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WINTER A.D. 2010
THE ANGLICAN DIGEST
An independent voice reflecting the ministry of the faithful throughout the Anglican Communion. Printed in the U.S.A.
THE ANGLICAN DIGEST
Vol. 52, No. 4
The Anglican Digest is published four times per year by SPEAK, the Society for Promoting and Encouraging Arts and Knowledge [of the Church] at Hillspeak, Eureka Springs, Arkansas. Editor The Rev. Canon Dr. Kendall S. Harmon PO Box 2730, Summerville, SC 29484-2730 Phone (843) 821-7254 e-mail: email@example.com Managing Editor The Rev. John Dryden Burton
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THE ANGLICAN DIGEST is sent to all who request it. It is not connected to any particular institution, parish, or diocese in the Anglican Communion and is supported solely by reader contributions and advertisements. Paid ads must meet guidelines set by the Board of Trustees but do not represent endorsement by THE ANGLICAN DIGEST. Opinions or views expressed in articles and advertisements do not necessarily represent those of the Board of Trustees. ©2010 SPEAK, Inc. All rights reserved.
Shortly after I arrived at the Cathedral, a man walked in one day and asked to see a priest. He told me a tragic story of loss and disappointment. He had made one bad decision after another. He had lost his family; he had lost his job; he had come close to losing his sanity. He wanted to find God again. He wanted to learn how to pray. “Will you teach me how to pray?” he asked. “I would be honored,” I replied. I began to tell him about the different kinds of prayer: petition, adoration, confession, oblation, and intercession. I told him about the Daily Office: Morning Prayer, Noonday Prayer, Evening Prayer, and Compline. I told him about centering prayer, meditation, and other ways of praying without words. The more I talked, the more overwhelmed he looked. The energy drained from his eyes. His face actually fell. “Oh,” he said. “I was thinking more about ... well ... maybe stopping in the morning to say ‘thank you’ and then again at night to say ‘I’m sorry’.” It turns out that he was closer
Learning to Pray
to Jesus than I was! Jesus didn’t actually say much about prayer. He taught the disciples the Lord’s Prayer, of course, but most of what Jesus teaches us about prayer he teaches us through his actions. Prayer is simply part of how he responded to the concrete challenges of his daily life. When someone needed healing, Jesus prayed for healing and healed them. When someone needed feeding, he prayed for food and fed them. When someone needed forgiving, he prayed for forgiveness and forgave them. Jesus carved out time for reflective prayer. He made time to be alone with God. Sometimes he went into the wilderness; sometimes to the mountain top; and sometimes into the sea. Interestingly, the more hectic his life became, the more intentional he seemed to be about creating space for prayer. What strikes me though, is how much Jesus trusted God. He always had his feet on the ground, looking directly at whatever life presented to him. Yet, he always kept his heart open to God, listening to God’s voice for guidance. He always seemed to be at peace with himself. It is possible, Jesus reminds us, to “gain
the whole world, but lose ourselves.” (Luke 9:25) It is this trust, I think, that frees us to live our lives more fully. It lets us stand before God as children. When we are wrong, we pray for forgiveness. When we are right, we pray for humility. When we are sick, we pray for healing. When we witness the suffering of others, we pray for their freedom. The more we learn about how to do this, the more we realize that it’s really not about us. It’s about God. A friend of mine came up to me in the gym recently. “I’ve been thinking,” he said. “Would you teach me how to pray?” “I would be honored,” I replied. I asked him what he was currently doing. He said, “Nothing, really.” I suggested he start by taking a moment in the morning to say “thank you” and another one at night to say “I’m sorry.” There’s more, I assured him, but, this seems like a good place to start. As I talked, he began to look more interested. The eyes widened and his face brightened. “You know,” he said, “that makes a lot of sense.” — The Rev. George M. Maxwell, Jr., The Cathedral of St. Philip, Atlanta, Georgia
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I was. I enfolded, encompassed all. And then . . . whoosh . . .
Jesus says . . .
I grew, as you did; I was born, as you were. I came for the poor who adored me; I came for the wise who worshiped me; I came for the mighty, for the wicked who persecuted me. I was I came I am I came.
I became infinitesimal, bedded in the womb of a young girl.
here among you, here to love you, here to save you, here to free you, here in you; Love born for you, God with you, always with you.
— ©Janet Hall Shaffer, Trinity, Ft. Wayne, Indiana
At times, I see her so clearly in my mind. She’s beautiful — beautiful the way that girls are just before they start to get interested in boys. Just beautiful. Soft face, delicate fingers, wispy hair that she brushes from her cheek to behind her ear while she folds the laundry. She’s beautiful, but she doesn’t really know that yet. She doesn’t know her eyes twinkle. She doesn’t know the boy down the street notices every soft line, every color she wears, every move she makes. She has yet to own the power that comes with feminine youth. She is but a girl. At her mother’s side, she makes flat bread. Dusting her hands, pouring water over rough-milled flour, mixing in palmfuls of oil. Back and forth her hands sculpt the mass of gooey paste, at last portioning them into little balls that are rolled out and flattened. Her hands run along the smooth surface of the iron plate, until it becomes too hot to touch. She dips her fingers in the water, letting it trickle down onto the plate where it sizzles. Then she plops down the disks of dough, which heat quickly, browning in spots,
cooking out the water on the surface. She piles them in towels to keep them warm, ready for dinner. She has gone outside to get a fresh bucket of water from the well. She kicks up some dust with her sandals. Up comes the bucket from the well, and with a dipping spoon, she ladles the water into her own bucket. The first dose splashes against the bottom and comes up across her left wrist, making the hem of her cuff wet. The wind cools it so quickly that it sends a shiver up her spine. More water, the bucket becomes heavy. She leaves some room at the top where water will still splash out during the journey home. She sits at the table with her mother and father. She is engaged to a man, a good man, a carpenter. She doesn’t know when her father will let Joseph come and take her. On one hand a new life awaits her, but on the other hand she will have to say goodbye to “this.” “This” is many things. This is a set of dishes she has been washing for years, a bed she has slept on for years, a kettle she burned herself on just four years ago. This is a floor that she sweeps, a game she plays, the smell of her
ho is this man? Where has he come from, and what do his words mean? “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be a great man, and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the
he rhythm of the house settles after dinner, clothes are changed, dishes washed, the lamp is snuffed and it’s time for sleep. One day she will be the only woman of her own house. There will be her things that she gets to use the way she likes—but “this” will never be the same again. In the sixth month, a messenger named Gabriel was sent to Nazareth where she lives. She was behind her house, mending a patch in the stone fence some boys had pushed through. The messenger said to her, “Hello, Mary. You have found favor with God. The Lord is with you.” She stood there, face expressionless, saying nothing, but feeling different. Something was about to change.
father’s clothes, her mother’s hair brush. This is her mother. This is her father.
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throne of your ancestor David. He will reign over the House of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom, there shall be no end.” And there was silence. A deep silence like the silence felt in creation when the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters . . . when the earth was without form and void, and darkness covered the face of the deep. (Genesis 1:1-2)
she must ask, “How can this be?” The angel said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called the Son of God.” “Mary, I understand your fear, you are searching for proof. See your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month for her who was said to be barren. You see? Nothing is impossible with God.”
A new creation was at hand, but
he silence returns. She sees Joseph—how will she explain this to him? How will she tell this to anyone? She could be cast out of her community for this. She could be stoned, if they do not believe her.
soul magnifies the Lord, and her spirit rejoices in God. For he who is mighty has found favor with her. And all generations shall call her blessed. He has put down the mighty from their seats and exalted the humble and meek. He has come to help his servant Israel; he has remembered his promise to Abraham and his seed for ever. I see her so clearly sometimes. Her face smiles. She is so beautiful. She is the Mother of God. She is Mary. —The Rev. Alexander D. MacPhail, Beckford Parish, Emmanuel, Woodstock, Virginia
Creation hangs in the balance. The silence is penetrating. The face of God is on the waters. The earth hangs dizzy in space. Mountains shake at the thought of this answer. All life groans for the appearing of the One. And finally, she says, “Behold, the handmaid of the Lord, be it unto me according to thy Word.” Or, as one might also put it, “Let there be light.” And there was light. “The light that enlightens all people was coming into the world.” (John 1:9) The angel departed from her.
It was on Saturday and I was trying to get out the door to an enjoyable afternoon with my kids when the after-hours cell phone rang. I was on call, and my heart began to sink at the thought of a day of family recreation and leisure lost to some pastoral concern. Not that I generally mind responding to the acute needs of congregants. When a call comes announcing the hospitalization of a parishioner or some such, I— like any priest—spring into action without hesitation. But rarely are Saturday calls on the emergency phone from parishioners. More often they are requests for assistance from people in the community-at-large that easily can wait until Monday morning. With mild irritation I answered, “St. John’s after-hour phone.” “You St. John’s on top of the hill?” asked a throaty female voice. “Um, well, we’re St. John’s on an incline…” I responded. “I think you may have us confused with another church.” (Maybe I would get out of this one after all.) “Don’t matter,” she barreled on, “I’m a holy dancer. Been
dancin’ for years. I’ve danced in twenty-one churches across the Valley.” She’s calling on the emergency phone in an attempt to book an ecstatic dancing gig, I thought. My kids were waiting on the front stoop, and bile rose in my throat as I prepared to lay into her for encroaching on my Saturday. But then she took a hard right turn. “My neighbor—I prophesied years ago she’s goin’ to hell—my neighbor done put the devil in my dog.” Irritation immediately gave way to confusion. What had she said? “She’s done put the devil in my dog,” the woman repeated. “His name’s Geronimo.” There was a pregnant pause. Obviously, it was my turn to say something. “Goodness, I’m sorry about that ma’am. Have you tried talking to your neighbor?” “Ain’t no point in that,” she said dismissively. “She’s been puttin’ evil on me for years, but I’ve maintained as a holy woman. My dog now has the hell eyes.” Another pregnant pause. My face grimaced as I asked, “What can I do for you, ma’am?” “I’m calling twenty-one churches. I’m trying to dunk Geronimo so I can baptize him in
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the Holy Spirit. He keeps lookin’ at me with those hell eyes. I need twenty-one churches to pray for me. I need you to pray for me.” For the first time in the conversation I was able to respond with confidence. “Ma’am, I will surely do that…and I will pray for Geronimo too.” I hung up the phone and prayed, especially for Geronimo. — The Rev. Barkley Thompson, St. John’s, Roanoke, Virginia
This modem symbol represents the church and its many, varied “workers.” A multitude of people, each with different tasks and gifts, works to build up the body of Christ. Often, nine bees are pictured near the hive to represent the nine fruits of the Spirit (see Galatians 5:22-23).
How odd of God to come as an infant. Most days — most of the time — I yearn for God’s mighty intervention in the ways of the world. I long for the Jesus who makes a whip of cords and drives the money changers out of the temple. Of course, that desire is firmly fixed in the narcissistic conviction that I am on the right side and it won’t be my tables that will be overturned. We may all be in for some surprises. But I am drawn to the risen and victorious Christ. I don’t want to dwell overly long on the broken Jesus dying; what was for all who saw it, a death of shame and failure. I want the God of power and might to step in and fix the mess we have made of things, the messes I have made. I want God to do the things I think are good. So what is with the baby thing? The incarnation of God’s love entered into the world in helplessness, totally dependent upon others, the very others he would later die for. Even today an infant is a symbol of vulnerability. In the first century of Rome and Israel it was all the more so. Children were the ones with the least voice and the least power. A newborn was the weakest of all.
