10 October 2022
Praying in Ordinary Time with USPG:
Monday 10 October 2022
The Calendar of the Church of England in Common Worship today (10 October 2022) remembers Paulinus, Bishop of York, Missionary (644), with a Lesser Festival, and Thomas Traherne, Poet and Spiritual Writer (1674).
I have a meeting later this morning about a local, church-based charity. But, before today gets busy, I am taking some time this morning for reading, prayer and reflection.
During the last two weeks, I was reflecting each morning on a church, chapel, or place of worship in York, where I stayed in mid-September. This week I am reflecting on the windows in one of those churches: All Saints’ Church, North Street, York.
In my prayer diary this week I am reflecting in these ways:
1, One of the readings for the morning;
2, A reflection on the windows in All Saints’ Church, North Street, York;
3, a prayer from the USPG prayer diary, ‘Pray with the World Church.’
Paulinus was born in the latter part of the sixth century, probably in Italy, and was among the second group of monks sent by Pope Gregory to England to assist Augustine in his work. He went with the party that accompanied Ethelburga to Northumbria, where she was to marry the king, Edwin, who subsequently took his wife’s Christian faith as his own.
Paulinus built the first church in York in about the year 627 and was the first Bishop of York. He travelled much north and south of the Humber, building churches and baptising new Christians. He had to flee for his life, however, when Edwin was killed in battle by the pagan king, Penda of Mercia, and Paulinus became Bishop of Rochester. He died on this day in the year 644.
Matthew 28: 16-20 (NRSVA):
16 Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. 17 When they saw him, they worshipped him; but some doubted. 18 And Jesus came and said to them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.’
‘The Pricke of Conscience’ window, All Saints Church, York (Part 2):
All Saints’ Church, North Street, York, which I described in this prayer diary recently (28 September 2022), is said to be ‘York’s finest mediaeval church.’ It dates from the 11th century and stands near the River Ouse.
The church has an important collection of mediaeval stained glass, including ‘The Pricke of Conscience’ window, depicting the 15 signs of the End of the World; the window depicting the Corporal Works of Mercy (see Matthew 25: 31ff); the Great East Window, originally in the north wall; the Lady Chapel Window; the Saint James the Great Window; the Saint Thomas Window; and the Coats-of-Arms window.
All Saints’ Church, on North Street, York, is known particularly for the early 15th century window depicting ‘The Pricke Of Conscience’ or ‘The Fifteen Signs of Doom’ Window, which I am looking at on these three days (Sunday, Monday and Tuesday).
This remarkable stained-glass or painted window is near the east end of the north aisle in All Saints’ Church. It consists of three lights with six image panels in each light, totalling 18 panels. There is light tracery also above.
The window dates from ca 1410-1420 and is based on an anonymous 14th century Middle English poem, ‘The Pricke of Conscience.’ The poem describes the final 15 days of the world, each panel contributing to a paraphrase of the poem.
‘The Pricke of Conscience’ window consists of three lights with 18 panels arranged in six equal rows. I was looking yesterday at the bottom-most row of three panels that features the donors of the window. The other 15 panels depict the signs of the end of days – the countdown to the Apocalypse or Last Judgment of humanity.
These 15 panels in five rows illustrating the poem. Reading from left to right, and from bottom to top, the first nine panels illustrate the physical destruction of the earth, while the last six panels in the window are concerned with ‘The death of All Living Things and the Fate of Humanity.’
Theis morning I am looking at the first nine panels depicting the physical destruction of the earth. I plan to look the last six panels in the window, concerned with ‘The death of All Living Things and the Fate of Humanity,’ tomorrow (Tuesday).
The first nine panels illustrating the physical destruction of the earth, reading from left to right, and from bottom to top are:
Panel 1, the First Sign: The Sea Rises to the Height of the Mountains;
Panel 2, the Second Sign: The Sea Levels fall so low that they can barely be seen;
Panel 3, The Third Sign: The Sea returns to Normal;
Panel 1, the Fourth Sign: The Fish make a Roaring Noise;
Panel 2, the Fifth Sign: The Sea Burns;
Panel 3, The Sixth Sign: Plants and Trees exude a Bloody Dew.
Panel 1, the Seventh Sign: Buildings Fall Down. This includes a depiction of the spire of All Saints’ Church, then newly-built but seen here to be falling.
Panel 2, The Eighth Sign: The Earthquake continues with Rocks and Stones sinking together, all at once;
Panel 3, The Ninth Sign: The Earthquake hits Every Country.
Did you notice the figure of a man, repeated, on each side of the top three panels? He indicates the scenes.
Today’s Prayer (Monday 10 October 2022):
God our Saviour,
who sent Paulinus to preach and to baptize,
and so to build up your Church in this land:
grant that, inspired by his example,
we may tell all the world of your truth,
that with him we may receive the reward
you prepare for all your faithful servants;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
The Post Communion Prayer:
who gathered us here around the table of your Son
to share this meal with the whole household of God:
in that new world where you reveal
the fullness of your peace,
gather people of every race and language
to share with Paulinus and all your saints
in the eternal banquet of Jesus Christ our Lord.
The theme in the USPG Prayer Diary this week is ‘Day of the Girl Child.’ This theme is introduced this morning by the Revd Benjamin Inbaraj, Director of the CSI-SEVA department, which runs the Church of South India’s social ministries.
The USPG Prayer Diary invites us to pray today (World Mental Health Day) in these words:
We pray for mental health workers and everyone who is struggling with mental health issues. May we all feel comfortable to discuss our mental health and to seek help when we need to.
Scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicised Edition copyright © 1989, 1995, National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. http://nrsvbibles.org
AB Barton, A Guide to the Church of All Saints, North Street, York (York, nd, post-2000).
Mary Chisholm, ‘All Saints’ Church, York: Pricke Of Conscience Window – Morality In Stained Glass 15th-C Style,’ Exploring Building History, <https://www.exploringbuildinghistory.co.uk/all-saints-york-pricke-of-conscience-window-morality-in-stained-glass-15th-c-style/> [Accessed 5 October 2022].
EA Gee, ‘The Painted Glass of All Saints’ Church, North Street, York’, Archaeologia 102 (1969), pp 158-162.
‘Pricke of Conscience Window’, The Stained Glass of All Saints, All Saints’ Church, North Street, York <https://www.allsaints-northstreet.org.uk/stainedglass.html> [accessed 5 October 2022].
Roger Rosewell, ‘The Pricke of Conscience of the Fifteen Signs of Doom Window in the Church of All Saints, North Street, York’, Vidimus, Issue 45 <https://vidimus.org/issues/issue-45/feature/> [accessed 5 October 2022].