Archive for June 2013

Feast of Thomas Benson Pollock (December 15)   Leave a comment

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Above:  St. Alban’s Church, Highgate, Birmingham, England

Image Source = Oosoom

Confirmation Here:  http://www.saintalban.co.uk/

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THOMAS BENSON POLLOCK (MAY 28, 1836-DECEMBER 15, 1896)

Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer

Thomas Benson Pollock, born at Strathallan, Isle of Man, attended Trinity College, Dublin, where, in 1855, he won the Vice-Chancellor’s Prize for English Verse.  Our saint studied medicine yet took Holy Orders instead in 1861.  He served as the Curate of St. Luke’s, Leek, Staffordshire, then as the Curate of St. Thomas, Stamford Hills, London, before, in 1865, becoming the Curate of St. Alban’s, Birmingham, where his brother, James Samuel Pollock, was the Vicar.  St. Alban’s was a large mission in a poor part of the city.  It operated a school and maintained a relatively large staff while depending on outside donations to finance the operations.  This was a demanding place to serve as a priest.  Our saint remained there for three decades, spending the last ten months as Vicar, having succeeded his deceased brother.  But finally our saint had to lay down his burden; he had overworked himself.

St. Alban’s became a High Church bastion.  This fact proved sufficiently controversial to lead to the threat of mob violence.  That putting out more candles, bowing to altars and crosses, etc., inspired some people to contemplate committing violence disturbs me and tells me more about them than about the congregation.  Those people with violent tendencies did have an alternative:  going elsewhere quietly.

Our saint was an ardent liturgist.  He served on the committee of Hymns Ancient and Modern and wrote metrical litanies published in Metrical Litanies for Special Services and General Use.  He also edited The Gospeller, the St. Alban’s parish magazine, in which he published some hymns.  Among his litanies/hymns was “Jesus, with Thy Church Abide.”  I have found partial versions in different hymnals.  A five-verse version is in Pilgrim Hymnal (1958), a ten-verse version is in The Hymnal 1940, and an eighteen-verse version is here:  http://www.hymnary.org/text/jesus_with_thy_church_abide.

Thomas Benson Pollock spent most of his priesthood and half his life performing difficult and necessary work for the glory of God and the benefit of others.  When he could do it no longer, he stopped.  Our saint had earned his retirement.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 25, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF THE INAUGURATION OF THE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST, 1957

THE FEAST OF JAMES WELDON JOHNSON, POET AND NOVELIST

THE FEAST OF SAINT WILLIAM OF VERCELLI, ROMAN CATHOLIC HERMIT; AND SAINT JOHN OF MATERA, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT

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O God, your Son came among us to serve and not to be served,

and to give his life for the life of the world.

Lead us by his love to serve all those

to whom the world offers no comfort and little help.

Through us give hope to the hopeless,

love to the unloved,

peace to the troubled,

and rest to the weary,

through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns

with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Hosea 2:18-23

Psalm 94:1-15

Romans 12:9-21

Luke 6:20-36

Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), page 60

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Feast of Howell Elvet Lewis (December 10)   Leave a comment

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Above:  Bridge, Carmarthen, Wales, Between 1890 and 1900

Published by Detroit Publishing Company, 1905

Image Source = Library of Congress

Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-ppmsc-07389

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HOWELL ELVET LEWIS (APRIL 14, 1860-DECEMBER 10, 1953)

Welsh Congregationalist Clergyman and Poet

Howell Elvet Lewis, born at Conwil Elvet, Wales, attended Presbyterian College, Carmarthen, Wales.  He ordained into the Congregationalist Church ministry, served the following churches:

  • Buckley Chapel, Flints (1880-1884);
  • Hull (1884-1891);
  • Llanelly (1891-1898);
  • Harecourt, London (1898-1904); and
  • Welsh Tabernacle, London (1904-1940).

The 1888 winner of the bardic crown at the National Eisteddfod of Wales served as the Chairman of the Congregational Union of England and Wales in 1933-1934  and retired to Wales.

