The Lord is a great king: come, let us adore him.
Year: B(II). Psalm week: 1. Liturgical Colour: Green.
|Other saints: Saint Edmund (d.869)|
East Anglia, Hallam, Hexham & Newcastle
He was king of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of East Anglia, covering modern Suffolk, Norfolk, and part of Lincolnshire. Very little documentary evidence for the details of his life exists, but it is known that Edmund was captured and killed by the Danish Great Heathen Army, which invaded England in 869, and the tradition is that he died the death of a Christian martyr.
Edmund’s body was buried in a wooden chapel near to where he was killed, but was later transferred to Beadoriceworth, where in 925 Athelstan founded a community devoted to the new cult. Thirty years after Edmund’s death, he was venerated by the Vikings of East Anglia, who produced a coinage to commemorate him.
In the 11th century a stone church was built at Bury, and Edmund’s remains were translated to it. The shrine at Bury St Edmunds became one of the greatest pilgrimage locations in England and the town retains St Edmund’s name to this day.
About the author of the Second Reading in today's Office of Readings:
|Second Reading: Saint Andrew of Crete (650? - 720/740?)|
St Andrew of Crete is of great importance in the Orthodox Church because he invented – or at least introduced into the liturgy – the canon, a new form of hymnody of which there is no sign before his time. Canons are huge, elaborately structured musical and poetic compositions. Andrew’s immense “Greek Canon”, for instance, is a hymn 250 verses long interspersed with litanies and odes, takes three hours to chant, and goes chronologically through the entire Old and New Testaments, showing examples of the need for repentance and conversion.
The canon, as a genre, has never taken real root in the rest of Christendom, but in addition to his achievements as a hymnographer Andrew was a noted preacher of sermons and discourses, and it is extracts from these that form some of our Second Readings. As might be expected from such a poet they are clear and inspiring, deriving their effect more from the arrangement of images and episodes so that one reflects and illuminates another, rather than from closely-argued pieces of reasoning.
The theological virtue of hope is symbolized by the colour green, just as the burning fire of love is symbolized by red. Green is the colour of growing things, and hope, like them, is always new and always fresh. Liturgically, green is the colour of Ordinary Time, the season in which we are being neither especially penitent (in purple) nor overwhelmingly joyful (in white).
|Mid-morning reading (Terce)||Jeremiah 17:7-8 ©|
A blessing on the man who puts his trust in the Lord, with the Lord for his hope. He is like a tree by the waterside that thrusts its roots to the stream: when the heat comes it feels no alarm, its foliage stays green; it has no worries in a year of drought, and never ceases to bear fruit.
|Noon reading (Sext)||Proverbs 3:13-15 ©|
Happy the man who discovers wisdom, the man who gains discernment: gaining her is more rewarding than silver, more profitable than gold. She is beyond the price of pearls, nothing you could covet is her equal.
|Afternoon reading (None)||Job 5:17-18 ©|
Happy indeed the man whom God corrects! So do not refuse this lesson from the Omnipotent: for he who wounds is he who soothes the sore, and the hand that hurts is the hand that heals.