Greetings on this gorgeous, soon to be very hot, day!
I don’t have any upcoming events to tell you about but, if you know of any, please fill us in. On that note…
A Fact about Fridays: Our western society and the church (especially the early church) have an extremely different view of Fridays. Our society – which predominantly revolves around the capitalist agenda of a Monday to Friday white collar working world – sees Fridays as a day of celebration. It’s the end of the work week, the beginning of the weekend…a time to kick back, relax, maybe have a cold drink on a patio, whatever.
It may surprise you to know – or to be reminded – that Fridays on our church calendar…every Friday…is a special “Day of discipline and self-denial.” Why? Because this is the day when Jesus was brutally murdered by the religious and political authorities who, rightfully, saw Jesus as a threat to their power. Jesus allowed himself to be hung on a cross in order to reconcile us to God through him. We can acknowledge this extraordinary gift with this simple prayer each Friday:
A Collect for Fridays
Almighty God, whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain, and entered not into glory before he was crucified: Mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross, may find it none other than the way of life and peace; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord. Amen.
By the way…What is a “Collect”? It really does mean “to collect”. It comes from the Latin word, colligere, which means “to gather.” These “collects” are short prayers that gather the intentions of the people and focus them into a succinct prayer for worship. It’s like a summary of the major themes in just a few lines. All collects follow the same basic form: we address God and name something of God’s character or action in the world on our behalf. This is followed by a request and then an invocation (usually “through Jesus Christ…”), a bit of praise, and finally the “Amen.” For Anglican prayers, the invocation and praise is, most often, something like, “through Jesus Christ your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.”
Another Quick Liturgical Note: The only calendar observance this week is that of Mary Magdalene. She is noteworthy though – this is not a memorial nor a commemoration but, rather, a Holy Day. Her observance merits the changing of the green colour of Ordinary Time to the white of a Holy Day. Find out below why she is so important…
For Your Devotions:
Friday, July 22nd is the Holy Day of St. Mary Magdalene. She is one of Jesus’ most celebrated disciples. In fact, in the tradition of the Eastern Church, Mary Magdalene is regarded as the equal of an apostle. According to the Gospel of Luke, Jesus cured her of seven demons. All four Gospel writers tell of her unwavering devotion to Jesus in staying with him while he hung on the cross and name Mary Magdalene as one of the women who went to the tomb early on Sunday morning. Both the Gospel of Mark and the Gospel of John say she was the first to see Jesus after his resurrection. She is spoken of so often and so highly that even a patriarchal society couldn’t write her out of the story! For more information: https://www.britannica.com/biography/Saint-Mary-Magdalene
In the joy of our risen Lord,