He wrote the following:

  • Sweet Songs of Wales (1889);
  • My Christ and Other Poems;
  • The Gates of Life;
  • By the River Chebar;
  • Songs of Victory;
  • The Life of Dr. Herber Evans; and
  • The Life of Howell Harris.

Among the saints’s hymns was the following, from 1916:  http://gatheredprayers.wordpress.com/2013/06/22/lord-of-light-whose-name-outshineth/.    Lewis understood correctly that cooperation with God is essential to doing God’s will yet that cooperation was not the only needed element.  May that lesson remain with us and inform our spiritual lives.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 25, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF THE INAUGURATION OF THE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST, 1957

THE FEAST OF JAMES WELDON JOHNSON, POET AND NOVELIST

THE FEAST OF SAINT WILLIAM OF VERCELLI, ROMAN CATHOLIC HERMIT; AND SAINT JOHN OF MATERA, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT

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O God, by your Holy Spirit you give to some the word of knowledge, and to others the word of faith:

We praise your Name for the gifts of grace manifested in your servant Howell Elvet Lewis,

and we pray that your Church may never be destitute of such gifts:

through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit

lives and reigns with you, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Wisdom of Solomon 7:7-14

Psalm 119:97-104

1 Corinthians 2:6-10, 13-16

John 17:18-23

Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 720

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Feast of Gerald Thomas Noel, Baptist Wriothesley Noel, and Caroline Maria Noel (December 2)   2 comments

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Above:  Winchester Cathedral, Between 1890 and 1900

Published by Detroit Publishing Company, 1905

Image Source = Library of Congress

Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-ppmsc-09011

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GERALD THOMAS NOEL (DECEMBER 2, 1782-FEBRUARY 24, 1851)

Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer

brother of

BAPTIST WRIOTHESLEY NOEL (JULY 16, 1798-JANUARY 19, 1873)

Anglican Priest, English Baptist Evangelist, and Hymn Writer

uncle of

CAROLINE MARIA NOEL (JULY 10, 1817-DECEMBER 7, 1877)

Anglican Hymn Writer

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One name–that of Caroline Maria Noel–led me to two more–those of her father and her uncle.  It is good to write about saints in the context of family, for families should foster righteousness.

Charles Noel Noel (1781-1866) was the first Earl of Gainsborough.  The title “Earl of Gainsborough” passed down through his lineage.

This post is about three of his relatives, however.

Gerald Thomas Noel (1782-1851), educated at Edinburgh and Cambridge, took Anglican Holy Orders.  He served as the Curate of Radwell then the Vicar of Rainham and Romsey then Canon of Winchester Cathedral.  He wrote hymns and books.  His books were:

  • A Selection of Psalms from the New Version of the Church of England and Others; Corrected and Revised for Public Worship (1810);
  • Arvendel, or Sketches in Italy and Switzerland (1813);
  • Fifty Sermons for the Use of Families (1830); and
  • Sermons Preached in Romsey (1853).

One of his hymns follows:

If human kindness meets return,

And owns the grateful tie;

If tender thoughts within us burn,

To feel a friend is nigh;–

O shall not warmer accents tell

The gratitude we owe

To Him who died, our fears to quell,

Our more than orphan’s woe!

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While yet his anguished soul surveyed

Those pangs he would not flee,

What love his latest words displayed,–

“Meet and remember me!”

Remember thee!  thy death, thy shame

Our sinful hearts to share!

O memory, leave no other name

But his recorded there!

And here is another:

When musing sorrow weeps the past,

And mourns the present pain,

‘Tis sweet to think of peace at last,

And feel that death is gain.

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‘Tis not that murmuring thoughts arise,

And dread a Father’s will;

‘Tis not that meek submission flies,

And would not suffer still:

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It is that heaven-born faith surveys

The path that leads to light,

And longs her eagle plumes to raise,

And lose herself in sight:

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It is that hope with ardor glows,

To see Him face to face,

Whose dying love no language knows

Sufficient to trace.

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O let me wing my hallowed flight

From earth born woe and care,

And soar above these clouds of night,

My Saviour’s bliss to share!

His grave is at the Abbey Church of Romsey.

