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The Anglican Church of Or

Lectionary 8 November 2015

This coming Sunday, in the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia of Or, the lectionary indicates (above) the liturgical colour is Green, or Red, or White, or Violet. This “reflects common practice in most parishes” (Lectionary page 4).

First prize goes to the first person who can calculate the number of reading options provided: Mark or Ruth & Mark or Ps 23 & Mt; or etc or etc or

You can celebrate the 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, or Proper 27, or Remembrance Sunday, or Feast of Christ in All Creation [no reading options provided for this last option]…

This “Proper” numbering of Sundays (“Proper 27” in this case) is a new numbering system introduced this year. Do tell me where, in the Lectionary booklet, it is explained what it actually refers to – because I can’t spot it. “Proper 1” is “5th Sunday in Ordinary Time” (8 February) – so at that point it is Sunday in Ordinary Time = Proper + 4. But for this coming Sunday it is 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time = Proper 27 + 5!!! So somewhere a Sunday has slipped.

What will I be doing? This coming Sunday I will use Green [I have no sympathy for kowtowing to mummy CofE, those who find Ordinary Time far too long and now start counting backwards to Advent and, bored with Green, pick the colour they have been using least – ah Red – making any understanding of the colour scheme incomprehensible]. It is the 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, that’s the Sunday in the 32nd ordinal (counting rather than ordinary-not-exciting) week. The Gospel reading will be the one used by most Christians – from Mark 12:38-44; the second reading is Hebrews 9:24-28; and I understand the choices available for First Testament and Psalm.

Let’s hope and pray General Synod Te Hinota Whanui has the good sense to not pass Statute 713, and let’s hope they send that and Liturgical Precedence 2009 for some real work together. Or else we will have yet another option: counting Sundays in Ordinary Time from Candlemas (The Presentation of Jesus in the Temple; February 2) which would make this coming Sunday something like the 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time in NZ – while the rest of the church is on the 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time!

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4 Responses to The Anglican Church of Or

  1. So wait a second. Are you saying that if you choose to celebrate the “Feast of Christ in All Creation” (whatever precisely that means, and however it’s to be distinguished from something like the “Feast of Christ the King” as we RCs celebrate it), you have NO available readings? Or at least no officially sanctioned ones? Shall the lector go up and pull a Philip Glass “4 minutes 33 seconds” bit? (i.e. this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/4%E2%80%B233%E2%80%B3) OR what?

    • Yes, Matt. I think you have it correct – or as best as I can determine.

      The lectionary booklet has the Feast of Christ in All Creation may be celebrated this coming Sunday, or the next Sunday, or the one after that. There is no indication whether that is an inclusive or an exclusive “or”. So it may be possible to celebrate the Feast of Christ in All Creation on each of the next three Sundays with a Philip Glass/Quaker time at the lectern.

      As you highlight, there is no indication what the Feast of Christ in All Creation involves. And, yes, it is different from the Feast of Christ the King which is celebrated (as with RCs) on November 22. There is also the possibility of celebrating, “and/or A Spring Festival of Praise to the Creator, during the spring season” (lectionary page 126) but, and the lectionary is explicit, for this “no material is provided”.

      On November 22 one may celebrate:
      Christ the King
      or The Reign of Christ
      or 34th Sunday in Ordinary Time
      or Sunday before Advent
      or Aotearoa Sunday
      or Feast of Christ in All Creation
      or, of course, A Spring Festival of Praise to the Creator.

      Blessings

  2. Ordinary Time comes from the Catholic reckoning of Sundays. Basically, 34th Sunday of Ordinary time is counted back from the last Sunday (Christ the King). I believe these are always the same (+5). However, it changed when working in the season of Epiphany. In the Catholic Church, Epiphanytide returns to Ordinary Time up until lent. So, 1st Sunday in Ordinary Time begins the Sunday after Epiphany. I think what happens, is an ordinary Sunday gets lost because of the nature of Easter and extra feasts. Feb 15 was the 6th Sunday in OT, and then Ash Wednesday came. Pentecost is the day that would pick back up with 7th Sunday, (now being the last day of easter season) but then the following 2 Sundays are 8 and 9 ordinary time which are always specific feasts (Trinity and Corpus Cristi). By the time it goes back to true ordinary time, it picks up with 10th Sunday, which goes with the ordinary propers. Basically, before Easter, it’s all up in the air, while after Easter, it should be proper plus 5 to reckon ordinary time. There are up to 34 that one can have. but between 4-10 they get moved around and lost.

    I hope that made sense. Pentecost is counted in the “ordinary Sundays” but it is celebrated with it’s feast readings.

    • You have the Ordinary Time system mostly correct, David. Your initial sentence can confuse: Ordinary (“counting” – cf “Ordinal” numbers) Time (Tempus per annum) comes not from reckoning of Sundays but a counting of the weeks. Hence this week is the 31st Week in Ordinary Time. Most Sundays are named by the number of the week they begin. The Sunday we have just had is and example when it does not (as are, eg., the Day of Pentecost, Trinity Sunday, The Baptism of the Lord, Christ the King). This may help.

      An issue for our church, and why I’m encouraging a relook (rather than passing Statute 713), is that we will be counting Sundays in Ordinary Time not as the rest of the world/church does from Epiphany January 6, but from Candlemas February 2 and so be out of sync all year.

      Blessings.

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