Feed My Sheep
The incarnation — the profound intrusion of God’s love into the world — comes not with trumpets of advancing armies or with shouts of triumph. The heavenly host may have sung “Alleluia,” but the only audience was a band of shepherds, poor and despised by the better parts of society. No one sat up and took notice. Nothing stopped. Herod was still King of the Jews, and in far away Rome not even a whisper was heard. It is commonplace to sentimentalize Christmas and the birth of the Christ child. The sweet baby Jesus is an appealing icon if only as a brief respite from the realities of life. I have enough reality from the evening news. There is too much need, too much conflict, too many unsolvable problems. It is nice to have a break. It is important to remember that, in the telling of the birth of Jesus, the New Testament already looks forward to his death. The swaddling clothes become a linen shroud wrapping the body for burial. The gift of myrrh was used for ministrations to the dead body. What God does for me is not to vindicate me or fix my problems or the problems I have made. Rather, God enters my life to join me in the messiness. What God
does is love me. What more powerful way could there be to say that than a child born in a stable? What is called forth is not a selfrighteous proclamation of my particular understanding of the truth. What is called forth is a response of love as vulnerable as that may be. When the risen Christ encountered Peter on the bank of the Sea of Galilee, he asked, “Peter, do you love me?” Three times Peter replied, “Yes, Lord, you know I love you,” and three times Jesus said, “Feed my sheep.” Fixing the problems of the world — the problems of separation and isolation — is our job, yours and mine. It isn’t easy, and it isn’t very neat. The reason we can do it is because we know God loves us beyond all imagination. How could we do any less? — The Very Rev. Joe Reynolds, Christ Church Cathedral, Houston, Texas
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Our thanks to Anon Y. Mouse from Walkerville, Maryland, who sent Operation Pass Along 21 vestment items. We will try to find good homes for each and every one.
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Daphne, Alabama hosted “Come and Behold Him”, a Nativity Open House in December 2009 with over 100 Nativity scenes displayed from private collections world-wide. These included unique, special créches of all shapes and sizes. The committee commissioned Katharine Nava of Fairhope, Alabama to paint her “take” of the Birth of Jesus for use in promoting the event, planned to be held each Advent season in the future. (The result, now the logo for the event, is displayed on our cover.) The result is TODA RABA YHWH - “Thank you very much God”, a 24-inch mixed media painting on wood. While Mary, Joseph, and the Infant Jesus appear prominently in the foreground with shepherds kneeling in worship, the Magi are visible on the horizon. The painting is the property of St. Paul’s.
About the Cover
One of the most vivid memories
A Window Candle
e are told in the Gospel of John “that all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God.” Therefore, we who
of my childhood is Mom lighting a candle on Christmas Eve and placing it in a window facing the street at the sun set. As she lit the candle, Mom would always remind us that the light brightly shining in the dark night was a signal to Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, letting them know they were welcome to abide in our home and hearts this night and always. As the years pass, especially at Christmas, I thank God more and more for my Mom and Dad. The effect the light of their faith had on me through their piety, heroic love, and generosity, continues to feed and deepen my faith. The entire Christian message is rooted in belief that “the true Light that enlightens every man” came into the world at a specific hour in time [not once upon a time] during the reign of Caesar Augustus, when Quirinius was governor of Syria. We Christians believe that Jesus Christ is that Light.
received a happy surprise, last week when I received a church mailing in which the pastor encouraged all parishioners, especially those with children, to set a candle [electric or battery lit] in a window facing the street at Christmas. “As the light near the tabernacle is a sign of God’s presence,” wrote the priest, “let this light in your window be a reminder that you too are a living beacon of his light intended to attract those who do not yet know the Lord Jesus.” I too ask, especially if you have children, that you set a candle in your window through the Christmas season. Tell everyone in your household what you are doing and why. Then trust the Holy Spirit to do the rest. — The Rev. Robert J. Godley, St. Barnabas, Ardsley, New York
believe are now living lamps, set aflame by the Holy Spirit, vessels of the Light. Like the candle my Mom placed on the window sill to guide the weary family seeking shelter those many years ago, so too are we called to be guiding lights in his name to those adrift in our dark and frightening world.
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Blessed art Thou, O Christmas Christ, that Thy cradle was so low that shepherds, poorest and simplest of all earthly folk, could yet kneel beside it and look level-eyed into the face of God. Blessed art Thou, that Thy cradle was so high, that the Magi, lords of learning and of wealth, could yet come to it by a Star’s pathway to hazard their wisdom’s store in Thy Baby hands.
A Christmas Prayer
This prayer was written by the Rt. Rev. Robert Nelson Spencer, Bishop of West Missouri. He was Bishop for almost twenty years beginning in 1930 or thereabouts. In fact, he ordained Fr. Foland. My father (also ordained by Bp. Spencer) always used this as the prayer before the opening hymn on Christmas Eve. — Mary Ida (Barnds) Garrard
Be this our Christmas haste, O Christmas Christ, to seek that Altar, and at this season of Thy Birth, unafraid of the Time’s complaint, may we be found kneeling still. Amen.
Blessed art Thou, that having grown to manhood and being a carpenter, Thou didst fashion a Christmas Altar like unto Thy cradle, so that all simplicity and all wisdom, all poverty and all wealth, all righteousness and all penitence for sin, might find sanctuary there.
The story of the origin of the Christmas creche rests with the very holy man, Saint Francis of Assisi. In the year 1223, Saint Francis, a deacon, was visiting the town of Grecio to celebrate Christmas. Grecio was a small town built on a mountainside overlooking a beautiful valley. The people had cultivated the fertile area with vineyards. Saint Francis realized that the chapel of the Franciscan hermitage would be too small to hold the congregation for Midnight Mass. So he found a niche in the rock near the town square and set up the altar. However, this Midnight Mass would be very special, unlike any other Midnight Mass. Saint Bonaventure (d. 1274) in his Life of Saint Francis of Assisi tells the story best: It happened in the third year before his death, that in order to excite the inhabitants of Grecio to commemorate the nativity of the Infant Jesus with great devotion, [Saint Francis] determined to keep it with all possible solemni-
What is the Origin of the Nativity Scene?
St. Francis and the Christmas Créche
ty; and lest he should be accused of lightness or novelty, he asked and obtained the permission of the sovereign Pontiff. Then he prepared a manger and brought hay, and an ox, and an ass to the place appointed. The brethren were summoned, the people ran together, the forest resounded with their voices, and that venerable night was made glorious by many and brilliant lights and sonorous psalms of praise. The man of God [Saint Francis] stood before the manger, full of devotion and piety, bathed in tears and radiant with joy; the Holy Gospel was chanted by Francis, the Levite of Christ. Then he preached to the people around the nativity of the poor King; and being unable to utter His name for the tenderness of His love, He called Him the Babe of Bethlehem. A certain valiant and veracious soldier, Master John of Grecio, who, for the love of Christ, had left the warfare of this world, and become a dear friend of this holy man, affirmed that he beheld an Infant marvelously beautiful, sleeping in the manger, Whom the blessed Father Francis embraced with both his arms, as if he would awake Him from sleep. This vision of the devout soldier is credible, not only by reason of the
sanctity of him that saw it, but by reason of the miracles which afterwards confirmed its truth. The example of Francis, if it be considered by the world, is doubtless sufficient to excite all hearts which are negligent in the faith of Christ; and the hay of that manger, being preserved by the people, miraculously cured all diseases of cattle, and many other pestilences; God thus in all things glorifying his servant and witnessing to the great efficacy of his holy prayers by manifest prodigies and miracles. Although the story is long old, the message is clear for us. Our own Nativity scenes which rest under our Christmas trees are a visible reminder of that night when our Savior was born. May we never forget to see in our hearts the little Babe of Bethlehem, who came to save us from sin. We must never forget that the wood of the manger that held Him so securely would one day give way to the wood of the cross. May we too embrace Him with all of our love as did Saint Francis…
Father Saunders is dean of the Notre Dame Graduate School of Christendom College. Father Saunders is also the author of Straight Answers, a book based on 100 of his newspaper articles and published by Cathedral Press in Baltimore.
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— The Rev. William Saunders
or others difficult emotions accompany thoughts of the home fires. Loved ones will not be present this year because they serve our nation on foreign shores or they have passed beyond the horizon of this life onto the shores of the next. We will miss them even in the midst of our joy. Still others gather with families who struggle to find the easy belonging we all seek. Old wounds and regrets, things done and left undone, hang in the air of family gatherings like silent, invisible barriers to intimacy, comfort and warmth.
Home and Christmas are woven together for many of us. The popular Christmas standard “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” expresses with its words and its nostalgic tones our longing to be home. Our desire to belong and to be with the ones we love knows no seasonal bounds. And yet, at Christmas we yearn for home in an especially poignant way. This can be a simple, sweet yearning. We enjoy a happy family and eagerly anticipate gathering together for our celebration of the Nativity.
Home for Christmas
And still, as Christmas dawns, our longing for home grows sharper. That’s because Christmas reveals a deep truth and extends an abiding promise. Our longing for home is, in the end, a longing for the presence of the God who made us for himself. At Christmas God himself reminds us of his promise — now fulfilled in Jesus Christ — that he will make his home with us. God became man in that Bethlehem manger long ago. He entered into a specific time and a specific place, but he also entered into our lives with their joys and sorrows, triumphs and tediums. He entered human life as he found it in order to make it what he meant it to be. When we celebrate Christmas, we remember that remarkable birth. And yet, we miss the most stirring part of the Christmas promise if we celebrate only things past. God is up to something right now. John Ortberg
says it well in his book God is Closer Than You Think. God is still in the business of coming down to earth: to this cubicle, this email, this room, this house, this job, this hospital room, this car, this bed, this vacation. Any place can become Bethel, the house of God. Cleveland, maybe. Or the chair you’re sitting in as you read these words.
home becomes a home when God comes to dwell there. Old wounds are healed, wrongs are forgiven, sorrow gives way to joy, and fear gives way to confident hope. When God makes his home with us, we can feel at home with one another. God is closer than you think. He has come home to your life, wherever you might be. —The Very Rev. Dr. Jacob W. Owensby, St. Mark’s, Shreveport, Louisiana
THE BEST MATHEMATICAL EQUATION I HAVE EVER SEEN: 1 CROSS + 3 NAILS = 4 GIVEN
courage to confess my sins against my children and the generosity of spirit to ask them for forgiveness when I know I have done wrong. Forbid that I should laugh at their mistakes or resort to shame and ridicule. Oh Lord, reduce the meanness in me. May I cease to nag. When I am out of sorts, help me please, to hold my tongue and keep my temper under control. Blind me to the insignificant shortcomings of my children and help me to see the good things they do. Give me a ready word for honest praise. Make me ever mindful
Oh God, make me a better parent. It is the most important job in the world and one for which there is no prior training. Help me to understand my children, to listen patiently to what they have to say and to respond to their questions kindly. Keep me from interrupting and contradicting them. Help me to be as courteous to them as I would have them be to me.
A Prayer for Parents
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Give me the
that they need the nurturing that comes with encouragement and appreciation for their small successes. Help me remember that my children are only children so that I may not expect from them the judgment of adults. Allow me not to rob them of the opportunity to wait on themselves, think for themselves, and to make their own mistakes. Forbid I should ever punish them as a means of ridding myself of anger and frustration. Help me to exercise reason and control. May I grant them all wishes that are sensible and give me the courage to withhold a privilege when I know it might do them harm. Make me fair and just, considerate and companionable, so they will have genuine esteem, respect, and affection for me. Make me fit to be loved and imitated by my children, for this is the greatest compliment of all.
To truly care for people requires not caring too much about their approval or disapproval.
