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2012 NZ Lectionary misconstrues

I recently received the Lectionary for 2012 for the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia (PDF here). There is much improved from recent versions, but with one inaccuracy. It assumes that A New Zealand Prayer Book/ He Karakia Mihinare o Aotearoa (ANZPB/HKMOA) has been revised! Regulars here will know that there was an attempt to print a revised Prayer Book without going through the required process – but that “revised” printing did not go ahead. The Lectionary assumes that it did:

The RCL has been adapted for use in a revision of ANZPB/HKMOA, replacing the exiting printed pages 549 to 723. (page 2)

Each Sunday in 2012, where this year (2011) and previous Lectionaries had RCL as the heading for the eucharistic readings – that column in 2012 is now headed ANZPB/HKMOA. Those 2012 readings, however, are not those in ANZPB/HKMOA as stated, but continue to be the readings assigned by our agreement to follow RCL.

I have let people responsible for the Lectionary know that this is an error (especially since, in this digital age, an error from one year, if not corrected, can so easily be there again next year) and asked them to correct it for the online, digital version. I cannot work out, however, why the collect cross-referencing that is used prior to the planned reprint – is still in the 2012 Lectionary!

Positively, I have also thanked them for the many improvements this year. The responsorial psalm has been placed where it comes in the Eucharist. The Eve of St Thomas has been restored (but the Christmas proper for non-Steven Monday 26 December have been removed? As has the proper for non-Holy Innocents 28 December?) The constant alteration of our colours continues to confuse/bemuse me: in this year’s lectionary 28 December 2011 is White; in next year’s lectionary the exact same date, 28 December 2011 is… Red!!!) Thankfully the counting backwards to Lent has been removed (this year, 2011, the 6th Sunday in Ordinary Time was also the 4th Sunday before Lent – that has gone for 2012). It may be worth reflecting why we have retained Sundays in Lent, rather than of Lent? The 5th Sunday in Lent is still called Passion Sunday – I don’t know why. Obviously, the 6th Sunday in Lent is the Sunday of the Passion. Why the special emphasis on Monday and Tuesday in Easter Week – and not Wednesday? Thankfully the plethora of titles for Sundays in Ordinary Time has been slashed: in 2011 a Sunday would be called 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time and RCL Proper 27 and 21st Sunday after Pentecost and 3rd Sunday before Advent. In 2012 only the first title is used. Obviously the Lectionary organisers heard our plea that Green (the colour I used), which had been removed 2011 for November 13, has been restored. Now, once again in the Anglican Church of Or, November 11, 2012 you can choose from Green, Red, White, or Violet.

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7 thoughts on “2012 NZ Lectionary misconstrues”

  1. The problem, Bosco, is the presence of biblical literalism in our church. I mean, not letting the right hand know what the left hand is doing is metaphorical isn’t it?

  2. The modus operandi for this lectionary is hard to fathom.

    I noticed that it is less a calendar of liturgical observances with scripture readings and more a chronicle of regional disasters and general historical mayhem. Do anniversaries of natural disasters and secular events really belong in a church lectionary?

    I also notice that there are stern warnings that certain feasts should not be displaced by other celebrations, and then the alternative readings are given in full! If there is no alternative, why supply an alternative?

    I also note that the lections for displaced commemorations are listed during the course of the lectionary. If they are displaced, they are not observed and don’t need to be there!

    In my opinion the gold standard in lectionaries in the Anglican Communion is the Church of Ireland’s. Clear, flexible and easy to follow. They have not uploaded 2011/2012 yet on the COI site so I may be forced to use the NZ lectionary in the interim.

    Now which sinking, national day, battle or tsunami is being observed tomorrow and what colour(s) recommended?

  3. I’m a bit confused. 1 January is the Naming of Jesus, and in the NZ 2012 Lectionary it says ”
    This is a principal feast and should not be displaced by any other celebration” then proceeds to give another two sets of alternative readings!

    I’m not an Anglican, but I’m just trying to follow the seasons of the Christian calendar in my private daily devotions. I find this kind of thing very hard to follow. I get the impression this document is written primarily for Clergy. Can you recommend a version of the Lectionary out there anywhere suitable for a layperson to follow?

    1. Claudia, you are absolutely right to be confused! I do not think of the lectionary as written primarily for clergy – and if it is, I will need to be convinced that clergy are given the training and formation to find their way around this document. I wrote about your very point here. For the situation you describe yourself in, you would find good resources in my online Chapel. Textweek has an abundance of resources. You could purchase a RC lectionary. Blessings.

  4. morena Bosco,
    I see from our Lectionary that last Sunday 20 May the colour was RED, but ordained people senior to me insisted that it remain white until Pentecost Sunday. Last Sunday 20th had no “w” with the “R”. But i complied with my kaumatua priests and let it remain WHITE. Whats your view, perspective, opinion on this?
    Rob McKay

    1. I am delighted to hear of the wisdom of your kaumatua priests, Rob. It gives me hope. 🙂 The Lectionary is wrong. I wrote about this particular example here. Please pass on my encouragement to these kaumatua.

      Just to be clear – the small letters (lower case) are for the saint day, if celebrated, and not the seasonal colour. Eg. in Ordinary Time, the weekday colour is Green “G”, but if a community celebrates a martyr on a weekday, they could use the colour red, “r” (lower case) in Ordinary Time.

      Christ is risen!

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