The Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity – September 17th, 2023


• The Propers for the Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity.
• YouTube link for the live-stream of our 10:30 service
• Announcements for the week of September 17th, 2023    

The Propers for the Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity.
The Book of Common Prayer 1928.

The Collect.

KEEP, we beseech thee, O Lord, thy Church with thy perpetual mercy; and, because the frailty of man without thee cannot but fail, keep us ever by thy help from all things hurtful, and led us to all things profitable to our salvation; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

The First Lesson. Ecclesiasticus 5:1-10

Set not thy heart upon thy goods; and say not, I have enough for my life. Follow not thine own mind and thy strength, to walk in the ways of thy heart: And say not, Who shall control me for my works? for the Lord will surely revenge thy pride. Say not, I have sinned, and what harm hath happened unto me? for the Lord is long-suffering, he will in no wise let thee go. Concerning propitiation, be not without fear to add sin unto sin: And say not His mercy is great; he will be pacified for the multitude of my sins: for mercy and wrath come from him, and his indignation resteth upon sinners. Make no tarrying to turn to the Lord, and put not off from day to day: for suddenly shall the wrath of the Lord come forth, and in thy security thou shalt be destroyed, and perish in the day of vengeance. Set not thine heart upon goods unjustly gotten, for they shall not profit thee in the day of calamity. Winnow not with every wind, and go not into every way: for so doth the sinner that hath a double tongue. Be stedfast in thy understanding; and let thy word be the same. 

Psalter Selection. Psalm 49.

O HEAR ye this, all ye people; * ponder it with your ears, all ye that dwell in the world;
2 High and low, rich and poor, * one with another.
3 My mouth shall speak of wisdom, * and my heart shall muse of understanding.
4 I will incline mine ear to the parable, * and show my dark speech upon the harp.
5 Wherefore should I fear in the days of evil, * when wickedness at my heels compasseth me round about?
6 There be some that put their trust in their goods, * and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches.
7 But no man may deliver his brother, * nor give a ransom unto God for him,
8 (For it cost more to redeem their souls, * so that he must let that alone for ever;)
9 That he shall live alway, * and not see the grave.
10 For he seeth that wise men also die and perish together, * as well as the ignorant and foolish, and leave their riches for other.
11 And yet they think that their houses shall continue for ever, and that their dwelling-places shall endure from one generation to another; * and call the lands after their own names.
12 Nevertheless, man being in honour abideth not, * seeing he may be compared unto the beasts that perish;
13 This their way is very foolishness; * yet their posterity praise their saying.
14 They lie in the grave like sheep; death is their shepherd; and the righteous shall have dominion over them in the morning: * their beauty shall consume in the sepulchre, and have no abiding.
15 But God hath delivered my soul from the power of the grave; * for he shall receive me.
16 Be not thou afraid, though one be made rich, * or if the glory of his house be increased;
17 For he shall carry nothing away with him when he dieth, * neither shall his pomp follow him.
18 For while he lived, he counted himself an happy man; * and so long as thou doest well unto thyself, men will speak good of thee.
19 He shall follow the generation of his fathers, * and shall never see light.
20 Man that is in honour but hath no understanding * is compared unto the beasts that perish.  

The Epistle. Galatians 6:11-18

YE see how large a letter I have written unto you with mine own hand. As many as desire to make a fair shew in the flesh, they constrain you to be circumcised; only lest they should suffer persecution for the cross of Christ. For neither they themselves who are circumcised keep the law; but desire to have you circumcised, that they may glory in your flesh. But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature. And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God. From henceforth let no man trouble me: for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus. Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen. 

The Gospel. St. Matt. vi. 24-34.

NO man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: and yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? There fore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (for after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

Link to the YouTube Live-stream of our Sunday service – 10:30 a.m.:

Click here to access our YouTube channel where you can always view past live-streams or check for any scheduled upcoming live-streams.

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Announcements for Sunday, September 17th, 2023

If you are visiting us – Welcome to Christ Church Anglican, Southern Pines! Thank you for being with us. We are very pleased that you joined us, and we hope that your worship here is a blessing. Please sign the guest book on the table in the narthex, and provide your contact information. Include your email address in order to be placed on the parish email list: you won’t be bombarded with mail, but it’s a good way to keep in touch. And may God bless you!

Altar Flowers – If you would like to give glory to God, to honor or remember someone, or to commemorate a special occasion with flowers to beautify the altar, the cost is $75, and the flowers last 2-3 weeks. So if you want your tribute to be for two different reasons, you can also do that! Simply give the information you would like to be included in the bulletin to Susan Saulsbury (410-984-4401 or, and make your check payable to Christ Church Anglican. Many thanks, and God bless!

Father Tom’s Vacation – Father Tom will be taking a break, from immediately following the service on Sunday, September 17th through Monday, October 2nd. He looks forward to heading up to Maryland to visit family (including his grand-nephews!), and hopefully also visiting Skyline Drive, Virginia, with maybe another stop or two along the way. Fr. Terrence (781-801-4813, will be covering our services, and also pastoral care, for the two weeks in question. Senior Warden Chris Gerry (919-775-5067) will be contact person for all other matters that may arise during this time.