Food for Thought
— Author unknown
JULIAN OF NORWICH: A Contemplative Biography, by Amy Frykholm, Special Correspondent for The Christian Century. In 1373, a thirty-year-old woman named Julian, living in East Anglia, England, began receiving visions — what she later called “sixteen showings” — that revealed to her the reality of the love of God. When she wrote these down, they became the first English-language book ever written by a woman. In this groundbreaking biography, Amy Frykholm recreates Julian’s world and paints a picture of a remarkable woman’s place in it. Impressively researched, beautifully imagined, and exquisitely written, Fryholm’s book is not only a marvelous read but will undoubtedly deepen the already considerable influence of this humble anchoress on contemporary spirituality.” — Paula Huston, author of “Forgiveness: Following Jesus into Radical Loving” (Item L0109, $21.99) Item L0122 (hardbound, 147 pp, notes, bibliography) $19.99 Of related interest: The Complete Julian of Norwich, by John-Julian, OJN, Item L0101 $29.99 I WILL SEE YOU IN HEAVEN, by Jack Wintz, OFM, editor of St Anthony Messenger and author of the best-selling “Will I See My Dog in Heaven?” In answer to the question, Friar Jack Wintz wants you to know — the Bible gives us many clues that we will be with our pets in heaven for eternity! This gift edition, with a special presentation page and related blessings and prayers, is an ideal book for those who already have “Will I See my Dog in Heaven?” to give to friends or relatives, and especially for those who have an ongoing relationship with a pet. In both the regular and this gift edition, Friar Jack concludes, “I have come to believe, ‘Yes, with heartfelt thanks to God’s saving love for the whole family of creation, I will see my dog in heaven’.” Item L121 (hardbound, 102 pp, gift edition) $14.99
Offering books that might not otherwise come to your notice at a discount
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THE SPIRITUALITY OF FASTING: Rediscovering a Christian Practice, by Charles M. Murphy, Director of the Permanent Diaconate for the Diocese of Portland (Maine). “This is a book about the religious discipline of fasting, its theory and practice. Food in a time of plenty and easy access to it have become major preoccupations for everyone. Advice abounds about proper diets and regimens to lose weight. Although these concerns are important, my book has a different focus and purpose. For a variety of reasons that I will explore, religious fasting has dramatically declined among Roman Catholics and many other Christians. My aim is to make it once more a central act of piety, but on a more solid basis than in the recent past. I want to show its roots in scripture and tradition and liberate it from legalisms that obscured its true meaning.” (From the Preface) Item V0090 (softbound, 114 pp, notes) $12.95 SLEEPY TIME BLESSINGS, written by Sally Anne Conan, illustrated by Nicole Rutten. Simple text and an adorable bunny baby — watched over by sweet guardian bunny angels! — make this board book a favorite bedtime story for very young children. [Ages 1-4] Item E1161 (Board Book, 12 pp) $7.99 TO EVERYTHING THERE IS A SEASON, illustrated by Jude Daly. The famous words of Ecclesiastes take on new life and meaning in a South Africa setting. [Ages 5-10] “With sunny watercolors. . . Daly interprets the familiar words . . . Soothing and enormously appealing illustrations.” – Publishers Weekly Item E0961 (Picture Book, 32 pp) $16 NOTE: Watch for our Christmas mailing for other children’s books for all ages.
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THIS WILL BE REMEMBERED OF HER: Stories of Women Reshaping the World, by Megan McKenna, an internationally known story-teller, theologian, speaker, spiritual writer, retreat leader, peace and justice activist, and world traveler. After an unnamed woman anointed Jesus’ feet, he said, “Wherever the good news is preached in all the world, this will be remembered of her.” His words continue to ring true today about women of every culture and religious tradition. [Here] is a book about hope, courage, imagination, and compassion flourishing amid the challenges of daily life. Megan McKenna looks at the inspiring lives and words of notable women from both the past and the present, holding them up as examples of how a passionate desire for justice can shine in our hearts and our deeds. Item E1162 (softbound, 213 pp) $15 Of related interest: Heart of Flesh, Joan Chittester, Item E0603, $20 The Story of Ruth, ibid, Item E0597, $20 Invincible Spirits, Felicity Leng, Item El033, $15 Are Women Human?, Dorothy L. Sayers, Item E0938, $9 THE STORY OF A SOUL, by St. Therese of Lisieux. A Paraclete Heritage Edition. Millons have been touched by St. Therese’s desire to be a humble “little flower” that would be a delight to God’s “eyes.” Her autobiography was first published in 1897 after her death at the age of twenty-four. Charming descriptions of her family, and accounts of her foibles, sense of humor, radical honesty, and intense devotion to God made the book an instant bestseller. This Paraclete Heritage Edition includes every word of the original text. Item L0124 (hardbound, 266 pp) $24 BUILDING CULTURES OF TRUST, by Martin E. Marty, Fairfax M. Cone Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus at the University of Chicago. American society, with its growing polarization, is experiencing a
profound crisis of trust, from government to mass media to educational and religious institutions. [W]hether we realize it or not ... this crisis affects us all. [In this book] eminent scholar Martin Marty proposes ways of improving the conditions for trust at what might be called the “grassroots” level. He maintains that citizens must put energy into inventing, developing, and encouraging “cultures of trust” in all areas of life — families, schools, neighborhoods, workplaces, churches, and so on. Marty particularly investigates how the often adversarial proponents of science and religion can develop a “culture of trust” in which to communicate constructively rather than pronouncing and talking past each other. In reply to those who doubt that small-scale efforts at trust-building can actually make a difference, Marty asks, What is the alternative? Item El163 (hardbound, 200 pp) $22.99 Also available by Martin Marty: The Mysteries of the Child, Item E1048, $24 FOLLOWING CHRIST: A Lenten Reader to Stretch Your Soul, by Carmen Acevedo Butcher, teacher of medieval Christianity at Shorter College in Georgia. Lent is a time of new life and fresh beginnings. In this unique reader for the season, short readings from extraordinary Christians who will open windows on your spiritual life, allowing fresh air to burst in. You will find the life-changing wisdom of Francis of Assisi, Hildegard of Bingen, Thomas à Kempis, Richard Rolle, Benedict of Nursia, Julian of Norwich, Catherine of Siena, Teresa of Avila, the Desert Fathers and Mothers, and others. Because each was a person of fervent life and passionate prayer, their words reveal how our waiting on God, and seeking God’s will, leads to a life of meaning and joy. Item L0114 (softbound, 210 pp, pocket size) $16.99 (for ordering information see next page)
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married daughter reinstituted a family tradition. She obtained her grandmother’s special Christmas cookie recipe and invited everyone to her home for baking and decorating sugar cookies and then sharing dinner. I watched with pleasure as she mixed the dough carefully, placed it in the refrigerator to cool, rolled it between waxed paper, and then invited each of us to cut out our preferred shapes. After she had baked them, we decorated them with her grandmother’s other special recipe — the yummiest icing ever. Her whole house warmed during the process. many times our family has done this together. At times we convinced the men to be actively and completely involved in the process, and the results were outstanding. The first year after my sister was married was especially memorable. Mom baked the cookies and spread them out on the table to decorate. Everyone grabbed a butter knife and the fun began. Mostly the fun was in eating the icing and poking fun
Just this past week, our newly
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at each other as we noticed our lips and teeth turning red or yellow or blue. My sister’s husband, however, was quiet, very intent on his particular collection of cookies. After some time, we returned our creations to the waxed paper on the kitchen counter so that the icing could harden and we could place them in boxes to share with friends — and our own tummies, of course. t was then that our true artist was revealed. My sister’s husband had decorated anything but the average cookie. In some mysterious way, he had re-created the shape of the confection before him. If he had a Santa shape to decorate, it had become a duck. If he had an angel shape, it was a cowboy. If he had a star shape, it was a space ship. It was the most original and hilarious sight imaginable. We laughed until we cried.
It brought back memories of the
od brings us into the world in many shapes and sizes. Some of us are Santa shaped, some snowman shaped, some candy cane shaped. Our particularity is a gift from the Creator. It matters nothing to God if we are tall or small, stout or thin, brilliant or dull.
What matters is that we turn our hearts and minds and wills over to the One who is with us always, who loves us beyond measure, who comes into our world and into our hearts over and over, offering a place of rest within us. C.S. Lewis once said that God does not love us because we are good. Instead, God will make us good because God loves us.
oon we will celebrate once again the miracle of the birth of God Incarnate. We do this at a particular time, on a special day, in a traditional observance. It is a wonderful time of year, filled with comforting memories and future promises. However, we cannot miss the fact that the Incarnation of God is not just one moment in time. The birth of Christ happens always, in us and through us and among us, changing our interior cookie shapes, offering us peace and hope. God is eternal, and the gift God offers to us, the gift of birth in the life of Christ, is offered to us completely, eternally, unreservedly — forever. — The Rev. Dcn. Kitty Davis, St. James, Wilmington, North Carolina
of Isaac Watts (1674–1748) and continued with Charles Wesley (1707-1788) and Philip Doddridge (1702–1751.) But, as has been pointed out in articles preceding this one, they were not used in the worship of the Church of England. The only congregational singing that was authorized by the Book of Common Prayer was the singing of Psalms, virtually always in metrical versification. Watts and Doddridge were both Non-conformists — the term used since the Act of Uniformity of 1662 to mean any person or group practicing Christianity outside of the Church of England. This term covered primarily Presbyterians, Congregationalists, Baptists, Quakers, and later Methodists. So far as this exploration of the evolution of hymnody is concerned, Presbyterians and Congregationalists can be excluded because they (being Calvinistic) allowed the singing of exclusively Psalms, like the Established Church; and Quakers more so since they practiced “silent meeting” which meant no singing.
Hymnody began with the lyrics
Hymnody Creeps Into The Church of England
Watts and Doddridge were, in fact, both Baptists, and wrote their hymns for their Baptist meetings. Wesley, on the other hand, was a priest in the established Church of England; but his hymns were written for meetings outside of Sunday liturgy, on weekdays and in homes, shops, or even outdoors, by the people who became known as Methodists. (Curiously, the first hymn to gain official approval for use in the Church of England was Wesley’s “Hark, the herald angels sing,” but it occurred in an underhanded way. The text of the hymn was included in a 1760 reprint of Tate and Brady’s New Version of Metrical Psalms, which was the standard song-book for the Church of England and therefore bound together with the Book of Common Prayer. It is not known who arranged this or how; but other than this one exceptional case, metrical Psalmody remained the only officially-sanctioned music for the people to sing in church.) new generation of writers, born between 1725 and 1751, then began producing lyrics for singing. Some of them, like Watts and Doddridge, worked in and
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the publication in 1787 of John Rippon’s A Selection of Hymns from the Best Authors, Intended to Be an Appendix to Dr. Watts’ Psalms and Hymns. Rippon (1751–1836) was a Baptist preacher but not a writer of hymns. Whereas most collections of hymns (in English, that is) had contained the work of a single author like Watts’ Psalms of David Imitated (1719), Rippon’s Selection is an anthology like what we recognize as a hymnal today. The best known work in the Selection is unquestionably “How Firm a foundation” (the favorite hymn of Andrew Jackson, Robert E. Lee, Theodore Roosevelt, and Woodrow Wilson!), but its author unfortunately remains anonymous, identified by Rippon only by the initial “K.” But the most creative hymnwriters of this generation were
But a new trend was begun in
for Nonconformist congregations, especially Baptists. Edward Perronet (1726–1792), although he was the son of an Anglican priest, was active in the Methodist movement and greatly admired by the Wesley brothers. He is best known for his hymn “All hail the power of Jesus’ name.”
