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Fifth Sunday after Easter (Rogation Sunday)
Click to read: Collect, Epistle, and Gospel
An Excerpt from Common Prayer Commentary:

In the Gospel, from that of St. John, we are taught how to ask of God, so that we may obtain the object of our prayer. From the beginning, we must admit what true prayer implies, that we are totally dependent upon God, in whom “we live, and move, and have our being” (Acts 17. 28). At the same time, we admit his ability to do all things, and all things well. We do not pray in order to remind him of what we need, for he “knows what things we have need of, before we ask him” (Matt. 6. 8). In asking, we rather remind ourselves of our great need for him, and of our deficiency. And we must ask in Christ’s name: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you.” That does not mean simply to end our prayers by saying his name. By prayer in Christ’s name, we mean prayer which is in accord with his will. It means praying for that of which he would approve. In order to have prayers answered, we should pray for that which is in accord with God’s providence.

But it is not simply enough to pray in word; we must also pray in deed. Jesus said, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Matt. 7. 21). And St. James, in the Epistle for today, says “Be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only.” Prayers, in which we join our wills with God’s will, are in vain unless we are willing, according to our capacity, to act on them. What good does it do to pray for forgiveness unless we try to amend our ways? Why pray to be more loving unless we attempt to love?

The Collect for today prays that we will be inspired both to will the right things, and be given the power to do them. The word “inspire” is related to the word “spirit,” and it is the Holy Spirit working in us and through us which enables us to will and do what God approves. Let us on this Rogation Sunday pray earnestly for the gift of the Holy Spirit, first sent on the Feast of Pentecost, that in all we desire, pray for, and do, we may please Almighty God.

“God is our hope and strength, a very present help in trouble” (Psalm 46. 1).

The Fifth Sunday after Easter is commonly called "Rogation Sunday." Rogation comes from the Latin word rogare, which means 'to ask.' We set aside this time to humbly ask God for His manifold and great mercies to comfort us (strengthen us) and bless us. The Rogation Days (the Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday after Rogation Sunday and prior to Ascension Day) are a special time of prayer and fasting in preparation for the great feast of the Ascension.

O LORD, from whom all good things do come: Grant to us thy humble servants, that by thy holy inspiration we may think those things that be good, and by thy merciful guiding may perform the same; through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

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These devotionals are based on the Calendar of the Book of Common Prayer (1962, Canada)

The Missionary Diocese of St. Luke the Evangelist
Victoria Avenue North
Hamilton, ON L8L 5G1

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