The Bible Through the Seasons: A Three-Year Journey with the Bible by Nicholas Connolly 472 pages (iUniverse, Inc. March 20, 2007)
How do you read the whole Bible systematically and prayerfully? How do you not loose energy for your reading when you hit page after page of Iron Age health regulations and butchering instructions? How do you connect your reading in with the Church Year and the ecumenical Sunday three year lectionary?
Nick Connolly had an insight in 1996 to read the Bible completely in three years, incorporating the Church Year, using the Sunday gospel reading from the three year lectionary, and also using the Sabbath Torah reading of the three year Synagogue lectionary. You can do the maths; with 1,189 chapters of the Protestant Bible, that’s about a chapter a day.
As well as the Saturday and Sunday readings being as I have described, Monday the reading is from the Prophets; Tuesday — Hebrew History and the Writings; Wednesday — The Psalms; Thursday — The New Testament; Friday — The Gospels.
There is a brief reflection associated with each reading. And other resources to stimulate prayer and lectio divina.
I bought the eBook and have started using it.
There looks to be exploration of the links between Church seasons and the solar seasons – I have not had time yet to explore how this works, and how this relates to us in the Southern Hemisphere.
There is an associated website, where it speaks of downloading a trial of four weeks. There is a page of this week’s resources – I’m not sure if this the the four week trial that is being written about, or if this continues perpetually. I hope it is the latter. There is a Yahoo Group – but currently with only 10 members. It would be good to have some idea how many books have been sold – how widespread is this way of reading the Bible, a few? many? droves? Such a community can be an encouragement…
I regularly encounter young people looking for a way to read the whole Bible. I am not (yet) convinced that this complete book is for them, but the scheme most certainly is a way I would like to recommend to them. Young people would certainly follow such a system online, or with an iPod, iPad app. I hope Nick Connolly considers producing such; or having an app produced. His resources page would be improved by linking the reading through to the actual (NRSV) text – not difficult to do. Here is today’s text. I would love to incorporate the system into the online chapel here.
A final point: Nick Connolly left the Roman Catholic Church and is now a pastor in the United Methodist Church. I have already mentioned, this book reads the Protestant Bible completely. It seems to me there can be a simple adaptation so that all the books of the Roman Catholic Bible are incorporated into this system (and the Orthodox Bible?).
Update December 14:
The online chapel here also has links to these resources.