By The Reverend Dr. Katie Snipes Lancaster

Ancient prayers still speak truth into our lives today. Clement of Rome was the third bishop to preside over Rome after Peter. It is said that he “has the preaching of the apostles still echoing in his ears, and their traditions before his eyes.” Though he was born after Jesus’ death, the people who taught him to trust Jesus were the people who knew Jesus in the flesh. Clement of Rome wrote highly sought after reflections on faith that were translated into at least three languages—Latin, Syriac and Coptic—and in his lifetime, his message would have been read in Greece, Syria, Palestine, Egypt and elsewhere (not to mention the fact that we still read it today). Today the Pope has 40 million followers on twitter, but in an era before social media, before USPS, before the printing press, it feels remarkable that he was able to transmit his prayers and sacred message across time and space in a way that feels viral. May this prayer, which transcends time and culture, continue to be heard in the ears of God, even now.

Let us pray:

O God Almighty,
Father of our Lord Jesus Christ:
Grant us, we pray,
To be grounded and settled in your truth
By the coming down of the Holy Spirit into our hearts.
That which we know not, reveal;
That which is wanting in us, fill up;
That which we know, confirm;
And keep us blameless in your service;
Through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
—Clement of Rome, 35–99 c.e.

Back to School Blessing in the Memorial Garden on Sunday, August 30, 9:30 a.m. is a short worship service for students, families, teachers, and all who care for students in school and at home. Space is limited and reservations are required.