God Uses Flawed People

The following proper is suggested for use on the anniversary of ordination of an individual bishop, priest, or deacon. On a Sunday or major feast day, the proper of the day is used in place of the proper given here.

Introit: Pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest, said Jesus to his disciples.  Send out your light and your truth, that they may lead me, and bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling.

Processional Hymn:

Collect: Almighty God, giver of all good gifts, in your divine providence you have appointed various orders of ministers in your Church: Give your grace, we humbly pray, to all who are called to any office and ministry for your people; and so fill them with the truth of your doctrine, and clothe them with holiness of life, that they may faithfully serve before you, to the glory of your great Name and for the benefit of your holy Church; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Gloria in excelsis

Holy Father, who, by no merit of my own, chose me
for communion with the eternal priesthood of your Christ
and for the ministry of your Church,
grant that I may be an ardent yet gentle preacher of the Gospel
and a faithful steward of your mysteries.

Lesson: For a Bishop: A Reading from the Book of Isaiah 61:1-8
1The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor;
he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;
2to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor,
and the day of vengeance of our God;
to comfort all who mourn;
3to grant to those who mourn in Zion—
to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit;
that they may be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.
4They shall build up the ancient ruins;
they shall raise up the former devastations;
they shall repair the ruined cities,
the devastations of many generations.
5Strangers shall stand and tend your flocks;
foreigners shall be your plowmen and vinedressers;
6but you shall be called the priests of the Lord;
they shall speak of you as the ministers of our God;
you shall eat the wealth of the nations,
and in their glory you shall boast.
7Instead of your shame there shall be a double portion;
instead of dishonor they shall rejoice in their lot;
therefore in their land they shall possess a double portion;
they shall have everlasting joy.
8For I the Lord love justice;
I hate robbery and wrong;
I will faithfully give them their recompense,
and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.
The Word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God!

Responsorial Psalm:
R. How great are the works of the Lord!
The works of his hands are faithful and just;
sure are all his precepts,
Reliable forever and ever,
wrought in truth and equity.
R. How great are the works of the Lord!
He has sent deliverance to his people;
he has ratified his covenant forever;
holy and awesome is his name.
R. How great are the works of the Lord!
The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom;
prudent are all who live by it.
His praise endures forever.
R. How great are the works of the Lord!

Epistle: For a Bishop: A Reading from the Letter to the Hebrews 5:1-10
1For every high priest chosen from among men is appointed to act on behalf of men in relation to God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. 2He can deal gently with the ignorant and wayward, since he himself is beset with weakness. 3Because of this he is obligated to offer sacrifice for his own sins just as he does for those of the people. 4And no one takes this honor for himself, but only when called by God, just as Aaron was.
5So also Christ did not exalt himself to be made a high priest, but was appointed by him who said to him,
“You are my Son,
today I have begotten you”;
6as he says also in another place,
“You are a priest forever,
after the order of Melchizedek.”
7In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence. 8Although he was a son, he learned obedience through what he suffered. 9And being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him, 10being designated by God a high priest after the order of Melchizedek.
The Word of the Lord!
Thanks be to God!

Sequence Hymn:

The Holy Gospel: For a Bishop: A Reading from the Holy Gospel of John 20:19-23
19On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being locked where the disciples were for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” 20When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. 21Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.” 22And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.”

The Gospel of the Lord!
Praise to you Lord Christ!

My 19th year as a Priest
Rt. Rev. Edward L. Tatro, Jr.

I’m going to tell you a story my friends written by Scott Higgins.  A story I feel could apply to many.

The Person God Uses

“What sort of person does God use? Imagine a group of people gathered before you. You need to select from among them those most likely to play a pivotal role in God’s plans for humanity. They are so at ease with you that they open up and share their darkest secrets. One tells you that after a night of heavy drinking he was sexually abused by one of his own sons. Another confesses that he gave his wife to another man to sleep with. Yet another plotted with his mistress to kill her husband. Another murdered a man and is still on the run from the law. One is a prostitute. Another has a lifestyle marked by violence – he even killed people to impress a girlfriend and his prospective father-in-law. Yet another confesses that he cheated his brother out of his inheritance.

Could you use them? I hope so, for they are the heroes of faith described in Hebrews 11. Noah is the man who got drunk and was sexually abused; Abraham is the man who gave his wife to sleep with another; David is the one who plotted to have his mistress’ husband killed. Moses is the one who murdered an Egyptian and was never brought to account for it. Rahab was the prostitute. Samson is the man whose life was marked by violence and who killed to impress his girlfriend. Jacob is the person who cheated his brother out of his inheritance.

Scripture shows that God uses very flawed people indeed!”

He indeed uses very flawed people, and I am one of those flawed people.  Today my brethren marks 19 years that I was hit on the head with a brick by God and said yes to Holy Orders.  Today marks my ordination anniversary.  I as your bishop and priest strive to instruct you in the ways of Truth and the Sacred Sacraments.  Today I give honor to God for making me one of the few that are called to sacred service and to serve Him.

What does serve mean? The dictionary defines serve as: to have definite use, to render assistance; be of use; help, and to answer the requirements of (God).

We all have a duty to God and must live by His precepts.  I hope I provide a good example to you in my daily life.  I ask your continued prayers that I may be a good priest, bishop, Shepard and counselor.

For the new comer, these are some of the symbols of a Bishop that you may encounter:

The Bishop’s Chair
In ancient times, a chair was a sign of authority to teach. The bishop’s chair is called a cathedra from the Latin word for chair and it is the presence of the bishop’s cathedra in a church that makes it a cathedral. The bishop’s chair then is a symbol of the bishop’s teaching office and pastoral power in his diocese. It is also a sign of the unity of believers in the faith that the bishop proclaims as shepherd of the Lord’s flock.