Anglicans, and (unlike the Wesley’s) doing their significant work within the established church. John Newton’s (1725–1827) story is well-known: seaman, slave-trader, sometime slave himself, but then converted and ordained to the Anglican priesthood, and mentor of William Wilberforce. While he was curate of the parish of Olney (1764–1779), he collaborated with one of his charges, the poet William Cowper (1731–1800) in writing and publishing Olney Hymns for use in the parish. Newton is remembered above all for his autobiographical hymn “Amazing Grace,” but is also represented in the Hymnal 1982 by “How sweet the name of Jesus sounds” and “Glorious things of thee are spoken.” His friend Cowper (pronounced “cooper”) was an important poet, a precursor of the Romantics. Three of his hymns are found in our hymnal: “Sometimes a light surprises,” “God moves in a mysterious way,” and “O for a closer walk with God.” Newton and Cowper seemed content to use their hymns in the
Olney parish and later in London where Newton became a rector. But their younger contemporary, Augustus Toplady (1740–1778), vicar of Broad Hembury in Devon, not only wrote and published hymns — Psalms and Hymns for Public and Private Worship in 1776 — but by the very title he challenged the ecclesiastical establishment to admit the singing of hymns into liturgical use. In it is to be found “Rock of Ages, cleft for me,” supposed to have been composed as he sheltered in a rocky glen from a violent storm. In spite of his strict Calvinist convictions, he actively campaigned for the Anglican church to include hymns in its liturgies: “…there is the strongest reason to believe that the best Christians in all ages have been hymn-singers. Moreover, the singing of hymns is an Ordinance, to which God has repeatedly set the Seal of his own presence and power…” (from the Preface to his book). Some 40 years after his premature death, in the 1820s, that goal was achieved. — Dr. Daniel Pyle, via The Angelus, Church of Our Saviour, Atlanta, Georgia
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any Episcopalians have read with affection and recognition the “Mitford” novels by Jan Karon. We have seen our clergy and ourselves described there with reality and also esteem. There is another, much earlier book along Mitford lines. It has taken forever to catch up with me. Or rather, I have taken forever to catch up with it. This book is entitled Men and Brethren and was published in 1936. It was written by James Gould Cozzens, who became famous, 20 years later, as the author of By Love Possessed, a literary sensation of 1950s America. Men and Brethren tells the story of an action-packed weekend in the life of an Episcopal clergyman in New York City. This is the Rev. Ernest Cudlipp, vicar of St. Ambrose Chapel on the East Side of Manhattan. Mr. Cudlipp — it was a time when Episcopal ministers were still mostly addressed as “Mr.” — is an experienced priest, aged 45, who leads the “mission-chapel” (i.e., church plant) of a prominent parish just four blocks to the west, Holy Innocents. In a letter to his mother, the author said
A Most Unusual Book
James Gould Cozzens James Cozzens (1903-1978) was a life-long Episcopalian whose father was a church warden and whose mother was an active church volunteer. He was sent to Kent School, in Kent, Connecticut, where he got a six years’ dose of Anglo-Catholicism from the celebrated Father Sill, founding headmaster of Kent. After less than two years at Harvard, Cozzens dropped out of college in order to write full time. He spent almost a year living in the clergy house of a downtown “mission-chapel” of St. Thomas, Fifth Avenue. Later he was able to earn his living as a writer, but he never lost his interest in the Episcopal Church. I say his interest because he did not actually consider himself a believer. He regarded himself as “P.E.”, which is old-fashioned
that Holy Innocents was a combination of St. Bartholomew’s, Park Avenue, and St. Thomas, Fifth Avenue. In those days several of the wealthier parishes of New York built, sponsored, and subsidized so-called “mission chapels” to the poorer communities closer to the East River. St. Ambrose Chapel in the book represents one of these.
lingo for Protestant Episcopal; but as an agnostic in relation to the Christian faith itself. He once wrote that he wished he could have believed the way C. S. Lewis did. So we have an agnostic Episcopalian — there was a wide breed of such people in days of yore, believe it or not — who carried a lifelong torch for the Church. In his most famous novel, By Love Possessed, Christ Church, Brocton (PA) carries a high profile. One of the most important scenes in this best-seller is a service of Morning Prayer and Sermon conducted by The Rev. “Whit” Trowbridge, S.T.D. (General). It is a jaw-dropping description of the many personal agendas converging in a conventional liturgy performed with feeling and care in a “provincial” parish. In James Cozzens’ last novel, entitled Morning Noon and Night (1968), an Anglo-Catholic rector strives mightily to transform a conventional New England Low Church parish into a center of Catholic piety. He largely succeeds, but with personal cost to his family.
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Men and Brethren Men and Brethren takes place during the Great Depression and recounts roughly a day and a
imposes on Mr. Cudlipp! One minute he is counseling a woman about to leave her husband, the next minute he is going the extra mile to help an Episcopal monk who has gotten himself in trouble, the next minute he is sorting out a feckless, damaged, yet slightly saintly older assistant minister, the next minute he is pumping some reality into the head of St. Ambrose’s idealistic (and delightful) seminarian, the next minute he is figuring out how to help a married woman and mother who has become pregnant as the result of an infidelity, and the next minute he is helping a sick woman be received back into the Roman Catholic church of her baptism. You could not call Ernest Cudlipp an Evangelical — for he
half in the life of Mr. Cudlipp, Vicar of St. Ambrose. Mr. Cudlipp is an experienced priest over whom the wool can simply not be pulled. He understands a lot about people, and is singlemindedly devoted to the work. He is a sophisticated and well educated man, and has many friends and acquaintances outside the confines of the busy Chapel ministry.
mimics Evangelicals and regards their Jesus as somewhat anthropomorphic. You could not call Mr. Cudlipp an Anglo-Catholic — for he thinks that High Church practices are “not a response to a real need” (p. 104). But you could also not call Ernest Cudlipp a Liberal, witness these words to his seminarian: “Your friends downtown aren’t getting anywhere, Wilber. They’re sentimentalists. They don’t believe in the doctrine of original sin. Realists are the only people who get things done.” (p. 92)
What is The Rev. Ernest Cud-
lipp in theological or ecclesiastical terms? He is a realist, fed by a sense of call but impressed with the limitations placed by actuality on what he can actually accomplish through his ministry. Interestingly, he gets a tremendous amount of good done. By the end of the book, he more or less carries everything before him. Doctor Lamb One of the more memorable characters in Men and Brethren is Doctor Lamb, the Rector of Holy Innocents, Park Avenue. Doctor Lamb is one smooth clergyman.
Here is Cozzens’ description of him, from a sartorial point of view. (The novelist always refers to this character as ‘Doctor Lamb’.): “This elegance of Doctor Lamb’s never ceased to be arresting. Eyes lingered on him with pleasure and a vague surprise, baffled. Soon you realized that his good appearance was due in part at least to his clothes. Not many clergymen could afford a first-class tailor. You grew unconsciously used to a readymade quality, inexpensive and unbecoming, in what they wore. Given the finest materials and perfect fitting, clerical garb became positively novel — a dress of unsuspected grace and distinction.” (p. 61) There used to be a lot of rectors like Doctor Lamb! Brooks Brothers offered that ten per cent discount for Episcopal clergy — amenity long gone — and it made a noticeable difference. (My wife says I dress more or less all right as a clergyman...until you get to the shoes.) Now Doctor Lamb is a little more than smooth. In the novel he is well on the way to being elected a bishop. He is tolerant, orthodox, kind, wise, and prescient. And he watches his back.
Here is a bit of timeless wisdom delivered by Doctor Lamb to his vicar: “I don’t have to tell you that you aren’t in favor at Synod House. The Bishop never forgets, and never, to my knowledge, forgives. Make no mistake, Cudlipp. That’s a very efficient office up there. Don’t imagine they haven’t kept track of you.” (p. 64) There is never any question in the book that Doctor Lamb is going on to advancement in the Church. (If you read the book, you’ll like him.) Jewel of Description There are so many jewels of description in Men and Brethren that I could pile them on top of each other, making a literary treasure house of ecclesiastical observation. But I won’t do this. I’d rather have you read the book. But just to whet your appetite one more time, here is one, a jewel, which in a single paragraph articulates a question I have forever wrestled with as I read old Episcopal parish histories: “(This) was an old engraving of the first (Holy Innocents) church, downtown. The building was small and unpretentious, but it had a good spire and per-
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hat is a paragraph for the ages. It raises a question posed by almost all Victorian architecture in comparison to Georgian Classical architecture — an unanswerable but endlessly fascinating question. It is a question something like, to use today’s vernacular, “What were they thinking?” Can I simply recommend this rich and startling novel to the readers of THE ANGLICAN DIGEST? As I said, the book is actionpacked. If you have ever served in the ordained ministry or exercised lay ministry in a parish or served on a Vestry or just been interested actively in what goes on in parishes, this novel opens a window. It is 75 years old and
fect proportions. The architect... must have been an intelligent man with an instinctive feeling for modifications of the Colonial tradition in the neo-classic Federalist taste. How anyone who ever worshiped in that first Holy Innocents’ could have endured the second church — a senseless jumble of fake Gothic, erected two miles farther uptown — was one of those mysteries in which the true course and meaning of civilization doubtless hid.” (p. 116)
final note to the readers of TAD: James Gould Cozzens was a subscriber to our long-running magazine right back to Father Foland’s time. Cozzens commented often in his private journals on announcements and articles he read in the Digest. When he died in 1978, quite unmourned, he left on his writing desk, in addition to works by Johnson, Swift, Shakespeare, and Steele, at least three copies of the 1928 Book of Common Prayer. I wish I had been there to say the Burial of the Dead over his ashes, down in Rio, Florida. — The Very Rev. Dr.theol. Paul F.M. Zahl
contains a few outmoded and non-politically-correct attitudes. It also reflects an Episcopal Church that was closer to worldly privilege, as a whole, than it is today. But Men and Brethren contains much that is wise and accurate, much that is funny and knowing, much that is tragic and also overcoming. It is, in the scanning portrait of its imposedupon, sarcastic, convinced hero, an overwhelming short burst of goodness in human form. The book is available from Amazon in a 1989 paperback edition. It is inexpensive.
Guest Quarters at
Whether seeking the serenity of an Ozark mountain retreat, searching shelves in Operation Pass Along, or doing research in the Foland Library, Hillspeak’s guest quarters are ideal. Scenic vistas from atop Grindstone Mountain and the proximity of Eureka Springs draw visitors from around the world. Each unit accommodates at least four people with a fully equipped kitchen. See them online at anglicandigest.org or call for more information or to make reservations. Linens are supplied but no maid service. Plan to spend some time with us. 8-5 Central Time M-F
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A TAD reader, whom I had just met, commented, after reading the autumn “Hillspeaking,” that I don’t seem to know who I am. That may well be true. I am the son of my parents, adopted by grace into the fellowship of the Holy Ghost. Period. et me tell you three little stories: ship in Norfolk, Virginia, and headed for the Panama Canal en route to the Pacific. In the Florida Straits off Cuba, where enemy submarines prowled, our engines broke down. We were dead in the water — just at sunrise. We had to have made an unmistakable target, silhouetted against the sun, as we lay for several hours. Nothing happened, not even a false sighting. We were under way finally and caught up with the other ships that waited for us in the Canal.
(2) The replacement battalion, to which I was assigned, boarded
(1) I was already in the Marine Corps when Pearl Harbor was bombed, and I was selected for Officer Candidate School. When I was commissioned I asked to be transferred to the AmTracs, the landing vehicle, newly developed, used in WWII. The Marine Corps had a better idea — since I had considerable administrative experience, I was assigned as personnel adjutant of a replacement battalion for the 1st Marine Division — hardly a combat position. All of my OCS classmates who went to AmTracs were either wounded or killed.
(3) In 1953 I was sent to Korea as assistant Public Information Officer for the 1st Marine Division. An old friend in Florida, much older than I then, wanted to retire, and offered the trade magazine he owned and published as a gift if I could come back and take it right away. It was a most generous offer and very enticing. I sent in a letter of resignation. The Marine Corps, in its wisdom rejected it, and I stayed on with the division in Korea. Within six months the
magazine went in to bankruptcy and had to be sold. I stayed with the Corps until I retired, enjoying some remarkably pleasant and interesting duty, and after a bit of merchandising and county government experience, moved to Hillspeak.
but I do know where I am now and where I plan to be — with Patient Wife in St Mark’s Cemetery at Hillspeak. — The Trustees’ Warden
Maybe I do not know who I am,
Chris Harrison, a minister’s wife, likes to tell the story about a day she was running late for an appointment. She needed to take her 3-year-old son to the babysitter’s house; however, her car wasn’t cooperating. Finally, after several false starts, it started firing. “It’s about time,” she said with disgust. “God helped us,” the little lad said calmly. Happy with his response, his mom told him, “Thank you.” “Not me,” said the child. “Thank God.”
The Boy Had it Right
The Bible contains about 800,000 words, depending on the translation. This is about four times as many words as are found in a book of average length. Although the Bible is so long and deals with the greatest themes that can engage the human mind, its vocabulary is singularly limited. It uses only 6,000 different words, a very small number compared to the 20,000 words that Shakespeare employed while writing his plays. Not only is the Bible’s vocabulary limited, but the average word in it contains only five letters. However, many of these short words are full of the deepest meanings and are worthy of earnest study. For example, consider these five-letter words: grace, peace, faith, saved, serve, glory and Jesus. Seen on a church signboard in northern Minnesota one summer: “Sure, you can worship God with a fishing pole in your hand, but when was the last time a walleye told you, ‘Your sins are forgiven’?”
