Ss. Simon and Jude 2021
24 October 2021
Today’s Readings: Ephesians 2: 19-22, Luke 6: 12-19.
Let us pray.

Almighty God,
who built your church upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Jesus Christ himself as the chief corner-stone:
so join us together in unity of spirit by their doctrine, that we may be made a holy temple acceptable to you;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.


A Reflection from Barbara Ross

Who were Saint Simon and St Jude?  There are many traditions about them, with conflicting details.  But it is accepted that they preached the Gospel around the Middle and Near East, and that they were martyred together.

From Luke’s Gospel (6: 12-16) we know that Jesus chose twelve out of his disciples, and named them apostles. Among them were Simon, called the Zealot, and Judas son of James, to be distinguished from Judas Iscariot.   

Apostles are people sent, chosen and sent for a special purpose: in the Gospels Jesus sends them out, or ahead of him, to proclaim the inauguration of his Kingdom, and to make known his teaching.

Jesus taught the way of love.   So, what may we understand by his choosing Simon the Zealot to be an apostle?  ‘Zealot’ suggests that Simon might have been a member of the sect which was an extreme form of Jewish nationalism.  They were in favour of open rebellion against Roman authority; some acted violently to pursue their aims.  But we do not know if they existed at the time. If so, Simon illustrates how encounter with Jesus brings radical change of outlook, aims and conduct.  Or perhaps ‘Zealot’ indicates Simon’s fervour in carrying out his apostolic mission.

The transforming effect of encounter with Jesus is dramatically shown in Paul’s Damascus experience; Paul, the relentless, zealous persecutor pf the followers of Jesus, meets and hears Jesus in a vision.  He is changed; he becomes a zealous proclaimer of the Gospel.  

Traditionally, the apostles are the twelve men named in the Gospels.  But today, we acknowledge that there were women apostles.   Mary Magdalene, the most faithful of the followers of Jesus, was the first to whom Jesus appeared after his Resurrection.  Jesus commissioned her to tell his brothers: ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’ (John 20: 17B).  Mary Magdalene is chosen to announce the good news of the Resurrection.  She is ‘the apostle to the apostles’, as Pope Francis has declared.

And Paul, in his letter to the Romans, commends Junia as ‘prominent among the apostles …’  (16: 7).  Paul, of course, has declared himself to be an apostle, and as genuine a one as those chosen by Jesus in his earthly life.   So, Paul uses the term in a wider sense than that established in later tradition.  Those who evangelise are apostles.

The first apostles, after the Ascension of Jesus and the coming of the Holy Spirit to empower them, preached their faith in Jesus, and particularly his death and Resurrection. and the message of salvation in Jesus.   They built up the Church.

This is what we are commissioned to do today.  We are to be focused, as were the seventy whom Jesus sent out in the Gospel account which we heard last Sunday.

They go to the places where Jesus himself intends to go, so they prepare people to meet Jesus.  They are labourers in his harvest, gathering people to him.  They are to be single-minded, as Carola explained to us last week. Jesus tells them to carry no  purse, no bag, no sandals.   Travel light!   This could well mean, unclutter your mind!

We are busy, we have responsibilities and anxieties.    But we should guard against being too self-focused, or we will miss opportunities to make the Gospel known; we will miss opportunities to draw people to meet Jesus and experience his transforming power.

We are aided in our carrying out our calling by the grace of Jesus.  We encounter him in the Eucharist.  We are refreshed and renewed so that we may be sent out, at the end of the Mass, at the Dismissal.   ‘Go in the peace of Christ, to love and serve the Lord.’  

We go out to serve him as apostles, in the Pauline sense. To evangelise and build up the Church.  We will have before us the example of the dedication of the early apostles. Particularly today remembering the single-mindedness and zeal of Saint Simon and Saint Jude.

Organ Voluntary

The Ass. Organist returns this week with another ‘name that tune’ piece, as I cannot remember the first line of the hymn we sing to this tune.  I can only remember the tune from my childhood, as my paternal grandmother’s family used to sing it on birthdays (they were 11 brothers and sisters) but to less edifying words: ‘Why was he born so beautiful? Why was he born at all?! He’s no ruddy use to anyone; he’s no ruddy use at all!’ A very jolly piece with some nifty foot-work.

Toccata on ‘God calls the brothers to action.’ K.J. Mulder.
Watch here
If you don’t recognise the hymn tune we know, as I didn’t until Matthew told me, then the answer is at the end of the Mailing.