Gerald had another brother, Baptist Wriothesley Noel (1798-1873), born at Leighmont, Scotland.  The 1821 Cambridge graduate took Anglican Holy Orders.  In 1827 he began to serve at St. John’s Chapel, Bedford Row, London, where he established a reputation for evangelical preaching.  In 1846, while at St. John’s Chapel, he helped to found the Evangelical Alliance (http://www.eauk.org/).  Two years later he converted to the Baptists, serving as a minister of John Street Chapel, London, from 1849 to 1868 and serving two terms as the leader of the Baptist Union.  Baptist Noel was also an active philanthropist in London and an ardent abolitionist who supported the federal side in the U.S. Civil War (1861-1865).

Baptist Noel’s writings included the following:

  • Essay on the Union of Church and State (1848);
  • Essay on Christian Baptism (1849); and
  • Freedom and Slavery in the United States of America (1863).

One of his hymns follows:

There’s not a bird with lonely nest,

In pathless wood or mountain crest,

Nor meaner thing, which does not share,

O God, in Thy pastoral care.

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Each banner crag, each desert rude,

Holds Thee within its solitude;

And Thou dost bless the wand’rer there,

Who makes his solitary prayer.

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In busy mart and crowded street,

No less than in the still retreat,

Thou, Lord, art near, our souls to bless

With all a parent’s tenderness.

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And we, where’er our lot is cast,

While life, and thought, and feeling last,

Through all the years in every place,

Will bless Thee for Thy boundless grace.

He died at Stanmere, Middlesex, England.

Finally we arrive at the saint of whom I intended to write all along.

Caroline Maria Noel (1817-1877), daughter of Gerald and niece of Baptist and Charles, was born in Kent.  She wrote her first hymn at the tender age of seventeen years.  Between ages of twenty and forty, however, she wrote no hymns.  Caroline resumed writing hymns after that, however.  The last twenty-five years of her life were filled with increasingly severe illnesses.  In this context she wrote primarily to assure others that there was divine comfort for those who suffer.  Her hymns, intended mostly for private meditations, appeared in two volumes:

  • The Name of Jesus, and Other Verses for the Sick and Lonely (1861); and
  • The Name of Jesus, and Other Poems (1878).

Perhaps her most famous hymn is “At the Name of Jesus,” a processional hymn for the Feast of the Ascension from 1870:

At the name of Jesus,

Ev’ry knee shall bow,

Ev’ry tongue confess him

King of glory now.

‘Tis the Father’s pleasure

We should call him Lord,

Who from the beginning

Was the mighty Word.

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At his voice creation

Sprang at once to sight,

All the angel faces,

All the hosts of light,

Thrones and dominations,

Stars upon their way,

All the heavenly orders

In their vast array.

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Humbled for a season,

To receive a name

From the lips of sinners

Unto whom he came,

Faithfully he bore it,

Spotless to the last,

Brought it back victorious

When from death he passed;

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Bore it up triumphant

With its human light,

Through the ranks of creatures

To the central height,

To the throne of Godhead,

To the Father’s breast,

Filled it with the glory

Of that perfect rest.

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In your hearts enthrone him;

There let him subdue

All that is not holy,

All that is not true:

Crown him as your captain

In temptation’s hour;

Let his will enfold you

In its light and pow’r.

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Christians, this Lord Jesus

Shall return again

In his Father’s glory

With his angel train;

For all wreaths of empire

Meet upon his brow,

And our hearts confess him

King of glory now.

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Glory then to Jesus,

Who, the Prince of light,

To a world in darkness

Brought the gift of sight;

Praise to God the Father;

In the Spirit’s love

Praise we all together

Him who reigns above.

Caroline’s grave is next to that of her father at Romsey.

I invite you, O reader, to join me in honoring the legacies of these saints.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 25, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF THE INAUGURATION OF THE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST, 1957

THE FEAST OF JAMES WELDON JOHNSON, POET AND NOVELIST

THE FEAST OF SAINT WILLIAM OF VERCELLI, ROMAN CATHOLIC HERMIT; AND SAINT JOHN OF MATERA, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT

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Dear God of beauty,

you have granted literary ability and spiritual sensitivity to

Gerald Thomas Noel, Baptist Wriothesley Noel, Caroline Maria Noel,

and others, who have composed hymn texts.

