Saturday, December 5, 2009

Let's sort the Lectionary now before it gets out of hand

Bosco Peters has a brilliant post on the deficiency of the lectionary published for our church whereby it offers way too much choice. There are two points to a lectionary. One is that it is a guide to reading the Bible: presenting multiple choice is not a guide to reading the Bible, it is the presentation of an array of possible readings. Two is that the lectionary, especially in an Anglican context, should enhance the idea of 'common prayer'. Choice simply does not do that.

Bosco also draws attention to the disturbing trend of our lectionary to propose multiple colour alternatives for various days of the year. This should stop. The role of the lectionary at this point is to tell us what to do. We might choose to do something different, but if we choose to follow the lectionary (and be canonically obedient at the same time!) then we choose to be guided, and, incidentally, choose to walk in step with other parishes throughout the land and the world. Except that is not going to happen, except by luck, if we may use colour A, B, or C ... or even D!

Anyone else to join the campaign for lectionary reform?


Paul Fromont said...

Amen. I for one am in agreement. The complexity, makes what should be an easy to follow resource and way of scripturally nourishing ones faith-journey more difficult than it need be. Complexity constructs a real barrier to engaging and utilising, in this case, the Lectionary.

May a movement for reform gather momentum.

Anonymous said...

The Lectionary as regards to colours is so bad we now have a Columban Calendar in our Vestry where there is one colour for the day. Other changes (By what authority)and not in line with universal practice have appeared over recent years. eg continuing white after Christmas till Candlemas when some of this period is Ordinary Time, Red for the Sunday after Ascension and Red for the Sundays before Advent - I think Red must be the compiler's favourite colour!