Memorial Days. A LMIGHTY God, our heavenly Father, in whose hands are the living and the dead; We give thee thanks for all those thy servants who have laid down their lives in the service of our country. Grant to them thy mercy and the light of thy presence, that the good work which thou hast begun in them may be perfected; through Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord. Amen .
Hear the Ascension-tide Evensong Broadcast on BBC Radio 3 from Lincoln Cathedral this past Sunday. Lovely! You can hear it by going here . Image: http://www.stmatthewsnj.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2006/05/Ascension.jpg
I appreciate the idea of leading a congregation through the liturgy of one's church in an explanatory way so as to make them feel more welcome and to simply assist them. If I had a congregation that was full of unchurched people, I would do at least a little of it for a while, especially being sure people knew where we were to be in the Prayer Book. But otherwise it is not a good idea. To begin with, plenty of neighbourliness can be expressed as people help newcomers follow along. The priest need not do it. Secondly, people should expect to have to "come up to speed" with a cultural phenomenon with which they are not familiar. They do in everything else. But especially I do not think it should be done because of the destraction. A sanguine, talkative priest can wind up spending more time explaining what is being done than actually doing it. I find a lot of this kind of problem in some presbyterian churches, by the way (to address my presbyterian friends). The different s
In the four Books of De Imitatio Christi by Thomas a'Kempis, one is dedicated to Holy Communion. It should be read by all. Here is an interesting excerpt: Any devout person may at any hour on any day receive Christ in spiritual communion profitably and without hindrance. Yet on certain days and times appointed he ought to receive with affectionate reverence the Body of his Redeemer in this Sacrament, seeking the praise and honor of God rather than his own consolation. For as often as he devoutly calls to mind the mystery and passion of the Incarnate Christ, and is inflamed with love for Him, he communicates mystically and is invisibly refreshed. Be neither too slow nor too fast in celebrating but follow the good custom common to those among whom you are. You ought not to cause others inconvenience or trouble, but observe the accepted rule as laid down by superiors, and look to the benefit of others rather than to your own devotion or inclination. What I like about this is the focus
"I have always been comforted by this thought, that whatever I may forget in my own private prayers, as long as I pray the Lord's Prayer I have at any rate covered all the principles." D. M. Lloyd-Jones.