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to my wife, my children, and friends, and to me a death such as my life hath been." But that of Philagrius in Gregory Nazianzen is eucharistical, but it relates more especially to the blessings and advantages, which are accidentally consequent to sickness. "I thank thee, O Father, and maker of all thy children, that thou art pleased to bless and to sanctify us even against our wills, and by the outward man purgest the inward, and leadest us through cross-ways to a blessed ending, for reasons best known unto thee." However, when we go from our hospital and place of little intermedial rest in our journey to heaven, it is fit, that we give thanks to the Major-domo for our entertainment. When these parts of religion are finished, according to each man's necessity, there is nothing remaining of personal duty to be done alone, but that the sick man act over these virtues by the renewings of devotion, and in the way of prayer; and that is to be continued as long as life, and voice, and reason dwell with us.
Acts of Charity, by way of Prayer and Ejaculation; which may also be used for Thanksgiving, in case of Recovery.
O My soul, thou hast said unto the Lord, Thou art my Lord: my goodness extendeth not to thee; but to the saints, that are in the earth, and to the excellent, in whom is all my delight. The Lord is the portion of my inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest my lot. Psalm xvi. 2, 3, 5.
As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the Lord is tried: he is a buckler to all those that trust in him. For who is God, except the Lord? or who is a rock, save our God? It is God that girdeth me with strength, and maketh my way perfect. Psalm xviii. 30—32.
Be not thou far from me, O Lord: 0 my strength, haste thee to help me. Psalm xxii. 19.
Deliver my soul from the sword, my darling from the power of the dog. Save me from the lion's mouth: and thou hast heard me also from among the horns of the unicorns, ver. 20,21.
I will declare thy name unto my brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise thee. ver. 22.
Ye that fear the Lord, praise the Lord: ye sons of God, glorify him, and fear before him, all ye sons of men. For he hath not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted,' neither hath he hid his face from him; but when he cried unto him, he heard, ver. 23, 24.
As the hart panteth after the water-brooks, so longeth my soul after thee, O God. Psalm xlii. 1.
My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God : when shall I come and appear before the Lord? ver. 2.
0 my God, my soul is cast down within me. All thy waves and billows are gone over me. As with a sword in my bones I am reproached. Yet the Lord will command his loving-kindness in the daytime: and in the night his song shall be with me, and my prayer unto the God of my life, ver. 6—8, 10.
Bless ye the Lord in the congregations; even the Lord from the fountains of Israel. Psalm lxviii. 26.
My mouth shall shew forth thy righteousness and thy salvation all the day; for I know not the numbers thereof. Psalm lxxi. 15.
1 will go in the strength of the Lord God: I will make mention of thy righteousness, even of thine only. O God, thou hast taught me from my youth; and hitherto have I declared thy wondrous works. But I will hope continually, and will yet praise thee more and more. ver. 16, 17, 14;
Thy righteousness, O God, is very high, who hast done great things. O God, who is like unto thee? Thou which hast shewed me great and sore troubles, shalt quicken me again, and shalt bring me up again from the depths of the earth, ver. 19, 20.
Thou shalt increase thy goodness towards me, and comfort me on every side. ver. 21.
My lips shall greatly rejoice when I sing unto thee; and my soul, which thou hast redeemed. Blessed be the Lord God, the God of Israel, who only doth wondrous things. And blessed be his glorious name for ever; and let the whole earth be filled with his glory. Amen, Amen. ver. 23. Psalm lxxii. 18, 19.
I love the Lord, because he hath heard my voice and my supplication. The sorrows of death compassed me: I found trouble and sorrow. Then called I upon the name of the Lord: O Lord, I beseech thee, deliver my soul. Gracious is the Lord and righteous; yea our God is merciful. Psalm cxvi. 1, 3—5.
The Lord preserveth the simple: I was brought low, and he helped me. Return to thy rest, O my soul: the Lord hath dealt bountifully with me. For thou hast delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears, and my feet from falling, ver. 6—8. . •
Precious in the sight of the Lord, is the death of his saints. O Lord, truly I am thy servant; I am thy servant, and the son of thine handmaid: thou shalt loose my bonds. ver. 15, 16.
He that loveth not the Lord Jesus, let him be accursed. 1 Cor. xvi. 22.
