Fifth Sunday after Pentecost 2011 Preparation

July 17, 2011 is the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost. I’ll be meditating on these.

Free Church Book of Common Prayer (1929)


O God, the Protector of all that trust in thee, without whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy; increase and multiply upon us thy mercy; that, thou being our ruler and guide, we may so pass through things temporal that we finally lose not the things eternal: grant this, O heavenly Father, for Jesus Christ's sake our Lord. Amen.

  • Epistle: Rom. viii, 18-23
  • Gospel: Luke vi, 36-42

A book of prayer for the church and the home (Universalist, 1866)


O God, the protector of all that trust in thee, without whom nothing is strong, nothing holy; increase and multiply upon us thy mercy; that, though being our ruler and guide, we may so pass through things temporal, that we finally lose not those things which are eternal. Amen.

  • St. Luke vi. 36.
  • Rom. viii. 31


Finding the one-year lectionary

So where do you find this one-year lectionary? Lemme tell you: that's not a question often asked on the left-hand-side of the Christian family, where there's either a value placed on the ecumenical convergence three-year lectionary or where it's a moot or alien question. It's prospering best in conservative Lutheran and breakaway Anglican circle, from what I can see. That doesn't dissuade me. (Then again, you can say the same thing about Geneva bands if you add conservative Presbyterians.)

I first look to the 1866 Universalist A book of prayer for the church and the home (Google Books) which stands in the center of the now little-known Universalist prayerbook tradition. The pastor of the First Universalist Church, Providence, Rhode Island and friend, W. Scott Axford, identifies in its collects a subtle and pervasive tenderness that, in his assessment, distinguishes Universalist liturgics. (I hope I'm not misinterpreting him, as this came from a discussion some years ago; he's quite thoughtful and precise on these matters.)

The collects -- pronounced with an emphasis on the first syllable -- are important because they synthesize and "collect up" the thoughts in the lessons.

But the fact that there's so much overlap between the one-year lectionaries means that it's useful to examine them for variations. Go back 45 years or so, and the in-use Anglican lectionaries would work, including the 1928 prayerbook that can be found on the web and for a song at many a used bookstore. I also consult the not-online Free Church Book of Common Prayer (1929) which is loosely connected to British Unitarian-inspired Free Catholicism, the subject of many other blog posts. One prayer book that uses the traditional forms with modern idiom is the 1965 (Anglican) Melanesian English Prayer Book and I consult it occasionally. Then, too, is the old Church of South India worship-book, of which I have written much. Of course, the current U.S. Episcopal church has a one-year cycle of collects, and that's a big part of the one-year appeal.

Fourth Sunday after Pentecost 2011 preparation

July 10, 2011 is the Fourth Sunday after Pentecost. I'll be meditating on these.

Free Church Book of Common Prayer (1929)


O Lord, we beseech the mercifully to hear us; and grant that we, to whom thou hast given an hearty desire to pray, may by thy mighty aid be defended and comforted in all dangers and adversities; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


We beseech the, O Lord, to renew thy people inwardly and outwardly, that as thou wouldest not have them to be hindered by bodily pleasures, thou mayest make them vigorous with spiritual purpose, and refresh them in such sort by things transitory that thou mayest grant them rather to cleave to things eternal; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

  • Epistle: 1 Pet. v: 5-11
  • Gospel: Luke xv: 1-10

A book of prayer for the church and the home (Universalist, 1866)


O Lord God, who hast made glorious the name of thy Son Jesus Christ; mercifully grant us, we beseech thee, such a participation of his spirit, that we may even here possess rich measures of heavenly strength and comfort; and that hereafter we may be admitted to the full joy of his blessed presence forever and ever. Amen.

  • Same lessons.

The scope of the lectionary review

As you may know, I write the day's blog post the night before and I came home a bit tired on Monday, so the post I planned with have to be parsed out over a few days.

  1. I have been comparing the collects and "Mass readings" -- appointed Epistles and Gospels -- in several prayerbooks: American Episcopal prayerbooks from 1786 (proposed) to 1928, the Church of England 1662, the King's Chapel 1918 and 1986 (latter collects only), the 1862 Christian Worship by Unitarians Charles Osgood and Frederick A. Farley, and the Evangelical and Reformed Church lectionary (lessons only) plus references to the medieval Salisbury use and Tridentine use.
  2. I'd like to find what James Martineau used, as he was an accomplished collect writer and liturgist in his own right.
  3. Of interest, the Unitarian propers (readings and prayers) were closer to all to all the other propers -- even the medieval ones -- than the Episcopalian propers of 1979 were to earlier Episcopalian sets!
  4. None were Universalist, though I suspect there were some borrowings in those liturgies where collects were appointed by month, rather than the traditional church year.
  5. But at 10:20 p.m., after looking for such a thing for years and years, I found a set of period Universalist propers -- and it may disprove my point. Will keep you posted.