God’s Powerful Word
FOR The Foland Library: • The Book of Psalms: A New Translation, by J. J. Stewart Perowne, • any edition, except Volume 2 • Volume 1 of Systematic Theology, by Ernest Swing Williams • Volume 2 of George N. H. Peters’s The Theocratic Kingdom • Volume 1 of The Hidden Wisdom in the Holy Bible, by Geoffrey • Hodson • The Beginnings of Christianity, edited by F. J. Foakes-Jackson and • Kirsopp Lake except Volume 1 • The “American Church History” series published by the • Christian Literature Company, except Volume 7 • Volume 2 of James Latimer’s Foundation of the Christian Missions in • the British, French, and Spanish West Indies • Church and People 1289-1889, by S. C. Carpenter, published by • SPCK in 1959 FOR Operation Pass Along: • John Coburn’s Christ’s Life, Your Life • Biblical Quilts, published by Martindale • 1979 Book of Common Prayer and 1982 Hymnal combined • 1928 Book of Common Prayer and 1940 Hymnal combined • Effective Small Churches in the 21st Century, by C. S. Dudley • Entering the World of the Small Church, by Anthony Pappas • The Search for the Twelve Apostles, by W. S. McBurnie • Stephen Noll’s Angels of Light, Powers of Darkness • Francis Weiser’s A Handbook of Christian Feasts and Customs • P. S. Barnett’s Jesus and the Rise of Early Christianity • Origins of the Liturgical Year, by T. J., Talley • Pastoral Theology in the Classical Tradition, by Andrew Purves • Othmar Keel’s Symbolism of the Biblical World Any of these may be sent to: The Ministries of Hillspeak 805 CR 102 • Eureka Springs AR 72632-9705
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© THE REV. LEE SAMPSON BLOCK, 75, in Leavenworth, Kansas. A graduate of the University of the South School of Theology at Sewanee, he was ordained deacon in 1961 and priest in 1962 and served several parishes throughout Texas until 1975, when he became the rector of St. Paul’s, Leavenworth, until retiring in 1998. ©
THE REV. JOHN BLOW, 82, in Auburn, Alabama. A graduate of
THE RT. REV. HARRY BROWN BAINBRIDGE III, 70, in Easton, Maryland. A graduate of the University of the South School of Theology at Sewanee and ordained in 1967, he served parishes in Tennessee before returning to Sewanee as assistant chaplain where he served in the University Chapel. After six years at Sewanee, he returned to parish ministry as rector of St. Thomas, Monroe, Louisiana. In 1988, he became rector of Christ Church, Easton, where he served until 1998 when he became the 12th Bishop of the Diocese of Idaho. Bishop Bainbridge served on the Standing Commission on Ministry Development and as President of Province VIII.
the University of the South School of Theology at Sewanee, he was ordained deacon in 1963 and priest in 1964 and served several parishes in Alabama and Florida before retiring in 1998. THE REV. DR. EDWARD SCIPIO BRIGHTMAN SR., 96, in Temple Hills, Maryland. He held degrees from Virginia Theological Seminary, Duke, and Wesley Theological Seminary. Ordained in 1953, his ministry spanned over 55 years and included service at parishes in New York, Virginia, Nebraska, and North Carolina. In retirement, he served at St. Barnabas’, Temple Hills, for over 25 years.
THE REV. CANON ROBERT J. CENTER, age 86, in Michigan City, Indiana. A graduate of SeaburyWestern, he was ordained in 1953 and served parishes in Illinois before becoming rector of Trinity, Michigan City from 1964 until retiring in 1987. He was made an honorary canon of the Cathedral of St. James, South Bend, in 1989.
THE REV. HOLLAND BALL CLARK, 83, in Asheville, North Carolina. He served in the U. S. Marine Corps in World War II. A
graduate of the Protestant Episcopal Theological Seminary in Virginia, he was ordained to the diaconate in 1954 and priesthood in 1955. He served parishes in Georgia, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, and South Carolina before retiring in 1998. THE REV. PINCKNEY MORRISON CORSA, 87, in Mercersburg, Pennsylvania. He was ordained a priest in 1958 and served as rector at St. Anne’s, Middleton, Delaware, for eight years and at Church of the Ascension in Westminster, Maryland, for 21 years until retiring in 1988.
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© THE REV. CANON LAURENCE D. FISH II, 81, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. A graduate of the Philadelphia Divinity School and the New York Theological School, he was ordained in 1963. Canon Fish served at Church of the Holy Spirit, Bellmawr, New Jersey, from 1963-1968 and at St. David’s, Cranbury, from its founding in 1968 until retiring in 2003. He was Priest-in-Charge of St. Barnabas, Burlington, until his death. He was appointed Archivist and Historian of the Diocese of New Jersey in 1988 and made an honorary Canon of Trinity Cathedral in 2002.
© THE REV. PETTIGREW V. HAMILTON, 68, in Kerrville, Texas. A graduate of Virginia Theological Seminary, he was ordained a priest in 1970 and served parishes in the Dioceses of South Carolina, Northwest Texas, Nebraska, and Iowa. Fr. Pettigrew also worked as Chaplain at Clarkson Memorial Hospital in Omaha, Nebraska.
THE VERY REV. RICHARD M. GEORGE, 80, in Phoenix, Arizona. A graduate of Seabury-Western, he was ordained in 1955 and served parishes in Wisconsin, Illinois, and Arizona. Fr. George was dean at St. Paul’s, Peoria, from 1977-1984 and Trinity Cathedral, Phoenix, from 1991 until retiring in 1994.
© THE REV. RAYMOND C. KNAPP, 90, in Lodi, California. He served in the U. S. Army Air Forces in the Pacific Theater in World War II. He received his Master of Divinity from Philadelphia Divinity School and was ordained in 1949. He served parishes in Wyoming and in the Diocese of San Joaquin.
THE VERY REV. JOHN F. MANGRUM, 87, in Palm Beach, Florida.
After service on Okinawa in World War II, Father Mangrum graduated from Berkley Divinity School and was ordained in 1950. Over the next fifty years, he
© THE REV. LYNN C. MCCALLUM, 67, in Ft. Myers, Florida. A graduate of Virginia Theological Seminary, he was ordained in 1968. He served parishes in Washington, Virginia, and Michigan. He also served at St. Andrew’s, Toledo, Ohio, from 1998 until retiring in 2007.
THE REV. DR. GORDON MCBRIDE, 69, in Casper, Wyoming. Following a career as a professor at Salt Lake City’s Westminster College, he attended SeaburyWestern Theological Seminary and was ordained a priest in 1984. He served as rector at St. Paul’s in Tucson, Arizona, from 1985 until 1991 and at Grace St. Paul’s until 2008. As a novelist, his works include Flying to Tombstone, The Ghost of Midsummer Common, and The Vicar of Bisbee.
served parishes in Michigan and Florida including service as Dean at St. John’s Cathedral, Jacksonville. He was founding rector of St. David’s, Wellington, Florida from 1979 until retiring in 1990.
tor at All Saints’, Ivoryton, Connecticut from 1969 until 1988. Fr. Pierce served at Holy Nativity, Kinsley, in retirement.
© THE REV. DONALD B. PIERCE, 82, in Kinsley, Kansas. A graduate of Yale’s Berkeley School of Divinity, he was ordained in 1954. He served parishes in Kansas and Connecticut before becoming rec-
THE REV. EDWARD GEOFFREY ROBINSON, 86, in Boca Raton, Florida. A veteran of World War II, he graduated from Virginia Theological Seminary and was ordained in 1953. He served churches in Wyoming from 1953 1961. After residency at St. Luke’s, Houston, Texas, from 1962 to 1964, he was full-time Chaplain at Coler Memorial Hospital, Roosevelt Island, New York City, until retiring in 1989.
THE REV. DR. JAMES EDWIN PIPPIN, 71, in Elkton, Maryland. A graduate of Virginia Theological Seminary, he was ordained in 1972 and served parishes in Maryland, South Carolina, and Virginia before retiring in 2004. Fr. Pippin was president of the Standing Committee in the Diocese of Easton. He also served as State Police Chaplain in Easton, Maryland for nine years.
Rest eternal, grant unto them O Lord, and let light-perpetual shine upon them.
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What is the greatest sin? That’s a question which theologians love to debate. In my thinking the greatest sin is a life not fully lived. And if that is the case, then the pressure is on the older we get. “I go to so many funerals these days,” a neighbour once said to me, “and they’re all my friends.” With less of life to look forward to, the past comes into sharp relief. “Time running out now and the soul unfinished, And the heart knows this is not the portrait it posed for,” laments R. S. Thomas in his poem, Self-Portrait. Growing older brings a unique set of challenges: frustration, failing health, less energy and decreasing mobility. But old age doesn’t have to be a grim affair of shrinking horizons. New opportunities in retirement often present themselves, and modern medical care and good health allow a quality of life vastly superior to what was possible even twenty years ago. As we grow older we are confronted with a choice: to live in the past and grow resentful at what we have lost; or to live now, accepting the inevitable loss of energy and recurrent weariness,
Old Age and Contentment
but feeding off happy memories with thankfulness for all that has been. So much depends on our attitude to life. I remember a lunch with friends in Cornwall. An elderly neighbour came. At the age of ninety-two he tottered in on two sticks, but otherwise was remarkably spry. At the end of lunch our host escorted him to the door. “Well, take care, Bill,” he said. Quick as a flash the old boy spun round, “I’m fed up with people telling me to take care. What I say is ‘Take risks!’ In fact that’s how I end all my letters these days – Take risks.” The inevitability but unpredictability of death evokes a kaleidoscope of human responses ranging from earthiness, denial, bravura, recognition, fear, to resigned dignity. The great French Jesuit, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, saw old age, illness, and even mental confusion, as opportunities to prepare him for the biggest challenge of all: the final surrender into the arms of God in death. Thinking about death can be a grisly, morbid affair, but I find it sharpens my hold on life and makes me determined not to fritter away my time on trivia. It makes me focus on some important questions:
• Am I making the best of my life? • Am I living in a way that is in accord with my conscience? • What do I really want? Above all, I don’t want to end up like Lady Macbeth: “Nought’s had, all’s spent, where our desire is got without content.” I’ve been ordained for over 30 years now, and during that time it’s been my privilege to be with a number of people as they died. Some were frightened not of annihilation, but of absurdity. Death sealed for them the emptiness of a life not fully lived. Death came too soon, before they could make sense of their life, before they could make one last attempt to give it meaning. They became vulnerable to attacks of despair in which their sense of the value of all that had gone before them drained away. The sting of death was not the loss of life, but the loss of meaning. I face my mortality in the conviction that death is the gateway to the fulfillment of human life, not its extinction. I believe life is a pilgrimage of which the destination is God. The fears that assail me are more about the process of dying rather than the event itself. It’s not the dying that’s the issue: it’s living until I die. Jesus said
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that he had come that “we might have life, and have it abundantly.” Abundant living is both his promise and his gift, and I pray for grace to be open to it. Sadly, we all know of individuals where disease and chemical changes to the brain have effected irreversible changes in their personality, but I have also seen how a person’s true character can emerge in old age. As a young priest I was a Chaplain at one of the Cambridge colleges, and I well remember two elderly Fellows. One was the quintessential English gentleman: polite, cultivated, and punctilious. The other was a shy Italian economist, well-defended and remote, who had fled to England from Mussolini during the Second World War. In their last years I watched the first become increasingly embittered and demanding, while the other relaxed sufficiently to pass off on high table a succession of beautiful Italian English-language students he picked up in the market place as his long-lost goddaughters and nieces. Underneath the cultivated exterior of one was a sad, rather self-centered person, whereas behind the hard exterior of the other was a gentle person trying
to get out. Neither had the energy to maintain the mask with which they had habitually disguised their true selves. As they got older their masks had slipped and their true characters emerged for all to see. As we grow older emotions often coalesce into an attitude of either resentment or contentment. Resentment is more than disappointment: it has a hard, bitter edge, fuelled by jealousy of other people’s supposed good fortune. There is a form of depression in older people which has less to do with the frustrations of getting older and more to do with unresolved conflict. When we are young and vigorous we have large reserves of energy and it is easy to avoid things. But the older we get, the more difficult avoidance becomes. The past catches up with us, including painful episodes we consigned to the basement under lock and key. Facing the past is too important a project to postpone to our death beds when we may not have the energy to deal with things. Unlike anxiety or anger, which I must confess I don’t always spot until it is staring me in the face, resentment is something I can easily recognize in myself. I can
also spot the person or persons against whom I am directing it. So I have no excuse. I have the option of either giving in to it and sulking, or by God’s grace working to rise above it and free myself from it. And that’s where prayer comes in. I need God to disturb my inertia. Contentment emerges as the mature fruit of the way we live our life. Amongst other things, it is the product of our attitude to other people’s good fortune and perhaps our own lack of it. Contentment emerges as a result of a positive attitude to life, including ‘taking risks’. It emerges in those who have integrated the biffs and bangs of life, and who don’t run away from conflict. There is a joy and serenity about such people. In their presence it’s a whole lot easier to breathe. Joy and contentment invariably go hand in hand. Joy is not dependent on possessions or maintaining a certain lifestyle. It just bubbles up inside you and takes you by surprise. St. Francis de Sales, writing in the sixteenth century, sees contentment as the gift of God. He draws a wonderful picture of our relationship with God as like a parent going out for an autumn walk with their child. As they go
along the country lanes, the child hangs onto his or her parent with one hand, while with the other hand happily picking blackberries and wild strawberries. He says that is how it should be, because God would have us delight in His gift of life. But he warns, we should be careful not to gather too many things on our journey through life lest we get distracted, or in order to pick more strawberries we let go of God’s hand and fall flat on our face. He says: Throughout your life, learn to trust in the providential care of God, through which alone comes contentment. Work hard, but always to cooperate with God’s good designs. Let me assure you, if you trust all to God, whatever happens will be the best for you, whether at the time it seems good or bad to your own judgement…. God will work with you and in you and for you throughout your life. And at the last you will know that you have not laboured in vain, and be filled with a profound contentment which only God can give. Francis de Sales’ teaching
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Contentment should be the crowning glory of our lives and the supreme mark of old age. It comes not as a result of suppressing anger and grief; nor is it resignation in the face of life’s tragedies. It is the fruit of the struggle to act and to pray honestly, to pray as we are, not as we would like to be. At the end of the American Civil War, in the diary of an unknown Confederate soldier, were discovered these words: I asked for strength that I might achieve; and I was made weak that I might learn humility. I asked for health that I might do great things; and I was given infirmity
echoes that of Saint Paul in his letter to the Church in Philippi. He says: I have learned to be content with whatever I have in life. I know what it is to have little, and I know what it is to have plenty. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being well-fed and of going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
Like the Confederate soldier, I have discovered that although God may not have given me everything I want in life, He has given everything I genuinely need and I have been blessed. I hope and pray that that is what you feel too. —The Rt. Rev. Robert Atwell, Bishop of Stockport
that I might do better things. I asked for riches that I might be happy; and I was given poverty that I might be wise. I asked for power that I might have the praise of men; and I was given weakness that I might feel my need of God. I asked for all things that I might enjoy life, and I was given life that I might enjoy all things. I got nothing I had prayed for, but everything that I had hoped for. Almost despite myself, my unspoken prayers were answered; I am, among all men, most richly blessed.