May we, as you guide us,

find worthy hymn texts to be icons,

through which we see you.

In the Name of God:  Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Sirach/Ecclesiasticus 44:1-3a, 5-15

Psalm 147

Revelation 5:11-14

Luke 2:8-20

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

APRIL 20, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINTS AMATOR OF AUXERRE AND GERMANUS OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOPS; SAINT MAMERTINUS OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT; AND SAINT MARCIAN OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK

THE FEAST OF JOHANNES BUGENHAGEN, GERMAN LUTHERAN PASTOR

THE FEAST OF SAINT MARCELLINUS OF EMBRUN, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF OLAVUS AND LAURENTIUS PETRI, RENEWERS OF THE CHURCH

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Feast of Anne Ross Cousin (December 7)   Leave a comment

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Above:  Princess Street and Calton Hill, Edinburgh, Scotland, Between 1890 and 1900

Published by Detroit Publishing Company, 1905

Image Source = Library of Congress

Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-ppmsc-07586

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ANNE ROSS CUNBELL COUSIN (APRIL 27, 1824-DECEMBER 6, 1906)

Scottish Presbyterian Hymn Writer

Anne Ross Cunbell, born at Hull, England, was the only child of David Ross Cunbell, M.D., of Leith, Scotland.  He was a veteran of the Napoleonic Wars.  She, a skilled musician and linguist, spoke German, French, and Italian fluently and read the New Testament in the original Greek.  Our saint, raised in the Scottish Episcopal Church, became a Presbyterian because of the Oxford Movement.  In 1847 she married the Reverend William Cousin, a minister of the Free Church of Scotland who served at Duns then at Chelsea then at Irvine then at Melrose.  He retired to Edinburgh, where he died in 1882, having raised six children.

Our saint wrote verses and published some of them anonymously over the decades.  Her collected works i(to a certain point, of course) were Immanuel’s Land and Other Poems (1876).  James Moffatt wrote:

All her hymns are songs of gratitude and praise, of love and hope, characteristic of the spirit of one whose deep evangelical piety invested with a rarer beauty a nature already gentle and full of grace.

Handbook to The Church Hymnary (London, UK:  Oxford University Press, 1927, page 308)

Among those hymns was “The Sands of Time are Sinking,” from 1857:

The sands of time are sinking;

The dawn of heaven breaks;

The summer morn I’ve sighed for,

The dark, sweet morn awakes.

Dark, dark hath been the midnight,

But daybreak is at hand,

And glory, glory dwelleth

In Immanuel’s land.

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O Christ! He is the fountain,

The deep, sweet well of love;

The streams on earth I’ve tested

More deep I’ll drink above:

There is an ocean fulness

His mercy doth expand,

And glory, glory dwelleth

In Immanuel’s land.

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With mercy and with judgment

My web of time He wove,

And aye the dews of sorrow

Were lustred by His love;

I’ll bless the hand that guided,

I’ll bless the heart that planned,

When throned where glory dwelleth

In Immanuel’s land.

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I’ve wrestled on towards heaven,

‘Gainst storm and wind and tide;

Now, like a weary traveller

That leaneth on his guide,

Amid the shades of evening,

While sinks life’s lingering sand,

I hail the glory dawning

In Immanuel’s land.

Anne Ross Cousin devoted her literary life to the glory of God.  That constitutes a fine and noble legacy.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 25, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF THE INAUGURATION OF THE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST, 1957

THE FEAST OF JAMES WELDON JOHNSON, POET AND NOVELIST

THE FEAST OF SAINT WILLIAM OF VERCELLI, ROMAN CATHOLIC HERMIT; AND SAINT JOHN OF MATERA, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT

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Dear God of beauty,

you have granted literary ability and spiritual sensitivity to

Anne Ross Cunbell Cousin and others, who have composed hymn texts.

May we, as you guide us,

find worthy hymn texts to be icons,

through which we see you.

