The Liturgy of St. Tennor

The Liturgy of Saint Tennor is the most basic form of mass celebrated by the Hammerite Order, and part of the liturgical portion of the Book of the Nail in its current form. It is said to have been composed by the revered St. Tennor, who compiled the teachings of Jeremyn and the rudimentary rites of the primitive Order into a more elaborate format. It was usually recited from memory by the High Priest and his assistants. Variations of this rite are used during, funerals, weddings, etc. Masses dedicated to other Saints, such as Edgar and Aaron are also performed on specific festival days; they consist of the main structure of the present one, but with substantial additions from the works of those saints.

Karras and the Mechanists later used this ritual as a basis for their own liturgy, but simplified it, altering it in conformity with their religion, and purging what they called "superstitious ritualism" for a greater focus on doctrine and ideological preaching. It was to be added, in its 'reformed' version, in the New Scripture of the Master Builder, but the latter was never finished.

The Liturgy

High priest facing altar

Hail to the Master Builder in the heavens. And on earth peace to his faithful servants.

Oh most stalwart and able Master Builder, who residest above in the great unflawed building, unmade by human hands, look down upon Thy humble servants as we endeavour to serve Thee and fortify the stones of Thy temple. Strengthen, O Master Builder, our weakness through hammer and nail, giving us a firm foundation, so that we may administer the holy mystery which has been given for the renovation and salvation of our degraded and ruined foundations, through the mercies of Thy spirit which governeth all.

Prayer while burning incense: Sacred fire of the forge, purging the dross of matter, by thy power let this be an acceptable sacrifice, a holy offering to our God and Builder.

Pause. Then as the smoke rises: O Master Builder, accept this incense as an odour of a sweet smell, and make fragrant the evil odour of our soul and body, and forge us in Thine imperishable fire.

Descending, he shall salute the Hammer, saying this prayer before the altar:

Blessed am I, Builder, that I may do the work Thou choosest me to do. Blessed is the nail that Thou askest me to strike, and blessed is the heathen when he receiveth the grace of my hammer. Plumb and plane, fire and forge, purify my spirit and banish from me all sin and dross.

And after the proclamation:

Thee, O Master Builder, we beseech and entreat, perfect with us Thy grace, and pour out through our hands Thy gift, the strength of Thy divinity. May it be to us for the rectification the offences of Thy people, striking down Thy righteous hammer of discipline on heretics and unrepentant sinners, and bringing all to Thy righteousness, O Lord of all.

Assistants: Bow your heads.

The High priest says:

O Master Builder, Thine is the Holy Hammerite Order, inasmuch as Thou, through the intercession of Thy saintly forgers, didst build our holy fellowship; and from the grace of Thy wisdom, who is indeed of one nature with Thy glorious divinity, are granted the degrees of the true Hammerite ordination; and through Thy clemency Thou didst vouchsafe, O Lord, to make our weakness spiritual members in the great body of Thy Holy temple, that we might repair the crumbling beams of our fellow man. Now, O Builder, perfect Thy grace with us, and pour out Thy gift through our hands: and may Thy mighty hammer of protection, and the clemency of Thy divinity be upon us, and upon the people whom Thou hast chosen for Thyself. For indeed, the Hammer is the most blessed of all the Builder's works: ‘Tis both a tool for building, and a weapon against thy foes.

(Aloud.) And grant unto us, O Builder, through Thy clemency, that we may all together, and equally every day of our life, please Thy divinity, and be worthy of a place as stones in Thine edifice, and sturdy beams in Thy holy temple evermore.

Assistants ascend to the altar, sprinkle with holy water and say: Let those who serve the Trickster depart hence, forthwith, from this most holy place, ere the Builder strike ye down!

And the High priest continues. The Assistant places the chalice upon the altar. The High priest crosses his hands, and says:

We offer praise to Thy glorious Hammer at all times and forever.

May thy Saints, who died for our sake, and commanded us to honour them in Thy name, themselves attend us in this rite which we perform for Thy glory. Most especially thy Martyrs who were slain at the hands of heathens.

