Saturday, October 17, 2015

A Prayer for Fall

The colors of the fall season this year have been particularly beautiful at times here in Western Iowa, as can be seen from a couple of pictures I took this past week at my congregation, St. Luke, this past week. 

In my daily prayer book ("For All the Saints", published by the American Lutheran Publicity Bureau - probably the closest thing Lutherans have to a monastic breviary), there was a beautiful prayer yesterday for the fall season from Wilhelm Loehe, a 19th century German Lutheran pastor and theologian who was instrumental in establishing churches in America, as well as restoring elements of our Catholic heritage to our Lutheran tradition:
"Blessed be the Lord! He hath done wonderful things, and blessed is His Holy Name, Who, now, that the summer is past, has brought me in joy to behold the blessed autumn days. Lord, I am not worthy of all Thy goodness and mercy which Thou hast again showered upon me.  Most humbly and heartily I beseech Thee, O Loving Father, turn away all dangerous storms and infectious diseases, and so bless me in my participation in Thy bounty, that with health of body, peace of mind, and a good conscience, I may thankfully enjoy Thy gifts, and use what Thou hast given me unto Thy glory and the promotion of my fellowman's happiness, and unceasingly bring to Thee acceptable fruits of my life.  In these days of the ingathering of the vintage, let me rejoice in Him, Who alone truly treads the wine press, the beloved Redeemer, Jesus Christ, With the fading and falling leaf, cause me to remember my mortality, and to prepare while it is yet time for a blessed end; to leave this inconstant, passing world with joy, whenever it so pleases Three; and to enter Thy glory, there, with angels and all the company of the elect, to evermore laud, praise, and thank Thee for all thy benefits. Amen."

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