Coat of Arms
A bishop’s coat of arms is distinguished by a sign of his rank. That sign, placed over the shield, is a particular version of an ecclesiastical hat that was worn in processions, as late as 1870. The hat is low crowned, flat, and wide brimmed. On a bishop’s coat of arms, the hat is green and hanging from it are 12 green tassels, six on each side. There’s also a processional cross above the shield. The cross on a bishop’s coat of arms has one bar; an archbishop’s cross has two. The design of the shield itself differs from bishop to bishop.

The Mitre
The mitre is the proper liturgical headdress for all bishops of the Latin Rite, including the pope. The word comes from the Greek word mitra, meaning “turban.” It consists of two stiffened flaps of material joined by a headband with two fringed strips hanging from the back base of the mitre.

A Pectoral Cross
The pectoral cross gets its name because it is worn over the breast, or pectus, hanging from a green cord intertwined with gold threads. There are rules determining whether it is worn over or under whatever the bishop is wearing. If he’s in a suit and collar, the pectoral cross is usually placed in the vest pocket with the chain showing.

The crosier is a pastoral staff that is conferred on bishops (and abbots) at their installation. In the West, the top of the staff is curved to remind the bishop of the shepherd’s crook and of his pastoral care of the people entrusted to him. It is a sign of the bishop’s need to keep watch over his whole flock, sustaining the weak and faltering, confirming the wavering faith, and leading back the erring ones into the true fold.

The Bishop’s Ring
The bishop’s ring is a symbol of the bishop’s fidelity to the church. The bishop’s ring is usually made of gold with an amethyst. The bishop’s ring was first mentioned as an official part of the bishop’s insignia in the early seventh century.

The Zucchetto
The zucchetto is a skullcap worn, particularly by prelates, since the 13th century. Archbishops wear a red, blue or purple zucchetto; bishops a purple zucchetto and priests wear black.

The Litany for Ordinations

God the Father, Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit, Have mercy on us.
We pray to you, Lord Christ. Lord, hear our prayer.
For the holy Church of God, that it may be filled with truth and love, and be found without fault at the Day of your Coming, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
For all members of your Church in their vocation and ministry, that they may serve you in a true and godly life, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
For Edward, our Archbishop, and for all bishops, priests, and deacons, that they may be filled with your love, may hunger for truth, and may thirst after righteousness, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
For Edward, chosen bishop in your Church, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
That he may faithfully fulfill the duties of this ministry, build up your Church, and glorify your Name, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
That by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit he may be sustained and encouraged to persevere to the end, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
For his family that they may be adorned with all Christian virtues, we pray to you, O Lord.
Lord, hear our prayer.
For all who fear God and believe in you, Lord Christ, that our divisions may cease and that all may be one as you and the Father are one, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
For the mission of the Church, that in faithful witness it may preach the Gospel to the ends of the earth, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
For those who do not yet believe, and for those who have lost their faith, that they may receive the light of the Gospel, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
For the peace of the world, that a spirit of respect and forbearance may grow among nations and peoples, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
For those in positions of public trust especially Donald Trump, Rick Scott, that they may serve justice and promote the dignity and freedom of every person, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
For a blessing upon all human labor, and for the right use of the riches of creation, that the world may be freed from poverty, famine, and disaster, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
For the poor, the persecuted, the sick, and all who suffer; for refugees, prisoners, and all who are in danger; that they may be relieved and protected, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
For ourselves; for the forgiveness of our sins, and for the grace of the Holy Spirit to amend our lives, we pray to you, O Lord.
Lord, hear our prayer.
For all who have died in the communion of your Church, and those whose faith is known to you alone, that, with all the saints, they may rest in that place where there is no pain or grief, but life eternal, we pray to you, O Lord. Lord, hear our prayer.
Rejoicing in the fellowship of the ever-blessed Virgin Mary, blessed Anthony and all the saints, let us commend ourselves, and one another, and all our life to Christ our God. To you, O Lord our God.
Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

At the end of the litany, the Bishop, standing, says the following or some other Collect, first saying
Bishop: The Lord be with you. People: And also with you. Bishop: Let us pray.
Ever living God, strengthen and sustain all the clergy that with patience and understanding they may love and care for your people; and grant that together they may follow Jesus Christ, offering to you their gifts and talents; through him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.

Let us walk unto the Lord an Offering and a Sacrifice!

Offertory Hymn:

Offertory Prayer: Father, may the sacrifice we offer you free us from our sins and bring together all who are joined by one Baptism to share the mystery of the Eucharist. Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Doxology:

The Gifts of God for the People of God. Take them in remembrance that Christ died for you, and feed on him in your hearts by faith, with thanksgiving.

Spiritual Communion
My Jesus,
I believe that You
are present in the Most Holy Sacrament.
I love You above all things,
and I desire to receive You into my soul.
Since I cannot at this moment
receive You sacramentally,
come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You were already there and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You.

Post Communion Collect:
Almighty Father, we thank you for feeding us with the holy food of the Body and Blood of your Son, and for uniting us through him in the fellowship of your Holy Spirit. We thank you for raising up among us faithful servants for the ministry of your Word and Sacraments. We pray that N. may be to us an effective example in word and action, in love and patience, and in holiness of life. Grant that we, with him, may serve you now, and always rejoice in your glory; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

One thought on “God Uses Flawed People

  1. Padre Tatro, Congratulations on your 19th year as a priest!!! –Such a blessing for you & those you have served over these years. Along with the scripture readings, the message of your homely, always the glorious music ,,,,,So much here to learn here about the “tools of your trade”! –Imagine next year for your 20th!!! Phil

    Liked by 1 person

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