ANZAC Day: Saturday 25 April
The references for Morning Prayer this week are as follows:
Tuesday 28 April 2015 (p.69 – 71) Psalm 139, Deut 9:23 – 10: 5, Eph 4: 17-end
Wednesday 29 April 2015 (p.74 – 76) Psalm 135, Deut 10: 12 - end, Eph 5: 1-14
Thursday 30 April 2015 (p.80 – 82) Psalm 118, Deut 11: 8 - end, Eph 5: 15 -end
Friday 1 May 2015 (p.84 - 87) Psalm 146, Proverbs 4: 10-18, James 1: 1-12
Prayer begins each morning (Tues - Fri) - 8.45 a.m.
We use A New Zealand Prayer Book (the red book)
How do we use the book? Prayers are said aloud with the leader reading the feint print and the congregation reading the bold print. When we get to the numbered sections they are read antiphonally i.e. the leader saying the first part up to the colon, the congregation the second part.
Each morning the lectionary has a set Psalm and bible readings for Morning Prayer. We say the psalms antiphonally and we end with “Glory to the Father, and to the Son: and to the Holy Spirit; as it was in the beginning is now: and shall be forever. Amen.” We take it in turns to read the sections from the bible.
A time of prayer takes place where the prayer book lists activities in bold (see p. 71). We do not do everything written down there. Instead we pray the Collect from the previous Sunday together, we have a time of open prayer and we conclude with The Lord’s Prayer.
The celebration of ANZAC Day has become so popular it doesn’t surprise me that there are a number of voices on the political left calling for us not to glorify war. We do need to be careful about this for to do so would be wrong. Warfare is indeed a terrible thing and should only be engaged in as a last resort and where the cause is clearly just.
However, in the nineteen years that I have been attending ANZAC services I have not once heard warfare praised. In fact at the 2014 service in Devonport I was quite surprised at the approach taken by the senior Navy person who addressed us. He was anything but a hawk.
One of the angles take by the media of late has been an attempt to downplay the importance to us of the Gallipoli Campaign because the ANZACs were used by the British in an ill-considered, wasteful and self-serving venture. I have four responses to this.
Firstly, one always sees most clearly with hindsight. It takes no genius to criticise another’s attempt that went wrong. Secondly, the idea was sound: secure the Dardanelles for the Allies. Had it worked, it would have been lauded as strategic brilliance. Thirdly, the Allies were invading an outlying piece of property that was part of a fractured and ailing Ottoman Empire and nobody foresaw the fierce resistance that would meet us. Finally, and most pertinently, even were there no good reason to invade, the sacrifices of young ANZACs and the profoundly maturing affect these had on both the Australian and New Zealand psyches, are in no way minimised as a result.
I ask you to join with me at the 10.00 a.m. ANZAC Day service on Saturday, 1 – 7 The Strand, Takapuna.
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
‘This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.' (John 15: 12 – 13)