Today’s hymn

Christ is made the sure foundation:
Watch here

Music from Matthew

Two gently lyrical pieces will be sung by Ruthy today. At the offertory, Malcolm Archer’s arrangement of Brother James’s Air by James Leith Macbeth Bain, setting words from Psalm 23 according to the Scottish Psalter (1650). Bain was a healer, mystic and poet known simply as Brother James, hence the title.
Brother James’s Air by James Leith Macbeth Bain (c.1860-1925) arr. Malcolm Archer
The Lord’s my shepherd, I’ll not want.
He makes me down to lie
in pastures green; he leadeth me
the quiet waters by.
My soul he doth restore again,
and me to walk doth make
within the paths of righteousness,
e’en for his own name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk in death’s dark vale,
yet will I fear none ill,
for thou art with me and thy rod
and staff me comfort still.
My table thou hast furnished
in presence of my foes.
My head thou dost with oil anoint,
and my cup overflows.
Goodness and mercy all my life
shall surely follow me,
and in God’s house forevermore
my dwelling place shall be. 
Choristers of Canterbury Cathedral Choir
During communion, Elgar’s simple setting of Ave verum, a Latin 14th-century text, in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.
 Ave verum Corpus by Sir Edward Elgar (1857-1934)
Hail, true Body, born of the Virgin Mary, having truly suffered, sacrificed on the cross for mankind,
from whose pierced side water and blood flowed: Be for us a foretaste [of the Heavenly banquet]
in the trial of death! O sweet Jesus, O holy Jesus, O Jesus, son of Mary, have mercy on me. Amen. 
The Choir of New College, Oxford
Edward Higginbottom (director)

Miletus and Prierne

During my recent stay in Turkey, I visited the ruins of the ancient cities of Miletus and Prierne.  Miletus was a major port city rising on a gentle slope to the impressive, possibly most impressive remaining, amphitheatre and, of course, we know it from the writings of St. Paul, as he visited there.  Prierne was smaller and less significant, across the bay from Miletus, but built on a steep hillside rising up to the Temple of Athena.

Unfortunately, my photos didn’t come out too well but here are a few:
The Amphitheatre at Miletus:
The Marketplace at Miletus:
The Church of St. Michael at Miletus:
To my surprise, this was a very small church.  It is only 26 pace (metres) long but, on the ground, you can still make out the apse, the place of the altar, the internal columns, the outer walls and the west end door.  As we have at St. Anne’s now, there would only have been seating around the walls, everyone fit would stand in the middle.
The Temple of Athena at Prierne:
This is very impressive, and from which you can just see in the distance, across the water, but now all agricultural land, the city of Miletus.

A video guide to Miletus and Didyma

These two videos are not great but give an idea of both Miletus and the Temple of Apollo in Didyma (modern day Didim).
The first mainly concentrates on the amphitheatre and the Baths of Faustina.  The image of the four columns with water in front is, actually, the agora or market place.
Watch here
The second, confuses the agora with the baths of Faustina but it does also show the Church of St. Michael but without mention.
Watch here

The geography of Miletus, Prierne and Didyma

The map below shows the relationship between these three cities.  The blue/grey area in the middle was all sea at the time of St. Paul but has all silted up now and is agricultural land.  Ancient Didyma was on the top of a hill and about a mile from the sea, as it is today.
You can also see, to the right of Miletus, an unsilted area, Lake Baffa, which is now a beautiful inland lake inhabited by flamingos!

Gert Van Hoef – Livestream

Broadcast live on Thursday 21st October 2021, from St. Martin’s Church in Doesburg:
Watch here

The Feast of All Souls –
Tuesday 2nd November 2021 – 7pm

There will be a list in church as of today for you to add the name of any who have died in the last year and should be remembered in the prayers at the All Souls’ Mass.

Daily Readings

Monday: Romans 8:12-17; Psalm 68:1-6,19; Luke 13:10-17.

Tuesday: Romans 8:18-25; Psalm 126; Luke 13:18-21.

Wednesday: Romans 8:26-30; Psalm 13; Luke 13;22-30.

Thursday: Romans 8:31-end; Psalm 19; Luke 13:31-end.

Friday: Romans 9: 1-3; Psalm 147:13-end; Luke 14:1-6.

Saturday: Romans 11:1-2,11-12,25-29; Psalm 94:14-19; Luke 14:1,7-11.

Name that tune

Did you recognise the hymn tune in the Organ Voluntary? It is the Easter Hymn, ‘The Day of Resurrection.’
Watch here
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