The physical world is our home, our environment; the garden God has given us to love, to care for, and to inhabit. The physical world is a measure of our security, and of God’s dependability. “While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest shall not cease.” Psalm 148 sings of the order and stability of the world, the astonishing intricacy and the utter simplicity of life. No matter what history may do, no matter how insecure we are in time, unless we destroy the world itself, the physical structure remains to sustain us. Exiled from home, church and native language, a stranger among strangers, we can still say: “There is everywhere earth, air, sky, and ocean.” Even in darkest prisons we can remember light, space, and the ordered freedom of the great world all about us. This same Psalm sings of the security of the world in one of the great verses of the Bible:
“Praise the Lord from the earth, Ye dragons and all deeps; Fire and hail; snow and vapors; Wind and storm fulfilling His Word. — (Psalm 148)
hanksgiving is not only the most genial and welcome of the feasts of the year, it is also among the strongest, the most “comfortable” in the true sense of the word. I do not intend to trouble this day by raising the perpetual spectre of hunger, homelessness, and poverty or the threat we pose to our own selves, to the physical safety and stability of our home on earth by our greed and our rapacity, our violence and sheer idiocy. These are what we have made of God’s garden. This is our bad stewardship of God’s immense bounty. The discomfort of Thanksgiving Day will haunt us as long as we are selfish. But it is not a day for us to dwell on our selfishness, or the miseries it has caused. It is a day for us to sing the glory of God our Creator – I see that all things come to an end,
He spoke the Word, and they were made He commanded, and they were created. He hath made them fast for ever and ever; He hath given them a law which shall not be broken.
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What does the Word of God do? It gives form to the chaotic; meaning to what is incoherent; brings light to the darkness; it bestows a name on the unknown. The Word of God is his creative power, the energy which brings the world into being, keeps it, and gives it meaning.
The Psalmist remembers the great God of the desert storm, riding wings of the wind. But God is not in the storm, for the wind and storm fulfill his word. He remembers the powerful creator God who slew the chaos monster, the great dragon that lived in the darkness and void of the waste of waters; the God who brought his energy and light to bear upon the darkness, giving it form and order. God is in his Word, through whom he made all these things; even the chaos which he brings to order; even the storm and the lightnings which are the shadows of his glory and his power. He spake His Word, and they were made; He commanded, and they were created.
But thy commandment is exceeding broad.
is this mystery of God’s Word more marvelous than in the offering we make this moment on this very day. God gives us the wheat and the grapes. He provides the substance. He also provides the intelligent skills which transmute these gifts into bread for our strength, into wine that maketh glad the heart of man. Then comes the miracle. For when we offer back to God the gifts of the wheat and grapes, and the work whereby we have made of them bread and wine, our food and drink; then, taking both them and us as we present them on the altars of his Son, He transforms the natural, making of it the grace of supernatural food and drink which sustains our souls: it becomes the Body and Blood of the Word of God Incarnate. This is the perpetual miracle: every natural thing, created through the Word of God, when offered to him again, by the Word becomes supernatural, returning to its spiritual source, and blessing us every way. How natural that the supernatural should work naturally. How natural that all of nature should return to grace. Therefore on
Thanksgiving, beyond all else we celebrate this perpetual miracle, a familiar part of our constant experience. God the Father, the Creator; giving us the wheat and the grapes; God the Son, the Word of God Incarnate, taking human nature, and enabling us to offer to the Father the bread and wine we have made from the Father’s gift; God the Holy Spirit, transforming all of it and the whole of it from nature to grace, to become the bread of heaven and the wine of eternal life. God dares to be more simple and more natural, and therefore more wonderful, than we could ever imagine or think him to be. Praise the Lord from the earth, Ye dragons and all deeps; Young men and maidens, Old men and children; Praise the Name of the Lord, For his praise is above heaven and earth. — The Rev. William H. Ralston, St. John’s, Savannah, Georgia
The history of the Church has been shaped by radicals. Furthermore, the future of the Church until our Lord returns will continue to be shaped by radicals. Now, before you jump to the wrong conclusion, let me explain what I mean. I am not talking about people who went to the root of Christianity (which is what “radical” means) and diverged from it in some novel or “prophetic” direction. The history of the Church is littered with people who did that: Gnostics, Arians, Nestorians, Donatists, Sabellians, Albigenses, Catharii, Jansenists, Quietists, etc. — and people are still adding to the list today with movements that have not yet earned the names by which they will be remembered in the history books. None of these movements defined Christianity or changed its essential teachings, except perhaps by reaction, as the Church clarified its theology in response to challenges of divergent movements. No, it is not those who departed from Christianity in radical ways that have shaped the Church. It is those who have embraced Christianity in radical
A Call to Radical Christianity
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ways that have influenced it most profoundly. When the Church became overwhelmed by nominalism and decadence, the men and women monastics of the Egyptian desert, Benedict and his followers in Italy, and the Celtic monastics in Ireland and Britain gave the Church a spiritual tradition that still inspires Christians. When the Church flirted with — or was seduced by — heresies, it was those who were radically committed to the truth of the Gospel who shaped the faith we believe today: Irenaeus, Athanasius, Gregory of Nyssa, Basil of Caesarea, Gregory of Nazianzus — and other saints too numerous to mention — known not for what they rejected about Christianity but for what they believed and how radically committed they were to it. And the opportunity to be radical Christians extends on down to us. God calls all Christians to be holy. To be holy or sanctified literally means to be “set apart.” All of us who know Christ have been called out from the world and set apart by God to belong exclusively to him. And our God is jealous over his people: Radical Holiness
Christians are called to be different from non-Christians. Talk of being different from non-Christians may sound strange, particularly to Anglicans and Episcopalians who are used to being engaged in their world and even leaders in it. But God is not calling us to disengage from the world; he is calling us to engage the world with our faith and our values in a way that demonstrates that our lives have been transformed by the grace of Jesus Christ. In what ways are contemporary Christians called to be set apart? Briefly, here are a few: “They’ll know we are Christians by our love,” was the refrain to a popular song among Christian youth in the late sixties. Non-Christians often tend to look at Christians as being negative, narrow, judgmental, and angry — because all too often we are! Whether extravert or introvert, every Christian should have the reputation for being someone who cares for and loves people. Do you stand out in the radical ways you treat others? Whether those who know you agree or disagree with your theology, would Radical Relationships
they find it impossible to deny that you always reflected the love of Christ in your relationships?
Jesus said more about money than he did about any other single topic. Money can easily become an idol if we place our security and trust in it instead of God. Being radical here means recognizing that all we have comes from God. Rather than ask “how much of our money is it right to give?” we should be asking “how much of God’s money is it right to keep?” C. S. Lewis said that we should give until it hurts—not because we’re sadists but because all false allegiances need to be broken of their power. As much as I hate to disagree with C. S. Lewis, I believe Scripture teaches something more: We are not to give until it hurts; we are to give until it feels good. II Corinthians 9:7 says, “God loves a cheerful giver.” When we give in such a way that we realize that God is using us as his instrument to provide his resources to be a blessing to others, it feels great! When we are free of the world’s call to materialism, consumerism, and debt, it feels even better.
Radical Approaches to Money
Work can become an idol or a mere means for getting money. Again, Christians should be radically different. We must aim for quality work without succumbing to workaholic idolatry. We must also be different in the way we value rest. “Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work” (Exodus 20:910). Let’s take the idea of Sabbath seriously. Let’s be ruthless about insisting that one day a week will be different, set aside in a unique way for worship, “re-creation” and rest. Christian teaching on sex is quite simple and to the point: sexual relations are appropriate only between a man and a woman who are united in Holy Matrimony. We don’t believe this because we are prudes, and God didn’t command this because he is a cosmic killjoy. God’s way of holiness is the way of wholeness—protecting us from destructive behaviors and relationships. We also should be radical in noting and eschewing the rising emphasis upon androgyny in our Radical Sexual Ethics
Radical Work and Rest
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culture today. Our differences as males and females should be joyfully appreciated. In a world that has lost the wonder of sexuality, the Church needs to value the beautiful, God-created diversity of men and women as equal in worth and yet different. Radical Followers and Leaders
The reason so many saints down through the ages could be so bold in their proclamation and in their leadership is that they were radical in following their Lord. Many who think they are being radical today are simply following the culture. The Christian who will count for Christ in shaping the future is the man or woman who is radically committed to following Christ and radically committed to leading, not following, the world. So let us keep our eyes fixed firmly on Jesus, who loved us and gave himself for us. Let us respond to his great love by being radical followers of Jesus, boldly seeking to reach, to engage, and to be radical leaders, in Christ’s name, to those around us. — The Very Rev. Canon Robert S. Munday, Ph.D., Dean and President of Nashotah House Theological Seminary
lthough the Name of God appears in the text of the Old Testament, we don’t know how to vocalize it. Hebrew words consist entirely of consonants. We know the Name of God consists of four consonants (which is why it is called the Tetragrammaton) – yodh, he, vav, he, corresponding to our letters y, h, v, and h. What we don’t know is what vowels should be sounded in between them. meanings. Because we know the consonants which form the Tetragrammaton, we know the Name of God is derived from the Hebrew root to be. Because we don’t know what vowels go with its four consonants, we don’t know precisely what variation it represents: He who is, and I am who I am represent only two of the possibilities.