O that I might love thee as well as ever any creature loved thee! He that dwelleth in love, dwelleth in God. There is no fear in love. 1 John, iv. 16, 18.
O most gracious and eternal God and loving Father, who hast poured out thy bowels upon us, and sent the Son of thy love unto us to die for love, and to make us dwell in love, and the eternal comprehensions of thy Divine mercies, O be pleased to inflame my heart with a holy charity towards thee and all the world. Lord, I forgive all that ever have offended me, and beg, that both they and I may enter into the possession of thy mercies, and feel a gracious pardon from the same fountain of grace: and do thou forgive me all the acts of scandal, whereby I have provoked, or tempted, or lessened, or disturbed any person. Lord, let me never have my portion amongst those that divide the union, and disturb the peace, and break the charities of the church, and Christian communion. And though I am fallen into evil times, in which Christendom is divided by the names of an evil division; yet I am in charity with all Christians, with all that love the Lord Jesus, and long for his coming, and I would give my life to save the soul of any of my brethren; and I humbly beg of thee, that the public calamity of the several societies of the church may not be imputed to my soul, to any evil purposes.
Lord, preserve me in the unity of thy holy church, in the love of God and of my neighbours. Let thy grace enlarge my heart to remember, deeply to resent, faithfully to use, wisely to improve, and humbly to give thanks to thee for all thy favours, with which thou hast enriched my soul, and supported my estate, and preserved my person, and rescued me from danger, and invited me to goodness in all the days and periods of my life. Thou hast led me through it with an excellent conduct; and I have gone astray after the manner of men; but my heart is towards thee. O do unto thy servant, as thou usest to do unto those that love thy name: let thy truth comfort me; thy mercy deliver me; thy staff support me; thy grace sanctify my sorrow; and thy goodness pardon all my sins: thy angels guide me with safety in this shadow of death, and thy most Holy Spirit lead me into the land of righteousness, for thy name's sake, which is so comfortable, and for Jesus Christ's sake, our dearest Lord and most gracious Saviour. Amen.
OF VISITATION OF THE SICK: OR THE ASSISTANCE, THAT IS TO BE DONE TO DYING PERSONS BY THE MINISTRY OF THEIR CLERGY-GUIDES.
God, who hath made no new covenant with dying persons distinct from the covenant of the living, hath also appointed no distinct sacraments for them, no other manner of usages but such as are common to all the spiritual necessities of living and healthful persons. In all the days of our religion, from our baptism to the resignation and delivery of our soul, God hath appointed his servants to minister to the necessities, and eternally to bless, and prudently to guide, and wisely to judge concerning souls; and the Holy Ghost, that anointing from above, descends upon us in several effluxes, but ever by the ministries of the church. Our heads are anointed with that sacred unction, baptism (not in ceremony, but in real and proper effect), our foreheads in confirmation, our hands in ordinations, all our senses in the visitation of the sick; and all by the ministry of especially-deputed and instructed persons: and we, who all our lifetime derive blessings from the fountains of grace, by the channels of ecclesiastical ministries, must do it then especially, when our needs are most pungent and actual. 1. We cannot give up our names to Christ, but the holy man, that ministers in religion, must enrol them, and present the persons, and consign the grace: when we beg for God's Spirit, the minister can best present our prayers, and by his advocation hallow our private desires, and turn them into public and potent offices. 2. If we desire to be established and confirmed in the grace and religion of our baptism, the holy man, whose hands were anointed by a special ordination to that and its symbolical purposes, lays his hands upon the catechumen, and the anointing from above descends by that ministry. 3. If we would eat the body and drink the blood of our Lord, we must address ourselves to the Lord's table, and he that stands there to bless and to minister, can reach it forth, and feed thy soul; and without his ministry thou canst not be nourished with that heavenly feast, nor thy body consigned to immortality, nor thy soul refreshed with the sacramental bread from heaven, except by spiritual suppletories, in cases of necessity and an impossible communion. 4. If. we have committed sins, the spiritual man is appointed to restore us, and to pray for us, and to receive our confessions, and to inquire into our wounds, and to infuse oil and remedy, and to pronounce pardon. 5. If we be cut off from the communion of the faithful by our own demerits, their holy hands must reconcile us and give us peace; they are our appointed comforters, our instructors, our ordinary judges: and in the whole, what the children of Israel begged