In the Name of God:  Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Sirach/Ecclesiasticus 44:1-3a, 5-15

Psalm 147

Revelation 5:11-14

Luke 2:8-20

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

APRIL 20, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINTS AMATOR OF AUXERRE AND GERMANUS OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOPS; SAINT MAMERTINUS OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT; AND SAINT MARCIAN OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK

THE FEAST OF JOHANNES BUGENHAGEN, GERMAN LUTHERAN PASTOR

THE FEAST OF SAINT MARCELLINUS OF EMBRUN, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF OLAVUS AND LAURENTIUS PETRI, RENEWERS OF THE CHURCH

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Feast of Henry Francis Lyte (November 20)   1 comment

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Above:  Brixham, England, Between 1890 and 1900

Published by Detroit Publishing Company, 1905

Image Source = Library of Congress

Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-ppmsc-08056

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HENRY FRANCIS LYTE (JUNE 1, 1763-NOVEMBER 20, 1847)

Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer

Henry Francis Lyte, born at Ednam, Scotland, attended Trinity College, Dublin, where he won a poetry prize three times.  He had planned originally to become a doctor yet chose instead to take Anglican Holy Orders.  He served various congregations from 1815 to 1823.  In 1818, at Marazion, Cornwall, our saint had an epiphany whereby what he already knew intellectually became real to him. Lyte sat by the death-bed of a fellow clergyman.  Our saint wrote:

…He died, I rejoice to say, happy under the belief that though he had deeply erred, there was One whose death and sufferings would atone for his delinquencies, and be accepted for all that he had incurred.  I was deeply affected for the whole matter, and brought to look at life and its issues with a different eye than before; and I began to study my Bible and preach in another manner than I had previously done.

–Quoted in Robert Guy McCutchan, Our Hymnody:  A Manual of The Methodist Hymnal, 2d. Ed. (Nashville, TN:  Abingdon Press, 1937, page 109)

From 1823 Lyte served as the Curate of Lower Brixham, Devon, a fishing village.  This was a bad assignment for a man with a fragile constitution and a sensitive spirit, yet he worked there for a quarter of a century in the vineyard of the Lord.  In 1847 our saint died at Nice, France, where he sought restoration and renewal.  His last words were

Peace, joy!

as he pointed upward.

Lyte wrote the following:

  • Tales on the Lord’s Prayer in Verse (1826);
  • Poems, Chiefly Religious (1833); and
  • The Spirit of the Psalms (1834).

I have provided the texts of some of Lyte’s hymns at my GATHERED PRAYERS blog.

When our end comes, O reader, may we, like Henry Francis Lyte, have a well-founded sense of peace and joy in God.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 25, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF THE INAUGURATION OF THE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST, 1957

THE FEAST OF JAMES WELDON JOHNSON, POET AND NOVELIST

THE FEAST OF SAINT WILLIAM OF VERCELLI, ROMAN CATHOLIC HERMIT; AND SAINT JOHN OF MATERA, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT

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Dear God of beauty,

you have granted literary ability and spiritual sensitivity to

Henry Francis Lyte and others, who have composed hymn texts.

May we, as you guide us,

find worthy hymn texts to be icons,

through which we see you.

In the Name of God:  Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Sirach/Ecclesiasticus 44:1-3a, 5-15

Psalm 147

Revelation 5:11-14

Luke 2:8-20

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

APRIL 20, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINTS AMATOR OF AUXERRE AND GERMANUS OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOPS; SAINT MAMERTINUS OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT; AND SAINT MARCIAN OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK

THE FEAST OF JOHANNES BUGENHAGEN, GERMAN LUTHERAN PASTOR

THE FEAST OF SAINT MARCELLINUS OF EMBRUN, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF OLAVUS AND LAURENTIUS PETRI, RENEWERS OF THE CHURCH

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Feast of Johann Hermann Schein (November 19)   Leave a comment

Thomaskirche_Interior

Above:  St. Thomas Church, Leipzig, Germany

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JOHANN HERMANN SCHEIN (JANUARY 20, 1586-NOVEMBER 19, 1630)