Hebrew names, of course, have
he first major Hebrew text in which signs had been added under the consonants to indicate vowels which should be sounded with them is called the Masoretic text of the Hebrew Scriptures, compiled after the time of Our Lord. That text provides vowel
Name of God. The Ten Commandments prohibit the misuse of the Name of God. In the Maccabean era that prohibition was extended to any use of the Name of God, lest someone, even accidentally, use the Name “in vain.” Though it was revealed to her, though she knew it, Israel regarded the Name as too holy to be sounded or even formed by the lips of sinful men. So whenever the Tetragrammaton appeared in the Hebrew Scriptures, Israel pronounced one of the titles of God in its place: “Adonai” or “my Lord.” It was not the vowel-signs proper to the Name of God, but for that reverent substitute, which appear in the Masoretic text. When, from Luther’s time (if not before), Christians pronounce as the Name of God “Yehovah” (spelled with a J since German has no Y), or when, as from the publication of the Jerusalem Bible, Christians have pronounced it as Yahweh, they have been vocalizing the vowels of a word which is not the Name of God, with the consonants which are. Which is to say, they have not been vocalizing the Name of God.
But Israel did not pronounce the
signs when the Tetragrammaton appears.
A Roman Catholic document looks at that anomaly, looks at the holiness of the divine Name, and concludes that Christians ought to do as Jews do, and say “the Lord” or “my Lord” rather than any such hybrid when the Tetragrammaton appears in the Hebrew text. Though he did reveal his Name to Israel through Moses, Israel came to regard that Name with the same reverence as it regarded his Self. God imply relationship with and access to him; but that might degenerate into familiarity and manipulation and magic. No one has ever seen God, because he is too holy for man to see him; and even so, no one pronounces the Name of God, for it is too holy for man to use.
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Knowing and using the Name of
ut it’s different with the Holy Name we celebrate in January, the Holy Name of Jesus. In the Incarnation, the Son’s divinity was fit into the constraints of our humanity. He emptied himself of some of the prerogatives of his divinity in order to be truly man. The works recounted in the Gospel which proceed from and manifest his divinity are such as are compatible with our humanity. God the Son let his divinity be
e should pronounce every human name reverently because each denotes a person made in the image and likeness of God. But we pronounce this Name, the Name of Jesus, with an especial reverence, because we know that this man is more than man. He is not only created in the image and likeness of God, but, in St. Paul’s words, himself “is the image of the invisible God, the first-born of all creation; for in him all things were created...” (Col. 1:15-16). The Church of England in its canons asserts the custom of the universal Church, that “when in time of Divine Service the Lord Jesus shall be mentioned, due and
e may not rightly pronounce the Name which is God’s own, the Name which connotes and connects us with his essence, but we rightly pronounce the names of men. By virtue of his circumscription, his really becoming and not just pretending to be man, we rightly pronounce the Name of the Man whom God the Son became: we rightly pronounce the Name of Jesus.
circumscribed by his humanity: he subjected the infinitude of his divine self to the boundaries and constraints of our humanity, and indeed even our mortality.
We may not know the meaning of the Holy Name of God, but we do know the meaning of the Holy Name of Jesus. Jesus, or Yeshua, comes from the root to deliver, and means the one who delivers, the one who saves. It is the same name (although in a later form) as that of Moses’ servant and successor, Joshua, who acted for Israel’s Deliverer in the final segment of its Exodus, as the people moved from their wanderings in the wilderness to take possession of the Promised Land. It was by no means an uncommon name in the Israel into which Our Lord was born: in a sense, it was given as a prayer, a prayer for the deliverance of occupied Israel from its captors, and perhaps a prayer that the boy to whom it was given would be the one to effect that deliverance. But this Name is not given to Mary’s Son as an expression of his parents’ hope, a prayer for what they hope will happen and who he might prove to be. Mary and Joseph give their child this Name in obedience to the word of the angel who descended to each of
lowly reverence” – a bow of the head – shall be done by all persons present...” (Canon 18 of 1603).
It is significant, I think, that in his defense before the Sanhedrin St. Peter says, “there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). He does not only say that it is in this Person, and this Person only, that we are saved. He says that this Name, and none other, is the Name by which we must be saved. The Savior’s Name connects us with him, and his salvation: we have a relationship with our Savior, we have access to our Savior, we attain “the innumerable benefits procured unto us” by our Savior, because we know and invoke and keep holy this Name, the human and yet Holy Name of Jesus, Godmade-man. — The Rev. Warren Tanghe, SSC, via The Angelus, Church of Our Saviour, Atlanta, Georgia
them as God’s messenger to proclaim the Name of the Lord as God’s messenger, in obedience to God (Mt.1:21; Lk. 1:31). And so this Name is less prayer than proclamation: look, see, deliverance is here; look, see, this child, bleeding from his bris, is Israel’s and humankind’s salvation, the fulfillment of all his people hoped for, if yet so very different from what his people hoped for.
ne of the many blessings of our way of worship is that there are not simply two “big days of the year” (Christmas and Easter), but an ongoing rotation of worship seasons — each one focusing on lessons that draw us into the totality of the Judeo-Christian story. For some Christian traditions, Christmas really was the big moment and now the focus
We are seasonal worshipers. No commentary on other expressions of the Christian faith, but that is who we are (like Romans, Lutherans and Orthodox). It is always dangerous ground to suggest one way of worship is better than another and I do not think that to be necessarily so. I have worshiped in virtually every Christian tradition — from Methodist and Roman to Congregational and Charismatic — and, frankly, I was usually able to find one or more pieces of the worship which did allow me to more effectively worship the Divine and be touched by his presence and power. But, I have always floated back to the tradition that now runs through my bloodstream.
In this Season There is Light
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or Christians, the Epiphany is the season during which we remember the manifestation of the Good News of the Gospel, shared through the birth of the Christ Child to all humanity — not just a reserved few. The season begins on January 6th, the Feast Day of the Epiphany, and continues until Ash Wednesday, inaugurating the season of Lent. The Epiphany probably should not have been a “sudden realization” because we are told in the Old Testament that God had every intent of casting wide his net of love by foretelling, through the prophet Isaiah, that the Messiah would be “a light for the Gentiles,” and would, “open eyes that are blind ... free captives from prison ... release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness.” [Isaiah 42:6-7] Of course, a quick jog of the memory will recall that
turns toward Easter — not so for Episcopalians. We are now in one of my favorite seasons — Epiphany. Now the literal definition of an epiphany is a “sudden, intuitive perception of or insight into the reality or essential meaning of something, usually initiated by some simple, homely, or commonplace occurrence or experience.”
his is what drew those wise men. Modern culture has tidied up that story a bit. We have, in our minds, a small gathering around that first creche including Mary, Joseph, shepherds, sheep and three wise men bearing gifts. But the wise men [see Matthew 2] had to travel for quite some time before they landed at Jesus’ doorstep. Remember, once Herod caught wind that Jesus had been born and that wise men were looking for him, Herod called and assigned them the “secret mission” of finding the child. Herod said to worship him, but in his heart was a plan to kill him. The wise men, or magi, traveled for quite some time and, by the time they caught up to the child, he was no longer in the stable, but in a “house.” (Matthew 2:11) They were so moved, they worshiped him; wisdom got the better part of them, and they did not go back to Herod. This season is an important one. Advent gives us time to pre-
Jesus read from Isaiah’s prophecy when he began his own ministry, following his emergence from the desert. In short, Jesus was, and is, the fulfillment of all that can be said about God. If one is looking for God — a good starting place is his Son, Jesus.
y encouragement is not to wait for the next big season, but to really let this season sink in. Look for the light and be on guard against the darkness. Hear and know that the Epiphany is about a God who does not reserve his love for a few favorites because we are all his “favorites.” It is a good season; one worth traveling through and taking time to let the Epiphany move in and, perhaps, make for you your own epiphany.
pare; Christmas itself, for those of us seasonal Episcopalians, does not officially begin until Christmas Eve and then lasts for 12 days. Then comes Epiphany and in this season there is light, the good news of God’s love for everyone, and darkness, the bad news that there always — born out of evil — seems to be something or someone set on snuffing out the light. So, we hit a tall peak in the stable, but what follows is Herod’s plot. Then the Holy Family’s flight to Egypt for safety followed by Herod’s slaughter of the innocents. This is all tough stuff.
— The Rev. Dr. Russell J. Levenson, Jr., St. Martin’s, Houston, Texas
51 Years Ago in TAD
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HE CENTENNIAL anniversary of the Rev. James DeKoven’s arrival at Racine College was celebrated 11 October by a Choral Eucharist in St. John’s Chapel of De Koven Foundation. After graduating with honors from Columbia College, James DeKoven went to General Theological Seminary, where, as a student, he founded a “ragged school” in lower Manhattan for destitute boys. After his ordination to the Diaconate, he was denied his request to work in the slums of New York, and so he accepted a teaching post at Nashotah House [a seminary of the Church at Nashotah, Wisconsin]. Five years later, in the fall of 1859, and at the age of 28, he became Warden of Racine College. There he labored for twenty years and refused calls from Trinity Parish, New York, the Church of the Advent, Boston, and St. Mark’s, Philadelphia. Because his college chapel had a vested choir and daily Evensong [Morning and Evening Prayer are both daily offices and so ordered by the Book of Common Prayer], James DeKoven was accused of “ritualism.” (Ritual
actually refers to the words of a rite: ceremony to the action. Many people confuse the two terms.) Nevertheless, he was elected to be the Bishop of Massachusetts, of Milwaukee, of Fond du Lac, and of Illinois, but in each case his election was denied [by a majority of the bishops] on the grounds that he was a “Romanizer.” In 1876 James DeKoven asked the Community of St. Mary, then in Peekskill, New York (the mother house is still there), to take over Kemper Hall, Kenosha. As a result, the Sisters of St. Mary were on hand in 1938 to save the buildings of Racine College from a sheriff s sale. Today the forty acre campus of Racine College accommodates a retreat house, a conference center, and a summer camp that bears the name of the gentle, peace-loving, educated man who was the victim of one of the most bitter and ugly and inexcusable controversies in the history of the American Church. Since his death at the age of 48, James DeKoven has been acclaimed one of the Church’s most “magnificent failures.” [It is not improbable that James DeKoven’s name may someday find a place in the Calendar of Saints of the American Church.] — From Chicago’s Advance
A layman by the name of Pope and another layman named after the protestant reformer John Calvin meet Sunday by Sunday in the Church of Our Saviour, Placerville, California. — The Sacramento Missionary Suggestion for a Sunday night supper: Melt a little butter and a right good hunk of very sharp cheddar cheese in a double boiler; stir in salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, dry mustard: add some stale beer, then beaten eggs. Pour on toast served on warmed plates. Add Alka-Seltzer two or three hours later.
