Saturday, April 6, 2013

Haiti Connection, George Augustus Selwyn

I've been busy putting together a bulletin for next week's Haiti Connection, the annual conference of the Episcopal Church's Diocese of Haiti and its friends.  It's often in Florida, but this year it's being held here.  It's such good news that we can now do this! I'm looking forward to seeing a few friends as well as to attending the conference for the first time myself.  This year the focus is on the New Haiti.

Anyway, there is a morning prayer service which will be in French, but whose bulletin must be bilingual (French and English on facing pages).  Here's the issue: the saint for April 11 (uncanonized, but remembered with gratitude as an example) isn't exactly high profile, and no one has translated the collect (prayer) for the day.  I found a good part of it in other places (Le Livre de la Priere Commune's prayer for missionaries, for example), but had to finish it myself.  I thought I might as well share in case anyone else wants to do something similar down the road. 


George Augustus Selwyn
Dieu éternel et tout-puissant, nous te rendons grâce pour ton serviteur George Augustus Selwyn, que tu as appelé à prêcher l’évangile au peuple de la Nouvelle Zélande et de la Mélanésie et de poser les fondations pour l’accroissement de ton Eglise dans de nombreux pays. Suscite dans ce pays et partout ailleurs des hérauts de ton évangile, messagers de ton royaume, afin que ton Eglise proclame l’insondable richesse du Christ notre Sauveur. Lui qui vit et règnes avec toi et le Saint-Esprit, un seul Dieu maintenant et toujours.  Amen.

Here is the original prayer from Holy Women, Holy Men: Celebrating the Saints (2009), p. 323

George Augustus Selwyn
Almighty and everlasting God, we thank you for your servant George Augustus Selwyn, whom you called to preach the gospel to the people of New Zealand and Melanesia, and to lay a firm foundation for the growth of your church in many nations. Raise up in this and every land evangelists and heralds of your kingdom, that your church may proclaim the unsearchable riches of our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holly Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Readings for the day:
    Genesis 12:1-4
    Psalm 28:7-11
    Ephesians 2:11-18
    Matthew 10:7-16

If you're interested in this man, here is a page full of links (below).  Personally, I think he must have been interesting, and I am most impressed with his learning Maori on the way there.  I'm still working on understanding and speaking Creole, and it's been a year and a half now (improving, though!).  He also is one of the few who seems to have been able to minister to both sides during the ten year war between the English and the Maori, which can't have been simple. Thanks be to God there are some who can do so. May God give us more such people.

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