German Lutheran Composer

Johann Hermann Schein, born at Grunnhaim, Saxony, was the son of a Lutheran pastor.  Our saint studied music, theology, and philosophy.  He sang in the choir at the Elector of Saxony’s chapel for four years.  Then our saint took private tutoring for years.  Then, from 1613 to 1615, he served as Music Director for the court of Duke Johann Ernst of Saxe-Weimar.  Finally, in 1615, our saint became the Cantor of St. Thomas Church, Leipzig.  He, among the greatest composers of his age, wrote much beautiful music, including church chorales and motets.  And he edited a great and famous hymnal, Cantional (1627).

The public worship of God is a matter to take seriously and to do as well as one can.  Johann Hermann Schein understood this well and acted accordingly.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 25, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF THE INAUGURATION OF THE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST, 1957

THE FEAST OF JAMES WELDON JOHNSON, POET AND NOVELIST

THE FEAST OF SAINT WILLIAM OF VERCELLI, ROMAN CATHOLIC HERMIT; AND SAINT JOHN OF MATERA, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT

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Eternal God, light of the world and Creator of all that is good and lovely:

We bless your name for inspiring Johann Hermann Schein

and all who with music have filled us with desire and love for you;

through Jesus Christ our Savior, who with you and the Holy Spirit

lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

1 Chronicles 29:14b-19

Psalm 90:14-17

2 Corinthians 3:1-3

John 21:15-17, 24-25

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), 728

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Feast of Arthur Tozer Russell (November 18)   2 comments

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Above:  St. John’s College, Cambridge, England, Between 1890 and 1900

Published by Detroit Publishing Company, 1905

Image Source = Library of Congress

Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-ppmsc-08087

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ARTHUR TOZER RUSSELL (JUNE 20, 1806-NOVEMBER 18, 1874)

Anglican Priest and Hymn Writer

The Reverend Thomas Clout, a Congregationalist, edited versions of the theological works of others.  He also changed his surname to Russell.  And, at Northampton, England, his son, Arthur Tozer Russell, was born.  Our saint, a graduate of St. John’s College, Cambridge, took Anglican Holy Orders in 1829 and proceeded to serve a series of congregations I choose not to list here.  He, once a High Churchman, became a Low Churchman and a moderate Calvinist, one critical of both the Anglo-Catholic Tracts for the Times and the Broad Church Essays and Reviews.  Perhaps our saint’s reputation rests mainly–as it should–on his about 140 hymns–an impressive output.  I have added the texts of a few of those hymns at my GATHERED PRAYERS blog.

Christian piety comes in a variety of forms and schools of thought.  I, for example, have become a High-Broad Churchman, an Anglo-Lutheran-Catholic, to be precise.  This might change.  My thoughts regarding Christian piety are sufficiently broad, tolerant, and accepting to admit Low, Broad, and High churchmen and churchwomen alike too the Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days with equal enthusiasm.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 25, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF THE INAUGURATION OF THE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST, 1957

THE FEAST OF JAMES WELDON JOHNSON, POET AND NOVELIST

THE FEAST OF SAINT WILLIAM OF VERCELLI, ROMAN CATHOLIC HERMIT; AND SAINT JOHN OF MATERA, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT

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Dear God of beauty,

you have granted literary ability and spiritual sensitivity to

Arthur Tozer Russell and others, who have composed hymn texts.

May we, as you guide us,

find worthy hymn texts to be icons,

through which we see you.

In the Name of God:  Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Sirach/Ecclesiasticus 44:1-3a, 5-15

Psalm 147

Revelation 5:11-14

Luke 2:8-20

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

APRIL 20, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINTS AMATOR OF AUXERRE AND GERMANUS OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOPS; SAINT MAMERTINUS OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT; AND SAINT MARCIAN OF AUXERRE, ROMAN CATHOLIC MONK

THE FEAST OF JOHANNES BUGENHAGEN, GERMAN LUTHERAN PASTOR

THE FEAST OF SAINT MARCELLINUS OF EMBRUN, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF OLAVUS AND LAURENTIUS PETRI, RENEWERS OF THE CHURCH