Laid are the renowned holy and life-giving mysteries upon the Builder’s altar evermore.

The High priest draws near to celebrate, and thrice bows before the altar, the middle of which he kisses, then the right and the left side of the altar; and bows to the Book of the Nail, and says:

Bless us, O Lord Builder. Pray for me, my fathers, brethren, and master forgers, that the Builder may grant unto me the capability and power to perform this service to which I have drawn near, and that this oblation may be accepted from the hands of my weakness, for myself, for you, and for the whole body of the Holy Hammerite Order, through His grace and mercies forever.

People: May the Builder listen to thy prayers, and be pleased with thy sacrifice, receive thy oblation, and honour thy priesthood, and grant unto us, through thy mediation, the pardon of our offences, and the reparation of our natures, through His sacred Hammer forever.

Presently he bows at the other side, uttering the same words; and they respond in the same manner: then he bows to the altar, and says:

Master Builder, Lord of all, be with us through His Hammer forever.  

And bowing towards the Assistant, who is on the left, he says:

Master Builder of all, confirm thy words, and secure to thee peace, and accept this oblation from my hands for me, for thee, for the whole body of the Holy Hammerite Order, and for the entire world, through His grace and mercies for ever.

He kneels at the altar, and says quietly:

Chisel us in Thine image, that we may be worthy to stand before Thee.

He rises, and says this prayer quietly:

We thank Thee, O our Lord Builder, for the abundant riches of Thy grace to us: for when we were cold, Thou taught of hearth and roof-beam. When we were hungry, Thou taught of pot and cauldron. When we were beset by foes, Thou taught of spear and shield. Thy hammer pounds the nail, holds the roof-beam. Thy hammer strikes the iron, shapes the cauldron. Thy hammer in our hands, unto our foes.

Assistants: Hearken ye, unto the holy scriptures

Assistants open the Book of the Nail, & priest picks an appropriate chapter and verse to read. A sermon on it is then read.

People: And we shall ascribe to Thee praise, glory, thanksgiving, and adoration, now, always, and forever and ever for Thy holy word which we are pleased to hear.

Priest signs himself with the sign of the Hammer, and assistants close Book of the Nail.

The Assistant says: Let us submit to the Builder’s forge, enflaming ourselves in prayer.

High priest says this prayer quietly:

O Lord, Master Builder, help my weakness through Thy power, Thy Hammer let is strike the nails in the foundations of my ruin, that as a mighty watchtower I may stand proudly before Thee, being  worthy of offering before Thee this oblation, as for the common restoration of all, and to the praise of Thy Hammer.

The High priest says this prayer quietly:: - O St. Tennor, do Thou intercede for us before that unflawed building wherein our Master and Lord doth abide .

High priest rises up and uncovers the cup, taking away the veil with which it was: he blesses the incense, and says a canon with a loud voice:

Blessed is the nail that Thou askest me to strike, and blessed is the heathen when he receiveth the grace of my hammer.

He signs the cup, faces people: Lift up your minds:         

People: They are towards Thee, O Master Builder, forger of all life.

High priest: The oblation is offered to our Builder, the Lord of all.

People: It is meet and right.

The High priest puts on the incense, and says this prayer:

Master Builder, grant me an open countenance before Thee, that with the confidence which is from Thee we may fulfil this and divine sacrifice with consciences free from all iniquity and bitterness. Forge us, O Lord, into mighty pillars of strength, beams of incorruptible steel.

 People: Holy, holy, holy, Master Builder Almighty; full are the heavens and the earth of His glory.

The High priest quietly, taking the hammer and raising it above altar: Holy, holy, holy art Thou, O Master Builder. As this hammer drives nail into wood, taming rough hewn wood, making of nail a useful thing, so shall the Builder use the faithful, moulding them into forms desirable, using them to tame wild matter, causing them to join together the foundations of our world in joyous, regimented harmony.

