I have come to myself, in a fashion. As many of you know, I am an Episcopalian. I like that about myself. I should say, I like the religion for many reasons. Most of them center around the fact that they, struggle and wrestle with the idea that what Christ taught may be valid. They have gay bishops and female priests. They have a fairly conservative style of worship (Cursillo withstanding) that touches and dings the cultural spiritual elements that make me feel closer with “God”. I am good with that, generally. They even have a really cool way of praying called the Daily Office that can be totally meaningful. It is a written prayer made up of 3 readings from the Bible and a Psalm that rotate on a 3 year schedule. There a ton of elements, some stay the same and some rotate on whatever schedule the person saying them wants. There are two online versions I enjoy. The Mission St. Clare DO is more conservative. It also has links to all sorts of musical fun. While the DailyOffice.org one is updated. You can actually say the office with the online community. (It is a bit early for me…6am PCT). You can also watch it later when you are ready to say it. Or, just say it on your own. The Daily Office can be found, in its outline format in The Book of Common Prayer that Episcopalians use for all their services and sacraments.
Phew…That is the part that makes sense in all of this.
What doesn’t make sense is that there are parts of my spiritual belief system that run afoul here. This side of my spirituality is not so easily explained away. Nor can it be tamed or denied. It comes from a deep, dark (yes, I said dark…there is nothing wrong with the dark womb of creation) place inside. I can’t NOT believe these things. I was never taught these tenets but I believe in them as sure as I believe in God the Father and His son Jesus the Christ.
What are these heresies, you ask? Well…they are fairly broad reaching.
- Divine Feminine, divine mother, Heavenly mother, Goddess– Whatever you want to call Her, I believe in Her. I kind of suspect she is the Holy Spirit (for tons of reasons). Mother-Father-Child seems to be the creative force that perpetuates the species. Plus, A masculine father God didn’t make me in His image. Some people vote for a one-ness…then, what do I do with my belief in Jesus, who I reckon as God, sitting on the Right side of God the Father….and the Left side of God the Mother, smack dab between them both.
- Reincarnation- I believe that our souls are eternal. Mormons do too…but I don’t do their story of it. I believe in the traditional reincarnation. I can’t make it go away. I don’t know, at the moment, why we go to the next life we do. I expect my observer self has a reason….probably some sort educational shenanigans. Probably not how good or bad we are.
- My Godhead is incarnational: IDK what sense this is traditionally used in but I mean that my Godhead incarnates at will. All roads lead to Rome and this includes polytheistic religions. My favorite incarnation of the Holy Mother is the Virgin Mother Mary. The Holy Spirit (Mother) will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God. The Virgin Mary, literally was swallowed by the Holy Mother to birth the God Child Jesus. Works…see?
So, what I need is a Divine Feminine Daily Office
In true Episcopalian Fashion (that of King Henry VIII’s reform of the prayerbook)…..
The DIVINE FEMININE Daily Office: Morning
Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Mother, God our Father, and
from the Lord Jesus Christ.
CONFESSION OF SINS
Let us humbly confess our sins unto Almighty God
Almighty and most merciful Mother and Father,
we have erred and strayed from thy ways like lost sheep,
we have followed too much the devices and desires of our
we have offended against thy holy laws,
we have left undone those things which we ought to
and we have done those things which we ought not to
But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us,
spare thou those who confess their faults,
restore thou those who are penitent,
according to thy promises declared unto mankind
in Christ Jesus our Lord;
and grant, O most merciful Mother and Father, for his sake,
that we may hereafter live a joyous, righteous, and truthful life,
to the glory of thy holy Name. Amen
he Priest alone stands and says
The Almighty and merciful Lord grant you absolution and
remission of all your sins, true repentance, amendment of
life, and the grace and consolation of the Holy Mother. Amen.
INVITATORY AND PSALTER
O Lord, open thou our lips.And our mouth shall show forth thy praise
Except in Lent, Alleluia may be added.
Glory to the Mother and to the Father, and to the Son as
it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.
Then follows one of the Invitatory Psalms, Venite or Jubilate.
Venite Psalm 95:1-7
O come, let us sing unto the Lord; *
let us heartily rejoice in the strength of our salvation.
Let us come before Gods presence with thanksgiving *
and show ourselves glad in God with psalms.
For the Lord is a great God, *
and a great Queen and King above all gods.
In His hand are the corners of the earth, *
and the strength of the hills is his also.
The sea is Hers, and she made it, *
and her hands prepared the dry land.
O come, let us worship and fall down, *
and kneel before the Lord our Maker.
For they are the Lord our God, *
and we are the people of their pasture
and the sheep of their hand.
O worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness; *
let the whole earth stand in awe.
For he cometh, for he cometh to judge the earth, *
and with righteousness to judge the world
and the peoples with God’s truth.
Jubilate Psalm 100
Be joyful in the Lord, all ye lands; *
serve the Lord with gladness
and come before God’s presence with a song.
Be ye sure that the Lord is God; *
it is she that hath made us and not we ourselves;
we are his people and the sheep of his pasture.
O go your way into his gates with thanksgiving
and into her courts with praise; *
be thankful unto them and speak good of God’s Name.
For the Lord is gracious;
her mercy is everlasting; *
and his truth endureth from generation to generation.
Christ our Passover Pascha nostrum
1 Corinthians 5:7-8; Romans 6:9-11; 1 Corinthians 15:20-22
Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us; *
therefore let us keep the feast,
Not with old leaven,
neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness, *
but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. Alleluia.
Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; *
death hath no more dominion over him.
For in that he died, he died unto sin once; *
but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.
Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, *
but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord. Alleluia.
Christ is risen from the dead, *
and become the first fruits of them that slept.
For since by man came death, *
by man came also the resurrection of the dead.
For as in Adam all die, *
even so in Christ shall all be made alive. Alleluia.
The Psalm or Psalms Appointed (re-imagined in gender neutral language inserting Mother alongside any Father reference etc)
At the end of the Psalms is sung or said
Glory to the Mother and to the Father, and to the Son: *
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.
One or two lessons, as appointed, are read, the Reader first saying (One lesson from the Gospel, one lesson from a more Divine Feminine source)
A Reading (Lesson) from _______________.
A citation giving chapter and verse may be added.
After each Lesson the Reader may say
The Word of the Lord
Thanks Be to God
Or the Reader may say Here endeth the Lesson (Reading).
In between each is a canticle….there are a ton, they will need to be revisited in another blog.
The People stand or kneel
The Lord be with you
And with thy spirit.
Let us pray.
Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy Name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever. Amen.
Our Mother, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy Name,
We rejoice at the bounty of thy realm
With fruitfulness and joy
Harming none we meet on our path
Give us this day the knowledge of your presence
And teach us to accept the forgiveness given
as we offer it to others out of gratitude.
Lead us to experience you in every temptation
And love unceasingly despite.
For thine is Kingdom, the power, and the glory
forever and ever, Amen
Then follows one of these sets of Suffrages
V. O Lord, show thy mercy upon us;
R. And grant us thy salvation.
V. Endue thy ministers with righteousness;
R. And make thy chosen people joyful.
V. Give peace, O Lord, in all the world;
R. For only in thee can we live in safety.
V. Lord, keep this nation under thy care;
R. And guide us in the way of justice and truth.
V. Let thy way be known upon earth;
R. Thy saving health among all nations.
V. Let not the needy, O Lord, be forgotten;
R. Nor the hope of the poor be taken away.
V. Create in us clean hearts, O God;
R. And sustain us Holy Mother.
V. O Lord, save thy people and bless thine heritage;
R. Govern them and lift them up for ever.
V. Day by day we magnify thee;
R. And we worship thy name for ever, world without end.
V. Vouchsafe, O Lord, to keep us this day without sin;
R. O Lord, have mercy upon us, have mercy upon us.
V. O Lord, let thy mercy be upon us;
R. As our trust is in thee.
V. O Lord, in thee have I trusted;
R. Let me never be confounded.
The Officiant then says one or more of the following Collects
The Collect of the Day
(This will be fodder for another blog along with the canticles)
Before the close of the Office one or both of the following may be used
The General Thanksgiving
Officiant and People
Almighty God, Deliverer of all mercies,
we thine unworthy servants
do give thee most humble and hearty thanks
for all thy goodness and loving-kindness
to us and to all men.
We bless thee for our creation, preservation,
and all the blessings of this life;
but above all for thine inestimable love
in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ;
for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory.
And, we beseech thee,
give us that due sense of all thy mercies,
that our hearts may be unfeignedly thankful;
and that we show forth thy praise,
not only with our lips, but in our lives,
by giving up our selves to thy service,
and by walking before thee
in holiness and righteousness all our days;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
to whom, the Holy Mother and Holy Father,
be all honor and glory, world without end. Amen.
A Prayer of St. Chrysostom
Almighty God, who hast given us grace at this time with one
accord to make our common supplication unto thee; and
hast promised through thy well-beloved Son that when two
or three are gathered together in his Name thou wilt be in the
midst of them: Fulfill now, O Lord, our desires and petitions
of thy servants as may be best for us; granting us in this
world knowledge of thy truth, and in the world to come life
Then may be said
Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.