This is the third post in a series on A New Zealand Prayer Book He Karakia Mihinare o Aotearo 2020.
Page iv says that “the formularies contained in this book were authorised by General Synod on 26 May 1988”. That is not quite correct. In fact, there are formularies in this book that were amended or authorised in 1994, 1998, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2014, 2016, and 2018.
Page iv: “New Edition 2020”. This, I have already explained, is also not quite correct. All the services bound into the 1989, 1997, 2002, and 2005 editions were formularies. That is not the case with about a third of the 2020 book. And, furthermore, there is no distinction in this 2020 book between what are formularies and what are not.
The Contents pages (v-vii) indicate the attempt to retain some of the same pagination of previous books by adding pages F404, T404 etc. after 436. Unusual as this is, I do not know why those pages are not organised alphabetically (F404, H404, S404, and T404 rather than F404, T404, S404, H404). Furthermore, I do not know, when there are versions in English, Fijian,Tongan, Samoan, and Hindi of the Liturgy of the Eucharist “Thanksgiving of the People of God”, why there is not a Te Reo Māori version.
The “Season of Epiphany”, the Contents page vi indicates correctly, begins on page 565. But page 565 is only the Principal Feast day of The Epiphany. The “Season of Epiphany” picks up again on pages 617-626. This is not mentioned in the Contents pages.
Turning to those pages, you notice an issue with Sunday 3 February. That Sunday falls after the Epiphany Season according to the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia (ACANZP) – which has the Epiphany Season concluding on the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple – 2 February: (“Ordinary time is the period after the Feast of the Presentation of Christ until Shrove Tuesday“). Sunday 3 February is still titled “The Fourth Sunday of Epiphany” (page 625)!
Similarly, the Contents page vi correctly gives “Season after Pentecost” as beginning on page 614. But, the “Season after Pentecost” stops after page 616, picking up again on pages 635-710, which is not mentioned in the Contents pages.
The “Season Before Lent” [sic], pages 627-634, is not mentioned in the Contents pages either. (And note capital “B” in “Season Before Lent” cf. “Season after Pentecost” – with lower case “a”).
A Foreword has been added to the 1989 Preface and Introduction.
Page 4 (image above): Sundays are now OF Advent (rather than IN); OF Christmas (rather than AFTER); OF Epiphany (rather than AFTER) [The Lectionary booklet refers to them as “of THE Epiphany”].
Page 4 indicates that there can be up to six Sundays in the Epiphany Season! This is incorrect. Using ACANZP’s distinction of the Epiphany Season from Ordinary Time (see here, five paragraphs above), there can at most be four Sundays in the Epiphany Season. Furthermore, there are no propers for the Fifth and Sixth Sunday of Epiphany provided after page 625.
There is no mention here, on page 4, of the new “Season Before Lent” (pages 627-634), a new season to me, and one that I do not know the status of in our Church. Is it new to this 2020 book?
Page 5 (image above): Sundays are now OF Easter (rather than AFTER).
Page 5 is completely confused in its Easter counting. I do not know why Monday and Tuesday in Easter Week are given a status that Wednesday (and so on) in Easter Week isn’t. In the past, these two days had their own propers in the Prayer Book (pp 593-4 1989-2005NZPBs). This 2020 Prayer Book has (as far as I can tell) removed any special provisions for these days. NZPB2020 (page 5) then has “First Sunday of Easter: Low Sunday”. That is totally confused. The First Sunday of Easter should be Easter Day. The SECOND Sunday of Easter is Low Sunday! The listing of Sundays of Easter continues, but the Sixth Sunday of Easter is completely omitted (even though there is provision for it on pages 605-607). Similarly, there is no mention of the Seventh Sunday of Easter (appropriately, the primary title on pages 609-611). Page 5 retains that as “Sunday after Ascension Day”.
Page 6: gives the titles as the “First” to “Twenty-Seventh Sunday after Pentecost” – titles not used in the propers (pages 635-710) – nor, it is notable, in the Lectionary booklet. Of note, while we are looking at those pages: “between 25 February and 3 March” (page 635) is given as being part of the “Season after Pentecost”. The earliest possible date for the Day of Pentecost is, of course, 10 May! So there is no way these dates are part of any “Season after Pentecost”. Similarly, on page 637, “between 4 and 7 March” is part of the “Season after Pentecost”!
Page 6 makes no reference to “The Thirty-fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time” (page 708) which is always the last Sunday in the Church Year.
The asterisk * at the bottom of page 6 refers to “Sundays AFTER Epiphany” rather than the agreed alteration in NZPB2020 “Sundays OF Epiphany”.
That asterisk * at the bottom of page 6 also points to a Table on pages 940-941. That Table indicates the date in each year (until 2040) of the “4th Sunday before Advent” – there is no other reference, that I can see, to this particular Sunday, either in the Calendar (pages 4-6) or in the propers (pages 550-710).
This series is continued with how this book defies General Synod.
Liturgical Commission’s Video of the launch of this new book