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Archive for the ‘Lectionary’ Category

Nahumite Devotions

ninevah

Destruction of Ninevah

A couple months ago, our class leader urged me to build a habit of reading scripture daily. So, being a good churchman, I went to straight to the lectionary for my regular course of bible reading. Not surprisingly, I was referencing the 1943 lectionary which is inserted in American 1928 Prayer Books after the same date (see the certificate given after title page). Interestingly enough, for the Eleventh Sunday in Trinity, the Book of Nahum was assigned for the Evening Lesson(s). What shocked me was the wrathful, even imprecatory, language of Nahum’s prose. The selection alarmed me given the usual ridicule of the 1928 American BCP being ‘liberal’. That charge might be better pressed against the 1940 hymnal, yet in continuing Angilcan churches both books are normally found tucked together behind pew benches. But, I’d like to debunk the earlier objection, namely, the American 1928 BCP as a ‘liberal’ book, starting with Nahum’s presence in the lectionary and how penitentialism restored in our devotions by secondary texts, if necessary.    (more…)

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Ascension Day

Christ’s Rapture

When the Common Prayer Book is affirmed as a standard for Anglican faith, it is usually understood as including the short catechism, divine offices, sacraments, and preface. But, often passed over is the lectionary. The lectionary, especially when coupled with the collects and readings) is perhaps the richest fount for Anglican doctrine as it provides the verses by which we are to understand or unlock scripture. In otherwords, the lectionary is a hermeneutical compass unlike any other, and it is often overlooked.

However, with every prayer book revision, the lectionary has also been modified, yet rare are the studies on successive lectionaries as an evaluation would require consideration of an enormous volume of material. The reintroduction of the ecclesiastical year (even with most readings organized in an expository framework) especially makes this project formidable. That said, the problem is significantly reduced if the lectionary of various BCP’s are considered for those Holy Days historically found in the ‘Table of Feasts’. That leaves a sample of about thirty readings each taken one-by-one. My hope is to cover these thirty festivals over a casual course of three years, starting with Ascension Day as the first of many micro-studies which, once added together, can perhaps evaluate the good behind our several lectionary revisions, especially what the 1928 BCP contributed. (more…)

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