Fr. James' Lectionary

The Lectionary is both a reading program for completing all of Holy Scripture on a one year schedule, and a daily comment on a portion of the day's reading wedded to a poem to give an added perspective on the theme.

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Location: Amherst, Virginia, United States

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Loving Integrity: Acts 4:32-5:42 with poem by Dylan Thomas, There Was a Saviour

Daily Readings
Psalm 5, Genesis 6, Isaiah 6, Acts 4:32-5:42

Daily Text: Acts 4:32-5:42

Loving Integrity
If there is a single theme in this passage, Acts 4:32-5:42, that theme is ‘loving integrity.’ Giving to the young church was a matter of whole-souled integrity. Note the illustration of the ones who tried to pawn their giving off as generosity. Or, be aware that the apostles continue to be the witnesses they are called to be even when threatened, when imprisoned, and when flogged. It is God whom they obey, not the authorities. They even rejoice over their suffering. They have given their lives to God. Nothing else and no one else demands of them ultimate loyalty.

There Was a SaviourDylan Thomas

There was a saviour
Rarer than radium,
Commoner than water, crueller than truth;
Children kept from the sun
Assembled at his tongue
To hear the golden note turn in a groove,
Prisoners of wishes locked their eyes
In the jails and studies of his keyless smiles.

The voice of children says
From a lost wilderness
There was calm to be done in his safe unrest,
When hindering man hurt
Man, animal, or bird
We hid our fears in that murdering breath,
Silence, silence to do, when earth grew loud,
In lairs and asylums of the tremendous shout.

There was glory to hear
In the churches of his tears,
Under his downy arm you sighed as he struck,
O you who could not cry
On to the ground when a man died
Put a tear for joy in the unearthly flood
And laid your cheek against a cloud-formed shell:
Now in the dark there is only yourself and myself.

Two proud, blacked brothers cry,
Winter-locked side by side,
To this inhospitable hollow year,
O we who could not stir
One lean sigh when we heard
Greed on man beating near and fire neighbour
But wailed and nested in the sky-blue wall
Now break a giant tear for the little known fall,

For the drooping of homes
That did not nurse our bones,
Brave deaths of only ones but never found,
Now see, alone in us,
Our own true strangers’ dust
Ride through the doors of our unentered house.
Exiled in us we arouse the soft,
Unclenched, armless, silk and rough love that breaks all rocks.
396:248

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