Church and love for your people: Mercifully grant that we who commemorate him this day may be fruitful in good works, and attain to the glorious crown of your saints; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Psalter: Psalm 30, 32

Lessons: Ezekiel 39:21-29, Philippians 4:10-20, John 17:20-26

Although the universal Church of God is constituted of distinct orders of members, still, in spite of the many parts of its holy body, the Church subsists as an integral whole, just as the Apostle says: we are all one in Christ. . .

For all, regenerated in Christ, are made kings by the sign of the cross; they are consecrated priests by the oil of the Holy Spirit, so that beyond the special service of our ministry as priests, all spiritual and mature Christians know that they are a royal race and are sharers in the office of the priesthood. For what is more king-like that to find yourself ruler over your body after having surrendered your soul to God? And what is more priestly than to promise the Lord a pure conscience and to offer him in love unblemished victims on the altar of one's heart?

Leo the Great

Ah, Holy Jesus