Not untrue headline: POPE MEETS JOHN CALVIN IN AN EPISCOPAL CHURCH
Bulls in the Bulletin
We are studying the miracles of our Lord. Bring your friends. New York Ushers will eat those who are waiting. Pennsylvania In the absence of the Rector, the Curate will take care of all pastoral cuties. Massachusetts How to change your wife through prayer. West Virginia
THE EPIPHANY (6 January) commemorates the “Manifestation [the Epiphany, or the showing forth] of Christ to the Gentiles,” or the visit of the three Magi to the infant Jesus. The Jews thought that their Messiah would be a king of the Jews only; but the star in the East revealed to the Wise Men, and to the world, that He was born not just King of the Jews, but King of the whole world; and so, when we enter with our Lord on the course of His earthly mission, it is fitting that we should make recognition of His Divinity. Consequently, the festival has always been celebrated with great ceremony throughout the whole Church. The Epiphany, like Christmas, has an Octave. “Twelfth Night” is so called from the fact that it is the twelfth in number from the Nativity of our Lord. THE EPIPHANY SEASON consists of the days from the Feast of the Epiphany to Septuagesima (the first of the Pre-Lenten Sundays). During these days the Church is concerned with the infancy, boyhood, and early ministry of our Lord. Vestments and altar hangings are in green to show our Lord’s growth — “And Jesus increased in wisdom and
stature.” Green is also used in the long Trinity Season to remind us of the spiritual growth expected in ourselves. ONE of the most serious problems within the Church today originates not entirely in inadequate teaching or inept practices, but in the curiously developed and allowed idea that not knowing is superior to knowing, that the opinions and judgments of the ill-informed or uninformed are superior to those of the informed. A man’s judgment, we are told, is no better than his information. If one does not know, he must have the humility, if not the sense or curiosity, to ask; if he has neither, the least he can do is to keep still. The conscientious Churchman (should there be any other kind?) wishes to know the Church for what she really is: he wishes to know the true faith and proper practice, and it is the business of the Church to tell him and to train him: it is the business of the Church to teach, to inform, to train — “to put to silence the ignorance of foolish men.” Many ecclesiastical periodicals, diocesan and otherwise, are so concerned, it seems, with money
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and meetings, journals and jokes, tithes and talents, that little space is allotted to matters of faith and practice, and consequently the reader’s knowledge of the Church, her nature, purpose, and extent, is restricted or denied. Often the parochialism and diocesanism, so frequently and publicly decried, is thereby encouraged; but even so, the Church is larger than any parish or diocese, any priest or bishop, or any layman. The Church is never embarrassed by the richness of her faith, but by the ignorance of it. Now, more than ever before, “Operation Unlimited” provides the sincere Churchman with an unexcelled opportunity to have a better understanding and greater enjoyment of the faith and practice of his exceptionally rich inheritance, and, what is more, to promote and encourage the same in others.
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All the People of the Bible: An A-Z Guide to the Saints, Scoundrels, and other Characters in Scripture, Richard R. Losch, Item 08D All Majesty and Power: An Anthology of Royal Prayers, compiled and edited by Donald Gray, Item 02C Anglican Difficulties: A Syllabus of Errors, Edward Norman, Item 04B The Bones of Joseph: From Ancient Texts to the Modern Church. Gareth Lloyd Jones, Item 97C Christ and Culture Revisited: How to Think about Culture, D. A. Carson, Item 08C Christ Plays in Ten Thousand Places: A Conversation in Spiritual Theology, Eugene H. Peterson, Item 05A Ears to Hear: Recognizing and Responding to God’s Call, Edward S. Little, Item 03D The Fate of Communion: The Agony of Anglicanism and the Future of a Global Church, Ephraim Radner and Philip Turner, Item 06B Imitating Jesus: An Inclusive Approach to New Testament Ethics, Richard A. Burridge, Item 08A Lesley Newbigin, Missionary, Thologian: A Reader, compiled by Paul Weston, Item 06D Rowan’s Rule: The Biography of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rupert Shortt, Item 09A A Short Life of Jonathan Edwards, “by all accounts, one of the most remarkable figures in American history,” George M. Marsden, Item 09B William Wilberforce: A Biography, Stephen Tomkins, Item 07D
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In the 20th century, there was a great religious leader who also became a great political leader. After some time in exile, he returned to lead his people and led them as they threw off their oppressors and the forces that threatened their cultural integrity. When he died, the whole nation was frantic with grief. The leader’s name? It could be Mahatma Gandhi, the spiritual founder of modern India. But, Ayatollah Khomeini, the spiritual father of the current Iranian theocracy, also fits the profile. He remains in very high esteem, not only in Iran, but throughout the Muslim world. Can we say that both these men had equally valid and appealing grasps on the nature
The Impossibility of Religious Pluralism
An Anglo-Catholic religious order of Third Order brothers and sisters striving to proclaim the Good News of Christ through penance and prayer. Our brothers and sisters minister in the communities in which they live. For information concerning our vocational life contact: Fr. John Mark, OSF, Minister-General, Trinity Episcopal Church, 106 N Grove St., Marshall, TX 75670
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of the divine and what it means to be human? Or that either’s guess was as good as the other’s when it came to pointing to the ineffable, the sacred or the holy? Will we not inevitably credit one more than the other? On what basis? Their respective effects on American foreign policy? The degree to which their words and actions comport with certain intellectual currents in the West? Our individual tastes? The Mahatma or the Ayatollah. If we prefer one over the other, it will be based on something. Nobody actually in practice accords all religions and all religious teaching equal respect. Everyone uses some standard by which to measure their merits — our cultural/political/class/ national prejudices and convictions, etc. There is a presumed superiority in whatever standard
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is used and however conscious or unconscious its application. Something will be trump. It is no more presumptuous for Christians to say that we measure Gandhi and Khomeini against the example of Jesus Christ because he is the definitive revelation of the divine-human drama than to use something else as trump. The earliest Christian creed was “Jesus is Lord,” i.e., Jesus is trump. It had to be declared. It had to be lived. It had to be, if it came to it, died for. Because it was true. If Jesus was just one among many spirit persons, even though a particular favorite, he could not — cannot — be Lord. And there would be little point in paying him any more attention than Spartacus or Socrates. Nor would there be any conflict between worshipping Jesus and worshipping Caesar. To claim Jesus as Lord means that everything else — personal preferences, familial traditions, political ideologies, national loyalties, other religious teachings — everything is measured in light of what we know of God and life in light of the life, teaching, death, and resurrection of Jesus. This does not mean that there is no truth or wisdom to be
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learned elsewhere. One can hold emphatically that Jesus is uniquely Lord and still believe that the Holy Spirit sings in and through the hearts and scriptures of those who do not know him as Lord. Listening carefully and respectfully to their wisdom can be edifying. But, we lose something essential when we abandon the scandal of particularity that is the declaration that Jesus is Lord. With reverence. With gentleness. With humility. With forbearance. But, it must be declared. In our reaction to simplistic, heavy-handed fundamentalism, we should beware of slipping into a simplistic pluralism that has more to do with the intellectual agnosticism of modernity than with Christian witness to the mystery of God. — The Very Rev. Matt Gunter, St. Barnabas, Glen Ellyn, Illinois
The Gloria in Excelcis is an angelic hymn proper to the celebration of the Incarnation. The Gloria envisions the night when the angels first sang this hymn of praise. We picture innumerable angels aglow with resplendent light as we sing, “Glory be to God on high, and on earth peace, good will towards men.”The Church has chosen these resounding, evocative words for our celebration of the Mystery of Christ with us. As were the shepherds before us, we are called by heavenly tidings to worship the babe of Bethlehem! But have we prepared our hearts in the same spirit of worship as those lowly shepherds on that first Christmas? Do we come to the Mystery of Christmas impetuous in our eagerness to worship him as we celebrate the Holy Eucharist? Will our eagerness abound in ejaculations of devotion to the Father: “We praise thee, we bless thee, we worship thee, we glorify thee, we give thanks to thee for thy great glory. O Lord God, heavenly King, God the Father Almighty” — eagerness and joy can and does break all boundaries! Equally natural during this season is to think of the Divine
Gloria in Excelcis
hrough glorious hymnody the Church teaches her children to seek mercy, pardon and peace which come only through Jesus Christ. She gives us the words: “O Lord, the only begotten Son, Jesus Christ; O Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father, that takest away the sins of the world, have mercy upon us. Thou that takest away the sins of the world receive our prayer. Thou that sittest at the right hand of God the Father, have mercy upon us.” These are solemn words, pleading words, hopeful words!
Son, as he came on earth to redeem us, as proclaimed to be the Lamb of God by John Baptist preparing the way for his earthly ministry, as the Lamb of God, both priest and victim, in the Holy Sacrifice of the Cross and its representation in the Mass, as the eternal Lamb of God as envisioned in the Book of Revelation, presenting to God the Father the perfect sacrifice of his glorified humanity on our behalf.
The Gloria closes with a burst of joy: “For thou only art holy; thou only art the Lord: thou only, O Christ, with the Holy Ghost, art most high in the glory of God the Father.” The second person of the Trinity is not honored alone but in union with the other Persons of the Trinity. The joy of the Church is that the initiative of God evokes our response in concert with the will of God. The Gloria is a hymn begun by the angels (messengers of God’s will) in the sky and finished by the Church on earth. Just as John Baptist attempted to prepare and make straight the way of the Lord, so too have we been recreated by water and the Holy Spirit for testimony, to bear witness to the light, that all might believe through our conveying the hope within us.
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From the Editor...
We hear a lot of talk about being prophetic in the Episcopal Church these days, but should we? several years I have heard an Episcopal Church leader say, “we are a prophetic church; we speak truth to power.” As I write this, there is an essay in circulation with the headline “Now is the time for prophetic action.” We need to think carefully about such words.
Are There Prophets in Our Midst?
On many occasions in the last
Let us dedicate “ourselves, our
souls and our bodies” to being a means for others to know Christ, using all the devices of love and mercy at our disposal to bring others to Christ and to make the gift which is ours available to others. — The Very Rev. William Willoughby, III, St. Paul’s, Savannah, Georgia
here are no prophets in the full biblical sense any more. As far as we know, the canon of Holy Scripture is closed. But it is possi-
n the Bible, a prophet was someone who brought God’s word into a situation. God spoke to them, they listened, and sought accurately to convey what they heard to God’s people. Hence we hear such Old Testament language as “Thus says the Lord,” or, in the ministry of Jesus, when we read “it was said . . . but I say to you . . .”
rophets also swim upstream at the time in which they minister. WAY upstream. If people are zigging, there may be an occasional zagger, but prophets are zuggers. They come from surprising backgrounds, speak in often shocking ways, and are most of the time greeted with disdain, opposition, hostility, or even worse. As Hebrews puts it: They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword; they went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, illtreated — of whom the world was not worthy — wandering over deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth (11:37-38).
starters, prophets are not usually self-referential and are never self-authenticating. You do not find them saying, “Hi, I am a prophet.” Indeed, quite the opposite is the case. Amos answered Amazi’ah, “I am no prophet, nor a prophet’s son; but I am a herdsman, and a dresser of sycamore trees . . .” (Amos 7:14).
ble, although rare, to see in a ministry a ‘prophetic’ element. How can we discern such a thing?
f we use these three measuring points, are there many today who may have prophetic elements in their ministry? Perhaps, but I would venture to say that if so, none of us know or recognize them as such right now, and we will be very surprised in heaven when we see the truth of how God is using them. n the meantime, let us be cautious about such language, remembering well Jesus’ warning: “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves (Matthew 7:15).
Perhaps most importantly prophets are almost always only seen fully in retrospect. When Jeremiah was ministering, many thought him crazy, and most believed him wrong. People from his home area plotted to kill him, and those in authority lowered him at one point into a pit of miry clay. They believed the temple of the Lord was impregnable and the Babylonians were never coming; it was only much later that they could see Jeremiah’s words about both were accurate.
Learning to Pray .......................................................... 3
Advent ........................................................................... 5
Hell Eyes ....................................................................... 7
Feed My Sheep ............................................................. 9
A Window Candle ........................................................ 11
Home for Christmas .................................................... 14 A Prayer for Parents .................................................... 16 Family Tradition ........................................................... 22 A Most Unusual Book ................................................. 27 Hymnody ...................................................................... 23
St. Francis & the Crèche .............................................. 13
Hillspeaking .................................................................. 32 Old Age and Contentment ......................................... 39 Thanksgiving Day ........................................................ 43 Holy Name .................................................................... 49 Fifty-One Years Ago .................................................... 54 In this Season ................................................................ 52 Impossibility of Pluralism .......................................... 59 Gloria in Excelsis .......................................................... 61 From the Editor ............................................................ 62 Call to Radical Christianity ........................................ 46
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