Ok—you asked for it…
One of the purposes of this site is to advocate for liturgically grounded Christian spirituality. Being in the Anglican tradition—particularly the strand that appreciates our catholic and Benedictine roots—that means celebrating the balance of the Mass and the Office. Had I been born in an early time, I imagine I might have been an advocate for the Parish Communion movement that pushed for more common celebration of the Eucharist. I wasn’t, though. With the ’79 American BCP restoring the Eucharist as the normative Sunday liturgy, things (in the States at least) have swung the other way and many current Episcopalians—espeically those not native to the tradition—are unfamiliar with the Daily Office, what it is, and why it matters if we and our parishes do it.
In that vein, I’m inviting submissions of propaganda for the promotion of the Daily Office. I’m thinking of something basic—one page, front & back—that can be handed out, put in a tract rack, discussed, used for a Sunday School/Adult Ed class, etc.
As these come in, I’ll note them here and post them on the Promoting the Daily Office page on the side-bar to maintain a repository of possibilities for printing, replication, and use in YOUR parish.
And while I’ve thrown around the word “Anglican” a couple of times, let’s not forget that the Office belongs to the whole Church and all of the Western Christian traditions have it in their ancestry. Yes, even you Lutherans… Submissions are welcome from all!
Nice idea. I might give it a try, myself, even. ;-)
Another thing that might be useful is some places one can go to see the offices done well. For example, visiting the Julian’s could give one a more visceral understanding of how it all holds together than one is likely to be able to get from reading through the liturgy.
HOWEVER, if you start suggesting retrogressing and REPLACING Sunday Mass with Solemn High Morning Prayer (as Paul Zahl did when he was at Birmingham, Alabama Cathedral), I shall immediately produce an opposing tract-rack piece — suggesting that Morning Prayer should always PRECEDE early Mass on Sundays!
You see, I WAS with the “Parish Communion Bunch” away back then (although a bit more stuffy and never as “folksy” as most of them were).
You don’t have to worry about that, Father… While I’ve been to quite a number of Solemn Evensong & Benediction services, I’ve never actually seen a Solem High Morning Prayer. M has, though–she used to sing at them at the cathedral in Birmingham when Zahl was there.
Jon, my favorite parish to point to is St. Mary the Virgin, Times Square. Every day the Office is said without fail alongside a full complement of Masses. As far as the rector knows, they’re the only parish in North America that maintains the full round.
Ooh! Ooh! I, too, might go for this.
Whoops! Maybe I posted my comment in the wrong space? I posted on promoting the daily office.
You know Derek I think you need to develop a retreat/weekend presentation and take it on the road… would be a nice project for you and Mother M together.
Well, I’ve been tentatively approached about leading a quiet day here in the area and if so it would focus on the Psalms and Office. No word on whether it’s actually going to happen, though…
Geez…did you have to post a call for papers during Holy Week???? ;-)
I’m in, of course, but it may be a while.
I don’t have much time right now…but I promise that I will distribute the fruits of this work in my parish!
Grace and Peace,
With permission of course. ;-)
Joe, distribution is the point!
I’ll take this opportunity to point you all to the Creative Commons licenses. The things that I produce here and the PDFs on various pages are all under the by-nc-sa license.
You might consider cribbing something from Martin Thornton’s book “Christian Proficiency.” He has a great chapter on the balance between Eucharist and Daily Office. It’s really too bad this book is out of print.
I’m not familiar with that book–thanks for bringing it to my attention!