Daily Common Prayer
As we move through lent this year we invite you to a practice of prayer and scripture that will connect you with God and to other past and present. For more info on the Book of Common Prayer check out the introduction at the end of this post.
February 23, 2015
You who raised -Jesus from the dead : raise us also to life abundant.
Polycarp of Smyrna (70 – 155)
Polycarp was arrested by Roman officials after having served as Bishop of Smyrna for many decades. When the Roman proconsul ordered him to declare that “Caesar is Lord” and to curse Christ, the elderly Polycarp refused, saying, “Eighty-six years I have served him and he never did me any wrong. How can I blaspheme my King who saved me?” Polycarp was sentenced to death by fire, but the flames miraculously stood like a wall around him and he was not burned. The executioner then stabbed him in the heart, which issued such an abundance of blood that the fire was quenched.
Søren Kierkegaard, a nineteenth-century Danish philosopher, said, “What the age needs is not a genius but a martyr.”
Lord, in our work for justice, let us not seek after martyrdom for its own sake, but neither let us turn away from your truth because we fear suffering. Give us grace to live faithfully whatever the cost. Amen.
To practice the whole Daily Common Prayer, you can click here (it includes daily scripture, prayers and reflections)
Introduction to the Book of Common Prayer
Christians have been singing and praying and worshiping together for thousands of years. We can sometimes forget that and view our worship, our prayers as something we do on our own…private.
This year during the Lent season, we want to dive into an exciting, new (for us!) practice…of praying prayers with people around the world, from diverse places, traditions, denominations. We’re going to do this from what is called “The Common Prayer” (www.commonprayer.net), a book with prayers and scriptures for every day, called a “liturgy”.
Liturgy (literally means “the work of the people”) is a communal response to the sacred. Its something we do together, as a way to ground ourselves TOGETHER in Christ.
Every day you will have the chance to join people…in all parts of the world, praying some of these very same prayers. There is strength in numbers, and there is a powerful sense of unity that can come as people from diverse places and circumstances pray together, even though they have never met, and don’t even speak the same language.
We also want to encourage you to do this in community….whenever possible.
So maybe you want to find a common time in your home to pray these prayers and read these scriptures together, or include them at the beginning of your cell gatherings…to remind us that we are NOT on this faith journey alone, but are meant to live our lives in community.