Now, I pray, may Thy fire be with us, O Builder; purge away our impurities, and sanctify our lips; unite the voices of our insignificance with the sanctification of Thy Saints. Glory be to Thy power, because Thou hast associated the earthly with the heavenly, the stone of earth and the fire of heaven.

The High priest says quietly, in a bowing posture: And with those heavenly powers we give Thee thanks, even we, Thine insignificant, pitiless, and feeble servants; because Thou hast granted unto us Thy great Hammer and the knowledge to build a life out of chaos, which cannot be repaid. Thou didst exalt our low condition; Thou didst raise our ruined state; Thou didst rouse up our mortality; Thou didst burn away our sins as dross in Thy forge; Thou didst enlighten our intelligence, and Thou didst condemn the Trickster, O Master, banishing him to the darkest wilds.

And he puts on the incense with which he censes himself, and says: Sweeten, O Builder, the unpleasing rot of our wood through the sweetness of Thy love, and through it cleanse me from the stains of my sin, and forgive me my offences and sins, whether known or unknown to me.

The High priest repeats these words once and again, and at each interval kneels. He kisses the altar in the middle, and receives with both hands the upper oblation.

High priest: Praise be to Thy holy name, O Lord Builder, and adoration to Thy majesty, always and forever.  

For He is the living and life-giving fire which descendeth from heaven, and giveth life to the whole world, giving shelter and heat, turning us from savage creatures into true men and women; and they who receive it are saved by it, and do not see corruption, and live through it forever; and Thou art the antidote of our mortality, and the restoration of our rusted frame.

Praise to Thy holy name, O Lord Builder. (As above.)

Raising the cup: The precious drink is as the oil that anointeth the cogs of our beings.

The high priest traces a hammer in the air above the altar seven times, his back to the People, saying each time: Consecrate O Lord Builder, this precious drink. For the heathen may drink the inebriating mud of sin and iniquity, we the elect shall partake of Thy life-giving elixir, whereby our rust is cleansed away, and our spiritual thirst ever quenched.

The Assistants approach; he lays cup on the altar, and signs each one of them with Hammer on the forehead and both hands, saying:

Blessed be thy mind, whereby the knowledge of craft is brought forth. Blessed be Thy hands that wield the hammer and build the Temple.

Assistants: Builder bless Thee.

All return to their own place.

The High priest bows, rises and says:

Let all who have rejected the ways of the Evil one, the snares of the Woodsie demon, come forth and partake of the true Faith.

Congregation comes. Priest seals each of them on forehead and both hands, giving them to drink of the cup. This should be refilled as needed. when all have partaken, priest says:

Remember my brethren, that the garment that is moth-eaten has no longer any commercial value or good use to which it can be put; and in the same way the wood that is worm-eaten is no longer worth anything for ornamenting even an ordinary building, but is destined to be burnt in the fire. So therefore the soul also which is a prey to the attacks of the Trickster will be useless for that priestly garment. Be therefore wary of the designs of the Evil one, lest ye perish in the destructive fire made for his kind, and let that fire be held back by the holy draught ye have drunk.

Priest does sign of Hammer toward congregation: Hearken, be ye as those sorts of wood which are fragrant and not liable to rot, and which are not subject to decay from age, from without, nor to be worm-eaten, that ye may be chosen to adorn the Builder's Temple.

Go ye out into the world, preach the Builder's Word, that all may proclaim his Name. For the conversion of all the heathen and ungodly we pray, and let their temples and dens of iniquity crumble before the Builder's hammer, their false idols crumbling to dust and scattered to the four winds of forgetfulness.

May our Lord Builder, to whom we have ministered, and whom we have seen and honoured in His renowned, holy, life-giving, and divine mysteries, Himself render us worthy of the splendid glory of His kingdom, and of gladness with His holy powers, and for confidence before Him, that we may be sculpted in His image, refined in His forge, and made into holy pillars of His temple. So let it be.

People: So let it be.

All disperse.



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