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Feast of Edwin Hatch (November 11)   Leave a comment

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Above:  University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Between 1890 and 1901

Published by the Detroit Publishing Company

Image Source = Library of Congress

Reproduction Number = LC-D4-12742

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EDWIN HATCH (SEPTEMBER 9, 1835-NOVEMBER 11, 1889)

Anglican Priest, Scholar, and Hymn Writer

Edwin Hatch, born at Derby, grew up in a Non-Conformist (non-Anglican) family.  Yet he took Holy Orders in The Church of England and served a London congregation.  Most of Hatch’s career, however, was academic.  From 1859 to 1862 the Oxford graduate was Professor of Classics at Trinity College, Ontario.  Then he was both Professor of Classics at Morrin College, Quebec City, Quebec, and Rector of the high school there.  Our saint returned to England in 1867 to become the Vice-Principal of St. Mary’s Hall, Oxford.  He delivered the Bampton Lectures (The Organization of the Early Christian Churches) in 1880.  Three years later our saint became the Rector of Purleigh, Essex, followed by the position of University Reader in Ecclesiastical History in 1884.  He delivered the Hibbett Lectures (The Influence of Greek Ideas and Usages on the Christian Church) in 1888.

James Moffatt wrote of Hatch:

A man of great learning, original mind, and force of character, he won a European reputation by work of rare independence and thoroughness in historical research; in this field he was acknowledged a master.  [Adolf von] Harnack [1851-1930] translated his Bampton Lectures into German and said of him:  “In his learning that of England’s great old theologians, Ussher and Pearson, lived to me again.  He was a glorious man, whose loss I shall never cease to mourn.”  Profound as his learning was, his published sermons show that his piety was as simple and unaffected as a child’s.

Handbook to The Church Hymnary (London, UK:  Oxford University Press, 1927, 363)

That piety is also evident in “Breathe on Me, Breath of God,” a hymn Hatch wrote.

Edwin Hatch combined scholarship, literary beauty, and deep piety to great effect.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 25, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF THE INAUGURATION OF THE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST, 1957

THE FEAST OF JAMES WELDON JOHNSON, POET AND NOVELIST

THE FEAST OF SAINT WILLIAM OF VERCELLI, ROMAN CATHOLIC HERMIT; AND SAINT JOHN OF MATERA, ROMAN CATHOLIC ABBOT

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O God, you have endowed us with memory, reason, and skill.

We thank you for the faithful legacy of [Edwin Hatch and all others]

who have dedicated their lives to you and to the intellectual pursuits.

May we, like them, respect your gift of intelligence fully and to your glory.

In the Name of God:  Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Deuteronomy 6:4-9

Psalm 103

Philippians 4:8-9

Mark 12:28-34

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

MARCH 6, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT CHRODEGANG OF METZ, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF EDMUND KING, ANGLICAN BISHOP OF LINCOLN

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Feast of Arthur Campbell Ainger (October 26)   Leave a comment

01833v

Above:  Eton College

Published on April 6, 1905

Image Source = Library of Congress

(http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2003670152/)

Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-pga-01833

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ARTHUR CAMPBELL AINGER (JULY 4, 1841-OCTOBER 26, 1919)

English Educator, Scholar, and Hymn Writer

Arthur Campbell Ainger, the son of the Anglican Vicar of Hampstead, attended Eton College then Trinity College, Cambridge.  Taking Holy Orders, our saint served as the Curate of Alweras, Staffordshire, from 1860 to 1864.  Then, from 1864 to 1901, he was the Assistant Master of Eton College.  Ainger, a scholar blessed with an excellent memory, devoted his life to Eton and won great respect.  James Moffatt wrote of him:

He had a facile and fertile pen.

Handbook to The Church Hymnary (London, UK:  Oxford University Press, 1927, page 248)

That facile and fertile pen, partnered with his able and trained intellect, produced hymns and poems.  Sir Joseph Barnby (1838-1896) (https://neatnik2009.wordpress.com/2012/11/26/feast-of-joseph-barnby-january-28/) set Vale and Carmen Etonense (1901) to music.  Ainger also co-edited an English-Latin Verse Dictionary and wrote Eton Songs (1901-1902) and Memories of Eton Sixty Years Ago (1917).