ACC and Diocese of the Holy Cross Synod – A reminder that the XXV Synod of the ACC, and also our Diocesan Synod, is upcoming: October 10th – 13th, in Orlando, Florida. Fr. Tom and Fr. Terrence will both be attending, but as it is during the week, there should not be any changes to our usual pattern of Sunday worship. But please pray for wisdom and guidance for all those attending! This prayer, found on page 36 of The Book of Common Prayer 1928, is especially appropriate for the weeks leading up to, and of course during, Synod: 

A Prayer to be used at the Meetings of Convention.

ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who by thy Holy Spirit didst preside in the Council of the blessed Apostles, and hast promised, through thy Son Jesus Christ, to be with thy Church to the end of the world; We beseech thee to be with the Council of thy Church [soon to be / now] assembled in thy Name and Presence. Save them from all error, ignorance, pride, and prejudice; and of thy great mercy vouchsafe, we beseech thee, so to direct, sanctify, and govern them in their work, by the mighty power of the Holy Ghost, that the comfortable Gospel of Christ may be truly preached, truly received, and truly followed, in all places, to the breaking down of the kingdom of sin, Satan, and death; till at length the whole of thy dispersed sheep, being gathered into one fold, shall become partakers of everlasting life; through the merits and death of Jesus Christ our Saviour. Amen.

Holy Days for the Week of September 17th, 2023:

Tuesday, September 19th: Theodore of Tarsus (690)
Wednesday, September 20th: Ember Wednesday in Autumn
Thursday, September 21st: St. Matthew, Apostle and Evangelist
Friday, September 22nd: Ember Friday in Autumn
Saturday, September 23rd: Ember Saturday in Autumn 

Rector’s Ramblings: On the Autumn Ember Days

Not by me! From the late James Kiefer’s KAL series of essays on the Christian Kalendar (lightly edited).

The Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday after September 14 are the traditional autumnal Ember Days. Among some Christians – including Anglicans – it is the custom to observe these clusters of three days roughly at the beginnings of the four seasons. They fall on the Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday following

  • The First Sunday in Lent
  • Pentecost Sunday
  • September 14th
  • December 13th (St. Lucia) or, the Third Sunday of Advent)

The handy shortcut for remembering the holidays that herald the Ember Days is “Lucy, Ashes, Dove, and Cross”:

Sant Crux, Lucia, Cineres, Charismata Dia
Ut sit in angaria quarta sequens feria.

Which for those of us who don’t think in Latin translates as:

“Holy Cross, Lucy, Ash Wednesday, Pentecost,
are when the quarter holidays follow.”

[from a Lutheran Church Missouri Synod blog entitled “Blog My Soul”]

They are days of special prayer for those about to be ordained to the ministry, and some measure of fasting or abstinence, such as not eating meat, is a customary part of their observance. The entree shrimp tempura and its relatives, which we are accustomed to think of as traditional Japanese dishes, were invented by a Portuguese missionary as meatless dishes for special days like the Ember days, and the word “tempura” is derived from the [Latin root of the] word “Ember.”

The history of the days has been a subject of much dispute. Their name is apparently derived from the Latin QUATTUOR TEMPORA, or “The Four Seasons.” They appear to have originated in Rome and to have spread from there. (The Qumran community [cf. “Dead Sea Scrolls”] had a similar observance, and I [James Kiefer] formerly thought that there was probably a connection, but apparently this is only a coincidence.) Originally there were perhaps only three sets of them, with the Spring Ember Days simply part of the days of Lent.

The prophet Zechariah speaks (Zech. 8:19) of “the fast of the fourth month, and the fast of the fifth, and the fast of the seventh, and the fast of the tenth,” and many Western manuscripts omitted the reference to the fifth. Counting from March as the first month, this would have been understood to refer to fasts in June, September, and December, and may have influenced the Christian observance. Again, there were pagan rites of purification connected with the times of sowing seed, harvest, and vintage, and the Christian fasts may have been chosen to counter-act these.

It has been said that the Ember Days were first observed in the time of Pope Callistus I (218-225), but the earliest definite reference to them that we have is in the sermons of Pope Leo the Great (440-461). Pope Gelasius I (492-496) decreed that ordinations should take place at the end of the first full week of Lent, and it may be that he both (a) added the Spring Ember Days to the calendar and (b) introduced the connection between the Ember Days and ordination (we have evidence that ordinations also took place on the third Saturday in December).

And now you know (as the late Paul Harvey might have said) “the rest… of the story!”

Hope and pray everyone enjoys a holy and blessed Lord’s Day, and a good and safe week. God bless you!

Fr. Tom Harbold

Contact Info

Phone: (910) 246-0955



750 Fairway Drive, Southern Pines
At the intersection of Aiken Road and Fairway Drive.


Christ Church Anglican
750 Fairway Dr,
Southern Pines, NC 28387