Historical Interest

In the beginning was the Word. In the beginning information passed from one person to others through speech. Oral tradition was the only means of distributing information until the advent of visual communication, and continued for some time to be the primary means of sharing and preserving information. Cave paintings are usually recognized as the earliest form of visual communication, with the earliest known dating to 30,000 BC. More permanent visuals — carvings rather than paintings — developed shortly thereafter, with pictograms (the predecessor to hieroglyphics and cuneiform) developing by around 9000 BC.

Let’s be clear: April Fools’ Day is not a religious holiday. It does, however, trace its origins to a pope. The day began, most believe, in 1582, when Pope Gregory XIII decreed the adoption of the “Gregorian calendar” — named after himself — which moved New Year’s Day from the end of March to Jan. 1. The change was published widely, but those who didn’t get the message and continued to celebrate on April 1 “were ridiculed and called April Fools.” Even though the annual panoply of pranks may not be grounded in any ancient religious merrymaking, the notion of “holy fools” does have a long and respected place in Judeo-Christian history.

...After prayerfully listening to the Word read, we then hear the Word expounded in the sermon. Confronted once again with the question of faith that the Gospel puts to us, we respond with conviction, “We believe.” Only then are we ready to pray, ask for forgiveness, make peace with God and each other, and finally move to making the sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving. The Creed is therefore the hinge, so to speak, between the liturgy of the Word and the sacrament. As the Eucharist flows from our need...

'The Bibliography,' first conceived as a one-time project of the Convocation's Mission 2006 initiative, is now a Convocation institution. Each fall, the clergy are invited to submit up to five book titles to the Bibliography. A selection of these books is raffled each fall during an especially festive dinner at the annual Convocation Convention.The proceeds of this highly anticipated event support a designated ministry or mission project. The bibliography has grown significantly since its introduction in 2007; it now includes 12 pages of book recommendations. Attention Convention delegates....this year's book selection has already arrived in Rome. Don't forget to buy your raffle tickets!

The Book of Common Prayer has been in continuous use since 1549, was revised in 1552, lightly amended in 1662, three hundred at fifty years ago. It was the first compendium of worship in English.


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