The following hymn dates to 1894:

God is working His purpose out, as your succeeds to year:

God is working His purpose out, and the time of drawing near–

Nearer and nearer draws the time– the time that shall surely be,

When the earth shall be filled with the glory of God as the waters cover the sea.

—–

From utmost east to utmost west, where’er man’s foot hath trod,

By the mouth of many messengers goes forth the voice of God;

Give ear to Me, ye continents–ye isles, give ear to Me,

That the earth may be filled with the glory of God, as the waters cover the sea.

—–

What can we do to work God’s work, to prosper and increase

The brotherhood of all mankind–the reign of the Prince of Peace?

What can we do to hasten the time–the time that shall surely be,

When the earth shall be filled with the glory of God, as the waters cover the sea?

—–

March we forth in the strength of God, with the banner of Christ unfurled,

That the light of the glorious Gospel of truth may shine throughout the world:

Fight we the fight with sorrow and sin, to set their captives free,

That the earth may be filled with the glory of God, as the waters cover the sea.

—–

All we can do is nothing worth, unless God blesses the deed;

Vainly we hope for the harvest-tide, till God gives life to the seed;

Yet nearer and nearer draws the time–the time that shall surely be,

When the earth shall be filled with the glory of God, as the waters cover the sea.

Arthur Campbell Ainger was truly a gentleman, a scholar, and a man of God.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 24, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF THE NATIVITY OF SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST

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O God, you have endowed us with memory, reason, and skill.

We thank you for the faithful legacy of [Arthur Campbell Ainger and all others]

who have dedicated their lives to you and to the intellectual pursuits.

May we, like them, respect your gift of intelligence fully and to your glory.

In the Name of God:  Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Deuteronomy 6:4-9

Psalm 103

Philippians 4:8-9

Mark 12:28-34

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

MARCH 6, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT CHRODEGANG OF METZ, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE FEAST OF EDMUND KING, ANGLICAN BISHOP OF LINCOLN

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Feast of Herbert Stanley Oakeley (October 26)   Leave a comment

07583v

Above:  Edinburgh from the Castle, Between 1890 and 1900

Image Source = Library of Congress

Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-ppmsc-07583

Published by the Detroit Publishing Company in 1905

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HERBERT STANLEY OAKELEY (JULY 22, 1830-OCTOBER 26, 1903)

Composer

Herbert Stanley Oakeley was the son of the Reverend Sir Herbert Oakeley, the Anglican Vicar of Ealing then the Dean of Bocking then the Archdeacon of Colchester.  Our saint, educated at Rugby then at Christ Church, Oxford, then at Dresden then at Leipzig then at Bonn, worked as a music reporter for The Guardian for a time.  By 1865, when he became the Reid Chair of Music at the University of Edinburgh, he was already a composer and an organist.  Yet his appointment caused a controversy due to the Reid Chair’s duties of conducting the Reid Concerts, major events.  As Reid Chair our saint promoted what he considered good music and favored the restoration of the organ to church music.  (The Church of Scotland lifted its bar on the organ in the late 1800s.)  Oakeley received ten honorary doctorates, became a Sir in 1876 and composer to Queen Victoria five years later.  He retired in 1891.

Oakeley composed works for piano, orchestra, and the human voice.  Among the hymn tunes he wrote were “Abends” and “Dominica.”

Oakeley glorified God via music–a wonderful way to accomplish that purpose.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JUNE 24, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF THE NATIVITY OF SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST

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Eternal God, light of the world and Creator of all that is good and lovely:

We bless your name for inspiring Herbert Stanley Oakeley

and all who with music have filled us with desire and love for you;

through Jesus Christ our Savior, who with you and the Holy Spirit

lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

1 Chronicles 29:14b-19

Psalm 90:14-17

2 Corinthians 3:1-3

John 21:15-17, 24-25

–Adapted from Holy Women, Holy Men:  Celebrating the Saints (2010), page 728

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